Category: Stella Maris Academy

November 25: The School Mass

The SMA Sentinels are Hard at It with Acts of Kindness & Fundraising!

Please consider donating to the support of Stella Maris Academy. Your donation is an investment in our future!

Caleb’s Sentinel Act of Kindness: Ringing the Bell for the Salvation Army

A Pre-K Sentinel Delivered a Bag of Goodies for His Kind Hearst Contribution. Thank you again, Kindergarten Teacher, Amanda Tessier for this Beautiful Video contribution!

More News from Stella Maris: Lunch for Teachers!

Thank you to Stella Maris teachers from the Family Association!

St. John’s teachers enjoyed a lunch break with warm sun, comfortable temps and a catered lunch on Wednesday from Panera Bread. It was a faculty appreciation lunch, sponsored by the St. John’s Family Association. The FA, made up of parent volunteers, has made it a longstanding tradition to host teacher appreciation lunches throughout the year. This year had a little twist – instead of “pot-luck” style, individual lunches were ordered and delivered to each staff member to keep things COVID friendly.

Stella Maris Academy Logo

Thank you, Fr. Seth, for Teaching Our SMA Students

Here Is Your Link to Ticketing Information for The Vatican Returns to Duluth Event August 7-9, 2020

We are delighted to share with you The Vatican Returns to Duluth August 7 – 9 at the DECC City-Side Convention Center. 

All tickets for the events must be purchased on-line.  Here is your link to access all the information you’ll need to come to the event.

The Vatican Returns to Duluth

The Vatican Returns to Duluth

The papal artifacts of Fr. Richard Kunst will be displayed for the public on August 7 – 9, 2020, at the DECC in Duluth.

The Vatican Returns to Duluth will include the artifacts themselves, a Vatican store, a sponsors’ gala dinner, and a wine and cheese night (both events with guest speakers).

The Event is a fund raiser for Stella Maris Academy & seminarians for the Duluth diocese.

Stay tuned for more news regarding this special event and go to to preview this amazing collection and to view event updates.

We are looking for volunteers! If you would like to help in any way, contact the Co-Chairs of the Volunteer Committee: Vicki Faegre at [email protected] and Judy Goar at [email protected]

An Interview with One of the Chairpersons: Ronda Hughes & An Interview with Father Richard Kunst

Papal Artifacts is delighted to share an interview today with Ronda Hughes, one of the chairpersons of The Vatican Returns to Duluth–an event to be held in Duluth, Minnesota in August 2020.

Please refer to the information below the radio segments for further information about this event.

The second audio recording is of none other than one of the hosts of Real Presence Live & the Curator of Papal Artifacts, Father Richard Kunst.  Since he is renowned as a collector and self-proclaimed “pope-aholic” he has much information to share with his audience.

We hope you enjoy these broadcasts!

During Catholic Schools Week, Discover Stella Maris Academy

Stella Maris Super Heroes

On Monday, Officer Jeremy O’Connor of the Duluth Police Department came to the Holy Rosary campus with his canine partner Kallie, who is a bomb sniffing K-9 for the DPD. He presented to the students during our Superhero day of Catholic Schools week about what he and Kallie do for the community. The kids talked about why we consider them our superheroes and how they help keep us safe!


Email: [email protected]
Phone: 218-623-6253
Mailing Address: 2802 East 4th Street, Duluth MN 55812


Email: [email protected]
Phone: 218-623-6251
Mailing Address: 2802 East 4th Street, Duluth MN 55812


Email: [email protected]
Phone: (218) 724-8565
Address: 2802 East 4th Street, Duluth


Email: [email protected]
Phone: (218) 724-9392
Address: 1 West Chisholm Street, Duluth


Email: [email protected]
Phone: (218) 624-1511
Address: 715 North 57th Ave West, Duluth

The Literary Luncheons at Stella Maris Academy, St. John’s

The Literary Luncheon Club at Stella Maris

Literary Luncheons are the best! About once a month, Mrs. Larson and her students spend a lunch period discussing a classic or contemporary classic novel that students have read independently over the previous month. 

