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 Did You Know?
By Cynthia Leal Massey
I f you’ve ever driven down Scenic Loop Road, you may have noticed a sign at the entrance to Low Road that
says “Schoenstatt Shrine.” Schoenstatt is a German word that means “beautiful place.” This shrine, built in 2008, is a replica of the original shrine in Germany, near Koblenz on the Rhine river, which was established in 1914. That shrine is the most visited of the shrines around the world. Through the years, more than 220 Schoenstatt Shrines have been erected in the world, each an exact replica of the original. The Helotes shrine, called Mount Schoenstatt, is one of three in Texas. The others are in Rockport and Austin. In the continental United States, there are ten daughter shrines and in Puerto Rico there are two.
The Schoenstatt Shrine is a Catholic shrine and part of the Apostolic movement founded by Josef Kentenich in Germany in October 1914. Kentenich, spiritual director of the Minor Seminary of the Pallottine Fathers, was standing in the old chapel of St. Michael, which had been neglected and unused for many years, talking to his seminarian students. War had broken out in Europe two months before, and Kentenich saw the need for a place of consolation. As a devout Marian (follower of the Virgin Mary),
he told his students that he had a vision to transform the old chapel into a Marian Shrine, a place where, in his words, “All those who come here to pray, shall experience the glory of Mary.”
Unlike at the shrines of Lourdes and Fatima, there has been no apparition of Mary in Schoenstatt. Rather, the shrines are places of renewal and contemplation where believers can experience God’s presence and transforming love through the mother of Jesus, according to Kentenich, who passed away in 1968.
In 1973, according to Kathleen Colunga, president of the board of the Schoenstatt Movement of San Antonio, the Texas Schoenstatt family began petitioning “Our Lady” for a gift of land for a shrine. Twenty- three years later, two women were driving on their way home on the historic Scenic Loop Road in Helotes and saw a “for sale” sign for a 52-acre property. Looking through the barbed-wire fence they could see the beautiful property of oak trees, mountain laurels and a spacious meadow of wild flowers and a beautiful hill. The land had previously been used for longhorn cattle to graze.
A call was made to Sister M. Corelia Bechold, Schoenstatt Sister of Mary, who
contacted a potential benefactor about the hill-country property. The benefactor believed it was the Blessed Mother’s choice and began the process to purchase the property for the future Schoenstatt Daughter Shrine in the Archdiocese of San Antonio.
The signing of documents and transfer of the deed took place on August 12, 1996. The Shrine was dedicated on October 18, 2008, by Archbishop Jose Gomez with over 1,700 people in attendance, including many concelebrating priests, deacons and assistants.
This year the Schoenstatt Movement celebrates how it began as an Apostolic
Movement in the Archdiocese of San Antonio, and will celebrate the 50th Golden Jubilee on November 23, 2019.
Visitors are welcome to visit the shrine, which is open from 9 to 5:30 daily. Go to for information on Mass and Rosary times.
Cynthia Leal Massey is the author of two books on the history of Helotes. Visit
     NISD Bowling Season Begins
Some of NISD’s amazing bowlers from Stevens, Taft, Marshall, Health Careers, Holmes, O’Connor, Brennan, Brandeis and Warren before the Regional Bowling Competition in March.
Four-Legged “Student” of Honor Keeps Her Boy Safe
   Submitted By Carla Squyers
incredible service but also acts as a source of comfort to Carter during his difficult medical journey.
The school and the family began preparing for a smooth transition several months before the first day of school. In addition to ensuring that district procedures were followed and parents were informed, all teachers were trained prior to the first day of school and the students in Carter’s classroom were trained on the first day of school. Carter’s mother feels that having Charlotte at school with him gives the family a peace of mind that they wouldn’t have otherwise. As for the staff and students at Hoffmann, she has quickly become a member of our school family.
  y Alissa Reinhard
BN orthside ISD Bowling Season
begins this month. After great
success last season, including a state championship by the Health Careers High School girls’ team, Northside ISD’s bowling program continues to grow with continued success on the horizon.
In San Antonio, high schools from the Northside and Northeast school districts compete for the opportunity to win their district and qualify for the regional tournament with the hopes of qualifying for the state tournament.
Last season, seven Northside high school teams and 11 individuals advanced to the state high school bowling championship.
All qualified after competing at regional tournaments. Advancing to the state tournament in the girl’s division were teams from Brandeis, Brennan, Health Careers, and O’Connor high schools. In the boy’s division, the Marshall, O’Connor, and Taft high schools teams qualified for state.
The Health Careers girls’ team was named state champs while a girls’ team with students from Brandeis, Brennan, Harlan, Holmes and O’Connor won the State All- District Bowling Tournament. A boys’ team with students from Brandeis, Brennan, O’Connor and Warren finished as runners up in their division.
offmann Elementary School registered a new type of “student” this year...the four-
legged type! Charlotte is a 10-month old Goldendoodle Service Dog for Carter, a second grade student at Hoffmann. Carter has Mitochondrial Disease, which means his body doesn’t produce enough energy for his organs to function properly. As a result, he suffers from frequent drops in blood sugars and increased levels of ketones. Charlotte is trained to detect when Carter’s blood sugar drops or his ketones go up and alert someone so that he can get proper treatment. She is an extra set of eyes on him to watch for subtle changes in his condition that even humans might not notice. Charlotte not only provides this
November 2019

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