What sets us apart
We asked our students what makes St. Mary's Visitation so awesome. Here is their top ten:
"Hello, my name is Felicity. I am an eighth grader here at St. Mary’s Visitation school, and will soon find myself graduating this upcoming spring. Over the course of my ten years here at SMV, I have been molded into a confident and capable believer, as well as a daughter of Christ through various activities teaching me the importance of academic challenge, service to society, and faithfulness.
At SMV I am so blessed to receive an education that integrates Catholic Moral Life into everyday activities, and to be able to myself imitate the Christ-like actions of my teachers. SMV goes beyond simply sitting students down at desks and handing out workbooks, it consists of committed, faithful teachers who bring Christ into every classroom. Whether it be our daily prayer journal, Fr. Peter coming in to talk to the class, or even just having a group conversation during Theology class, I come to know God as I am learning. At SMV I learned to take hold of my ambitions and set goals. I learned what it meant to trust in God and work and strive to achieve those goals.
Teaching students the impactfulness of service to society is a key point in SMV’s central mission, and it more than lives up to that standard. I am so blessed to live in a city such as Elm Grove with shelter and food, as many of us are, but it is crucial to a follower of Christ that he or she cares for those most in need. My eyes were completely opened to this very notion when I attended one of the many service trips that SMV takes to St. John’s Open Door Cafe in downtown Milwaukee, where I had the privilege to serve the homeless and hungry, and to see firsthand their strife and sufferings. It was powerful to me because I found that I could be the living Christ in these people’s lives, and that I was making a difference for them even if just by putting food on their plates. This was a feeling that I will never forget, and one that I hope to experience more often as I grow in age and faith.
If not for my attending SMV, I can confidently say that my faith would not be nearly as strong as it is today. Faith is having complete trust or confidence in God’s existence and providential care, leading to a sense of peace, without the need for scientific proof. This is a notion that the vast majority of people find hardest to grasp when it comes to the Church. It is one thing if someone is solely told there is a God, as the feat becomes believing in His true presence. It is another, however, to be told, and to feel. Here at SMV, I am not simply told of God’s presence, I can feel it radiate in every student or teacher that I may share a conversation with. It is the experience of faith, and the feeling of Christ’s presence everyday that makes me truly understand the meaning of faith. Through attending masses, confessions, as well as monthly benediction and adoration, I come to know Christ in a special way, one that allows me to trust in God’s providential will.
As I graduate onto new things, many doors in my life will open, each requiring a great deal of faith and devotion to Christ, which SMV has given me through Catholic religious formation, academic challenge, and continuous improvement. "~Felicity SMV 8th Grader
"Our family has been at St. Mary's Visitation for three years. We moved here from out of state and came to the SMV Open House. Since then the school has been a great part of our life. The first thing you notice about the school is the great students. The older kids are buddies to the younger ones and they genuinely want to be their friends. Then you see why the kids are so great after meeting their parents. The parents instill great values in their children and their kids carry those values with them both inside and outside the school. To us, SMV is a great community that we are proud to be a part of. The teachers help our kids learn and give us all a place to make new friends and have fun."
~ Chad Schmidt, SMV parent of 3rd grader
"SMV is more than just a school. It is also a community of caring people that has enriched our lives over the past seven years."
~ Courtney Warren, SMV parent of 3rd and 1st grade students
"As soon as I started DSHA, I could tell that there was a distinct difference between the people that had a quality education in grade school and the people who were struggling. From the start, SMV proved to give us an immense head start, and the first month showed to be all review. Now, with a semester done of high school, I can still feel the difference that St. Mary's gave me. I still hold onto the habits I learned, like showing my work and keeping good notes, and when a new topic is introduced, I remember learning the basics of it at SMV. The education I got was stellar, and I am truly blessed that I got the opportunity to spend ten years here at St. Mary's Visitation."~Sofia SMV Alumni
"We have continued to be impressed by the caliber of Catholic education our children are receiving at St. Mary's. They are learning important life skills by living the school's theme, "Encourage one another and build each other up."
~ Ann and Jake Scott, SMV parents of 7th, 5th and 1st grade students
"I like St. Mary's because I am receiving a great Catholic education. I enjoy religion class, the Living Stations of the Cross and singing in the choir at Mass." ~ Mary, SMV 5th Grader
"St. Mary's is a great school because it is easy to make friends. The teachers go out of their way to help us learn, and encourage us to do our best." ~ Jack, SMV 7th Grader