I cannot think of the Catholic School I attended, St. Rita, without including the context of
my family life of the 50’s. They were interwoven as Jesus said it should. Holy water fonts(home and church), votive candles(home and church), making the sign of the cross, reminding other children, and of course being reminded by them also, that a sin had been committed and confession was needed, etc. Homilies at mass went straight to the point and no ambiguities. Group praying was done at home with the family as well as the school. Reminders that it was Saturday and confession at the church that night. Media had Catholic content and we watched Ab, Sheen on the B&W, and the Rosary on the big floor radio on our knees with the family.
It only invokes feelings of wholesomeness and there was too. Christmas my friend, was a real Christmas. Focus was always on the Nativity, and the angel was placed on the top of the tree by the youngest child held by a parent. There was Santa and gifts and the usual, but less in a commercial way. We went to see Santa at Sears, but we never took it real seriously. We actually knew how Santa tradition came about. Presents were OK, but we also knew that they were gifts given to parents by God to us. The poor were always considered first.
We were told that Catholicism had to be lived, and for certain in my family it was. The Holy Spirit shone on Catholicism of those days. Happy memories, except maybe one year when I had a nasty matron for a teacher. But I know now she had problems, and God allowed her to suffer her inner problems so that she could be drawn to him for help.
A wonderful time of my life and I feel so sorry for the children today for the loss of that infrastructure.