Every year on December 8th, the Saint Gregory’s community celebrates the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. The regular daily routine is forgotten for the day, and the students instead attend a beautiful High Mass, participate in a sevens rugby tournament, and attend a banquet in the evening. Over the years, several traditions have formed surrounding the school banquets. At every banquet for example, each class sings a folk song they have been especially preparing for the occasion. But there are also some traditions that are particular to certain banquets. One such tradition is the singing of the Boar’s Head Carol by the senior class as they process around the room with the object of their song. Such traditions, says Hilaire Belloc, nourish the soul in a mystical way and help to make sense of the strange and perhaps even horrifying fact of our mortality. At Saint Gregory’s we wish to show the students under our care the importance of good and beautiful traditions so that they in turn might show it to their families and communities and thereby make the beginning of a restoration of what is quickly and tragically being lost in the world today.
Man has a body as well as a soul and the whole of man, soul and body, is nourished sanely by a multiplicity of observed traditional things. Moreover, there is this great quality in the unchanging practice of Holy Seasons, that it makes explicable, tolerable, and normal what is otherwise a shocking and intolerable and even in the fullest sense, abnormal thing. I mean, the mortality of immortal man.
~Hilaire Belloc (A Remaining Christmas)