Notre Dame High School, West Haven, Connecticut, celebrated its Holy Cross Heritage during Catholic Schools Week in the United States.
On Monday, January 30, Fr. Wilson Miscamble, C.S.C., presided at Eucharistic Liturgy in Alumni Hall that marked the beginning of the annual heritage observance. In his homily, Fr. Miscamble exhorted the Notre Dame students to deepen their faith and to put their faith into action regardless of the cost.
Angel Chavez, a member of Notre Dame’s senior class, gave a personal reflection at the conclusion of the liturgy. Angel spoke to the members of the Notre Dame community about his personal growth in faith during his four years at NDHS, and how the traditions of the Congregation of Holy Cross have influenced his life.
I am Angel Chavez, a member of the Class of 2017.
As a Notre Dame senior, I have had four years to embrace the mission of the Congregation of Holy Cross. Notre Dame has prepared me well for college, in all aspects: the mind, body, and spirit. I am glad to be a part of the family of the Congregation of Holy Cross. The feeling that you get from the Brothers and Priests is indescribable. “Hail the Cross, Our Only Hope.” The cross is a symbol of hope, and we as followers of Christ, are drawn to spread his good word.
Where is the hope that God wishes upon all of us? I know that I have seen Christ and his hope in soup kitchens, food pantries, hospitals, nursing homes, and various services projects. I’ve served the hungry, disabled, and sick. Whether my heart is set on putting food on someone’s table, or a smile on their face, I do it out of love and respect for all of God’s children. That is the effect of a Holy Cross education in service.
I have a deep passion for the sciences, so I found myself drawn to serve the veterans at the VA Hospital. In addition to wanting to experience the environment of a hospital on a day-to-day basis, I learned a lot from the veterans themselves. They told me of their battles, both on and off the front lines; overcoming such great odds is a feat in and of itself. I was even more impressed when they spoke to me of how their ambitions had led them to pursue their dreams, whether that be to start a family or a career. I honestly was surprised when they told me that God was by their side. Faith is where they have found their courage and that it is where we will find ours.
As a role model to my two younger brothers, I believe that I must set myself apart from the rest. That is why I have grown so much as a person. I wouldn’t recognize the person that I was only four years ago. From a freshman to a Notre Dame man, I’ve become more than what I once was. I strive to be an educator of the faith because there is nothing stronger than that: faith in humanity, faith in family, and faith in love. May each of us who has been formed by the Congregation of Holy Cross do the same.
To emphasize the solidarity of Holy Cross educational institutions throughout the United States, Mrs. Gail Bellucci, Notre Dame’s campus minister, coordinated a video sharing of morning prayers between Notre Dame and two other Holy Cross schools: Bishop McNamara High School, Forestville, MD and Holy Cross High School, San Antonio, Texas. Notre Dame High School has a sister-school relationship with St. Joseph Hill Secondary School, Kyarusozi, Uganda, East Africa. In what has become a tradition at Notre Dame, a faculty-student basketball game will serve as a fundraiser for St. Joseph Hill.