Saint Paul’s School celebrated its 111th birthday on September 14, and what a remarkable feat it is to have endured the trials and tribulations over the past 111 years!
Saint Paul’s President Brother Ray Bulliard, FSC, described the significance and importance of the school birthday: “That Saint Paul’s has lasted 111 years is a testament to the vision of the founding Benedictine Fathers in 1911 and the transforming mission of the Christian Brothers in 1918. Both stress an aspect we must never forget: we are doing God’s work, and His presence must be central to all we do at Saint Paul’s. Our birthday celebration was meant to be a reminder of that reality and an inspiration to keep it going for the next 111 years.”
On Wednesday, September 14, students had a unique school schedule that included three class periods in the morning, followed by lunch, and then the festivities began at about 1:40 p.m.
At 1:45 p.m., all the students and faculty gathered inside the Gene Bennett Sports Complex and listened to Brother Ray’s riveting speech on the history of Saint Paul’s School. Brother Ray asked the students to remember our account of the Benedictines and those original 48 students of the school as we passed through the arch.
Next, the Saint Paul’s Marching Wolves led a parade of faculty and students around the campus while playing music and celebrating the school’s 111th birthday.
Finally, after the students walked through the arch, being greeted by retired brothers – Brother Terrance, FSC, Brother Pete, FSC, and Brother Jerry, FSC – as well as Brother Ray, Brother Ken, FSC, and Brother Javier, FSC, they were treated to a lovely snack of blue and gold cupcakes, provided by the Mother’s Club.
Most students appeared to enjoy the parade and appreciate the school’s history. However, one anonymous student who emailed The Paper Wolf commented that while he liked how teachers get to march next to their students, he took issue with a few aspects of the parade: he felt that the band plays the same traditional songs repeatedly each year and that a march around a few blocks followed by cupcakes at the end was underwhelming.
However, Saint Paul’s junior and drum major, Shawn Cooney, strongly disagreed, countering that “the band only played two songs: ‘Swag Surfin” by Lil Wayne and ‘Still Fly’ by Big Tymers, and clearly, these are not traditional Saint Paul’s songs. We had never played them before and hoped the student body would enjoy them for the school’s birthday parade.”
In addition, other students found the parade fun and exciting. “It’s a memorable experience listening to the band as I walk the path that the first Christian Brothers walked,” said Dominic Roy, a Saint Paul’s senior.
In conclusion, the annual Saint Paul’s birthday parade allows us to remember our history, whether we are students, parents, alumni, friends, or faculty of Saint Paul’s. As students, the parade allows us to remember where we came from and recognize where we are now while enjoying ourselves.