It’s a “Little” Christmas Miracle!


Ricky Hubert, Staff Writer

Monsignor McClancy is ringing in the New Year with a bang! After the traditional McClancy Epiphany mass featuring students dressed up as the “Three Magi” was scratched due to our scheduled Priest testing positive for COVID-19 3 days in advance of the mass. Suddenly the major celebration that had been planned for so long was put to a screeching halt.

However, that did not defer our humanities coordinator Mr. James Olszewski and our campus minister Mrs. Sciame Doddato who in just 72 hours assembled our Epiphany Celebration. In my sit down with Mr. Olszewski, we chatted about the event and how it all came together so quickly. Mr. Olszewski said in our conversation that administration was a bit weary about having the entire student body in the gym for mass on January 6th given the rise in Omicron cases across the city. So making a clever pun he quipped that the Priest scheduled to perform the service that day testing positive himself was, “the straw that broke the camel’s back. Epiphany… Camel. Put that in print!”.

Mr. Olszewski added on that the chalk drawing, blessing of the “homes,” and students portraying the three kings going from door- to-door, were all traditions that Mr. Olszewski himself experienced back in middle school to celebrate the epiphany and that people in our McClancy family had seen in other parishes. When asked what the response to the event was, I was told, “ Very positive, the students asked good questions about what the traditions were and why we did them. The students playing the kings would like to play them again next year too”.

Although Mrs. Sciame Doddato is out with an ankle injury ( and we hope she feels better soon!!) The beauty of Gmail allowed me to get some perspective from our campus minister herself. While Mr. Olszewski stated that he celebrated the Epiphany in middle school similarly to the way we celebrated in school, Mrs. Sciame Doddato, while not celebrating the feast in this fashion until she was a little older, has fond memories of the holiday as well. Mrs. Sciame Doddato wrote, “ With Epiphany being an Italian Feast, growing up my family did celebrate it. We affectionately called it ‘Little Christmas’. When I became a mother I wanted my girls to know the importance of that day”. Aside from her daughters, Mrs. Sciame Doddato also wanted her students to know the importance of that day, as shown through the way we celebrated in school on the 6th.

What you also might have noticed that morning was that the Campus Ministry office was decked head to toe in student artwork of the Holy Family and the Three Magi. It appeared as if La Befana (the Epiphany’s equivalent of Santa Claus) had stopped by the night before! When asked about the artwork, Mrs. Sciame Doddato responded, “The decorations outside my office were done by my religion classes. My hope was that they would have been our focal point at our liturgy. Unfortunately, our liturgy had to be canceled but I wanted the students’ work to be seen”.

If the Epiphany Celebration showed anything in our school, it is that we have one of the hardest working staffs’ around. Pulling together an event of this scale in just 72 hours is no easy feat. With Mrs. Sciame Doddato’s family having referred to the feast of the Epiphany as “Little Christmas” during her childhood, I think we at McClancy can call our celebration at school a “Little” Christmas Miracle!