As a Catholic school and a people of faith called to live the vision of the Congregation of the Brothers of Saint Francis Xavier, the Campus Ministry Team recognizes service to all of God’s people as a vital expression of the XBHS community’s faith.
As members of the Body of Christ, we are called to be a sign of God’s love by reaching out to those who are suffering. The service component of the Campus Ministry Program is rooted in the Gospel call to see Christ in the poor and marginalized.
Through programs such as XACT, and the various food and clothing drives, the Campus Ministry Team provides opportunities for the Xaverian Brothers High School community to share its unique gifts with the world. X-CEL, Global Encounter, and Christian Senior Service provide opportunities for students to develop personal relationships with those whom they serve. These relationships serve as a catalyst for the praxis of a “faith seeking justice.”
We recognize that along with actual service, prayerful reflection on issues of social justice is required. In these times of prayer, students are encouraged to discern what lessons they have learned from the people they encounter. It is our hope that by providing such opportunities, members of the XBHS community will, like Theodore James Ryken, “fall in love with the service of God.”
Each year, the Ryken Global Awareness Committe collaborates with Campus Ministry to plan a charity night to benefit an important cause.
For the 2014-2015 school year, the Ryken Global Awareness Committee is working in conjunction with our Campus Ministry department to sponsor a charity event to benefit Catholic Charities of Maine. For the past five years, Xaverian has worked with the Catholic Charities food bank in Caribou, Maine. This is the only food bank in the Aroostook County, serving 25 food pantries and supplies food to more than half the population of Aroostook county every year.
On January 30, ‘The Maine Event’ will have inflatable rides, movie marathons, acoustic sets by student bands, refreshments, a talent show and raffle prizes. Any parent or family that would like to donate baked goods, items (especially gift cards) and tickets to sporting events or music concerts for raffle would be extremely appreciated. Please contact Mr. Mike Fitzgerald (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions or concerns.
The Christian Senior Service program is a faith experience that is conducted during the last term of the senior year. It is a unique opportunity for those seniors who meet the requirements to put their faith into action through service.
Beginning with meetings designed to facilitate proper discernment, students are encouraged to see their service as a means to bring God’s healing to those most in need. to foster continued discernment, as well as to process the experience of service, participants must meet the following requirements:
Meet once a week with a faculty mentor.
Attend all evenings of reflection throughout the program.
Complete a five-page reflection paper.
Maintain a daily reflection journal.
Inherent in all of these requirements is an attempt to integrate reflection on one’s relationship with God with the lived experience of service.
The CMT will facilitate the accomplishment of these goals as follows:
Maintaining a comprehensive data base of service sites and relevant supervisors.
Creating and maintaining a prayerful environment within which proper reflection may occur.
Properly publicizing all requirements and meeting times as well as criteria for grading.
Maintain an easily accessible data base to facilitate mentoring .
Communicate on a regular basis with the administration concerning student status.
Xaverian Global Encounter is a week-long service retreat during April vacation open to members of the sophomore, junior and senior classes who meet the program criteria. Candidates are required to successfully complete an application process to participate in the program. Once accepted to the program, participants attend a series of orientation meetings to build community and to develop an understanding of Christian ministry.
During the experience, students travel to marginalized areas to live, work, and pray with established communities. Students are exposed to the realities of poverty and are encouraged to process their experiences through nightly reflection meetings and Gospel-based prayer services.
Upon their return, students are expected to share their experiences with the Xaverian Community through a variety of special projects.
Past sites have included:
Rostro de Cristo, Duran, Ecuador
The Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota
St. Francis Farm in Lacona, New York,
Peter Maurin Farm in Marlborough, New York
Nazareth Farm in Salem West Virginia
John Filigar Farm in Alderson, West Virginia.
Several key components of XGE are as follows:
Create Gospel-based reflection events prior to the retreat.
Facilitate the creation of community within each work site; it is imperative that this be done in the reflection evenings leading up to Global Encounter.
Provide each participant with access to relevant spiritual resources.
Set up proper communication channels for parents and family to contact participants if necessary.
Provide each retreat facilitator with a packet containing proper travel documents, financial means, and student health information.
Create opportunities for student participants to share their experiences on Global Encounter with the XBHS community.
Plan a Thanksgiving liturgical service in order for retreat participants to give thanks and formally share their experiences with each other.
