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We all have our favorite (and, perhaps, not so favorite!) Brothers from our years at the Prep. I've tried to include them on this page, but I had trouble getting decent scans of some who should be included. Mea culpa!

For those of you who've forgotten (or like me, never new as much as I should have) the background of the Xaverian Brothers, here are a couple of links that might be of interest.

When you click on the links immediately below, you will be taken away from the '59 reunion website. To come back, you will have click the Back button on your browser, or reuse the link you used to get here in the first place.

 


Xaverian Brothers

An institute of lay-men, founded under episcopal approbation by Theodore James Ryken, in Belgium, in the year 1839

 Xaverian Brothers (CONGREGATION OF THE BROTHERS OF ST. FRANCIS XAVIER), an institute of lay-men, founded under episcopal approbation by Theodore James Ryken, in Belgium, in the year 1839. To obtain the views of American prelates as to the merits of his project to establish a teaching congregation, he came to America (1837), and received approval from seven bishops, who gave him testimonial letters. (Click here to continue...)

 


The Founder's vision was unique

He intended to form a community of laymen who as religious brothers...would participate in the Church's mission of evangelization through a life of Gospel service lived in solidarity and availability among the people. (Click here to go to the official website for the Xaverian Brothers...)


 

 

 

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"Brother Armand, who later was to be called Brother Anthony, was born in Baltimore, MD in 1931. He graduated from Mount St. Joseph High School in Baltimore. His early teaching years took him to St. Joe Prep. The next 30 years he spent at Xaverian High School, Brooklyn, Our Lady of Good Counsel in Wheaton, MD, and St. Mary’s Ryken, Leonardtown, MD.

"In 1991 the Provincial asked four brothers to go to Rapid City, Dakota, to establish a community and to work among the people there. Brother Armand picked up roots and became part of this pioneering community, teaching at St. Thomas More High School in Rapid City. He was a dedicated teacher.

"He contracted lung cancer and came here to Ryken House. He died on . I’m not sure, but I believe he is buried in Baltimore, his home town."

(From Brother Giles, CFX)

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"Brother Augustine was at the Prep our first three years. He was the homeroom teacher for 9C during our freshman year and taught history to freshman and sophomores. He was the tennis coach during our sophomore year and taught Senior typing during our junior year."

(From Jim Dunn)

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The Mass of the Resurrection: Brother De Sales (Thomas Lawless), CFX

Chapel of St. Xavier High School , Louisville
Tuesday, March 5, 200

Readings : First: Wisdom 3:1-9
                     Second: First Thessalonians 4:13-18
                     Gospel: John 14:1-6

Homily

"These readings that we have just heard are really written for us rather than for Brother De Sales. They are written to give us comfort, to console us at the loss of our Brother De Sales, " Dee " as the Brothers called him. The words from the Book of Wisdom assure us that though De Sales appears to be annihilated, he is really at peace, and at the final judgment he will rise and shine forth, alive and sparkling. The Letter from St. Paul further consoles us that death is but a new beginning for Brother De Sales, that he has gone to Jesus, and that as Jesus died and then rose again, so Dee too will rise with Him on the last day. And in St. John’s Gospel, Jesus Himself tells us not to let ourselves be troubled, not to worry, but to be comforted, for He has taken Dee off to a place He has prepared for him in His Father’s house. So while we may feel sad that our Brother De Sales is taken from us, we are encouraged to celebrate his long and fruitful life among us, and the beginning of a glorious one, face to face with God.

"His long and fruitful life among us: Like most Brothers around my time, I first met De Sales at Camp Calvert, Leonardtown, where he organized the life of the camp for both the boys and the Brothers. He was young, smiling, and willing to aid a young brother down from Xaverian College for summer duty. Quiet and reserved, he was yet observant and ready to give a helpful hint or nod to a brash young brother to save him embarrassment. He loved camp and he loved the kids and he loved the Brothers.

"At the end of the season he would return to Louisville for the annual visit to his family. Those two weeks at home renewed his life. A private man as well as quiet, he never spoke much of his family in the community, but his family was very important to him, a very important part of his life. So much so, that forty years ago he wrote to the provincial to ask permission to be buried in the family plot. The provincial refused: it was unheard of - Brothers are buried with Brothers in the Brothers’ cemetery. Two years later there was a new provincial -- De Sales wrote again. It was l970: Things had changed. Thinking had changed. The new provincial said, "Why not?" And today, thirty-eight years later, Dee, or "Uncle Tommy," will be laid to rest with those he loved so well.

