The Sullivan Family from St. Mary Magdalene Parish

Jackie and Tim Sullivan

9 children attended St. Mary-Basha & Seton Catholic Prep


Why was it important that your children attend Catholic schools?

“Catholic schools are so important to us because if you think about it, our kids are spending the majority of their day in someone else’s care. Their minds are molded and shaped by people they spend their time with. Yes, parents are the primary educators of their children, but isn’t it nice to know that in a Catholic school we are supported by like-minded people who share the same morals as we do? In the Catholic schools our kids begin their day with prayer, they attend mass, they go to adoration. They are taught about the Theology of the Body by St. Pope John II according to their grade level. The classes in general are tougher, which prepares them for college and beyond. At both St. Mary-Basha and Seton Catholic Prep there are also programs for kids who need extra help so that they are not lost in the system, but that they flourish in a Catholic environment. This is truly Catholic. We have made life-long friends in this Catholic environment which is really important when your kids grow up and go off on their own.”


What aspect of Catholic schools made the greatest impact on your children? 

Answered by our daughter, Theresa Sullivan, on her Catholic Education:


“I was able to experience the universality that is the Catholic Church through my Catholic schooling. I grew up in a community that is grounded in the traditions of the Catholic faith. I learned how to seek truth and convey that truth in my actions and words. There is no ambiguity in truth of Jesus Christ and I am glad I was able to grow up in a community that held me accountable to the one truth and one set of morals that comes from it. While we learned tolerance for other people’s personalities, we learned not to tolerate other people’s “truths” because there is only one truth which is Jesus. My Catholic school community gave me a fighting chance to know what I stand for and how to behave as such. It made God and my religion my world, not just something for Sundays or for my home life. It was a foundation for living that I carried on into adulthood. It is irreplaceable and I will be forever grateful that I was able to attend.”


What would you tell parents who are trying to choose between Catholic education and all of the other options available to them?

“DO NOT let the price-tag scare you away! We’ve had nine kids go through Catholic education. We’re just an average middle-class family. We never thought we could afford it, but we decided many years ago that Catholic education was a priority for us. There are several scholarships out there. Any Catholic school can tell you about them. CEA has been extremely generous to our family and has been very instrumental in making Catholic education possible and affordable for us!


When you choose a Catholic education, you can be comforted and even thrilled with the knowledge that it is Christ-centered in every class, school activity, sporting event, etc. It’s about the whole truth. Let’s learn the truth about the crusades not just accept what Hollywood and rewritten history books tell us. Science and the church go together! Every single class at school we can and do talk about Jesus.”


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