I Want to be a Star

As early as eight years old, Bryce Johnson loved to sing, dance, and perform.

Born with a developmental disability, this challenge did not stop Bryce in his pursuit to participate in the world of the performing arts. While attending Valhalla High School in El Cajon, Bryce joined Arms Wide Open with Rubio’s Dance Studio where he has been performing for four years. Learning about our dance and music programs from a friend, Bryce joined St. Madeleine’s and the St. Madeleine’s singers and dance troupe in 2013.

Dance and music are just two of the unique programs offered at St. Madeleine’s. These programs have been part of the SMSC curriculum for several years because they facilitate social interaction, emotional development, and self-expression. Additionally, music stimulates the senses and can help improve a person’s self-confidence, memory, and overall mental health. Music is even more beneficial when paired with dance as it implements a physical component that enhances movement and motor skills.

St. Madeleine’s has recently engaged in a new program for SMSC students involving dance, music and the performing arts. Partnering with Rubio’s Dance Studio, Arms Wide Open, and Christian Youth Theatre (CYT), St. Madeleine’s has established a new performing arts program offering our students a variety of new learning opportunities.

This new program is a series of 8-week musical theatre workshops where students attend classes twice a week, learning songs and dances to popular shows such as The Lion King, Grease, and The Wizard of Oz. Each 8-week course culminates in a professional performance by the students.

We are inviting YOU to support this important opportunity that benefits Bryce and other students at St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center.

Over 100 students are interested in the musical theatre program (25% of SMSC students). However, due to limited funding, only 40 students are currently enrolled.

Since this program is vital to the growth, development and overall well-being of our adult students with developmental disabilities, St. Madeleine’s wants to include all interested students in the program AND continue these workshops throughout the year.

YOUR support is essential to Bryce and the other students who benefit from the Performing Arts Program. Although no gift is too small, please consider making a gift of $150 or more to help us reach our goal of $24,000 for St. Madeleine’s new Performing Arts Program year round.SMSC Dance Performance Morning Glory Brunch 2014

ð       $150 supports 1 student for an 8-week session

ð       $750 supports 5 students for an 8-week session

ð       $1,500 supports 10 students for an 8-week session

ð       $3,000 supports 20 students for an 8-week session

ð       $6,000 supports 40 students for an 8-week session

ð       $24,000 supports the Performing Arts Program for a full year!

Furthermore, as a special Thank YOU for making a generous gift to this valuable program, you will be invited as a special guest to SMSC students’ first performance of Grease – a heartwarming production you won’t want to miss!

Thank you in advance for supporting Bryce and other students at St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center!Fashion Show 2013_Bryce

With warm regards,                                                   Gratefully,

Debra Emerson, MBA                                                 Bryce Johnson

Chief Executive Officer                                               SMSC Student and Future Star


Your tax-deductible gift will help write a happy ending for the performing artists at St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center. Please send in your gift today. To make a secure and easy donation online, click here or visit www.stmsc.org.



Cajon Middle School Students Learn the Value of Giving Back to Their Community

It was a complete surprise to see   Marilu Ortiz’s smiling face walk     through Sophie’s front door, since  it had been at least a decade  since she was an art instructor at  the gallery. She handed me a  small envelope with a huge purple sticker on it and said,  “Open it!” Inside was a   Postal  Money Order for $460 made out  to Sophie’s Gallery.

Miss Ortiz’s art class at Cajon Middle School chose Sophie’s Gallery as a beneficiary for their community service project. Her students were learning about leadership in classes supported by the Ken Blanchard Companies through Blanchard Student Leadership, a program that teaches decision-making skills, developing self-confidence, motivation and good judgment. The whole school participated in raising money during a 3-week period.

 Miss Ortiz’s art class sold small copies of student-generated artwork, working in shifts selling them to their classmates. They not only raised their funds in a short amount of time but also exceeded their goal of $400. Along the way students learned empathy and awareness of the needs of the community. When asked what they learned they said things like “I feel good inside for helping Sophie’s.” and “I didn’t only benefit, others did too.”

Sophie’s Gallery used the funds to purchase beads for our jewelry classes. On behalf of St. Madeleine’s and our artists we sincerely thank Principal Don Hohimer and the students from the Cajon Middle School art class for their hard work and generous gift! We also thank their teacher Marilu Ortiz not only for thinking of us, but for her continued passion for the arts in our community.

SMSC’s Self Advocacy Gives Back

As many are already aware, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center was established in 1966 by the Religious of the Sacred Heart, who have touched the lives of many in 41 countries.
Recently, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center had the opportunity to connect to a   group in Kenya – St. Madeleine Sophie Home and Educational Centre. Their focus is similar to ours, as their “program empowers persons with special needs to believe in themselves, develop their gifts, and manage what independence is possible for them within a supportive environment.”
In November of last year, the Center received a letter from
Sr. Becky Loukae, RSCJ — the SMS (Kenya) Center Director — requesting a donation for Tuition Aid for residential students at their Centre. The letter had barely been opened before SMSC’s Self Advocacy Group responded.
As part of their philanthropic efforts, the SMSC’s Self Advocacy Group raises money annually for other non-profit organizations in San Diego County. After a brief discussion, the SMSC Self Advocacy Group voted to raise money that would benefit SMSC’s sister organization in Kenya.
Last month, the Self Advocacy officers presented a check to Sr. Irene Cullen, RSCJ on behalf of the Kenya Centre in the amount of $1,200 to support tuition for four residential students of St. Madeleine Sophie Home and Education Centrein Kenya.

Bunco Madness!!

St Madeleine Sophie’s Auxiliary





May 10, 2014

10:00 AM-2:00 PM

The Elks Lodge #1812

1200 E. Washington Avenue

El Cajon, CA 92020

$25 per person

Proceeds to benefit adults with developmental disabilities

Guests will enjoy a light lunch, door prizes, opportunity drawing/Chinese auction and cash prizes!

(Your tickets for the opportunity drawing and Chinese Auction along with your reservation will be given to you at the door)

Call or email Carole Ryan-Steinauer, Event Chair to make reservations:

Cell 619-504-6675/Home 619-449-5366 or csteinauer@cox.net