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Message from the Assistant Headmaster, 10/5/18

Dr. RashfordAs a school community rooted in the teachings of Christ and His Church and founded on the principles put forth by St. Benedict in his Rule, Saint Louis Priory School seeks to recognize the service our students, faculty and staff give to promoting human well-being on and off campus. Several events took place this past week that illustrate our school’s commitment to develop programing that aims to build up the community of which we are all integral members.  

On Monday, October 1, our faculty and staff participated in professional development related to our continuing work in the area of equity and inclusion. We were fortunate to have Ms. Beatrice Parwatikar, a longtime friend of both the Abbey and Saint Louis Priory School with extensive professional experience in diversity, inclusion, social justice, and racial reconciliation, facilitate a series of discussions centered on these critical issues. As part of the program, we addressed the importance of being in relationship with each other and with those whose lives we might touch through our acts of service and hospitality. We recognize the need for developing these personal relationships in our everyday interactions with those we encounter in and out of the classroom and in fostering the same personal connections in our commitment to service outside of our campus community. 

Sponsored by a group of Priory students who have been involved for nearly a year in Join Hands ESL’s Big Brother program, this week’s dress-down day donations are a wonderful example of such a commitment. Once a month, these students get together with their Little Brothers for a time of fun and recreation. As one participant said at the conclusion of Wednesday’s prayer assembly, the work of the group aims to “… empower the people of East St. Louis, to walk in solidarity with those we serve, showing love and compassion to those in need, and affirming and reflecting the beauty and potential of each individual.” Like many of our other student-led service efforts, these young men are developing their own full potential as they learn to walk and serve in solidarity with others who strive to foster human well-being.

Similarly attentive to the well-being of our students, this past week CHADS Coalition for Mental Healthgave an SOS presentation to the entire sophomore class. SOS stands for Signs of Suicide and is an "evidence-based suicide prevention program for students in grades 6-12, faculty, and parents." On Thursday, High School Advisory groups were asked to have an informal conversation about student anxiety and mental health and to discuss some of the information that was shared with the sophomores during their presentation. Although we hope that our community provides the necessary support to help students manage the type of stress they might experience in school, the national, and even global, statistics on adolescent anxiety and teen suicide strongly indicate that our young men are not immune to this sad and tragic epidemic. It is extremely important that we as a school, together with our families, further the dialogue about these issues with our young men, however difficult that dialogue might be. The school administration will continue to work closely with Mrs. Materniak, our school counselor, to consider mental health and wellness programming and services for our students as they develop and mature in their time at Priory. 

Next week, we will come together as a school community to participate in our 2018 Homecoming festivities. The numerous events leading up to and taking place during Saturday’s game are truly a collaborative effort of so many individuals in the Advancement Office and on the Alumni Board, our Athletics program and maintenance staff, and the student body. We are looking forward to seeing many of our alumni on campus for their reunion celebrations and hope that everyone will join us down at the stadium on Saturday afternoon for the Homecoming barbecue and to cheer on our Priory Rebels football team in what is sure to be a great game against the football team from Louisiana, Missouri.

In Christ,

Dr. Jared Rashford
Assistant Headmaster

“Listen carefully, my son, to the master’s instructions, and attend to them with the ear of your heart.”

Prologue, 1

“This is advice from a father who loves you; welcome it, and faithfully put it into practice.”

Prologue, 1

“First of all, every time you begin a good work, you must pray to him most earnestly to bring it to perfection.”

Prologue, 4

“If you desire true and eternal life, keep your tongue free from vicious talk and your lips from all deceit; turn away from evil and do good; let peace be your quest and aim. (Ps 33[34]:13)”

Prologue, 17

“Clothed then with faith and the performance of good works, let us set out on this way, with the Gospel for our guide, that we may deserve to see him who has called us to his kingdom (1 Thess 2:12).”

Prologue, 21

“If we wish to dwell in the tent of this kingdom, we will never arrive unless we run there by doing good deeds.”

Prologue, 22

“What is not possible to us by nature, let us ask the Lord to supply by the help of his grace.”

Prologue, 41

“Therefore, we intend to establish a school for the Lord’s service.”

Prologue, 45

“The good of all concerned, however, may prompt us to a little strictness in order to amend faults and to safeguard love.”

Prologue, 47

“The reason why we have said all should be called for counsel is that the Lord often reveals what is better to the younger.”

Chapter 3, 3

“Your way of acting should be different from the world’s way; the love of Christ must come before all else.”

Chapter 4, 20-21

“Never give a hollow greeting of peace or turn away when someone needs your love.” –Chapter 4, 25-26

“Bind yourself to no oath lest it prove false, but speak the truth with heart and tongue.”

Chapter 4, 27-28

“Place your hope in God alone.”

Chapter 4, 41

“Respect the elders and love the young.”

Chapter 4, 70-71

“Pray for your enemies out of love for Christ. “

Chapter 4, 72

“If you have a dispute with someone, make peace with him before the sun goes down.”

Chapter 4, 73

“The first step of humility is unhesitating obedience, which comes naturally to those who cherish Christ above all.”

Chapter 5, 1-2

“Speaking and teaching are the master’s task; the disciple is to be silent and listen.”

Chapter 6, 6

“The first step of humility, then, is that a man keeps the fear of God always before his eyes (PS 35[36]:2) and never forgets it.”

Chapter 7, 10

“Let us consider, then, how we ought to behave in the presence of God and his angels, and let us stand to sing the psalms in such a way that our minds are in harmony with our voices.”

Chapter 19, 6-7

“On arising for the Work of God, they will quietly encourage each other, for the sleepy like to make excuses.”

Chapter 22, 8

“Every age and level of understanding should receive appropriate treatment.”

Chapter 30, 1

“Above all, let him be humble. If goods are not available to meet a request, he will offer a kind word in reply, for it is written: A kind word is better than the best gift (Sir 18:17).”

Chapter 31, 13-14

“Let all the rest serve one another in love.”

Chapter 35, 6

“Indeed, nothing is to be preferred to the Work of God.”

Chapter 43, 3

“Idleness is the enemy of the soul. Therefore, the brothers should have specified periods for manual labor as well as for prayerful reading.”

Chapter 48, 1

“The life of a monk ought to be a continuous Lent.”

Chapter 49, 1

“All guests who present themselves are to be welcomed as Christ, for he himself will say: I was a stranger and you welcomed me (Matt 25:35).”

Chapter 53, 1

“Proper honor must be shown to all, especially to those who share our faith (Gal 6:10) and to pilgrims.”

Chapter 53, 2

“(B)ecause wherever we may be, we are in the service of the same Lord and doing battle for the same King.”

Chapter 61, 10

They should each try to be the first to show respect to the other (Rom 12:10).”

Chapter 63, 17

“We wish this rule to be read often in the community, so that none of the brothers can offer the excuse of ignorance.”

Chapter 66, 8

“Trusting in God’s help, he must in love obey.”

Chapter 68, 5

Never to do another what you do not want done to yourself (Tob 4:16).”

Chapter 70, 7

“No one is to pursue what he judges better for himself, but instead, what he judges better for someone else.”

Chapter 72, 7

“Let them prefer nothing whatever to Christ, and may he bring us all together to everlasting life.”

Chapter 72, 11-12

“What page, what passage of the inspired books of the Old and New Testaments is not the truest of guides for human life?”

Chapter 73, 3

“What book of the holy catholic Fathers does not resoundingly summon us along the true way to reach the Creator?”

Chapter 73, 4


Saint Louis Abbey

Saint Louis Priory School

500 South Mason Road
St. Louis, MO 63141
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