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St. Anthony 101

November 01, 2023

St. Anthony Indian Mission

As school resumed in August we entered into the one hundred and first year of classes at St Anthony Indian Mission. The use of that idiom “101” usually denotes something basic principal on which to build something larger or greater.

In 1923 the Franciscan Friars and Sisters opened a small school building and year by year slowly created the beautiful campus with which to offer our students a bright future through quality education. We the staff and faculty of 2023 give thanks for our inheritance and promise “through prayer and preparation … to fulfill this awesome call to ministry...through word and example, to those entrusted to our care”. These words were part of the promise made by our faculty on 15th August in front of the whole school assembled for our “All School Mass”. As they made this commitment, every student stretched out hands in blessing over their teachers.

“101” of St. Anthony’s is that we have a ministry, under the Lord, to serve the students entrusted to us. It is a foundation on which to build with God’s grace.

Another “101” at St. Anthony’s is the hectic preparation of the school during the long vacation. The staff had completed many repair, cleaning, technology and renovation tasks. Three of our graduates were employed to help and as one of them said, he never realized how much work had to be done just to get the school ready for the students. Not the least of these tasks was getting the school bus ready for its daily rounds of pickups and drop offs.

That latter task may seem an ordinary matter but it fact it was an extraordinary achievement. The bus route was cancelled when covid entered our lives and had never been resumed. Our buses are not young. One dates from 1998 and the other from 2008. Our maintenance men worked to make a respectable bus from the two. (101 – Safety first). Eleven students arrived on the bus that first morning and forty nine took the bus home.

Little by little, we have been putting pennies aside to get a new bus. Finally, we are in a position to place the order for a new bus. We were nervous about doing so but “101” the Lord will provide.

The faculty and staff are filled with enthusiasm. The school schedule for the year is in place and peace filled joy permeates the classes. One day we will learn that the Lord is in charge not us. (Another ‘101’ He is better at it than we are, learn to trust!). We have a school filled with wonderful young people and are privileged to be part of their lives and their future.