Then after school, they watch a film of the book, discuss its merits and faithfulness (or not) as an adaptation, and eat movie-themed snacks.

The size of the group involved varies depending on interest and reading difficulty, but even so– look at this big happy group of students who participated in J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Fellowship of the Ring!”

A Financial Gift of Substantial Means Presented to Stella Maris Academy

Stella Maris Academy wishes to announce the school was recently the recipient of a private donation in the amount of $250,000. This extraordinary gift demonstrates great confidence in Stella Maris Academy’s vision for Catholic school education in Duluth. 

Hilaire Hauer, president of Stella Maris Academy, said, “This gift exemplifies a certain movement in our community: people coming together to support Catholic school education in Duluth.” 

This gift enables the school to meet annual budget needs and further strategic plan priorities. The school relies on community support and fundraising in order to maintain affordable Catholic education. Income from family tuition provides 60% of daily operational costs, while the remaining 40% is made up of generous parish and community support, and donations such as this one. 

Every gift matters to Stella Maris Academy. Last year, the school was the recipient of over $425,000 in private donations, both large and small. SMA is immeasurably grateful for all of its supporters whose donations of time, talent, and treasure enable us to provide exceptional Catholic school education in Duluth for today’s students and future generations. 

With three campuses located across Duluth, Stella Maris Academy is a Catholic Liberal Arts school educating children Pre-K through 8th grade. Stella Maris Academy places high importance on educating the whole child through four pillars of education: intellectual, spiritual, human and the care of others through stewardship. 

Opportunities to donate to Stella Maris Academy can be found online at: Grateful, Thankful, Blessed To learn more about SMA, visit:

Stella Maris Academy Newsletter for February 5, 2019

The above attached newsletter is now the “Stella Maris Academy Monthly Newsletter.”  This one newsletter will cover all SMA wide events and activities for the upcoming month.

This newsletter will be published and sent out in advance of the upcoming month, typically the last Thursday of the month.

The campus specific newsletters that were sent out every two weeks will be replaced with an email directly from the campus principal or office with the most important and necessary information for that campus when necessary and appropriate.

In Christ,
Peggy Frederickson

Here are some highlights from Catholic Schools Week at the Holy Rosary Campus– with a Shout Out to Mrs. Tessier who coordinated these activities, making it the Best. Ever. Thank you, Mrs. Tessier!

Catholic Schools Week

The Students were given clues throughout their classrooms with religious trivia. They had to use spy pens, word decoders, QR readers and more to reveal where their next clue was hidden. When we got to the gym with their final clue, everyone pieced together the puzzle, which was their final clue, a four letter word: MARY. This unlocked Fr. Rich & Fr. Jeremy, and set them free.   —Mrs. Tessier

Catholic Schools Week: Holy Rosary Campus

Another activity the students engaged in took place in the gym on Monday morning where the students saw the bags they had decorated all lit up and arranged in the shape of a heart. They then prayed together the chaplet of Divine Mercy for the people for whom they’d created their bags. The darkened gym was quite literally lit with their prayers.

One favorite activity held throughout the year is having the older students reading to the younger ones. Here is just one example of two St. John’s parishioners enjoying their time together.


Please enjoy the Stella Maris newsletter from our Holy Rosary Campus!  Follow the link below.

Kindergarten this week had lessons on the 5 senses, one of which was identifying the scents in little containers provided by their teacher, Amanda Tessier.  It was a great day to be a volunteer for an incredibly imaginative teacher who was kind enough to gift me with these great photos!   Her newsletter is featured here!

Stella Maris Kindergarten

Stella Maris Kindergarten


First graders had the opportunity to learn all about different saints during the fourth graders’ Saint Report Presentations last Friday. The students worked hard on their posters and they turned out fabulous.

Sharing Saint Reports

Sharing Saint Reports

Sharing Saint Reports



Please enjoy the Stella Maris newsletter from our Holy Rosary Campus!  Follow the link below.

Holy Rosary Campus News 11.16.2018

Holy Rosary Campus News 11.2.2018

Holy Rosary Campus News 10.17.18

Holy Rosary Campus News 10.5.18 (1)



Stella Maris Academy 6th Graders Travel to the Capitol

The 6th graders traveled to the State Capitol on Wednesday where they had the opportunity to tour the building, attend an informative program with local legislators, and see politics in action!


