Archbishop Blase Cupich made his second visit to Saint Viator High School this year, and he felt so at home that he donned a baseball cap, and accepted a shirt and bag, all adorned with the Lions’ logo.
“He’s a lion for life,” said Fr. Corey Brost, C.S.V., president, in presenting the archbishop with gifts, “and he’s committed to Catholic education.”
The Chicago archbishop headlined a dedication and prayer service held Sunday to celebrate the completion of a $3 million renovation of its fine arts facilities and the multi-media, college-styled dining facility, the Fr. Louis Querbes Hall.
In thanking the Viatorian Community and individual investors on hand for investing in the school and its mission, Cupich described their partnership as a “great enterprise” and one that gives young students a “very hopeful outlook on the world.”
“I really do find that Catholic education, especially at the secondary level, is a top priority,” Cupich said. “We need to bond together in ways that make it possible for many families to enjoy the great privilege of schools like Saint Viator.”
Many of the Viatorians who served as teachers and administrators were on hand for the dedication, including Br. Leo V. Ryan, C.S.V., a former president of the school and the last living member of the building committee — made up of Viatorians — to design the school.
“It’s spectacular,” Br. Ryan said. “And I like how it’s tuned into all the latest technology. It will really help carry students into the 21st century.”
Many of the investors on hand for the dedication supported the capital campaign, despite not having any students at the school any longer.
“Our kids had a tremendous experience here. Viator not only prepared them for college, but it has carried through their professional lives,” said Jack Klues of Arlington Heights. “And when you combine all the spirit and commitment of the Viatorians, we had to support this.”
Tod Faerber, a member of the board of trustees and graduate of the Class of 1976, agreed. The youngest of his four children, Joe, graduated in 2014, but he continues to work for the school.
“This is great,” he said looking around the new Querbes Hall. “Anything that we can do prepare these students for college and beyond, I’m all for.”
With the completion of Querbes Hall and the fine arts facilities, it brought to a close the school’s Shaping the Future with Faith Campaign, a four-year, $14 million undertaking, with major building improvements and an increased endowment fund, all made possible by generous donors.
“Today is the culmination of a long journey,” Fr. Brost added, “that will provide facilities that will enhance the educational experience for each student here and for generations.
“We have also increased our endowment, from $8 million to $10 million,” he added, “to allow more families to experience the transformative power of a Saint Viator education.”