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Steve Mamanella Appointed Director of Communications and Public Relations

Steve Mamanella“Is this heaven?”

In the almost three weeks since I started as the new Director of Communications and Public Relations for Saint Louis Abbey and Saint Louis Priory School, I have been asking myself the same question that was so poignantly asked of the character played by Kevin Costner in the iconic movie “Field of Dreams.”

As a newcomer to the Priory community, I have been learning more with each passing day about this school’s distinctive elements:

  • The deep-rooted Catholicity of this place, as expressed by the monks and all who serve with them, as well as by a student community that is clearly committed to growing in faith, hope and love
  • An increasingly diverse but uniformly hard-working student population, and a camaraderie among the students that extends across grade levels
  • A continuing commitment to academic excellence – exemplified by a senior class that includes one of the highest percentages of National Merit Semifinalists in recorded school history, and by 40% achieving a 33 or higher on the ACT, with six perfect scores so far
  • A vibrant sports program available to all students, and unique extracurricular activities not found anywhere else
  • And an exceptional, dedicated faculty and staff, along with committed parents who choose to sacrifice because their sons’ education is among their top priorities.

And I get to help tell the story of this amazing place! How great is that?

Professionally, I have been blessed to serve within the Church throughout my career as a communicator — for the last 14 years with an organization called Ascension, the nation’s largest Catholic hospital system, and before that as Communications Director for the Archdiocese of St. Louis and the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois.

St. John Paul II visited St. Louis back in 1999 when I worked for the Archdiocese, and St. Teresa of Calcutta came to Peoria in 1995 when I served there. It has been a tremendous privilege to be able to serve my faith through my daily work.

Today, my wife Tricia and I live in Cottleville in St. Charles County. We have two sons – one of whom graduated from college last spring and now works as a zoologist for the Delaware Nature Society.

Part of my role as Director of Communications and Public Relations is to help raise awareness and increase visibility for Priory within the St. Louis community. But I recognize that it is Priory students who are the school’s best “brand ambassadors.” Their interactions with all those they meet send an important message about what makes Priory so special.

Priory parents, too, are ambassadors, sharing their own experiences and telling others about the influence that Priory has had on their sons’ development in mind, body and spirit. Priory alumni likewise are great champions for this place, as they describe the profound impact that this institution has had on their lives.

I look forward to working with all of you — students, monks, faculty, staff, parents, alumni and friends — to help share the good news of this school more broadly than ever before.

Is this heaven? No, it’s Priory!

“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
P. 314.434.3690    F.314.576.7088
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