WEB EXCLUSIVE Students gathered virtually for Convent and Stuart Hall’s first Chapel of the year. The gathering was focused on celebrating life, students virtually connecting in the midst of a global pandemic.
“This was the first gathering since the welcome assembly where we got to meet the new faculty,” junior Kelly Cronan said. “This week felt a little bit hectic with all of our new classes and I think it was really important to have time and space to reflect.”
The chapel’s focus, inspired by the school year’s overarching theme of grace, gave students a chance to step away from their academic classes and into a spiritual space. Chapel allows students to unite their intentions and share the mission of Sacred Heart schools, according to Religion, Theology & Spirituality teacher Paul Pryor Lorentz.
“When we come together during Chapel, it’s our time to remind ourselves what school is about and to remember that there is a spiritual element to our education,” Pryor Lorentz said. “That element is what makes our school unique from other schools.”
Students and teachers had the opportunity to send virtual gratitudes using the “chat” feature on Zoom. Gratitudes are typically expressed in-person with the student body concluding each one with a joint clap.
“Although attending chapel on Zoom was hard because I was unable to physically be with my friends, it was nice knowing that everyone was together in a virtual sense watching the same thing,” senior Bella Wasserman said. “Hearing Mr. Pryor Lorentz read out the gratitudes also reminded me of our usual chapels at school and gave me a feeling of support and community.”
Future chapels will take place each Monday. Future chapels may be in Gallery Mode rather than webinars which will allow students to see one another on their screens, according to Pryor Lorentz.
“The bigger spiritual work of Chapel is to unite our intentions and share the mission of Sacred Heart schools,” Pryor Lorentz said. “We can continue to do that by coming together through these chapels and learn how to make a positive change in the world.”
Students and faculty gave thanks to all first responders who actively serve the community, and also took a moment to pray for individuals affected by the ongoing California fires. Addressing wider issues taking place in our community during chapel is beneficial, according to Cronan.
“I think it was important to address the fires happening in California during the chapel since they are affecting a lot of people in the community,” Cronan said. “Chapel is the perfect time to pray for those in need.”