Photo Credit: Katia Huddleston/Achona Online
The Academy of the Holy Names and all its students have one woman to thank for the thriving school and community it has become: Blessed Marie Rose. In honor of her memory and dedication to making the Sisters of the Holy Names who they are today, the Academy of the Holy Names celebrated Rose Week.
Rose Week, organized by Sister Lisa, kicked off the week with a prayer event hosted by Cross Fit, the campus ministry club. “It’s open to any girl. Every other Tuesday evening at 8 p.m, they’re going to continue running it. And the second and the fourth Tuesday morning of the month they’ll gather in the chapel.”
Wednesday, the school came together virtually to celebrate Mass. Father Bruce gave the Mass while Bethany Masiello (‘22) led the school in beautiful songs like “Fire of Justice.” Kate Cohen (‘21), Chandler McKnight (‘21), and Laura Caroline Jung (‘22) spoke at Mass, talking about Blessed Marie Rose’s achievements and how her legacy has affected them a century later.
“Marie Rose suffered from poor health during much of her life. She had only six years with this new community of religious sisters,” said Jung, addressing the school via YouTube liv. “God continued to bless the little group of sisters….We thank God today that the sisters came to Tampa in 1881 to begin our own beloved Academy. With joy, we celebrate the Feast Day of Blessed Marie Rose Durocher.”
“Every day, when we step foot on campus, we are being enriched with the values of the sisters,” said McKnight. “Their hard work is the very foundation of our school.”
McKnight and Cohen, president and vice-president of the Student Council, are directing a donation that will be made in honor of the Sisters of the Holy Names to RCMA. “RCMA is a school that serves migrant working and low-income families to help eliminate education challenges these families may face,” said Cohen.
Sadly, due to COVID-19 restrictions, Spike and Splash, an annual event that combines a swim meet and a volleyball match in the hopes of raising money for breast and pediatric cancer research, was canceled. In its place, girls were invited to wear pink shirts on Thursday for five dollars. The profits of the dress-down day were donated to cancer research.
On the final day of Rose Week, Friday, advisories took part in an SNJM Schools Prayer Service. The event was pre-recorded and was an opportunity to pray alongside Academy’s sister schools across the globe.
“This summer, we, all the campus ministers from the different SMJM high schools, got together to see how we could support each other during COVID and how are we adapting our programs,” said Sister Lisa. “One thing that came out of it, is that we want to bring our schools together. Everyone did a little recorded piece about their school and then it went into a prayer service commemorating Blessed Marie Rose.”
“I thought it was really cool that there were other schools with our same name,” said Colleen Buckhorn (‘23). “It was like seeing Academy through different eyes.”
At the end of the video, a link to a FlipGrid was displayed. The students were invited to film their own video answering the question: “Where do you feel called to cast the fire of God’s love?” The FlipGrid is still open to recordings and Sister Lisa encourages girls to upload their own responses.