Each year, the Santa Hawk Toy Drive provides toys for over nine different social service agencies who assist families in need in the Greater Boston area during the Christmas season. The organizations include: The Dedham Youth Commission, Sojourner House, Victory Programs, Dove, The Italian Home for Children, the South Boston Action Center, The Home for Little Wanderers – Harrington House, My Brother’s Keeper of Easton, and the Cor Unum Meal Center of Lawrence. The drive begins in December and runs to the last day of classes before Christmas break. Donated toys and bikes, given by members of the Xaverian community, are placed under the tree outside of the Campus Ministry Center.
Throughout the academic year, the Campus Ministry Team provides a number of opportunities for the Xaverian Community to reach out to others in need. Students are encouraged to take leadership roles by joining with the Campus Ministry Team in developing and coordinating school-wide service projects.
Service projects sponsored by the Campus Ministry Team include:
Brother Bede Fund 50/50 Raffles and Dress Down Days: The Fund is used to subsidize the social justice and service programs of the Xaverian Community and individual students. The Fund is named after Brother Bede Benn, CFX, a Xaverian Brother working with the Native Americans on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota.
Thanksgiving Food Drive: Students work to collect canned food donations from the Xaverian Community for local food pantries and food assistance programs in Boston.
Santa Hawk Toy Drive: During Advent, the Xaverian community focuses its attention on the goal of collecting new toys for underprivileged children in our local area. The toys are gathered in the month of December and delivered to local social service agencies for distribution.
Lenten Clothing Drive: Each year, the St. Francis House Shelter calls upon the Xaverian Community to donate clothing for their male residents. The drive is coordinated during Lent, and specific lists of the needs of St. Francis House residents are distributed to guide donations.
Red Cross Blood Drive: Every spring, Xaverian hosts a blood drive in the school gym. Many students and faculty members contribute to the drive by donating blood and by helping throughout the drive.
Every year, Campus Ministry/the Ryken Global Awareness Committee runs a Thanksgiving Food Drive. Donated food items are given to the Norwood Food Pantry and Little Brothers-Friends of the Elderly. Bins for donations are placed in each homeroom and once full, items are brought to the Campus Ministry Center. Each week, a member of the Ryken Global Awareness Committee stops by each homeroom to remind students about the Food Drive. This drive has collected thousands of food items annually to help many families in need thanks to the support of everyone in the Xaverian community.
Facilitated by the Campus Ministry Team, X-ACT is a student initiated and directed organization that seeks opportunities for all members of the Xaverian community to become involved in issues of peace and social justice.
In the past, X-ACT members have served the elderly residents of the Ellis Nursing Home in Norwood, the residents of the Fernald Center in Waltham, and the homeless of the Woods Mullin Shelter in Boston. Openness to new opportunities for service has been a feature of the X-ACT program that has kept student interest high over the past five years.
Students have participated in the City Year Serv-A-Thon, the annual Walk for Hunger, Christmas in the City, and the Ellie Bloom Special Olympics. Through such opportunities, X-ACT seeks to create an awareness of the Christian call to service, as well issues of peace and social justice. Besides the experience of service, students participate in prayer and faith sharing relative to service experiences.
X-CEL (Xaverian Community Encounters Life) is an urban immersion retreat program for selected members of the junior class. Participants in X-CEL spend three days (Thursday through Saturday) living in Boston and ministering to a wide range of individuals and social service agencies. Students participating in this program have the opportunity to follow the tradition of the Xaverian Brothers to manifest God’s “care and compassionate love to…the poor, the weak, and the oppressed of this world.”
In addition to the works of mercy, X-CEL focuses on the giftedness of each participant and invites participants to see themselves as faithful signs of God’s love and compassion for a broken world.
Every effort is made to facilitate a sense of “contemplation in action.”
Through directed prayer, participants are invited to reflect on the Scriptural foundations of social justice and to offer petitions for the people they encounter.
Reflective questions encourage students to integrate their experiences in Boston with the faith that they profess, as well as what they have learned in their Theology classes.
Each student participant is interviewed by a faculty member to assess the progress of the retreat and to help students process the experience. In order to promote the Gospel value of simplicity, X-CEL participants are required to leave behind many luxuries and comforts.
Each year, the Santa Hawk Toy Drive provides toys for over nine different social service agencies who assist families in need in the Greater Boston area during the Christmas season. The organizations include: The Dedham Youth Commission, Sojourner House, Victory Programs, Dove, The Italian Home for Children, the South Boston Action Center, The Home for Little Wanderers – Harrington House, My Brother’s Keeper of Easton, and the Cor Unum Meal Center of Lawrence.
A private, Catholic, college preparatory day school for boys in grades 7-12. The Boston area prep school offers a rigorous academic curriculum, a well-developed campus ministry program focused on faith, character, and leadership, and a proud athletic tradition featuring competitive Division 1 high school athletics in the Catholic Conference.