Spelling Bee Finalists

St. John the Evangelist Campus News 1.18.19

St. John the Evangelist Campus News 1.4.19

St. John the Evangelist Campus News 11.30.2018

St. John the Evangelist Campus Newsletter 11.16.2018

St. John the Evangelist Campus Newsletter 11.02.2018

St. John the Evangelist Campus Newsletter 10.18.2018

St. John the Evangelist Campus News 10.05.18

Wolf Ridge 2018

Jesse Murray, Principal, St. John’s Campus

Mission Statement

Commissioned by the Catholic Church, the Stella Maris Academy community prepares lifelong learners who lead, love, and serve as Jesus taught—transforming our world one student at a time.

Highlights From The First Weeks of School

The students are into their daily class routines. Special events during the first few weeks have highlighted our mission in action. Check them out. Great things are happening at Stella Maris Academy.

Student Service

We have received multiple compliments and thank you’s for our students’ involvement in volunteering at the Built on a Rock Concert, Donut Sunday, and the Cathedral’s fall parish picnic. Most recently, students relocated the 300+ reams of paper, Kleenex and Clorox wipes, and tons of wood chips (of which multiple hours came from students coming after school to make this happen). Students work toward achieving fifteen hours of service during a year, five hours of service for their church, their school, and their community!

Wood Chip Project
Wood Chip Project
Wood Chip Project

Sentinels Cross Country Running

The first race of the year was held at Hermantown Middle School. Sixteen of our forty two racers were ready to compete in the 7th and 8th grade divisions last week. Ava Revoir (7th Grade), John Meyer (6th Grade), and Owen Hayden (7th Grade) raced in the top 25 of the their age group. Upcoming races include the LCA Invite on October 2, the Swain Invite (7th/8th Grade) and Harvest Run (5th/6th Grade) on October 6.

Formation Retreat

With the theme “strength in numbers”, the upper middle schoolstudents of Stella Maris Academy focused on the role of friendship in their faith and life. The day in- volved talks, games, small groups and time for pray- er. This was a great way to kick off the new year with Christ at the center of all relationships! This retreat was lead by the National Evangelization Team.

Formation Retreat
Formation Retreat
Formation Retreat

Other News

Stay Connected—as we venture through the first trimester, you may want more information about Work-thon, Chromebooks use, volunteer opportunities, daily routines, Rediker access/functionality, and elective options. Once a Trimester, Mr. Murray will be hosting a morning and evening open session to share highlights, discuss upcoming events, and answer questions to make sure new and current families are connected. Although very beneficial for new families, all parents are welcome to attend. The first trimester event will be October 10th following our 8:30am morning Mass and then again at 5:30pm that evening. An agenda will be emailed the week before the event.

Homework and weekly student progress — Students progress is updated every Thursday night by your child’s teacher. Friday is a great time to check in on weekly progress, student participation, and responsibility. Three im- portant windows you can monitor are the calendar (for daily homework), progress (current grade for each class), and recent scores (chronological log of student work). Click here for a generic image. Log into your Rediker account to view your child’s progress.

After School Study Sessions—On Monday, Tuesday and Thursday each week, a classroom has been dedicated to a quiet and focused study room. This room will be supervised by a teacher and is available for students to complete their homework, make up tests and quizzes. An activities bus will depart at 4:00pm to take students to Ordean to pick up their homebound route . There is no charge for the study session. Students must have homework, class- work or independent work to attend these sessions. Call the office or send a note with your child to attend one or more of the study sessions.

Work-A-Thon —The first fundraiser of the year starts today! Student packets (letter, pledge sheet, and sponsor let- ter) were sent home yesterday with all the information about the Work-A-Thon. The students will be participating in service projects in our community on Friday, October 12th. NEW this year: we have an online option for donations called Give Now. Copy this link and email to friends and families. This is a great way to have friends and families from outside of Duluth to support the students and this great service project. It is easy to give. You can also direct them to the SMA website and scroll down to “Give Now”. Please have donors add the student’s name for whom they would like the donation credited.

