‘God is found here,’ bishop says at school Mass

‘God is found here,’ bishop says at school Mass

Photos by James A. McBride

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Bishop Dennis Sullivan celebrated the opening Mass for Paul VI High School, Haddon Township, juniors and seniors Sept. 4 at St. Vincent Pallotti Church. Above, the bishop walks in procession with Father John Rossi, director of Catholic Identity at Paul VI, and student altar servers Anthony Rizzo and Ryan August, at the start of the liturgy.

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Left, student Maureen Hennessy proclaims the first reading. Right, two students hold candles, representing the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

HADDON TOWNSHIP – As the first week of school began for students in the Diocese of Camden, at Paul VI High School here, one of the first to welcome them was Bishop Dennis Sullivan, who celebrated two Masses at nearby St. Vincent Pallotti Church, on Sept. 4, for the school’s juniors and seniors, and on Sept. 5 for the freshman and sophomores.
One of nine Catholic secondary schools in the Diocese of Camden, Paul VI opened in September 1966 with an enrollment of 613 boys and girls. Last year enrollment was 1,096. It is 1,124 for the 2013-14 school year.
During the Sept. 4 morning Mass, Bishop Sullivan implored God to “strengthen (the school community) during the year,” and recalled the day’s Gospel message from John, and Jesus’ public pledge to his followers that “the Father will send the Holy Spirit in my name.”
“We celebrate this liturgy today to affirm Christ’s giving his pledge of the Holy Spirit,” Bishop Sullivan said.
With the Holy Spirit entering the hearts of students, faculty and staff, the Camden leader said, “through learning, teaching, administering, groups, and clubs, the spirit of the Living Lord emerges, and can be known, loved and followed.”
We are also given wisdom, he said, to know that God is ever-present in the school. “God is found here, active and present,” he said.
Bishop Sullivan invoked the school mascot, the Eagle, who “rises up, like all of you do, and soars just as all of you soar, through the knowledge, and contact with Jesus Christ.”
As an Eagle is a bird of power, he said, so are the Paul VI students. “The power, the spirit of the Living Lord, is in you,” he said.

Categories: Catholic School News

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