Pope John Paul II Regional Catholic Elementary School in West Brandywine (Chester County) and Pope John Paul II High School in Royersford (Montgomery County) recently hosted events to celebrate the Canonization of their namesake Saint John Paul II as well as that of Saint John XXIII.
Pope John Paul II Regional School held a Mass commemorating the Canonizations on Friday, April 25th. A 35 member student choir and eight student musicians began the celebration with a musical prelude. At the close of Mass, the Pre K and Kindergarten students processed in followed by the President and Vice President of the Student Council who enthroned the picture of Saint John Paul II. As the enthroning took place, the student body sang the school hymn “Crossing the Threshold of Hope” written by, retired music teacher, Pat Lamb. The refrain, “John Paul II, we love you” was repeated throughout the song.
Pope John Paul II Regional Catholic Elementary School’s history dates back to 1907. In 1970, the parishes of Saint Cecilia, Saint Joseph and Saint Stanislaus Kostka consolidated their parish schools into Coatesville Area Catholic Elementary School (CACES). Originally housed in three buildings at each parish, the CACES students moved to the present 30-acre site and state of the art facility in West Brandywine, PA in 2007.
On Sunday, May 4th Pope John Paul II High School held a Mass in celebration of the Canonization of Blessed John Paul II in the school auditorium which began with a procession led by members of the Student Council, National Honor Society and various school clubs and athletic teams. Father Jeffery Rott, School Minister, was the celebrant and Father Alan OKon was the homilist. During Mass a blessing of several Saint John Paul II relics, including a zucchetto warn by Saint John Paul II, which was on loan from the National Shrine of Our Lady of Czestowchowa were blessed. Following Mass the school hosted open house activities celebrating the Canonization including a video replay of the Canonization ceremonies from Rome.
Pope John Paul II High School opened in September 2010. It is the Philadelphia area’s first new Catholic high school in 43 years. At Pope John Paul II High School, the faculty and administration continue to honor the commitment to Catholic Education and provide students with formation in the Catholic faith, as well as the education to excel in academics and life alike.