Family Association News—The Family Association meets monthly on campus. The next two meetings will be Oc- tober 11th and November 8th. Meetings are from 9:00am-10:00am. The Family Association is currently working on the upcoming dance dates and theme, donut Sunday events at our parishes, lunchroom support and upcoming teacher appreciation events. Be on the look out for details on these events. If you signed up at Parent Night using the helping hands sheets, you will be contacted directly by the coordinator of these events.

You are invited! – Stella Maris Academy all campus Mass will be held on Tuesday, October 2 at 10:00 am. Join us for Mass at 10:00am and stay for coffee and rolls following Mass to welcome new families to the Stella Maris Acad- emy community. This special Mass will be held at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary with Bishop Sirba pre- siding. Please join us in this awesome celebration.

School Pictures—Picture day is scheduled for Monday, October 8, 2018. Information from Lifetouch will be going home next week with your child. All students will have their pictures taken, but only those with orders will receive pictures. You must turn in the envelope with payment to order pictures. All students will be dressed in uniform for fall pictures.

St. John the Evangelist Campus Newsletter

St. John the Evangelist Campus Newsletter

Uniform Message—Just a reminder that pants and shorts with outside sewn pockets are not part of our uniform. The teachers have seen students in black jean-like pants. The policy states, “black or grey chino or dress pants in full -length style with internal seams and internal pockets.” View the uniform policy here.

Land’s End Uniform Sale—Friends and Family Sale—40% off regular priced items. Enter the promotional code LESUFRIEND and PIN 1470 at checkout to receive the discount.

Bishop’s Scholarship Dinner Volunteers The Bishop’s Scholarship Dinner is scheduled for Sunday, October 7, and the group responsible for planning the event has requested a few volunteers to help out during and after the event. Greeters, coat checkers, and thank you note writers are needed. The event is on a weekend, and the note writing can take place outside of the school day. This is a good opportunity for a flexible and evening/weekend volunteer opportunity. If you’d like to support this event, please follow the link Scholarship Dinner Sign Up. If you are interested in attending the event, contact Terese Kenny ([email protected]).

13th Annual Diocesan Assembly Have trouble discussing complex moral topics with your kids and others? Want to better understand God’s plan for love? Want to know why Humanae Vitae is important (and how to pronounce it)? Join the club!

Your opportunity to pray, learn, and worship with your Church family is on Saturday, October 13th at the Annual Di- ocesan Assembly. Join Bishop Paul Sirba at Marshall School in Duluth as international speaker Colin MacIver, LIVE from Ascension Press, presents “Made in His Image… Made to Love.” If you’ve heard of Theology of the Body (TOB) for Teens, Colin is an author and presenter in the videos. You can see his biography from the link on the Assembly website at

Newly added: Mothers’ Room with live-streaming video of the auditorium in case babies need extra attention. Also added is a Rosary for reparation for our Church led by Bishop Sirba and others at the end of the lunch hour.

Upcoming Events

The Work-a-thon: Look for kids asking for support for the Academy.  Our service day will be October 12th 8:30-11:00 am

Thursday, 9/27 7th Grade Laurentian Information Meeting

Tuesday, 10/2 SMA Mass at 10:00 a.m.

Tuesday 10/2– Friday 10/5 7th Grade Laurentian Field Trip

Thursday 10/4– Friday 10/5 8th Grade Earth Science Field Trip

Sunday, 10/7 Bishop’s Scholarship Dinner

Monday, 10/8 School Pictures

Wednesday 10/10 Parent Orientation with the Principal

Thursday 10/11 Family Association Meeting

Friday, 10/12 Work-A-Thon

Saturday, 10/13 Diocesan Assembly Day

Thursday & Friday 10/18 & 10/19 No School

Here is a link to the Stella Maris Newsletter from Holy Rosary Campus

Peggy Frederickson, Principal, Stella Maris Holy Rosary Campus



An Appeal from the Pastor to the People of Our Parishes

Father’s Ramblings

“Father Rich, these are NOT Worms!!

