Beginning the End of Lent

Gregory the Great Academy and Lent

Lent is winding down to an end. Both faculty and students at Gregory the Great Academy reflect on how well we have joined our sacrifices to Christ’s as we joyfully anticipate the Resurrection. If we have failed, this is not the time to throw in the towel. Rather, we acknowledge our all-too-human shortcomings, ask our Lord for new resolve, and use all our strength to make this last week, this time between death and rebirth, a triumph. The end of Lent is a great time to begin again.

Under the Same Roof as the Blessed Sacrament

We are greatly helped in this resolve by our privilege of living and working under the same roof as the Blessed Sacrament, Who reposes in our beautiful chapel’s tabernacle. If you were to slip into the chapel at any time of day or night, you would be likely to see several adolescent boys devoutly praying before the altar, or offering a private Stations of the Cross. How moving it is to silently share with young boys this time with God! They sacrifice their time, their much-needed sleep, and their enjoyment in order to love and serve the Lord.

Our best help, of course, comes from the Lord through the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Eucharist. Confession is available daily, and the Eucharist is offered four times a week. During Lent, our Byzantine chaplain offers the Liturgy of the Pre-sanctified Gifts, wherein the Eucharist has been consecrated at a previous Sunday Liturgy. This Pre-sanctified Liturgy is celebrated in the evening and combines Great Vespers with a solemn service of Holy Communion.

Daily Rosary, Lauds, and Compline, private devotions—all are seriously practiced by boys who are learning to be good Catholic men. They will be the priests, religious, and fathers of families who bring Christ to their little corners of the world. Their observance of Lent, fostered by the helpful atmosphere of Gregory the Great Academy, will make America and the world spiritually great. The end of Lent is the beginning of life.

The School of Divine Wisdom


A Natural Order

One of our greatest teachers, St. Thomas Aquinas, says that Sacred Liturgy uses physical things to communicate the divine so that we may cultivate friendship with God. God called the things He created “good,” and therefore, the good things of this world have a purpose in worship, which brings us closer to the divine. The Church’s Liturgy, the highest form of worship, appeals to the senses, and then, through these familiar experiences, to the soul. This is the natural order—experience of earthly things first, then worship, liturgy, and finally friendship with God.

The pedagogy of Gregory the Great Academy participates in this order by firmly rooting every aspect of life in the Church’s Liturgy. Our whole rhythm is set by the Church’s calendar. We celebrate the saints in daily worship and at banquets on Feast Days. We see and teach the world as the book God gave us to study in a school of divine wisdom. In this school we strive to know Him. Knowing Him, we love Him. Loving Him, we desire to serve Him, and to serve well.

Latin Mass or Byzantine Liturgy? We Choose Both!

This is why Gregory the Great Academy not only lives the liturgical calendar, but offers Mass and Divine Liturgy in their most beautiful forms. We are blessed to have a bi-ritual resident priest who has faculties for both the Latin Mass and the Melkite Byzantine Liturgy. Both present to God the best we can offer: ourselves as participants in Christ’s sacrifice, singing and praying words the Church handed down to us in her school of divine wisdom, beautiful words and moving, worshipful music.

Beautiful liturgy is the school that reaches the soul through the senses. This is the school of divine wisdom that Man participates in to his everlasting benefit. It is fitting to offer God the best Sacrifice in our power. And we in turn benefit by deepening our friendship with Him as our souls are moved to contemplate mysteries we cannot fully apprehend.