“Authentically Catholic and Warmly Ecumenical.” At Saint Patrick Catholic School we live by these words each and every day, but no day is this more evident than Christian Unity Day.
Each year, in the spirit of ecumenism, the Catholic Church celebrates the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, and each January we celebrate Christian Unity Day by inviting our area pastors, priests, and ministers to attend Chapel to celebrate them and recognize what we have in common with our friends of other faiths. These ministers and priests work in collaboration with us to deepen the faith of our students and this is worth celebrating!
Our ecumenical and interfaith spirit is part of what makes Saint Patrick so unique. Principal Steve Hammond shared that Christian Unity Day is by far his favorite chapel of the year. He stated, “We come together with the knowledge that we are the body of Christ. Through the teaching of total formation, we are reaching people in the most meaningful ways just as our visiting clergy do in their communities."
We were unable to host our Christian Unity Day celebration in person last year, so we were excited to have the opportunity to worship together once again. Our guest faith leaders were joined on stage and introduced by students who attend their respective churches. The students presented each visitor with a different colored ribbon representing a religious virtue. In turn, they each tied the ribbon around a wooden staff creating a rainbow of colors representing God’s promise.
We would like to thank the following guests for joining us at Chapel on Wednesday, January 19th: Father Eric Ayers, Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church; Father Anthony Mpungu, Catholic Church of Saint Mark; Reverend Ryan LaRock, Deep Creek United Methodist Church; Pastor Jack Howell, Trinity Presbyterian Church; Reverend Jaqueline Soltys, Church of the Good Shepherd; Pastor Joel Neubauer, St. Mark Lutheran Church; Reverend Joshua McCauley from United Methodist Church – ODU; Reverend John Rohrs, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church.