Religion Department

Nearly every priest and sister living in St. Marys teaches Religion class in the Academy, so it is one of their chief means of influencing the future generations of young Catholics. The Religion department is an apostolate that uses concrete means of developing young minds to think deeply, express these thoughts well in writing, and establish a thorough understanding of the Faith. The ultimate goal of Religion class is the salvation of souls because “faith comes by hearing,” but also through the opening of souls to the vivifying effects of sanctifying grace. In this way a Religion teacher does not work alone but accompanies God in His work within souls.

There is thus an intellectual or curricular aspect to the classes but also a personal aspect to instructing the students about who God is and what He wants from each of them. This instruction and the living example of the teacher touch the very nature and purpose of each child. A student may study English and history in school and come to a certain necessary knowledge of good and beautiful things that will act as a means of attaining his end as created by God, but what is addressed and formed in a Religion class touches this end directly. This is why we can say that while every class rightly taught in the school is good and true in its own right, all subjects must be subservient to the study of God and His revelation through Jesus Christ and His Church.

Students begin religious instruction through exposure to sacred persons, objects, and stories. Their knowledge is built on the catechism, which is memorized throughout the elementary school years and explained so as to give them a deep understanding of the mysteries of their Faith. Scripture and the texts of the liturgy supplement this instruction all the way through their formative years. By the time students reach high school they are given a more in-depth study of the Faith, grace, Our Lord Jesus Christ, His Blessed Mother, the Church, the crisis in the Church, and the Kingship of Our Lord. All of this is enshrined in the sacred liturgy through the weekly school Masses and high-school attendance at Solemn Vespers of major feasts. Starting in 8th grade, all students attend annual retreats, culminating in five-day Ignatian retreats in the senior year. What the students receive is nothing other than what Holy Mother the Church has always passed on to her children, which is an immeasurable gift.

The goal is to give the Faith to young people, but most importantly, to give them a love of that faith and a generosity towards God. We hope and pray that they might have a great docility to His influence and a willingness to offer themselves to a noble cause in the work of bringing souls to God. This is how the cycle repeats itself and how God never ceases to make Himself known and loved throughout the entire world

School Mass

Participation in weekly School Mass is part of the Religion requirements for all students and is required. Students will be assigned a day to attend School Mass with their class in Assumption Chapel.