By Sister Mary Jean Williams, OP
Director of Mission Integration,
Regina Dominican High School
May 9, 2017, Wilmette, Illinois – Regina Dominican High School completed its Dominican Week by presenting the Regina Dominican Veritas Award to Olivia Janickas, a senior, and Mary Schanel Stenson, Mathematics Department Co-Chairperson, Student Council Co-Moderator and WYSE and Mathletes Coach. The presentation took place during the Liturgy honoring St. Catherine of Siena.
The Veritas Award was established to commemorate the 800-year jubilee of the Order of Preachers. The faculty and staff nominated a senior and a colleague who, like St. Dominic and St. Catherine of Siena, exemplify a commitment to preach the Gospel message boldly and embrace and encourage a life of service to others.
Before the award presentation, Maggie McNaughton, one of the student Dominican preachers, shared her reflection, “Living the Dominican motto: Laudere, Benedicere, Praedicare.”
Sister Jean Williams, OP, Director of Mission Integration, shared comments from those who nominated Olivia Janickas and Mrs. Schanel Stenson.
“Olivia, those who nominated you recognized you as being empathetic, kind, compassionate, respectful, and willing to help anyone,” Sister Jean said. “You have been a model student since you transferred to Regina Dominican. You seek to excel in the classroom and are a conscientious worker. You always greet everyone with a smile. You openly proclaim your faith and set a powerful example of integrity and you have provided many hours of service to others. You embody Veritas and Caritas.”
To Mrs. Schanel Stenson, Sister Jean said, “Mary, you were recognized for exemplifying the spirit of the Dominican charism in your interactions with students, colleagues, and parents. You are a compassionate teacher who encourages your students and brings out the best in them. Your daily positive attitude and care and concern for others are attributes that impact the life and community of Regina Dominican.” She added that the teacher’s dedication to the student is “phenomenal, and you are a leader in our community for both students and adults.”
Ms. Patricia McDonell, last year’s recipient, presented the Veritas pin, a certificate, and gifts to Olivia and Mrs. Schanel Stenson, whose names are now engraved on the award’s perpetual plaque in the chapel.
Feature photo: From left are Elizabeth Schuster, Regina Dominican High School President; Meg Bigane, Regina Dominican High School Principal; Olivia Janickas and Mary Schanel Stenson, this year’s Veritas Award recipients; Patricia McDonnell, Regina Dominican High School Assistant Principal, Academic Dean, and 2015-2016 recipient.
By Sister Mary Jean Williams, OP
September 14, 2016, Wilmette, Illinois – During the Back to School Liturgy on September 1, the Regina Dominican High School community commissioned student Dominican Preachers.
Father Peter Wojcik asked the assembly to extend their hands toward the Dominican Preachers, who offer reflections during school liturgies and prayer services and take leadership in promoting the Dominican heritage and spirituality to the school community. as he read the prayer of blessing:
“Loving God, source of all wisdom and knowledge, we ask you to bless and guide these young women as they offer themselves in a special service to the school community as Dominican Preachers,” Father Wojcik prayed. “Strengthen them with your gifts, that they may preach by word and example the truth that comes from you. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ and through the intercession of St. Dominic and St. Catherine of Siena.”
The Dominican Preachers promised with the help of God, St. Dominic and St. Catherine of Siena to live the Dominican pillars of prayer, study, and community in their words and actions.
Rachel Lucas, Olivia Janickas, Lauren Murphy, and Kirby Weiland had attended the Annual Dominican High Schools Preaching Conference, held June 24-29, 2016, at Siena Heights University in Adrian. The conference focuses on teaching students from more than 30 Dominican high schools various ways to preach through their lives. The new student preachers were amazed that so many Adrian Dominican Sisters whom they met at the conference had either attended or ministered at Regina Dominican.
Emma Dunderdale, Kaitlin Clancy, Grace Tamisiea, and Margaret McNaughton had attended the 2015 Dominican High Schools Preaching Conference and continue their role as student Dominican preachers.