"In between those sessions at Camp Calvert and visits to his family, De Sales taught high school; first at St. Michael’s in Brooklyn and then at Mt. St. Joseph in Baltimore. He then put in two terms as superior of the community and headmaster of the school at St. Joe’s Prep in Bardstown. There he made many friends - friends that lasted through his life, some of whom are here today. While they may never have known it, and certainly they did not know it at the time, those were not the happiest years of De Sales’s life. He hated being superior, and he did not savor or want the responsibility of being headmaster. In fact, to induce him to take the job and to make it easier for him, the provincial told De Sales that he could choose for himself the men he wanted for the Bardstown community and school. Dee was, as you know, a very bright and perspicacious man. He chose his men well - and his community saved him. They covered and supplied for his weaknesses - his severe shyness and reserve among adults he did not know, his dodging of social events and even of appointments. They loved him for his goodness, his honesty, his kindness, and his humility. During the summers when they would depart for summer studies at Silver Spring, Brooklyn, and New York, they never griped, they never complained or spread stories about him. When asked how things were at Bardstown - how’s the Boss? - they replied with positive enthusiasm. They loved him, and they saved him - he lasted the full two terms, six years. And some Brothers of that community are here with us today.

"In 1962 De Sales left Bardstown to teach at the new Xaverian High School on Shore Road overlooking the Narrows of New York Harbor. There he resumed his post-graduate studies, taking his first doctorate in Science History in 1966 and
his second in Biochemistry in 1969. He then began his long career at Fordham University as associate professor of biochemistry, and his careers as researcher at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Institute and then as researcher and adjunct faculty in Immunology at Rockefeller University.

"For thirty-four years at Fordham and these connected universities and research centers, Dee continued at the height of his powers, at the cutting edge of the new biological sciences and technologies, making key contributions to the advancement of world health and medicine, and inspiring, encouraging, and mentoring hundreds of gifted young scientists to take their places in these new and exciting fields. Some of those scientists, former students, are with us today.

"Meanwhile, Dee moved out of the large community of Xaverian High School where he had lived a shy and reclusive life, to the small community at Holy Name and then to the newly formed small community at the old St. Michael’s, where he found
easy sharing relationships with a small group of Brothers. He was supremely productive and supremely happy.

"There is an ancient Arabic saying, "Those whom God loves He first makes mad." On first hearing, it may seem as just another religious bromide. But that is not how it is understood by Arabs. For them it stands first as both an explanation and a
warning. It was a caution to all to look kindly and lovingly on those mentally afflicted - a mandate to treat them well, to care for them, for they are the beloved of God, His truly chosen ones. Secondly, at a deeper, more mysterious level it stands as a love call of God Himself: the call of God to the mentally ill to let everything go and to wait only for Him to come and take them to Himself. And we as Christians add a new dimension to its meaning, the dimension of the Gospel. It stands as a call to participate in the agony and death of Jesus Christ in a unique and terrible way: The mental "Way of the Cross."

"For the last five to six years that has been the life of Brother De Sales. Gradually his memory and recognitive powers began to fade, his judgment began to fail. At the same time, physical ailments began to make their appearance and to complicate his mental difficulties. Confused and increasingly helpless, he was assigned to Ryken House. It was his entry into the Garden of Gethsemane. You who lived with him here, you who cared for him and tended him, who fed him, and washed him, and clothed him, who cleaned his room and did his laundry and tried to make him comfortable, you who visited him and took him out, who sat with him and spoke with him - you know first hand what his Passion has been. Slowly stripped of every gift and faculty, he was in truth like his naked and crucified Savior. He was called to and caught up in the death of the Cross. For God so loved him that He took him for His Son, Jesus Christ. And we can now rejoice in the fact that having died with Jesus, he now lives with Jesus in the Father through the Holy Spirit. Thanks be to God!"

(From Brother Peter Fitzpatrick, CFX)

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"Brother Edgar was at the Prep our final two years: 9A homeroom, taught freshman English, junior French and typing. He also coached the tennis team and the glee club."

