Dominican sisters from the St. Cecilia Congregation in Nashville, Tennessee have administered and taught at Aquinas since its founding in 1977. The congregation has over 300 sisters who teach Pre-K through college at 42 schools in 15 states and 5 countries. The sisters at Aquinas teach all subjects with a special emphasis on religious education. Since 1216, the Catholic Church has looked to the Order of Preachers founded by St. Dominic to preach and teach the Word of God. The Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation have continued this mission of St. Dominic through their dedication to the Christian education of youth in institutions of learning. For 150 years, St. Cecilia Congregation has owned and operated schools in which students are instructed in a well-rounded curriculum that endeavors to instill, even in the very young, a love for learning and a desire for prayer.
Four features mark education in the Dominican Tradition. These four elements are preaching, study, prayer, and community and are present within each school’s distinctive history and culture. In the schools, preaching takes the form of teaching. Daily lessons and activities inform the minds and hearts of our students. Children are taught to seek in their daily lessons knowledge of the true, the good, and the beautiful which will help them see reality in the light of eternity and true happiness. Students deepen their knowledge of God and His creation especially the human person in their studies and relationships with one another. We witness by our lives the truth and love of Jesus Christ. “Pope Paul VI wrote, “modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers, and if he does listen to teachers, it is because they are witnesses.” We are made to love as we are made in God’s image and likeness, and so, we give of ourselves in communion with God for all eternity. In Love of Truth, we seek to instill the virtue of study in the children. By example and teaching The Truth – Veritas ( its source is God, the First Truth) we teach the children that study is necessary to come to know and understand creation, but most importantly to come to know God. We are entrusted with the children for a short time. In this time, our goal is to assist them to mature, to become independent thinkers, and to gain a love for all that is truly human. Our faith is the foundation in our journey through life. Book learning and knowledge of the faith is important, but the transfer of the students’ knowledge to a living out of their faith is manifested in their respect for each human person. In prayer, the day is permeated with an awareness of the presence of God through personal prayer and the liturgy. We begin and end the day with prayer and encourage each person teacher, staff, and student to include Our Lord in their day. The sacraments are made available to the students as a means to holiness. The Eucharist, the source and summit of our lives is celebrated each week. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available as is needed. Devotion to Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament in the perpetual adoration chapel is offered for prayer each day. Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Saints is fostered daily. Lastly students are shown a love and respect for the Church and her ministers. In community, we are united in mission – The spread of the Gospel, the Love of Jesus Christ. There is a presence of Jesus Christ in our school that is sensed by those who enter our school. Our faculty, staff, students, and parents are filled with a joy that is inviting to each other and those families we serve. There are ample opportunities to be involved in school activities which support our mission – spiritual, social, and service oriented. In this, Our Dominican Tradition, we are rooted in prayer, supported by our community of families and pastors, committed to truth, and united in love.
Aquinas Alumni Vocations
Graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in 1998 Graduated from Notre Dame in 2002 majored in Japanese Studies and Philosophy Entered Navy ROTC. Served in Japan for two years on the USS Blue Ridge Entered St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia in 2008 Ordained to the Diaconate in 2013 Priestly Ordination 2014 Once ordained Father Christensen will serve as a Diocesan priest for three years and then will be on loan to the Military Archdiocese as a Chaplin.
Sister Martin de Porres Murphy, O.P. entered St. Cecilia Congregation August 14, 2000. Final vows July 29, 2007. Aquinas College in Nashville, TN with a Bachelor of Arts, K-6 Elementary Education, Enrolled in the summer at Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH
Aquinas College, Nashville, TN – Liberal Arts Degree, Bachelor of the Arts, K-8 Elementary Education, December 2003 Xavier University, Cincinatti, OH – Masters in Education, 2009 Montessori Primary AMI Diploma/ Certification – 2013 Entered the Convent August 17, 1998 Final Vows – August 10, 2005
Entered Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter, Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary, Lincoln, Nebraska, International Headquarters in Fribourg, Switzerland; September 2008 Priestly Ordination May 2014. The International Society of Apostolic Life was founded by Father Josef Bisig. This order of priests operate parishes and schools (and missionary apostolates) and offer the traditional Latin Mass (Extraordinary Form) and all the Sacraments according to the Rites of 1962. This community has 400 members worldwide.