St. John’s Jesuit High School & Academy began celebrations for its 50th year of re-establishment in Toledo, Ohio, on Friday, September 4, 2015, with a Mass of the Holy Spirit. Father Brian Paulson, SJ, provincial of the Chicago-Detroit Jesuit Province, concelebrated the Mass with fellow Jesuits, members of other religious orders, and members of the Catholic Diocese of Toledo.
Mike Truesdell, president of St. John's Jesuit, said the Mass was a wonderful way to begin a new school year, as well as mark the school's milestone anniversary.
"This Mass of the Holy Spirit served as a perfect example of our Jesuit Catholic identity," said Truesdell. "Alumni attended in person as well as via the Internet. St. John's Jesuit represents a special community indeed!"
At the school's official opening in September 1965, St. John's Jesuit's first president, Fr. Nicholas Gelin, SJ, said, “Today, St. John’s begins its second springtime with a planting that we pray will yield a harvest comparable to the first.”
The school has certainly achieved this. Many of Toledo’s leaders in education, business, and government have their foundation in a St. John’s Jesuit education, as do many other people around the country. Over the past 50 years, St. John’s Jesuit graduates have included Pulitzer Prize winners Michael Sallah ’73 and Nick Anderson ‘85; Tony Award winner Kevin Kirkwood Smith ’95; Arizona Governor Doug Ducey ’82; CBS correspondent Steve Hartman ’81; Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman ’73; Olympic contenders Scott Parsons ’97 and David Colturi ’07; numerous judges, priests, captains of local and national industry; NFL and NBA players and coaches; community leaders; and more.
The high school opened its doors to all boys in 1965 with the gym, auditorium, and chapel still under construction. Today, the campus has grown to 54 acres, while teachers and staff continue the school's 50-year mission to educate young men, grades 6-12. Academic facilities include a high school for grades 9-12, with a wing for grades 6-8, and a campus that consists of an array of state-of-the-art sports facilities, arts complexes, and a chapel that seats the entire student body.
||Father Brian Paulson, SJ, celebrates Mass of the Holy Spirit with fellow Jesuits and other priests.|
More than 10,000 young men have experienced opportunities that have changed their lives and defined who they are throughout their years at St. John's Jesuit. Graduates understand that helping someone and touching another's life makes a world of difference for a student. Though many graduates go on to successful careers, Jesuit education has always been more about internal formation based on St. Ignatius of Loyola's teachings, the St. John’s Jesuit brotherhood, and becoming men for others. For 475 years Jesuit education has produced tomorrow’s leaders in a Christ-centered atmosphere.
St. John’s Jesuit is part of a network of 63 high schools and 28 colleges in the United States and hundreds of institutions worldwide that share similar ideals and programs. Founding documents based on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius orient and guide all Jesuit institutions and their employees and collaborators to effectively carry on the educational mission and services of the Society of Jesus.
Dr. Catherine Karl, senior consultant in the Office of Secondary and Pre-Secondary Education for the Midwest Jesuits, expressed appreciation for St. John's Jesuit's history and ongoing work of forming young men for others.
"The Midwest Jesuits celebrate and congratulate the commitment of St. John's to educating the whole person for the past 50 years and in the years to come," she said. "St. John's graduates take their place among the thousands of Jesuit school graduates across the country and around the world who strive to live their lives for others. St. John's is a gift to all!"
Click here to watch St. John's Jesuit's Mass of the Holy Spirit.
Learn more about Jesuit education in the Chicago-Detroit and Wisconsin Jesuit Provinces.