(From Jim Dunn)

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Brother Gery

"Brother Gery was a Brother for 41 Years. He taught at St. Joe and Our Lady of Good Counsel in Wheaton, MD. He was appointed Aspirant Master at our Juniorate in Leonardtown, MD, as well as the superior of the Community of Ryken High School in Leonardtown. He served as Personnel Director of the Brothers of the American Central Province

"When he was 55 he asked to begin working directly with the poor. After taking lessons in Texas for Spanish, he went to Carmen Pampa in Bolivia in February of 1986. 

"In 1989 the effects of cancer caused him to leave. His last months were painful, but he bore it with his usual aplomb. He was 59 when he died, and he is buried in Bonne Brae Cemetery in Baltimore, MD. He died on May 12, 1989 ."

(From Brother Giles)

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"Brother Giles was with us our final two Prep years: homeroom 11C, taught junior and senior French, coached track our junior year, and golf our senior year."

(From Jim Dunn)

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"When we asked Brother Giles to comment on his vocation and ministry, he shared these reflections. 'Being a Xaverian Brother has been a complete thrill for me. At times it has been difficult, but that's true of anything worthwhile. I have been inspired by the example and the devotion of those around me and have made wonderful friends among the Brothers. I have always loved kids and for years I was totally involved in their lives, even during the summer. Camp Calvert in Leonardtown, Maryland, was an assignment that I loved and I spent many of my summers there, eight weeks at a time. Wherever I was, St. John's, St. Joe's, with Children's Services, my focus was always with the kids who were least appreciated. I am still in touch with my first patient at Children's Services. He calls me at least twice a week. I have known him since he was 15 and now he's 39.'

"Brother Giles entered the community on February 15, 1946. In the first phase of his ministry, he followed the typical pattern of moving from one teaching assignment to another. After he graduated from Catholic University in 1952, he taught at St. John's Preparatory School in Danvers. After five years he went to St. Joseph's in Bardstown. From 1963 to 1968, he served on the faculties of Ryken High School in Leonardtown, MD, and Good Counsel High School, Wheaton, MD. In 1968, he arrived at St. Xavier in Louisville to open a guidance department, and he has spent his entire life since in that city.

"In 1981 he served as Primary Therapist at a local Adolescent Psychiatric Hospital, but continued to be involved at St. Xavier part-time. After eight years he returned to St. X full-time. He loved the students and he was always involved in sports and clubs. Again, in his own words: 'I introduced wrestling as a sport to St. Joe Prep, Good Counsel, and Saint X. The two schools that are still operating have the program and they are going well. The number of athletes that have participated is profound and I am happy to have been the one to make this possible. I also introduced the ancient art of falconry to students and adults here at St. X. A number of adults still participate in the sport and one of them keeps me in touch with his hunts by way of e-mail. I have loved sports all my life and coached football, basketball, track, cross country, and golf. I also started a guitar club once, which was a lot of fun, but I never got the hang of it!'

"At 77, Brother Giles still has his vivacious personality and enthusiasm. He continues to enhance the lives of others -- just as he has enhanced the lives of numerous students over the years."

(From the Concordia, Fall 2005) 

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“Brother John came to the Prep in '57 and served as resident director until '61. He then became Headmaster and Superior at Leonard Hall in Leonardtown, Md. Following his assignment, he became administrative assistant at Nazareth HS in Brooklyn. He then became principal of Xaverian HS also in Brooklyn

“He returned to teaching in '78 and then joined the provincial staff as vocation director in '82. In '85 he received certification as hospital chaplain at St Francis hospital in Rosly, N.Y., until his sudden death in '99.  He is buried in N.Y.”

(From Brother Giles)

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"Brother John Lesica died at home in his sleep at the age of 72 on February 9, 1999. His Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at Resurrection-Ascension Church in Queens, New York; Father George Cowan, a long time friend and prayer partner, presided. Brother Patrick Pennell, CFX gave his eulogy. Burial was in the Brothers' plot, Resurrection Cemetery, Staten Island, New York.

"Brother John was born on October 7, 1926 and raised in Guardian Angel parish in Manhattan. The family then moved to Resurrection-Ascension parish in Queens. From there he entered the Xaverian Brothers in 1944, after graduating from Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx, NY. He received his Bachelors and Master's degrees in English from Catholic University in 1950 and 1955, respectively. In 1969 he earned a Master's in pastoral counseling from lona College.

