Patty Wilhelm | Students Teach Me about God's Love

Patty-WilhelmMiddle School Teacher
St. Gregory School, St. Nazianz
Teacher for 10 Years

In the light of the recent violence it seems that there is not enough love in the world. That is why teaching in a Catholic Christian atmosphere is a true blessing for teachers as well as for students. In our school we teach love. We do not teach the version of love that is portrayed on television or popular novels. We teach the fullness of love that is Jesus Christ.

One of the important lessons we impart to the children is a sense of self-worth. They are created in the image of God, and they are His children. Our students learn that they are truly loved and truly valuable. This lesson is put into context, however.

Building Relationships with God

We teach the students that they are not the center of the universe, God is. We show the children how to build a relationship with God through prayer, Scripture, and the sacraments, especially the Mass. Once the children develop this strong connection to God, they then realize that He is entrusting them with certain responsibilities. We give them opportunities to be of service to others in the classroom, the school, and in the community. Our students learn that they are the Church; they are members of the Body of Christ.

My middle school students have taught me far more about God's love than I could ever teach them. So many of my students have and are facing very difficult circumstances. I have sometimes had to search my soul to find the right words. Some students act out their hurt, and I have had to look them in eyes and remind myself that this is what Jesus looks like. I hope that my students leave my classroom knowing they are loved and that they will make the world a better place by sharing God's love with others.