‘I am happy to be back in school’: Former Robb Elementary students pen letters to The Vatican

The Vatican responded on Oct. 5 and commended them for sharing their stories

Former students of Robb Elementary School say they’re happy to be back in a classroom at a new school after surviving the unthinkable on May 24. (Catholic Extension/Juan Guajardo/KSAT)

Former students of Robb Elementary School say they’re happy to be back in a classroom at a new school after surviving the unthinkable on May 24.

These students who penned letters to The Vatican transferred from Robb to Sacred Heart Catholic School on scholarships from the Catholic Extension, a Chicago-based nonprofit, for the 2022-2023 school year.

In the letters, they shared their trauma from the mass shooting and asked for prayer for themselves and their loved ones. The letters were personally delivered by CE’s Chancellor, Cardinal Blase Cupich.

One of the letter writers, a fifth-grader named Noah, was shot during the massacre and is still recovering, according to CE. Noah received a scholarship through CE to attend Sacred Heart and told The Vatican that he feels “safe and loved” at his new school.

“I am happy to be back in school. I was lucky to be able to come to this school,” part of Noah’s letter reads.

Another student, Madison, said in her letter that she also feels safe at Sacred Heart and asked for prayer for her cousin, who was shot during the massacre.

“I feel safe here. I was at Robb Elementary School and I feel safe now that I am here at Sacred Heart Catholic School. Thank you for praying for Uvalde. But, could you pray for my cousin? He got shot at the Robb Elementary School. His name is Samuel,” her letter reads in part.

Despite all that the students have been through in the last five months, each one shared their hope for better days.

The Vatican responded to the students’ letters on Oct. 5 in a letter to the Catholic Extension. It reads as follows:

“His Holiness Pope Francis has received your letter and he has asked me to thank you for forwarding letters from Sister Maria Luisa and the children at Sacred Heart School. He appreciates the sentiments which led them to share their stories and thoughts with him. His Holiness will remember the students, their families and all of those suffering from the recent act of violence in Uvalde in his prayers. Commending each of them to the protection of Mary, Mother of the Church, His Holiness imparts his blessing.”

You can read more of the students’ letters below:
Letter to The Vatican from Flor, a fourth-grader. (Catholic Extension/Juan Guajardo)
Letter to The Vatican from Madison. (Catholic Extension/Juan Guajardo)
Letter from Noah, a fifth-grader, to The Vatican. (Catholic Extension/Juan Guajardo)
Letter to The Vatican from Sacred Heart Catholic student. (Catholic Extension/Juan Guajardo)

About the Author:

Cody King is a digital journalist for KSAT 12. She previously worked for WICS/WRSP 20 in Springfield, Illinois.