Class of 2019 Celebrates a Joyful Baccalaureate Mass
On Saturday, May 18, the Class of 2019 gathered with faculty and parents to celebrate the Baccalaureate Mass in the Chapel the North American Martyrs. The pews and choir loft were filled as the soon-to-be graduates made their procession into the chapel.
The solemnity of the Baccalaureate Mass marks a joyful occasion, not only for the graduates and their families, but also for members of Jesuit’s faculty, many of whom played crucial roles in teaching and inspiring students to be good men and leaders for the world.
The Mass was celebrated by Jesuit president Fr. Christopher Fronk, S.J. He was assisted by school chaplain Fr. Kevin Dyer, S.J., and Frs. Frank Reale, S.J., Paul Shaughnessy, S.J., and Donald Saunders, S.J. Speaking about his active duty assignment to the Helmand province in Afghanistan, Fr. Fronk began his homily: “I remember thinking, ‘There but for the grace of God go I.’ For whatever reason I was born in the United States, and those folks were born there.” Then, to the seniors, Fr. Fronk said, “I bring that to your attention because I want you to remember how much and how well God has graced you. No matter how tough you think you have it, I promise you, it’s better than a lot of other places in the world. Think about the things that drive you crazy, and remember, there are people who would be thrilled to have those problems.”
Fr. Fronk then emphasized the Gospel passage from John 13, saying “If you listened carefully, you heard a really important line from Jesus. It sums up who we are as Christians, who we claim to be as followers of Christ, who we’re supposed to be. Jesus is giving one more piece of advice to the apostles: ‘You know you’re supposed to love God. You know you’re supposed to love your neighbor. But I have one more thing for you. Love one another as I have loved you.'”
Seniors Chris Scamardo, Zach Deblieux, and Jonathan Sanders handled the readings while Cole Lacour led the congregation in the Prayers of the Faithful. After Mass, seniors and their parents mingled on the chapel steps and on Will Clark Field. Many seniors took photos with their families and classmates, since they knew it was their last student event on campus.
Commencement Exercises for seniors will take place at the Pontchartrain Center (Kenner, LA) on Thursday, May 23. The ceremony will mark the 172nd year of Jesuit High School. Seniors are reminded that they must be present for graduation rehearsal on Thursday at 9 a.m. at the Pontchartrain Center. The commencement ceremony starts promptly at 8 p.m.