The most tried and true measure of success is time. This is perhaps the greatest testament to the mission of the Catholic Church. Thousands of organizations and regimes have come and gone since Christ founded his Church over 2,000 years ago. Jesus himself promised that he would be faithful to his mystical body until the end of time.
Our historical moment in Catholic education is marked by decline and devastation. The statistical indicators are staggering: Catholic schools across the country are ceasing to exist, but Mount Royal Academy remains a beacon of hope for the future.
25 years of excellence in Catholic education, surely a paradoxical sign amidst distressing closures.
Our only recourse and reason for mission success here at MRA is because Jesus has promised himself to us. His presence is most evident in our mission. Pope Paul VI proclaimed in 1974 these prophetic words: "Modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers, and if he does listen to teachers, it is because they are witnesses."
I often ask myself, "what makes a credible witness?", for surely man is bound to fail. And I think therein lies the truth of a credible witness. As Pope John Paul II - whose feast day we celebrated at Mass on Monday - boldly stated, "We are not the sum of our weaknesses and failures, we are the sum of the Father's love for us and our real capacity to become the image of His Son Jesus.”
We can never be content with our mission success, because the sum of God's unconditional love for man cannot be measured. It will only be realized in heaven, our hoped for destiny. The grandeur of heaven is the ultimate motivation.
Our school has always prayed a weekly rosary to express our devotion to Our Lady. The Households prayed the rosary together during Spirit Week for the first time, and I was personally very moved by hearing the intermingled voices of the children. Older students invited the younger ones to sit with them, then led them in prayer. One student even suggested that we do the final decade together: to hear the concert of nearly 200 of us reciting prayers in unison really lifted the soul.
Our attempt to capture the essence of Mount Royal Academy is being released in a series of short videos featuring the thoughts and lived experiences of students, parents, and teachers of Mount Royal Academy. The main objective is two-fold: we want to bring more children to know the Father's love for them and celebrate, with gratitude, the success of the school. We invite you to share in 25 years of excellence in Catholic education as we release the videos over the next four weeks. Christ also needs us all to share this hopeful mission with anyone who will listen, especially the children and families who need and seek us the most.
Yours Truly in Christ,
Derek Tremblay, Headmaster