This past Wednesday we formally inaugurated the 2015-2016 academic year with a Mass of the Holy Spirit. We also used this as an opportunity to welcome the Class of 2019 to our community. Our celebrant was our chaplain Fr. Richard Dion.
The Class of 2019 lined up outside and processed into the gym behind the altar servers. The only other time they will do this will be in May of 2019 when we gather for their senior farewell Mass. The freshmen sat in chairs on the gym floor while the other classes sat in their sections in the gym (more on that later). Fr. Richard ate his Wheaties that morning as he was on fire during his homily. I took lots of notes as he spoke but of course I cannot find them! He spoke of the need fort the students to be witnesses in this world, to show the world that they are believers in a time when many are not. He spoke of how refreshing it is to come to Trinity and to encounter students who are so active in their faith. He spoke of Pierce Gilman '15 who came to him last year and asked to make his first communion and to be confirmed. He also spoke of David Gagnon '11, the former captain of Trinity's hockey team, who came to him and said he wanted to be a priest. "The hockey captain wanted to be a priest!" he said. "That doesn't happen!"
Following the final prayer, we made a presentation to the Class of 2019. Each year we present the classes with various symbols of our Catholic faith. The seniors receive a candle at the senior farewell Mass, the juniors receive a Tau cross at the Junior Leadership Ceremony, the sophomores receive rosary beads on the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, and our freshmen receive a San Damiano Wall Cross at the Mass of the Holy Spirit. I told them the story of the cross and how St. Francis of Assisi was praying before the cross and heard Jesus asking him to rebuild His Church. I told the students that these crosses, I hope, are reminders to them that they are called to build up the Church as well.
Fr. Richard blessed the crosses and as I called each freshman up, Mr. Mailloux '72 and Fr. Richard presented them with the crosses. I then explained to the freshmen that each class has their own section in the gym and their section has been empty but now...it's all theirs, they are now one of us. They all moved to the freshmen section to raucous applause from the other students.
May God the Holy Spirit continue to bless Trinity High School in this our 46th academic year!