Omaha Catholic school community continues morning prayer

By J1 Reporter Molly Smith

Every single day, the Marian staff and students stand together as a community to lift their hearts in prayer. When schools were ordered to close, the Campus Ministry team knew that they “wanted to keep the morning prayer in place to start Marian’s school day,” said Mrs. Anna Kolterman, the Campus Ministry Liturgical Music Minister.

“I prayed about this, and it occurred to me to reach out to other campus ministers around the area to invite them to participate in a morning prayer project to unify our communities during this unprecedented time and to strengthen our prayers by joining together,” Kolterman said.

This idea instantly got the attention of her fellow campus ministers, and she says the responses were “immediately positive and [they] were eager to be a part of the project.” 

As of now, there is not a distinct schedule, as all schools have been guiding the morning prayer in their own ways, with Marian’s prayer instructions as a helpful resource.

Marian students Scarlett Wedergren ‘20, Lauren Zadalis ‘20, Jess Brusnahan ‘21, Caelen Reinhart ‘21, and Anna Dailey ‘21, have represented Marian in this project so far. Other morning prayers have come from Omaha Skutt Catholic, Mount Michael Benedictine, Duchesne Academy, Creighton Prep, Roncalli Catholic and Mercy High School.

In Wedergren’s morning prayer video, she took the community outside as she read some of chapter five of Mark’s Gospel and challenged listeners  to “trust even when much is unknown,” which is very fitting in this time of uncertainty. 

“I actually wrote the prayer many months back, but the words happened to fit our current situation so perfectly. I wanted to add a few thoughts about loving one another through these difficult times and understanding that everything happens for a reason,” Wedergren said.

After watching her video, it is clear there was a lot of work that went on behind the scenes to produce it. “Janny Apiwattangsakul ‘20 was the videographer who filmed so smoothly while walking backwards. She even took her shoes off in the 35 degree weather to not make noise,” Wedergren said. “My brother, Dash, downloaded a teleprompter app with the prayer and held the iPad for me to read, also walking backwards. It was sure a production! It took many takes, but it was worth it.”

Additionally, Marian’s President Mrs. Mary Higgins sends out a morning prayer at the beginning of each week to the Marian community. 

In this time of unprecedented events, Mrs. Kolterman says that “our campus ministers in the area, and even from other states have been communicating more than ever before. Some good that has come out of this situation. We have been communicating about many other things besides the morning prayers, discussing ideas about many things campus ministry in a virtual world!” 

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A screen shot from senior Scarlett Wedergren’s morning prayer. Photo by Janny Apiwattangsakul.

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