Mrs. Marilyn Stuit, 5th grade teacher, was awarded the 2016 Monsignor Gerald Lawrence Lewis Award for Excellence in Teaching. Mrs. Stuit teaches 5th grade Language Arts and Science at St. Thomas More Catholic School in Chapel Hill. She is in her 30th year of teaching, with the last seven years at St. Thomas More.
On April 20, 2016, Bishop Michael Burbidge celebrated Mass at St. Thomas More, and Msgr. Gerald Lewis delivered the homily and concelebrated. Fr. Scott McCue, Pastor at St. Thomas More, and Fr. James Labosky concelebrated as well.
Msgr. Lewis, for whom the award is named, spoke of the light of Jesus that is inside each person. “We are all called to be that light to the people around us, and teachers at Catholic schools help teach us about the light of Jesus.” He continued, “Each of you have a special light, and you are to light up your part of the world.”
After Mass, Anne Stahel, Chair of the Lewis Award Committee, spoke about her recent visit to the Mrs. Stuit’s classroom. She was impressed by Mrs. Stuit’s creative ways to encourage and correct the children during a writing assignment with an amusing puppet, Mr. C.O.P.S.
Mrs. Stuit received a silver tray, plaque and a monetary award. She was chosen to represent the Diocese at the Excellence in Teaching Conference at the University of Notre Dame.
Principal Dr. Michael Ashton received a plaque to display in the school building. “Perhaps the most enduring gift she has given to her children is the ability to draw from them their own passions and interest in helping others,” said Dr. Ashton. “Students in Marilyn’s care grow from being children participating in a prescribed project to young pre-teens initiating service and raising awareness on an issue that touches them.”