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Allison Welch
Part-time high school Theology teacher; Full-time wife and mother; Wanna-be writer; Eternal Jesus freak
Interests: i love to read, write, hike, kayak, bike, and hang out with family and friends.
Recent Activity
This is a re-post. I wrote it after my first year of teaching, and six years later it still rings true. The end of the year is rough. There is a flurry of activity and then total stillness. The feeling is intensified this year--my son is graduating from high school. The excitement about achieving milestones is amplified, so is the worry and regret... Did I do enough? Did I do it right?... I'm taking my very last Master's class and the Professor mentioned that she says a prayer after the class is over...something along the lines of "Lord, make it... Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2015 at My First Year
Hi Y'all! Happy spring! When I first typed the word 'spring' I accidentally typed 'sprint' and I had to laugh to myself. Sprint indeed. I'm in my LAST course of my Masters degree program. Can you say ALLELUIA?! Four long (year round, no stopping), ironically very fasst years. I have two more weeks of school left (the teaching kind), and then I'm off. Literally. My high school girlfriend and I are going on a pilgrimage that we promised ourselves for our thirtieth birthdays. That was twenty years ago (but whose counting). So, after my last day at work, I'm hopping... Continue reading
Posted May 24, 2015 at My First Year
I am very excited to be participating in a Catholic forum! Please check out my most recent article at Catholic365 -- "Everything Gets Better." It was a long Lent, but I learned a valuable lesson -- everything gets better. Bonus points for all who read the blog: Watch this TedTalk (same theme as theme of most recent Catholic365 article). I promise you'll be glad you did. It is fascinating stuff! Are you feeling depressed about the state of affairs in the world? This is good news from the secular world! (When was the last time that happened?) Included within it... Continue reading
Posted Apr 2, 2015 at My First Year
This is a re-post of an article written three years ago. We are still doing this activity at school and very much enjoying it. Before we go outside we read the Scripture of Jesus coming into Jerusalem and students are encouraged to close their eyes and imagine themselves in the scene. Then we talk about how and why we move so quickly from praising to condemning. I pray you have a blessed Holy Week. “Tell me and I'll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I'll understand.” Ancient chinese proverb. I was always so confused about how... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2015 at My First Year
Looking for something to do for Lent? How about ten little things per day?! One of my favorite activities to do with our Prayer Buddies (Lower School students) is to create sacrifice beads. It's cheap and easy, and it is loaded with spiritual truth. United with Christ's suffering, our sacrifices on earth help bring in the Kingdom. It is at the core of Christianity: suffering is redemptive. So during this season of Lent we practice love the way Christ witnessed to it: willing the good of another as other. For forty days we go out into the desert in solidarity... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2015 at My First Year
"Remember who you are," her mother's words ran after her everytime she left the houe. Brilliant. A simple seed planted in the comfort and safety of home; a tiny germ that will, when worn down with time and nourished with God's light and living water, transform into a new creation. Remember who you are. The words slap your soul like the proverbial screen door, demanding that you acknowledge the threshold beneath your feet. I love how it resonates inside, reverberating in the interior being, begging the question: Who am I? Repeated often enough, the words fall away and the memory... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2015 at My First Year
We always start class with prayer. On the rare occasion that someone has to remind me then everyone gets a lollipop. That'll keep me honest. Nothing gathers the class' focus like the sign of the cross. BAM. In a loud clear voice I begin, "In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit." AMEN. It never fails. I've told myself that when this mini-creed no longer gathers us at the foot of the mountain it's my sign that it's someone else's turn to lead them into the Promised Land. My favorite devotional and theirs, is a... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2014 at My First Year
It's how I got started. The High School Theology teacher ruptured her appendix and I got a phone call at 10pm on a Sunday night. "Any chance you can fill a long-term sub position?" I should have asked what they meant by a long-term! Six years later I am still a sub of sorts. Someday I hope to write a book about my experiences teaching theology, religion and morality to teenagers. And I have stories to tell. The good kind, the bad kind and the just plain ugly. I plan on calling the book "My Life as a Substitute". That's... Continue reading
Posted Sep 26, 2014 at My First Year
Whether you're a parent, a student or a teacher (and aren't we all at least one of those?), I hope you've had a great start to the school year! As the stars aligned I had a ten page paper for my Masters class due during the first week of school. For those of you who are teachers out there you know what I'm talking about when I say the start to the school year is just plain crazy. On of my favorite back-to-school stories from My First Year was when I came home from school one night, dropped by bags... Continue reading
Posted Aug 23, 2014 at My First Year
There are many. One day when I was in the teachers' lounge (yes, I go there now), someone was describing a feeling we could all relate to: It's not possible to keep all the balls in the air. I set one down for a while then I pick it back up and put a different one down. Yes, that's it! That's exactly how I feel. No matter how much I am able to juggle, the feeling of failure lays heavy at my feet. The relentless grading and lesson planning alone will crush you under their weight. Somehow "balls" like laundry... Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2014 at My First Year
You might remember when I "crowd surfed" in the chapel at one of our diaconate meetings. The unity of voice and spirit carried me away like a teen at a rock concert. It was church worship how its meant to be, a taste of heaven. Recently I had a very different encounter at one of our meetings. It is important to note that it was in the classroom and not the chapel that we struck a note of discord that sounded, well,... like hell. Some of the men fundamentally disagreed about a particular church teaching and I have to tell... Continue reading
Posted Feb 17, 2014 at My First Year