"After thirteen years of teaching in Baltimore, MD, Bardstown, KY and Leonardtown, MD, he began his administrative career. After a year spent as an administrative assistant at Nazareth High in Brooklyn, he was appointed Superior and Principal at Xaverian High School in Brooklyn, NY. After his tenure as Principal, he continued to teach at Xaverian and worked part-time as a counselor at the Family Consultation Center in the New York Archdiocese. From 1978 to 1982 he served as Xaverian Vocation Director for his province for four years. He then ministered as a program specialist in the diocesan Catholic Charities' Office of Pastoral Care of the Sick Since 1985 he worked tirelessly as chaplain and Assistant Director of the Pastoral Care Dept. at St. Francis Hospital, Roslyn, Long Island.

"Brother Patrick, his dear friend and confrere, observed in his remarks at the funeral Mass that teaching and pastoral counseling were the two areas of his work-life that he enjoyed and loved. Brothers, family, friends and former students fondly remember him. Father James Barry, CP., his dear friend, knew him as a man who lived life to the full, and shared it freely with everyone. The quality that John possessed that Father Barry voiced and that all who knew John will sorely miss was his 'affirming'; 'he was always affirming the other person, the good of the other person, the fun, the joy, the growth of the other person.' In the light of the Fundamental Principals of the Xaverian Brothers, John's life was a beautiful dramatization of the challenge, 'As a Disciple of Jesus Christ, you are called to follow in His footsteps and minister God's healing touch of love, through word and deed, to all whom you meet in your journey of life.' His family rejoiced in the celebration of his life, witnessed its impact, and felt his loss deeply."

(From http://www.angelfire.com/ma/xb/callful.html, as provided by Jim Dunn)

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“Brother Jude did go to Africa. He was a good athlete and did compete with the students. He was a bit rough and took no crap on the court or in the classroom.

“Brother Jude went to Germany, why I do not know. But there he met a nurse and married her. He remained there and died there. Again I do not know anything more.”

(From Brother Giles)

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“Brother Kirby is here at Ryken House in retirement. After the Prep he came here to Louisville and was Principal of Flaget High School. I am not sure, but he may have closed it. He then went to the Indians in South Dakota and was there for a number of years. I suppose the weather there was not harsh enough for him, so he opted to go to Alaska where he was the assistant to the flying priest. He was in Ruby and a number of other remote villages. He once sent me a picture of the main street and in the middle of the street was a moose. 

“When he reached 80 it was time for him to hang up his missionary ways. He takes walks twice a day and is currently enjoying good health. Maybe I can talk him into going to the Reunion .”

(From Brother Giles)

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“Brother Mario left us and joined the priesthood. He was stationed in Richmond, Va. and was head of Catholic Charities. I don't know much more about him after he left the Prep. He as a lot of fun to be with. He and Brother Jude would horse around and beat up on each other in good fun. Of course, Mario would get the worst of it, but occasionally Jude would let him get a lick in once in a while.”

(From Brother Giles)

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“Brother Raymond left I believe soon after he left the Prep and married. Where or when I know not. The same goes for De Porres. I think he contacted throat cancer and died of the same.”

(From Brother Giles)

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“Brother Romuald was a classmate of mine. We traveled together when we graduated from our Juniorate in Peabody, Mass., to the Novitiate in Old Point Comfort, Va. It was old point but not very much comfort. 

“Rom was somewhat of a genius. When we would go downtown on a Saturday, he would stay home and translate French into Latin. You must remember that he was a brilliant scientist and mathematician. 

“When he left the Prep, he went to Leonardtown, Md., where he stayed until he was diagnosed with cancer. He then came here to St. X where he died and is buried in our cemetery. His relatives keep flowers on his grave all of the time. A building was named after him at St. Mary’s Ryken High School.”

(From Brother Giles)

(See http://www.smrhs.org/page.cfm?p=321 regarding the building at St. Mary’s Ryken High School that was named for Brother Romuald.)

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“After Brother Shawn left the Prep, he went to Nazareth High School in Brooklyn where he was Assistant Principal. He also directed plays as he did when he was at the Prep. Remember Max Howard? I don’t know if he was during your time, but Max went on to become a professional actor and acted in plays here in Louisville. 

“Shawn then went to Mount St. Joe in Baltimore where he became Principal. He didn’t stay in that position very long when he went to Bolivia. He was in the Alto Plano (spelling?). While there he put on plays again that traveled around Bolivia. He met a lady there and resigned from the Brothers and married this lady who was connected with the plays.  He became a Principal of a school in Bolivia and died there. I am not sure of the date of his death or where he is buried.”

(From Brother Giles)

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