Saint Viator News

Delivering the latest news from Saint Viator High School.

Month: July 2019

Saint Viator Students Help Lead 10th Annual Viatorian Youth Congress

IMG_0604The Viatorian Youth Congress wrapped up Thursday and it was a milestone. This year’s congress marked its 10th anniversary, and Saint Viator High School students and alumni played key roles.

For starters, Mrs. Cathy Abrahamian, a Viatorian associate, brought a delegation of seven current students and another six alumni served as leaders. Br. John Eustice, CSV, and Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, were among the adults involved, while Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, said daily Masses, and he and Fr. Dan Hall, CSV, Provincial, made presentations to the group.

In all, 70 teen delegates and college-aged leaders convened at the Cabrini Retreat Center in Des Plaines. They represented parishes and schools in Arlington Heights, Bourbonnais, Chicago, Kankakee, Las Vegas and Bogotá, Colombia.

Jason Wilhite ’15, served as one of two coordinators, helping to guide leaders and delegates through the prayer sessions, group discussions and other activities that make up the four-day congress.

IMG_0597He attended the youth congress in 2013 and 2014, and he returned last year to address delegates about social justice. He credits his faith-based activism, in part, to his experiences at VYC. Next month, he returns to Saint Viator to serve as a campus minister.

“We hope to challenge delegates,” Jason said at the outset, “to be more engaged in their faith — and to work for a better world.”

The Viatorian Youth Congress originally was conceived to bring together teens from different schools and parishes run by Viatorians, as a way to advance the Viatorian charism.

Now in its 10th year, organizers see the benefits of its faith and leadership development. Its daily activities include keynote presentations, prayer workshops, opportunities to assist in leading liturgy, and small and large group discussions. There’s also a talent show, a Taizé prayer service and confessions.

A highlight takes place on the second day when delegates and their leaders visit the Viatorian Province Center. They break up into groups of three to interview and then present to the crowd a Viatorian associate, brother or priest.

“The VYC helps our young faith leaders realize that they are part of a worldwide family,” Fr. Corey says, “that is changing the world.”

Saint Viator Soccer Team Enjoys a European Trip of a Lifetime

Saint Viator mens and womens soccer players expanded their horizons and explored new vistas this summer. They just returned from a 3-week trip to Europe, which they describe as a ‘trip of a lifetime.’ Both the Varsity and Junior Varsity soccer players were invited to participate in this unique travel opportunity, joined by their coaches and assistant coaches. Such travel opportunities aren’t usually a part of the average high school experience, but they have a long-lasting impact.  

“This trip not only included amazing soccer competition with teams from around the world,” said Athletic Director Jason Kuffel, “but it showed these young student athletes places in the world they might not normally see. They learned about the cultures of Hungary, Spain, and France and had a fantastic experience.” 

In addition to learning about new cultures and countries, the athletes met soccer players from all over the world, navigated the trains in Europe, toured churches and castles, prayed together, tried new foods, and grew as individuals and as teammates. 

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Kids waiting for the opening ceremony

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“Saint Viator soccer players will remember this experience for the rest of their lives,” said Saint Viator parent Beth Zimmerman, “They came back from the trip connected with their teammates and coaches, and are excited for their soccer seasons to begin!” 

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Goodbye Hungary Thanks

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Saint Viator Athletics offers similar opportunities to additional teams, helping create a well-rounded athletic experience. It’s the Viator way – Go Lions!

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Inside basilica

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Saint Viator’s Cross Country Invitational to Be Held August 17

DSC_1111The fourth annual Saint Viator Cross Country Invitational is just around the corner. On August 17, the Saint Viator Traveling Cup Trophy will be awarded, and the competition is already looking fierce. 

In past years, this event has drawn over 500 young students from 20 different partner schools in the surrounding suburbs. The participants run a course that stretches around the Saint Viator campus before returning inside the Boler Center for an awards ceremony. Each runner wears a traditional cross country bib with a number and crosses the finish line in front of friends, parents, and coaches.

Chris Bremner, director of enrollment, is hoping for another successful event this year – with even more students taking part in the competition. According to Bremner, the pre-season invite has been the driving force behind the growing popularity of this event. This year, 20 partner middle schools have already signed on, with approximately 40 students from each school competing. 

DSC_0909Participating schools include: Our Lady of the Wayside and St. James schools in Arlington Heights, St. Mary School in Buffalo Grove, St. Alphonsus School in Prospect Heights, St. Gilbert School in Grayslake, St. Hubert School in Hoffman Estates, St. Emily and St. Raymond schools in Mount Prospect, St. Thomas of Villanova, St. Theresa and Immanuel Lutheran schools in Palatine,,, St. Francis de Sales in Lake Zurich, St. Patrick in Wadsworth, Frassati Academy in Wauconda, Holy Family Academy in Inverness, St. Anne School in Barrington, St. Paul of the Cross School in Park Ridge, and Queen of All Saints. St. Juliana, and St. Benedict schools in Chicago  

Members of the Saint Viator cross country team are looking forward to helping out with this event as a way to give back to their communities and share their knowledge with the junior high runners. Two members will lead each race, carrying the Saint Viator flag, while other students will help encourage runners around the course. 

DSC_0958“We pride ourselves on running a great event that showcases these young student-athletes,” said Patrick Gaeger, assistant director of enrollment and the boys lacrosse coach. “The day is all about having fun and introducing the runners to high school cross country. It’s also a great chance for students to meet fellow athletes and coaches and learn more about Saint Viator.”

