The Majernik Family
“We knew from the time Kylie was born that we were going to send her to a Catholic school,” says Becky Majernik. Catholic education was an important part of Becky’s own upbringing, and her husband Mike had attended Catholic schools as well. “We knew the value of Catholic education and wanted ournchildren to have the opportunity to live their faith daily,” says Becky.
Becky and Mike have been successful in providing a Catholic education for all four of their children. Their daughter, Kylie,nrecently graduated from Notre Dame Cathedral Latin High School (NDCL). This fall, Andrew, a junior at NDCL, will be joined by his brother, Connor, a freshman. And Danny, the last of the four Majernik children to be educated at St. Paschal Baylon Elementary School, will enter first grade.
“Having four children in Catholic schools is challenging,” says Becky, “But it is not something we are willing to give up. We see the solid foundation it has provided for our kids.” Both Mike and Becky work hard to support their family and to cover the costs of Catholic school tuition. Mike works as a captain with the Mentor Police Department, while Becky tutors children with autism. “We sacrifice a lot to send them to Catholic schools. Without tuition assistance, keeping the kids in their Catholic schools would be difficult, especially now during the quarantine,” says Becky, who is unable to work during this time since her job takes her into other people’s homes. Mike also does side jobs to supplement their income; many of these, too, have been put on hold.
FUND A DREAM FOR DANNY
In March, Mike and Becky were notified that Danny was chosen to receive a $2,500 Fund A Dream scholarship for the 2020-2021 school year. The news could not have come at a better time. Danny is one of six children at St. Paschal, and one of 66 students in the Diocese to receive a Fund A Dream scholarship for the coming school year. All recipients were chosen based on family need.
Fund A Dream students are sponsored by donors who gave generously for this purpose at the 2019 Alleluia Ball. More than 100 students will benefit from this generosity over the next two years. The goal of Fund A Dream is to provide a meaningful connection between donors and students and to give more families access to Catholic education. In June, sponsors received a letter introducing them to their students. Some received a photo of their student as well. A reception is being planned in the future to bring together students, families, and sponsors.
Diane Raguz, principal at St. Paschal Baylon Elementary School, sees firsthand the impact of tuition assistance. “Fund A Dream and Diocesan Tuition Assistance are critical in helping families who are deeply rooted in their Catholic faith and want to ensure that their children benefit from a faith-based and academically excellent education. We are so grateful to these donors who also value Catholic education and graciously offer financial support to help our families and students. It is a true blessing and gift to be part of this program,” says Diane.
A FAMILY OF FAITH TOGETHER
“We are continuing to realize even more reasons why we love St. Paschal Baylon School and Parish,” says Becky. “We sent our children there for religion so that they could learn their faith. We see the fruits of that every day.” The older children participate in the St. Paschal Youth Group, which is led by Mrs. Mickol, Danny’s kindergarten teacher. Becky marvels at how Mrs. Mickol teaches a Bible verse for every letter of the alphabet to kindergarteners, “and they remember them!” she says.
During the quarantine, the Majerniks survived like many other families: hanging out together. They are awaiting the days when they can participate again in parish life. “Even the kids have commented that they miss going to church,” says Becky. Additionally, the family is involved in the activities of the parish. Mike runs the casino for the Spring Fling, while Becky helps with school lunches and CYO sports. Becky recently helped to organize a parade to show appreciation for the teachers during the quarantine. The family is looking forward to the days when they can go to Mass together, watch Indians’ baseball, and support each other’s activities and sports again.
Becky and Mike share the belief that Catholic education is making a difference as they see their children remain close to their family and their faith. The couple is incredibly grateful for the financial support they have received. Becky says, “Our kids appreciate every day in Catholic schools. Thank you to people who give to support Catholic education. We wouldn’t be able to have our kids in Catholic schools without the support of others. Our hope is that one day, we will be able to do the same for someone else.”
To sponsor a student through the Fund A Dream program, please contact Bob Hickey, firstname.lastname@example.org, 216-696-6525 x3310, or go to www.catholiccommunity.org/fund-a-dream.