October 2nd, 2012

Elementary Excellence: St. Patrick

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor


Elementary Excellence: St. Patrick
photo from St. Patrick Facebook Yearbook Group

St. Patrick wants their athletes to faithful on and off the field

The following feature is a part of a weekly series called "Elementary Excellence" - a set of profiles that will spotlight Louisville area Catholic elementary schools and its athletic programs, teams, traditions and excellence in all aspects of sports. Do you want your school to be featured? Send us your recommendation to editor@catholicsportsnet.com.

At St. Patrick, Celtic Athletic Ministry president Steve Kaufman and his athletic program try to teach their students about sports while instilling faithful values in them at the same time.

“Our goal is to make sure the kids keep athletics into perspective,” said Kaufman. “We hope that the students learn about their faith in sports and not just about winning.”

The St. Patrick booster club is called the Celtic Athletic Ministry now. This is to remind them that they’re a ministry and their goal is to teach their students about the Catholic faith.

“We started the Celtic Athletic Ministry to signify how we do athletics,” said Kaufman. “St. Patrick is about faith and so we changed the name of the Booster Club to CAM; the name change helps us better signify that faith is our main goal.”

In order to make sure that faith becomes a priority, St. Patrick resurrected the Sports Leader program, where the coaches teach the student athletes about three virtues.

“To help us get CAM off to a good start, we brought back the sports leader program,” said Kaufman. “This program was restarted this year. The sports leadership program is to ensure that our coaches are ministers. Sports are not always about the x and o’s, nor is it about winning.”

This year, the athletes will learn about charity, courage, and humility. The coaches will make sure their athletes implement these virtues into their lives.

“During the year we will emphasize three virtues,” said Kaufman. “This is to show the students how faith can help us live through sports. Charity, courage, and humility are our virtues for the fall sports. Our coaches have done a great job incorporating these virtues in their practices and game time preparation.”

St. Patrick is one the larger catholic schools in Jefferson County. Right now, 600 out of the 800 students who attend St Patrick participate in the athletic program. Since the school is rather large, St. Patrick already offers most sports that most kids want to play. However, Kauffman noted that they would be open to adding a new program if generated enough interest.

“Our pee-wee sports have evolved over the years,” said Kaufman. “We now offer volleyball, cross country, and flag football for the younger ones. St. Patrick offers just about everything that a kid would want to play. I would like to see fishing added one day. It would be a sport that could teach the kids about the environment and conservation.”

CSAA athletic directors spend a lot of time working with no monetary reward. However, Kaufman says that it’s a passion and that the program is a ministry. Their goal is to teach the students about life.

“Coaching and being an athletic director is a passion,” said Kauffman. “It’s a ministry, we don’t do it for the money, I do it because I love the kids, I want them to become good citizens, people, and enjoy the sports that they do.”

The St. Patrick community is not even 20 years old, yet the school is a special place for those that are a part of the community. Kaufman hopes that it will continue to stay that way.

“St. Patrick is a living spiritual community,” said Kaufman. “Our goal is to make the world a better place. It is our obligation to make the world a better place. I see us putting our goals into action rather than just saying our goals. We want these changes to be for the better. That’s what makes St. Patrick a special place to me.”

 

 

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