 As we continue through our inaugural year of our new citywide school of Stella Maris Academy, there are a lot of exciting things happening that we couldn’t have done had we been four separate small schools as in the past.

 Certainly the teachers would tell you one of the big advantages is having the opportunity to have more than one class of a particular grade at one location. Here on the East side of town, at the Holy Rosary Campus in particular, there are 2-3 classrooms of each grade, and that gives the teachers the ability to work together– something they did not have in the past, and they love it.


There are all sorts of benefits for having united our Catholic Schools, but there have been some challenges, too. One of them is the need for more financial aid to help kids go to a Catholic School who otherwise would be unable.

Because of the socioeconomic differences between the east and west sides of town our ability to offer aid has been challenged. This is mostly going to be a difficulty as we move forward trying to figure out how aid is distributed considering the limited availability.

 I write this to look for support from parishioners. I have done this sort of “ask” before with a lot of success and help from you. What I am hoping is for people to come forward who may be interested or willing to help out one of our own parish families when it comes to sponsoring part or all of a year’s tuition.

Even if you can only afford a little bit, anything would help. In this situation my goal is to strictly help our own parishioners with this, as there is a definite need.

Please see me if you may be interested in this sort of charitable work as it is a great cause!

—Fr. Rich

Archery at Stella Maris

Stella Maris Kindergarten
Amanda Tessier











Stella Maris Academy: Lots Happening on Our Campuses!

The following commentary is from Jesse Murray, principal of Stella Maris Academy’s St. John’s campus.  We are grateful for the amount of information he shared with us about the students at St. John’s  and the good work and experiences they are having at Stella Maris.  Thank you, Jesse Murray!

The students from Stella Maris Academy continue to combine fun, learning, faith, and service into their daily experiences.  Here is a tour through a few recent events on the the St. John’s & Holy Rosary Campuses:

The 8th grade students were led by Mrs. Katie Lisi and Dr. Mary Boylan, MD,  on a tour of the Women’s Care Center.  Here they learned a valuable lesson on the miracle of life and the science that helps us care for this most precious gift.  The students had the special opportunity to see real life images of a baby with the 3D ultrasound equipment. Following, they had lunch and an afternoon of sledding fun as a reward for reaching their class goal for a school fundraiser.  

Also pictured below is Mrs. Peggy Frederickson, principal at the Holy Rosary Campus, sharing a gift of over $1,300 with the Women’s Care Center raised through a penny war fundraiser at their campus during Catholic Schools Week. 

8th Graders Sledding Party

Mrs. Peggy Frederickson, Principal, Holy Rosary Campus










The 7th grade class recently traveled to the Laurentian Environmental Center for a three day field trip.  Valuable lessons regarding life and faith were learned. Lessons of humility, self control, courage, teamwork, and perseverance were on the top of the list as our youth were challenged to take ownership of their experience in life and become contributing members (good old-fashioned stewardship!).  The experience was unforgettable in many ways! The lessons are truly carried back to the classroom to strengthen our learning and faith community.

7th Graders at the Laurentian Environmental Center

7th Graders at the Laurentian Environmental Center












The 6th grade class recently had a strong showing at the regional History Day competition at UMD.   The theme this year was “Conflict and Compromise”. Each student conducted historical research through personal interviews, reading biographies and historical texts,  finding archived material and photographs, and studying the details of historical events that have shaped our society and world.  Two 8th graders and eight 6th graders will advance to the state competition in May at the University of Minnesota.


6th Grade Science Projects

6th Grade Science Project









The 5th grade class was recently on retreat at the Cathedral of Our Lady.  The children celebrated Mass with the younger Stella Maris Academy students and spent time in prayer and reflection in advance of afternoon reconciliation.  For fun, they met up with the kindergarten students, read books together, and enjoyed a lunch. Later in the week, the 5th grade class shared the St. Patrick’s Day spirit by wearing their green!  In order to be out of uniform, the middle school students brought in over $325 of personal donations to give to the BackPack Program, serving the children in need in our community.


