On Wednesday, February 16, students gathered in the CHS Gym to celebrate the annual Racial Harmony Mass.
Fr. Michael Alello ’98 served as celebrant. In his homily, Fr. Allelo said, "There's no question right now that across the world, the nation, our state, and even on campus some days that we can be easily divided by politics, by economics, by race or by our own thinking. But the scriptures tell us to be united." Fr. Allelo emphasized the advice of Saint James to be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger. He focused on the importance of listening and hearing the stories of pain of our brothers, being slow to speak and taking time to contemplate what has been said, and being slow to anger with each other and ourselves.
The intercessory prayers, read by Christopher Mengis '22, quoted from Open Wide Our Hearts: A Pastoral Letter Against Racism by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Last week, several of our Bears took part in a powerful learning experience earlier this week when they visited the Whitney Plantation Museum - the only museum in Louisiana with an exclusive focus on the lives of enslaved people. After Mass, two members of the class of 2022, Seth Harden and Cam Broussard, had the opportunity to share their personal experience of the trip.
Seth Harden '22 shared how the field trip helped him realize how far our country has come and to see what the many activists and minorities have been fighting for. Seth said he was able to visualize and understand the dehumanization of slaves, how they were treated as a whole. For him ad his peers, being able to hear the slaves perspectives, their hardships, overall struggle, see their living conditions, was an emotional experience.
Cam Broussard '22 commented on how different this plantation tour was from any that he had been on in the past. He encouraged his classmates, peers and all members of the CHS community to visit Whitney Plantation, and if they are unable to visit, download the plantation's app to listen to first-hand accounts of slave experiences.
We were honored to have members of the E.D. White Student Ministry team with us on campus to celebrate this important liturgy.
Thank you to Campus Ministry, Student Ministry, administration, Fr. Michael Allelo '98 and the outstanding CHS Choir for all of their work and effort to coordinate this moving mass. Special thanks to Seth Harden '22 and Cam Broussard '22 for sharing their experiences with our student body.