A group of juniors were spotted loading suspicious items onto a trailer outside of La Salle Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 7, as a rather tall and ominous balding figure loomed over the students, keeping things moving as quickly as possible. Items seen going onto the trailer include cases of water bottles, trays full of cookies, slices of assorted cakes, slabs of concrete, and planks of wood. Students have reported that the mysterious figure goes by the name, Coach Lee Pierre. All of this can mean only one thing: Senior Retreat is upon us.
For many years, as students go through their time at St. Paul’s School, they look up to the seniors and dream about the day that the traditions and privileges that come with being the big man on campus are finally theirs. Throughout the year, seniors have different traditional events that help them grow together as a a class and enjoy their final days in high school, such as the March Through the Arch, the Senior Barbecue, the Senior Ring Mass, and, most recently, the Senior Retreat.
When asked about Senior Retreat and what makes it so special, former student and current Campus Minister Barrett Baumgartner noted that part of what makes the senior class change as a group is that they are, for the first time perhaps, locked into a place with each other in a deeper way than they have been before. And with that, comes a deeper understanding and appreciation of their brothers. When asked about the retreat, many seniors refused to give any quote whatsoever. However, one managed to make a statement without revealing any secrets as to what goes on at Senior Retreat.
“I feel now that my heart is still in St. Paul’s, but my mind has graduated,” senior Michael Brown said.
Though certain things are known about the events that take place during Senior Retreat, such as receiving the traditional Senior Cross, participation in small group activities, and large group activities designed to create a sense of senior unity, not much else has been revealed. Apparently, the seniors make some sort of pact every year to refuse to spoil any of the surprises in store for the future classes. And since no senior or former senior has yet to crack, a sense of wonder about the Senior Retreat still lingers on.
For more information on Senior Retreat, see related article by senior Michael Burke.