Some of the most fun, most productive things that happen in my classroom are spontaneous, Spirit led. I know this, because they're not in my plans... For Catholic Schools Week, each student in the school (approximately 450) is given a strip of construction paper and instructed to write a prayer on it. Then we connect the colorful prayer requests together to form a giant prayer chain that we display in the lobby. I'll admit it was simply a task on my list, bellwork to give my students in order to satisfy someone else's plan. I don't know what reminded me... Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2014 at My First Year
The Christmas Crib was an overwhelming success! Check it out... We delivered two truckloads of baby clothes and supplies to the local Women's Center. THIS is what Christmas is about... I think this is the beginning of a beautiful tradition!... In His love, Mrs. Welch Homework: Please keep us in your prayers as we take a busload of youth to the March For Life. It is an amazing time -- including a Youth Rally that you never outgrow. It's exciting, fun, exhilarating and profoundly moving -- but as you can imagine, the responsibility of taking a group of teenagers anywhere... Continue reading
Posted Jan 18, 2014 at My First Year
... of giving. And if we are Christian, not just to people we know. "Overcoming poverty is not an act of charity but an act of justice. Poverty is not natural. It is man-made." Nelson Mandela 1918 - 2013 Amen. Homework: Add "Baby Jesus" to your gift list. Make it a family tradition to buy baby clothes and supplies and donate them to your local woman's center. It is one of our favorites! Happy shopping. Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2013 at My First Year
For several years I dreaded Christmas. I'd made such a production of it that it ceased to be fun. Two trees, (one the kids decorated however they wanted and one for me); garland on the mantle, down the stairs and in each window (thirteen); and pointsettias everywhere. Then there was the extensive gift list: my family, my husband's family, our family...friends, teachers... At one point I was buying for nearly 30 people. Then, of course, you have to wrap it all. Ugh. And I love wrapping. Have I mentioned the baking? No wonder I grew to despise it. So My... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2013 at My First Year
ATTITUDE by Charles Swindoll "The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think, say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2013 at My First Year
One of my students showed me this and I thought I would pass it along. It's salvation history set to song. Hope you enjoy it. Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2013 at My First Year
It's been a while... The truth of the matter is that at the end of the school year I experienced a genuine crisis of confidence. The song that kept running through my mind was none other than "Losing My Religion" by REM. This can't be good. The words, "Oh no, I've said too much..." kept taunting me like a schoolyard bully. Only I was singing the lyrics wrong and found myself drowning in an eddy: "Oh no, I've said too much...I haven't said enough"--Which, though the wrong words, and impossibly paradoxical, is actually closer to the truth. That's what it... Continue reading
Posted Aug 19, 2013 at My First Year
First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage. At least that's how I learned the song. We spent a lot of time this year talking about love, what it is, how to recognize it, how to live it. As always, students were required to look in Scripture and the Catechism to aid in understanding. The secular messages that they are inundated with are sung to a very different tune, and I happen to know they are confused. "Love is a decision." One day I put this on the board as bellwork. I had planned... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2013 at My First Year
Highlights from our Emmaus Walks: We read the Scripture together and talked about the story. "Isn't it funny?" I asked the class, "Just imagine the men telling Jesus about what had just happened to Him--as if He didn't have any idea! Who knew Scripture was funny?" I could tell they hadn't considered it. (I am convinced that God has an amazing sense of humor, and furthermore, that it is a requirement of being Christian.) Then I explained that we were going to go for a walk and look for God. "You're not going to believe this Mrs, Welch!" the kindegarten... Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2013 at My First Year
I love the Scripture story about the two men walking to Emmaus. It's so easy to imagine, to place youself there. Consumed by dramatic recent events, the men are stunned when they encounter a stranger who appears not to know what has happened. Everybody is talking about it, how could he be unaware?! I love the irony of it, of two men telling Jesus about what happened to him. How often we do that--talk to God as if He doesn't have any idea what we're talking about?! Taking an Emmaus Walk is always a great idea. And what's not to... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2013 at My First Year
I've been singing it for several days now, the Divine Mercy Chaplet. I first heard it several years ago and it is a song that never really leaves you. It is simple and hauntingly beautiful. Recently, I've been singing it while walking the dog. Spiritually, I imagine scattering mystical rose petals as Gracie and I walk past the jail, past the contruction site, past the people driving the opposite direction. In prayer I ask Jesus to visit them, to touch them with special graces, "For the sake of his sorrowful passion have mercy on us and on the whole world."... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2013 at My First Year
Catholic Teaching on Sex? In a word: misunderstood. Thank you, Fr. Barron for helping us to understand! Encore?... The church proposes, it does not impose. Pope John Paul II Mrs. Welch Student Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2013 at My First Year
It happened again, with uncanny similarities... They drove past, across the invisible line that separates "us" from "them." I waved as they went by. It is a simple but important gesture, a greeting that announces our intentions: We are friendly, peaceful, approachable... We were praying the rosary when they parked their vehicle. "Two men..." someone said, verbalizing the concern that had already broken our focus. Two men going to Planned Parenthood? No... they were there for us. "They were here before," someone said nervously, acknowledging the impending confrontation. I glanced over my shoulder and saw one of them getting something... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2013 at My First Year
We have a Pope! Isn't it exciting?! I'm so optimistic. What a great opportunity for the world to see my mother Church in all her beauty; thousands of years of history and tradition paraded before us. The successor to Peter has been named. And what a name!! Who doesn't know --and love-- Francis of Assisi? Wasn't it cool how the seagull landed on the chimney right before the white smoke came flowing out to announce that a Papam (Papa) had been chosen; a Pope whose first decision would be to pick the name of a man who is known for... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2013 at My First Year