Last week during Catholic Schools Week, the Battaglia sisters did the Call to Worship. Below you can read the script of the awesome speech they gave about their time in Catholic Schools and NDP.
Good morning, my name is Katherine Battaglia, I’m a senior and this is my sister; Hello, I’m Christina Battaglia. I’m a freshman.
Katherine: Coming from a public middle school, my sister and I both decided that we needed a change in our lives. Even though our classes were challenging and we had great friends, we knew, deep down, we were missing something. Attending Notre Dame Prep, and embracing a private Catholic school education, has changed our lives.
I came to NDP as a freshman with one word on my mind: Transformation. I was excited and a little skeptical that this school would actually change me. Little did I know that the word, Transformation, would offer so much more that I could possibly imagine. As I stand here, I would like to describe how my faith has been transforming. We are told that as NDP girls, we leave being Loving, Just, and Wise. This is how those three words have transformed me into the woman that I am today.
Loving: It is hard for me to put into words the feeling of gratitude I have towards this school and everyone that I have met over the years. NDP has made me feel truly at home, comfortable and loved. Before coming here, I had girls that I called my friends, but today, I look around, and see the many faces of friends that I am honored to call my sisters. I am thankful to the faculty at NDP for they have embraced me in every sense of the word. Each teacher truly understands the daily trials and tribulations of a teenage girl growing up in today’s society and has always had an open heart and showed compassion during times of hardship.
Just: I now understand the importance and significance of saying yes to the dress. Being a humanities kid, it is easy to understand how the dress connects us to each other. Our blue dress makes us the same, our experiences set us apart. Our dresses are a reminder that no matter how far we go in life, we will always have NDP to come back home back to with open arms.
Wise: I can only think of one quote by Audrey Hepburn that best summarizes, in my opinion, what it means to be wise. That is, “To walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.” For me, my transformation in faith was realizing that God, the transcendent, is everywhere. That, being wise doesn’t mean knowing all of the answers. It simply means, coming to terms that we all have a purpose here, and it is up to us, whether or not we choose to hear our calling, whatever that may be in life.
My Transformation began the first day I stepped in to these shoes and being surrounded by Loving, Just, and Wise people. Their strength is our strength, their love is our love, and the God in them greets the God in us every day. I am forever grateful for my time here at NDP, and before I pass the mic to my sister, I would like to end with a special greeting I learned on my first day here, which is, Namaste, in other words, the God in me greets the God in you.
Christina: Hello and as I mentioned earlier, I am a freshman here at NDP. Each one of us has their own personal journey, and my journey has been a little different from my sister’s. All of my life, up until last year, I attended a public school in Baltimore County. I loved everything about both my elementary and middle school, my teachers, friends, the clubs, organizations, and yes, the challenging classes, but I always felt like there was something missing in my life. I wanted to be closer to God. My family and I are very devoted to our Catholic faith and I perform the double bass along with the Contemporary Music Group at my church, but I wanted to feel God’s presence, feel closer to Him on a daily basis, and to do more for others through community service.
I remember ever since Katherine became an NDP girl, how much I wanted to be a part of the sisterhood, spirituality, and traditions that she loved so much; and I wanted to be like her. I knew that attending such a tranquil, beautiful, and endearing Catholic private school would not only nurture my soul, but it would allow me to feel the closeness to God that my heart, mind and soul needed.
I also wanted to feel the presence of the Blessed Mother and embrace her love, our Notre Dame. Feeling her powerful love every day has given me the peace of mind and spiritual fulfillment that I was missing. NDP has embraced me in every way, and has allowed me to open up my heart, my mind, and my soul to God daily through prayer and meditation. I also am so grateful for the many new friendships that I have encountered through my classes, clubs, and orchestra ensemble. I now am able to feel what my sister has felt over the past four years here at NDP through the strong bonds of sisterhood, deep spirituality and closeness to God, and traditions that have enriched my heart and mind. Watching Katherine’s transformation over these past four years has given me the inner drive to become a NDP girl like her. I’m a proud Catholic school student, a proud sister, and an even prouder NDP girl!
Blue by Loyal, White Be True! Thank you, and Happy Catholic Schools Week!