Centralia, Illinois

Our Principal's Corner

Our Principal's Corner


“ The Divide......."


November 9, 2018


by Jason Swann, Principal






Finally, the election is over!!! I must say that I will NOT miss the constant smear-campaigning ads splattered across our television broadcasts in a repetitive fashion at all. I wonder what an election in today’s “instant news and social media” society would look like if the candidates would simply tell us what they are planning to do to serve us, our area, and our interests instead of spending millions of dollars to slam their running opponent? I’m quite sure we will never know. What the election did remind me of, along with our continuous news updates on the candidates/election in progress, was the great divide within our country. I mean, it was difficult to get away from it what with all the broadcasts highlighting “a country divided” every morning, evening and night. 

This idea brought me to consider both the severity and truth to this “divide”. After all, regardless of political affiliation, we are all still Americans, right? And who is working harder to divide, or keep a country divided, the dueling political parties, or the news media itself? Regardless of where you side or your personal platform on this matter, the concern should raise in you the question, perhaps not globally or even politically, but personally; what am I doing to bridge the divide? I know, you’re probably asking what it could possibly be which you could do to bridge a political divide however, what if we ask the question on a smaller, more personal scale? For example, what am I doing to bridge the divide in my relationship, Church, family, workplace, or with God? 

One thing public issue can teach us is how to refocus on the like-private/personal issues we are going through in our own lives and we can ask ourselves this, do our words match our actions? I have listened to many people who condemn the actions of our politicians and news media only to be doing the same things which they condemn in their personal lives. Why is this? Why do so many of us say what “others” should be doing as if we are the judge, yet perpetuate the exact behavior? Perhaps we feel we are above such judgment ourselves. One thing is for certain, the “do as I say not as I do” motto runs ramped in modern America. Unfortunately, it simply doesn’t work. Unfortunately, thoughts dictate our actions and far too often, our actions counter our words! 

As a Church, we need to remember how we got here and why we are here in the first place. Not to condemn and judge but to uplift and support! We do not exist as a religion of ownership, but a religion of discipleship. The number of Catholics in our churches are dwindling faster than the number of Catholic students in our schools and what, if anything, are we doing to stop it?? Yes, the divide is there but are we working to bridge it, or, like the modern social platform, are we working to keep it there? 

Times like this are good for self/organizational reflection. If we believe we are above such practices we are allowing ourselves to sit stagnant and eventually be passed by. Whatever your quarrel, whatever your fear, whatever your disagreement, can it not be set aside in order to allow for collaboration? If we hold onto the past, how will we ever be able to work to the future? It is time to ask yourself, do my suggestions for others match the efforts of myself? Do I need to reassess my personal mindset and contribution to growing forward? 

Mr. Swann/Principal

Saint Mary School


[Posted on November 9, 2018]

Our Principal's Corner