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Message from the Assistant Headmaster, 9/8/17

Jared RashfordThe 2017-2018 school year began with the same intensity and dedication that is so characteristic of our school community. It has been absolutely wonderful to witness our students and faculty immediately engaging — both in and out of the classroom — in the teaching and learning of their respective disciplines. Our Advancement team, in coordination with the Mothers’ Club, has held a series of Form coffees, a fantastic opportunity for Priory mothers to come together and seek out ways to volunteer in the essential work of the school. Our Division Directors have coordinated back-to-school nights for the parents of students in Forms I and III, and our College Counseling office met with Form VI students and their parents to share valuable information regarding the logistics of successfully managing the college admissions process. I appreciate the dedication that everyone has shown to help us realize Priory’s mission of providing a Benedictine, Catholic, college preparatory education of the highest excellence so as to help talented and motivated young men develop their full potential as children of God.

At the Form III parent program last week, we emphasized the importance of community in the formation of our young men while at Priory. One of the ways that our students and faculty meet as a community each week is through our advisory system. At the High School level, Mr. Nickolai provides a suggested curriculum that can serve as the basis for small group discussions each week. This past Thursday, advisors reviewed the honor code with their advisees, providing an opportunity to answer any questions and engage in helpful dialogue concerning the responsibility we are all given to behave honorably both on and off campus. As the Priory Honor Code states:

Each student at Priory is expected to show both honor and integrity in all aspects of his life. These virtues take time to develop, and require an effort on each student’s part to be respectful towards persons and property - in thought, word, and action - and to be truthful in speech and writing. An individual’s practice of this gives him the foundation for a character that is honest and God-fearing.

A student’s honesty about himself and honesty in his relationships with others are the basic values on which Priory rests. This community depends on each person’s honesty if it is to develop a sense of trust and openness. A Priory student makes a commitment to honest behavior in all areas of school, formal and informal, curricular and extracurricular.

We are all familiar with the words of Jesus, “a good tree is known by its fruits.” We know that we are called individually and collectively, to be good stewards of the Lord’s creation. This means that we have a deep responsibility to show respect to all people and for all material things. One of the signs of a maturing person is his or her ability to be respectful consistently. We all have good days and bad days yet we are called to transcend our moods and to be respectful in word and deed at all times.

We show our respect both in the way that we present ourselves and in the way we treat others. One shows respect for oneself by good deportment and bearing, and by politeness of speech. This latter also expresses respect for others as do gestures of courtesy and good manners.

This Honor Code is predicated on the inherent dignity that we each possess as given to us by God when He willed to create each and every one of us in His own image, as we were reminded this very morning as Mass by Father Cuthbert Elliott, O.S.B., ’02. I hope that all of us will take some time to seriously reflect on the importance of recognizing the profound dignity within each other and then commit ourselves to acting and speaking in a way that accords with such an understanding.

Please consider joining us this Saturday in the Abbey Church for the ordination of Brother Andrew Senay and Brother Edward Mazuski ’05 to the priesthood.

In Christ,

Dr. Jared M. 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

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St. Louis, MO 63141
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