The Student News Site of Xavier College Preparatory


The Student News Site of Xavier College Preparatory


The Student News Site of Xavier College Preparatory


The Student News Site of Xavier College Preparatory


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Xavier celebrates 50th annual Catholic Schools Week; 80 Years of Catholic Education At Xavier

Chloe Beery
A crowd of students sit and await the favorite Catholic Schools week activity, the lip sync battle. This event is one of the lunch-time activities planned by the student council, along with music at the bell tower, penny wars and the seniors vs. teachers dodgeball game.

Xavier students watch lip sync battle during lunch at Getz Family Courtyard on Thursday, February 1. The lip sync battle was one of the many activities celebrated during Catholic Schools Week.

Catholic Schools Week is a tradition around the nation that celebrates Catholic education.

It is a joint project that began through the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

For 50 years, this tradition has been celebrated throughout the United States, and Xavier College Preparatory has celebrated Catholic Schools Week since the week’s inauguration in 1974.

“We recognise that Catholic education is available to so many students in the United States,” said Xavier’s president Sister Joan Fitzgerald.

Catholic Schools Week is always celebrated on the last Sunday of January and continues throughout the week. This year the celebration occurred from January 28 through February 3.

The theme of this year’s annual Catholic Schools Week was “Catholic Schools: United in Faith and Community.”

The NCEA introduced daily celebration themes. Parish was celebrated on Sunday; community celebrated on Monday; students on Tuesday; the nation on Wednesday; vocations on Thursday; faculty on Friday; and staff, volunteers, and family on Saturday. 

“Without all of these people that we are celebrating, Catholic schools would not be strong. The students, teachers, staff and volunteers make a family within the Catholic schools,” said Father Elario Zambakari, Xavier’s chaplain.

Catholic schools around the nation typically celebrate with Mass, student activities and events.

This year, Xavier celebrated Catholic Schools Week through spirit days and student activities organized by the student council. Monday was Music Day and included a teachers versus seniors dodgeball game at lunch, Tuesday was Career Day, then Wacky Wednesday, Thursday was Adam Sandler Day with lip sync battles at lunch, and lastly Flashback Friday.

“Catholic schools make a huge impact on not only their students but their faculty and staff and the community around them,” Brittany Ecker, Xavier’s interim principal, said.

On Wednesday, Xavier student council and executive board members went to Saints Simon and Jude Cathedral for Mass to celebrate Catholic schools and any employees who have worked in the Dioceses of Arizona for 25 years. Stephanie Brugger, Anthony DiStefano, Kelly Fitzgerald and Polly Fitz-Gerald were honored.

Xavier is one of a few all-girls Catholic schools in the nation. Sister Joan Fitzgerald explains that in the past there were a lot of all-girls Catholic schools but there are not too many left around the country anymore. Xavier not only celebrates its being a Catholic school, but also an all-girls school.

Catholic schools are important to acknowledge and celebrate all that Catholic education has accomplished, and Catholic Schools Week is a great way to show appreciation. 

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