With hundreds of students and family members expected this year, sponsorship opportunities are now available for those interested in promoting a business and supporting this community event. There are several levels of sponsorship available, beginning at $100. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, go to https://www.saintviator.com/elementary-cross-country-invitational or contact Chris Bremner at (224) 625-1256 or cbremner@saintviator.com.

Service & Song Unique Among Summer Camps

Image-1A spirited game of “rock, paper, scissors” opened the 8th annual Service & Song Camp this week at Saint Viator High School, and as advertised it broke down barriers between the nearly 90 students on hand, who ranged from 6th graders through high school students.

Teens divide up into groups and spread out each afternoon to serve at social service agencies across the Northwest suburbs. Each afternoon starts with a reflection on their service and people they impact, as well as a song led by student musicians and choral members.

“Dear God, help us to serve and grow together, meet new people, make new friends and do what you want us to do,” said Matt Goss ’20, who is serving as co-emcee with Faith Kuper ’20.

DSC_0047For the first time, Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, is directing the camp. Though he has participated as an adult leader — he credits his vocation, in part, to the hands-on service experienced at the camp — this is the first year he trained its leaders and organized the camp.

“This week, we’re going to build community by responding and reaching out to people in need in a lot of different ways,” Br. Lamick said at the outset.

First timers at the camp were more than just junior high students. Athan Huelscamp ’20, told his group that this was his first year and he was excited to participate.

“I transferred here after sophomore year,” he told them, “and last year I wasn’t able to do it. I was looking for ways to get involved in more service.”

Image-1 (1)After the opening prayer, Br. Lamick asked each student to reflect on what injustice in the world bothers them the most. They then proceeded to write out those injustices on sheets of paper hanging on the back wall of Querbes Hall. Their answers ranged from hunger, homelessness and poverty, to gun violence and human trafficking.

“The most prevalent answer among all your responses was hunger,” Br. Lamick told the crowd, “and this week we will be doing many things to respond.”

Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, a former teacher and president of Saint Viator, organized the camp, in part to directly involve incoming students into service, and give current students a chance to serve as leaders.

Image-1 (2)Over the course of five afternoons, groups will sort food at area food pantries, collect canned goods in surrounding neighborhoods, make hospice blankets, do light maintenance and yard work at the homes of senior citizens, help at resource centers for the homeless and at another for victims of domestic violence, as well as work in two local gardens — including the Viatorian Community Garden — that raise fresh vegetables for hungry families.

“That’s why so many of you come back each year,” Br. Lamick said to the 90 teens assembled, “you’re living the vision — and putting faith into action.”

The Sky’s the Limit for this Lacrosse Star

sps_0110_9894433Summer is a busy time for Serafina DeMunno ’21. She had just two weeks off after her Saint Viator girls’ lacrosse team lost in sectionals on May 22, to when her summer tournament season began with her club team, True Lacrosse.

In all, Serafina figures she will only be home two days in June and probably only two in July between all of the state and national tournaments she is playing with her club team, as well as attending showcase camps and tournaments led by college coaches.

All this after she was named MVP of her team—for the second straight year—as well as East Suburban Catholic Conference player of the year, all-sectional and an all-state honorable mention.

Her stats from last season back it up: She had 108 draw controls—winning face-offs—95 goals, 37 assists, 68 ground ball controls, 3 interceptions, and 48 caused turnovers. She also led her team to a record of 14-2 in the regular season and 15-3 after the playoffs.

D6yLLIMXsAAcGiP“She is hands down one of the best athletes I have ever coached,” says Suzanne Rich, head coach of Saint Viator’s girls’ lacrosse team and a coach with DeMunno’s private club team, True Lacrosse.

“Serafina has been critical to the success of our team and she continues to lead by example,” Rich adds. “She is a team player and always puts her team first. Her goal is to play Division I lacrosse in college and I am doing everything to help her make that dream come true.”

This year, Serafina added even more accomplishments to her list, when she went out for winter and spring track seasons.

During the winter, Serafina tied the indoor record at Maine South in the 50-yard dash at 6.2. Outdoors, she was sectional champion in the 200-meters and qualified for the state finals.

“I called her the beast,” quips Track Coach Wayne Edelman. “She always brought a no-quit attitude and was a very hard worker.”

Serafina discovered track in eighth grade, she says, and appealed to Athletic Director Jason Kuffel to compete in both spring sports at Saint Viator.

“Running just comes naturally to me,” Serafina says, “and it keeps me in shape for lacrosse.”

Lacrosse, however, has been her true love, she says since she followed her older brother into the sport in first grade. She joined True Lacrosse in fourth grade and hasn’t looked back.

sps_0054_9894362Serafina not only plays midfield—where she covers the entire field and plays both offense and defense—but she also opens each game by taking the draw.

“I love being involved in every play,” Serafina says. “I love all the running back and forth and just how fast the game is played.”

Off the field, Serafina reflects her Viatorian education, by serving others. She volunteers at St. Joseph Home for the Elderly in Palatine, working alongside the Little Sisters of the Poor. She also volunteers in the memory care and skilled nursing units at the Garlands of Barrington, and when she’s in school, she uses her fluent Spanish skills to tutor other students.

“I love it all,” Serafina says. “I’m just more productive when I’m busy.”

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