At Menaul School, religious studies faculty teach students to study, inquire about, and explore world religious teachings and traditions. Students appreciate that religion and spirituality are a core part of human experience. Above all, students develop and demonstrate the curiosity to struggle with the “big questions” about the purpose and meaning of life.

Menaul School’s roots are in the Reformed Christian tradition–specifically, Presbyterian. However, the religion department invites the experiences of students from all faith systems and traditions. Our faculty encourage students to explore their own spiritual beliefs freely and creatively.

Menaul School educates students to understand a broad range of world religions. Ultimately students develop a deep understanding of their own beliefs, while learning how to be respectful of others.

In mind, body, and spirit, Menaul School graduates students who are not only academically well-prepared but also spiritually and socially prepared.

Why is this so important? Students graduate with a clear understanding of how they developed their beliefs. They understand they are part of a larger tradition. And, they know how to function in a diverse world where not everyone thinks or lives the way they do.

RELIGIOUS CLASSES

MIDDLE SCHOOL

6th Grade:   Introduction to the Bible (1 semester)
7th Grade:   Ethics and Morality (1 quarter)
8th Grade:   World Religions (1 quarter)

UPPER SCHOOL

9th Grade:      Covenant (1 semester)
10th Grade:    World Religions (1 semester)
11th Grade:     Ethics
12th Grade:     Credo: Senior Religion Seminar

CHAPEL

Weekly chapel recognizes God‘s presence in our lives. Students are required to attend Chapel and to participate respectfully according to their family’s spiritual tradition. The Chapel program is led by Reverend Takako Terino, who calls on faculty, staff, and community speakers to contribute. Students are not required to attend church services outside of chapel time. However, everyone is encouraged to participate in services for their own faith tradition to extend their spiritual growth as explored at Menaul School.

MISSION WEEK

Mission Week in the spring is a time when each Upper School class participates in a community service project. During Mission Week, Menaul School students serve our greater community. Younger students serve our local and regional communities, while older students have the privilege of traveling to other states and to serve.

Why is Mission Week considered part of “religious studies”? Mission Week has been part of the Menaul School program for many years in slightly different formats. However, it echoes “mission service” as done by many Protestant church communities.

In fact, Menaul School benefits from church groups who come to Menaul to complete various projects as part of their own mission tradition. They give back to a great educational program whose core values match their own.

Mission Week is a way students”pay it forward”. They learn just how right it feels to help others without expecting anything in return. However, what they do get are real world experiences outside of school. Bonding together on long bus trips, endless inside jokes, and that satisfying feeling of physically challenging work. All of these things and more, make Mission Week unforgettable.

COMMUNITY SERVICE

Service to others: an important part of a well-rounded education.

In the Middle School, we include service learning opportunities in the Learning Expeditions. What is a Learning Expedition? Week long project-based learning experiences combine all academic subjects into one real-world project.

For example, when Middle School students studied the experiences of refugees, they prepared community garden plots for refugees in the Albuquerque area. Students also created shelter designs and models intended to house refugees living in different climates.

Upper School students must complete and report 70 hours of independent community service over the course of 4 years.

9th grade students are required to complete 10 hours
10th grade students are required to complete 15 hours
11th grade students are required to complete 20 hours
12th grade students are required to complete 25 hours