Notre Dame Regional High School

Cape Girardeau, MO

Letters from Clare

A Notre Dame Alumni Prayer Connection

In the days before cell phones, email, online education, or Skype, Saint Clare and Saint Agnes communicated via hand written letters personally carried back and forth between Bohemia and Assisi by Franciscan Friars as they made their dangerous travels on foot across Europe. Clare shared her insights about the spiritual life with Agnes in these letters.

Inspire


Notre Dame Regional High School is asking our alumni to carry-on the conversation that Clare and Agnes had about their spiritual life.  To achieve this dialogue, we have started a Notre Dame Alumni prayer connection called, Letters from Clare, to inspire the spiritual growth of our students during the school year.  On the first day of their classes at Notre Dame, students will receive a letter written by one of our alumni to encourage them in their faith journey.

Themes for Path of Prayer

Clare outlined four basic themes to characterize a path of prayer:  Gaze, Consideration, Contemplation, and Imitation.  These themes will aid you in writing a letter to one of our students.  Below we have provided some details to help you through writing your letter.  Please begin your letter with, “Dear Notre Dame student.”   These are only guidelines and we hope you will make the letter your own.

  • Gaze – Saint Clare, in her writings, suggests that you gaze on the image of the Christ as a start to your path of prayer.  Before writing your letter, take a moment to reflect upon the life and sacrifice Christ made for us all.
  • Consideration – Clare then suggests that you consider the mystery of Christ.  Christ makes himself known to us throughout our life in very mysterious ways.  Share a specific story where Christ made himself known to you and how that moment affected your relationship with Christ.  Encourage students to build a stronger relationship with Christ and to reflect on how he is making himself known to them throughout the year.  
  • Contemplation – For the third theme on the path of prayer, Saint Clare suggests we move from consideration to contemplation.  In your letter, provide encouragement to the student.  This may be an exhortation to trust in the faculty and staff or to be open to God, or it may be an affirmation that God will reveal Himself in His own time during the year. Briefly share your own experience at Notre Dame and use that experience to inspire the student to take advantage of their time in high school.
  • Imitation – The final theme to the path of prayer is imitation. After contemplating your identity and transformation, Saint Clare suggests imitating Christ so that we may radiate God’s face to the world.  Share with the student what act you will undertake to hold them in prayer through the year. Will you volunteer an hour of your time in service to others?  Will you put a pebble in your shoe?  Will you volunteer more time at church?  Will you spend an extra hour before the Blessed Sacrament? Whatever the means of prayer, remember the focus is on praying for the students during the school year, and God showering them with his grace. The focus is not on any spiritual heroics you might perform.

At the end of your letter, please sign with your first name, your graduation year, as well as your city and state of residence.  Now that you have a guideline, we encourage our alumni to pray for our students and write them a letter. If you have any questions, contact Alex Jackson, Development Director at development@notredamecape.org or 573-335-6772 ext. 320.

Letters from Clare Template

View Example

View Example 2

Please send your completed hand-written letter to:
Notre Dame Regional High School
Attn: Development Office
265 Notre Dame Drive
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
- OR -
Email a typed copy to:
development@notredamecape.org