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St. Ignatius College Preparatory, San Francisco
  • Rethinking Africa: The staff of the African Advocacy Network includes Joe Sciarrillo, pictured here with Jean Elias Xavier, Director Aboudou Traore, Charles Jackson and Clementine Ntshaykolo outside their office in the Dolores Street Community Services building. They help a growing number of African immigrants to the Bay Area who may number as many as 50,000.
  • Retiring Pillars: SI’s faculty surprised Fr. Sauer in May with applause and flowers after the announcement of his reassignment.
  • The SI boys’ lacrosse team enjoyed what may have been best year since its founding nearly a quarter century ago. The lacrosse press ranked the team among the top 15 in the nation as SI turned in another undefeated season in league play – its fourth undefeated season since it joined the WCAL in 2010.
  • Richard Driscoll ’06, a performance engineer for Oracle Team USA that will defend the America’s Cup in September, is among the few locals hunkering down in Pier 80 off Marin Street, where they work 65-hour weeks to make sure that Ellison’s boat sails twice as fast as the wind and maneuvers with precision and power as it takes on challengers from around the world.
  • Retiring Pillars: Since the 1970s, Mary McCarty made sure Latin was a living language for students in her classes.
  • Rethinking Africa: Ira Shaughnessy ’00 spent two years in Ghana from 2007 to 2009 working with the Bormase helping with the cultivation of the Moringa tree, whose leaves are rich in vitamins.

Features

 

Service Story: Immersion

Clare Connolly ’14
Contributing Editor

 I sit with my hands in my lap and my eyes wander, looking around at the many unfamiliar faces that make up the Narcotics Anonymous meeting. I make eye contact with a classmate and can tell we are thinking the same thing: what are we doing here? How am I supposed to contribute to this meeting with no experience of addiction? My life experiences are probably so different from everyone else’s. As the meeting begins, the facilitator reads the expectations and asks us to reflect on our

week so far.

 

 My week had been anything but usual. I was in my two-week Immersion in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district−infamous for drug access, homelessness, and poverty. I abandoned my luxury items; we slept on the floor and volunteered in soup kitchens, shelters, rehabilitation centers, and more. During the first week, I had the preconceived notion that I needed to “fix” the community’s problems. I felt like an outsider, desperately trying to close the gap between “them” and “me” – but I was approaching my time in the Tenderloin completely wrong.

 

 During my time in the Tenderloin, my biggest obstacle was thinking that I was worlds away, even though I was only twenty minutes from home. I was more similar to the people of this community than I had originally thought. During the second week, I learned to shift my mindset from simply doing “charity” to being with people as a source of support. I was there to smile as they received free lunch; I was there to listen to their life stories.

 

 As students at St. Ignatius, we should all live for the “Magis.” We should all strive to do and be greater. My goal on Immersion was to leave as a better person than I was when I arrived. To my surprise, I accomplished this through listening, not talking or searching for answers. I realized the skill of being present for the individuals in front of me was what really mattered. When I started watching and listening, my mind opened to a new horizon of thoughts that I hadn’t previously contemplated. What do the phrases “men and women with and for others” and “for the greater glory of God” mean to me? I had to decide how I could be a woman for others. I had to decide how to do things for the greater glory of God. Through the religious studies courses and taking advantage of all service opportunities at SI, I understand the meaning of Ignatius’ words.

Posted by on Sunday February, 23, 2014

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