By Sister Mary Jean Williams, OP
December 15, 2016, Wilmette, Illinois – Ring Day – at 55 years, the oldest tradition at Regina Dominican High School – was celebrated December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, at a Mass honoring Mary, patroness of the school. During this traditional Mass, the seniors wear their caps and gowns for the first time and have their class rings blessed.
At this first Mass celebrated in the newly remodeled auditorium, Bishop John R. Manz, Auxiliary Bishop of Vicariate IV in the Archdiocese of Chicago, told the community that this was his first Ring Day Mass.
The senior class prayed in thanksgiving for the events and people, the talents, and the gifts that they have experienced throughout their four years at Regina Dominican.
Dominican Preacher Lauren Murphy volunteered to share a reflection on her four years at Regina Dominican.
“This is the first of many milestones for the graduating Class of 2017,” she said. “Ring day is a time to recognize the unity of our senior class. We come together today to receive a blessing and recognition from our school community for our time, pride, and commitment to the values we stand on. The four pillars we value within the Regina Dominican family are prayer, study, community and service.”
Lauren shared that, during the recent freshman retreat, she had stressed to the new students the importance of being involved in school activities. “Taking a leadership role and taking a risk was something I never feared,” she said. “Like Mary’s willingness to say yes, I said yes, too.”
Lauren’s remarks included gratitude for her experience at school.
“Here at Regina, I was in a comfortable enough environment to take chances. I am beyond grateful for these opportunities because I have become a more independent, confident, and strong individual,” she said. “With the support of my friends, teachers, and administration, this was all made possible. I think it’s fair to say that in this community everybody cares about one another.”
In conclusion, Lauren expressed her appreciation for her experience this summer at the Dominican High Schools Preacher Conference. “Going to the preaching conference in Adrian, Michigan, this past summer, I learned that even though we are such a small school, we are very well known,” Lauren told her class. “Many Sisters in Adrian have taught here or even visited.”
Oh I remember the Ring Ceremony very well! The first time, when I received my own Regina ring ,and the many years while I was Campus MInister planningthe Liturgy. I think this year may be the first that had a Bishop presiding! Biahop John Manz was a good choice!