Jesuit community invited to attend one-day Summit on Human Dignity
Each year, Jesuit High School Sacramento takes a week to look at and explore a current social justice issue. Past topics have included mental health and economic injustice while this year’s event is entitled, “The Road to Brotherhood: Striving to Grow as a Diverse Community.”
Aside from having a new theme, the format will also look different with this year’s Summit being shortened from a week to a single day, which is this Wednesday, March 3, 2021, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. All students who signed up had to choose to participate either on-campus or on Zoom.
The one-day event was put together by student leaders along with the Office of Service and Justice and the Wellness Program.
Alonso Lee ’22, one of the students involved, believes the presentations given during the Summit will be meaningful.
“The social justice summit at Jesuit has always been designed to help students spark an interest or passion for a social justice issue,” Alonso said. “As a wise community organizer once told me, ‘Always try to find how that social justice issue affects you or your community directly.’ In essence, find how racism, homophobia, or ignorance affects you personally.”
Wellness Counselor Mrs. Kasey Cardinale is also involved in the Summit and will be facilitating a morning session offering prayer and laying the foundation for the important discussions later in the day.
“I will be inviting students to participate in a relaxation practice to open our ears and our hearts to the stories of all students on our campus, not just the loudest voices,” Mrs. Cardinale said. “TeamCARE, our student club on campus dedicated to mental health programming, will be facilitating discussion groups in the afternoon with freshmen and sophomore participants. These discussions will circle around the question: What gets in the way of being a Man For and With Others at Jesuit High School?”
Alonso, who will help lead the session entitled “Being a Man for Others,” feels that students, especially freshmen, will benefit heavily from the stories and experiences their fellow students have to share.
“Students in the Women and Men for Others workshop should expect to hear honest and vulnerable testimonials,” Alonso said. “We have been mentally preparing and discussing with each other our experiences of when [we] felt outcasted or [when] we outcasted someone else. Since freshmen have not had the opportunity to really understand the senior perspective or the junior perspective, I think listening to them is an invaluable asset to any freshmen’s outlook on their future at Jesuit.”
When it comes to the purpose of this year’s Summit, Mrs. Cardinale believes the speeches can really help students reflect on who they are and the impacts their actions have on others.
“My primary hope is that students first show [a] willingness to join us for this important dive into brotherhood and human dignity,” Mrs. Cardinale said. “Second, I hope that this experience facilitates [an] opportunity for personal reflection, empathy for peers, and understanding behaviors that contribute to brotherhood versus break down brotherhood.”
It’s clear that despite the pandemic limiting how the 2021 Summit can operate, Jesuit understands that having conversations on important issues must still take place, even if it means much of the school’s community will be participating over Zoom.