Kindergartners & 5th Graders Reading Together

Kindergartners & 5th Graders Reading Together








Kindergartners & 5th Graders Reading Together

5th Grade St. Patrick’s Day Spirit









Keep sharing information with the people of John’s.  We love your input!





How fun is it to see the faces of two Stella Maris students–one from the Holy Rosary campus and the other from Saint James!

Maia Lisi & Reggie Frederick, way to go, making the news and speaking as articulately as you did!  We are proud of you and excited you were present when the Gold Medal Winners came home!






Jenny Boran

Hello! This is Ms. Boran reporting from Stella Maris Academy’s middle school campus at St. John’s! This is my first year working for Stella Maris and I am serving as the Faith Formation Director. One of my responsibilities is  campus ministry for our middle schools.


I’d like to give you a glimpse into  faith formation taking place at St. John’s this Lenten season. We are keeping it simple and as a school are focusing on the three traditional themes of Lent: prayer, fasting and almsgiving.



This year our students began  Lent by brainstorming in their weekly small groups how they could each fast, pray, and give (alms) this season.  It involved  students considering their daily lives and what things get in the way of their relationship with Christ. They each came up with a few personal Lenten goals that pertain to their daily lives and faith. I’ve been very impressed by a few of our students who willingly gave up their iPads, TV or other technology in order to grow in their faith and to simplify their lives. Some of the students have expressed  surprise at their revived contentment with “old-fashioned” leisure, like reading and hiking! I’m excited to see them continue to grow in this awareness as  Lent continues.


Stella Maris Stations of the Cross

Each of our homerooms are dedicating part of their morning meetings to some form of Lenten prayer. They are also holding you, the parish community, up in prayer this season!






The whole school is also attending weekly Stations of the Cross led by Fr. Rich on Thursday afternoons.  The students will have also have an opportunity to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation during this season. In addition to Fr. Rich we have four priests from the Duluth parishes who have generously offered to come hear our students’ confessions.

We have also arranged Lenten retreats for each grade, which offer the students an opportunity to step away from the classroom and have time to learn more about this sacred season and to provide them with an opportunity to slow down and to connect with Christ in the midst  of their week.


As a campus we are undertaking a food drive this March to help support the CHUM food shelf. Each week we’ll be collecting a particular food item on the CHUM Most Needed list. Our hope is that students will look to their own pockets and piggy banks for the funding of this food drive making it a more personal sacrifice and effort to feed the hungry as the Gospel commands us.

Hunger statistics will also be displayed in the cafeteria to spur a greater awareness of the local needs as well as an appreciation for the delicious food made available to us by our kitchen staff.  

Please continue to pray for our students, staff and the mission of our school!



Many students chose to learn archery as one of the multiple electives offered during the second trimester.

Archery at Stella Maris

Archery at Stella Maris











SMA-Holy Rosary Campus Kindergarten Round-up on Thursday, Mar. 1, from 12:30 – 2:00

Please enjoy this video from last year, created by Amanda Tessier, one of the Kindergarten teachers, now at the Holy Rosary Campus.  Our name has changed; we are, “Called to Be One,” but the flavor of academic, social and religious guidance hasn’t changed.  We hope to see you at Kindergarten Round-up at Stella Maris Academy, the Holy Rosary Campus, Thursday, March 1, from 12:30 – 2:00.




SMA-Holy Rosary Campus Kindergarten Round-up
Thursday, March 1 at 12:30 – 2 PM

Stella Maris Academy Logo   


Announcing Kindergarten Round-up at the Holy Rosary Campus of Stella Maris

Thursday, March 1 at 12:30 – 2 PM
2802 E 4th St, Duluth, Minnesota 55812
Come explore Stella Maris Academy with your incoming Kindergartner! 
Your child will be able to experience Stella Maris Academy with hand on activities while you learn more about how small class sizes, exceptional teachers, and our focus on growing the whole child can enhance your child’s education.




Stella Maris Kindergarten Teacher, Sue Weber

Special Events
Stella Maris Academy’s Special Campus Events
Please check the Stella Maris Calendar for more events and activities!




Stella Maris Kindergarten
Amanda Tessier

Amanda Tessier, creator of the video, with her present Stella Maris Students