Holy Spirit offers apology

Holy Spirit High School in Absecon has apologized for two of its students who have been accused of acting in a racially insensitive manner during a Feb. 17 home basketball game.

The two Holy Spirit fans dressed as a monkey and a banana and taunted the visiting Atlantic City High School players.

“Holy Spirit offers our heartfelt apologies for offending anyone that evening,” Father Perry Cherubini, president of Holy Spirit, said in a statement that has been posted on the school’s website.

“As soon as Holy Spirit Athletic Director Jay Connell was made aware that individuals within the ACHS community were offended, Connell personally called and apologized to ACHS Administration, and on February 21st the apology was accepted.”

Both teams have a large number of black players.

The Press of Atlantic City Feb. 28 suggested that the students who appeared in costume were racially insensitive. Other news outlets picked up on the story.

The Holy Spirit statement said the school “does not tolerate any type of offensive or discriminatory behavior.”

“As a culturally, racially and spiritually diverse school community, Holy Spirit values, respects and honors all life. Appropriate corrective action will be taken, a meeting with the student body will be held to discuss this experience and to reinforce the importance, value, and responsibility we all have in treating each other with dignity and sensitivity,” it said.

In addition, discussions will be held in all Social Justice, Crimes Against Humanity, and World Religion classes.

“The decades long history, rivalry and friendship between ACHS and HSHS is a treasured one,” Father Cherubini said. “To the students, families and fans of the ACHS Vikings, our apologies for behavior that may have suggested otherwise.”

Atlantic City won the game, 54-53.

Categories: Catholic School News

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