Photo by Andrew Brown ’18 | Fr. Jim McDermott S.J. celebrated the opening mass Feb. 27 to this year’s Summit on Human Dignity titled We The People: Inclusive and Faithful Citizenship in Modern Democracy. Each Mass is led by a specific priest who has good qualities to add to the message or theme of that Mass and its purpose.
By Juan Carlos Ramirez ’18
School Mass celebrations are planned so the priest has much more to offer than a sermon or the Eucharist.
Assistant Principal of Ministry Mr. Paul Fisko said that his office tries to select a priest who has had experience with the topic of the Mass, which may include priests outside of Brophy.
“When it comes to the other Masses, we often try find a priest locally who has a particular personal experience with the topic or theme of the mass,” Mr. Fisko said.
“You have other Masses like Jesuit heritage week and All Saints that we ask our Jesuits on campus to make sure they are ministering to the community,” Mr. Fisko said.
Another element that Mr. Fisko said they take into account is the insight that the priest could provide to the students and the community.
“Depending on the theme, we try to invite someone or utilize someone locally,” Mr. Fisko said. “Sometimes it’s just about getting students exposed to people they need know, others have an expertise or insight into the theme of the particular Mass. And then sometimes because it is a special occasion we’re trying to go for someone who has national acclaim or provides a major leadership for a Jesuit cause.”
Altar server Michael Grindey ’18 said that having guest priest provides great insight because they don’t go to Brophy everyday.
“They aren’t at Brophy everyday so they aren’t stating ‘Be Men for Others’ or the Grad at Grad,” Grindey said. “They are speaking from the heart. They have no idea what this place is about if they have never been here before.”
He also said that having guest Jesuit priests is great because it only confirms that Brophy’s message extends further from this campus and part of something bigger.
Mr. Fisko also said that it is imperative to make sure that the priest is good with kids.
“We try to chose a priest who we also think will do well with kids,” Mr. Fisko said. “We don’t just want to put any priest up in front of young people. Usually Jesuits, who do the work that they are doing, are good with all types of people.”
Grindey said that he hasn’t had a bad experience with any priest, but they are different in their own way.
“I think all priest are different,” Grindey said. “There are priests who are more stern. Then there are those priests who are more welcoming, funny and have this sense of humor. I wouldn’t say I have had a bad experience with a priest, but I would be lying if said that there weren’t bad priest out there. In my personal experience, it’s just different types of personalities.”
Mr. Fisko said that in previous years the baccalaureate and transition Mass have been reserved for the president who was a Jesuit, but Ms. Adria Renke is the new president.
He said that they could select a different priest this year, but he thinks that it’s only appropriate to give the two final Masses to the Rev. Phil Postell, S.J.