February 2020 Principal’s Newsletter
Parents and Friends,
I had the privilege of attending Kairos 148 this January with an incredible group of young men at the Jesuit Retreat Center in Applegate. While praying in the chapel, eating in the dining hall, and walking around the property, I could not help but be nostalgic for my time on Kairos as a student. The memories came flooding in as I reflected on the person I was at that time and as I recalled conversations and moments from my late high school years. I even laughed a few times as I remembered those things that were so important back then that seem so insignificant or trivial now. In some ways, I was envious of that person whose naiveté and limited perspective allowed him to enjoy a much simpler world.
In the weeks following this experience, it became clear to me that my reflection was more than just a few old memories; it was a reminder about what we do at Jesuit High School. I was reminded that our students and our graduates are not finished products. They are still in the process of learning, searching, discovering, failing, listening, and experiencing a world that will continue to shape the person they are becoming. Our job at Jesuit High School is not to create finished products, our job is to plant seeds that one day will grow. The seeds we plant today may take years to bear fruit.
I recently shared this reminder with our faculty and now I am sharing it with you, our parents. I remind you first and foremost to be patient with these young men. Be patient and be confident that what they are learning and experiencing now is working to create a person who will live a life with and for others, who will continue to deepen a relationship with God, and who will live a life of meaning and purpose. In addition to patience, I remind you to be hopeful. Be hopeful and enjoy the freedom of knowing that your investment as a parent is worthwhile; even when our children do not always show the progress, gratitude, and attitude that we expect today. “Above all, trust in the slow work of God,” as stated so beautifully by Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J.
I leave you with this excerpt of a prayer attributed to Archbishop Oscar Romero. This prayer hangs in my office as a reminder of my role as an educator and as a father.
This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise.
We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that.
This enables us to do something, and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an
opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest.
We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master
builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own.
Michael Wood ‘99