In last month’s column, I discussed the implications of a “first choice” perspective for student formation at Bishop Lynch. Every aspect of a student’s experience at BL is reflected in the accountability chart that is available for viewing on the school’s website at www.bishoplynch.org/strategicplan (pages 5-8). Reflective of the school’s commitment to its Dominican heritage, the “first choice” lens applies to a student’s academic formation as well. This academic formation occurs through the cultivation of critical thinking skills, acquisition of knowledge and wisdom, and love for the pursuit of Truth (“Veritas”). Leadership for the academic program at Bishop Lynch is provided by the Assistant Principal for Academic Affairs, Mr. Randy Becker.
This past Sunday, the Church celebrated the canonization of Cardinal John Henry Newman, a key figure from the 19th century who provides for us meaningful insights about what it means to pursue learning in a Catholic high school like Bishop Lynch. Newman was an Anglican theologian and priest who lived from 1801-890. In 1845, Newman converted to the Catholic faith and was appointed a Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII in 1879. Cardinal Newman was widely recognized for his writings and wisdom, even during his own time in the English-speaking world.
Newman believed that a crucial component of education was the formation or cultivation of the intellect. In our own time and context, we might say that a “first choice” education goes beyond the mere acquisition of facts or workforce skills. Rather, an education that is worthy of the long history of Catholic education is rooted in the cultivation of the ability to think for oneself, after having been properly formed. Additionally, all areas of learning are interconnected. Individual subject area “truths” converge around Truth Itself (Jesus Christ).
The mission statement of Bishop Lynch highlights the principles of scholarship and the development of the total person, concepts that would resonate with Saint John Henry Newman. The intellectual formation that young men and women receive in a Catholic high school is incomplete without the integration of all other areas of human and spiritual formation. This overall program of formation and cultivation of the intellect, all in pursuit of and love for Truth, are indispensable elements of a “first choice” experience at Bishop Lynch.
Faithful to Catholic Tradition and to our Dominican heritage of scholarship and service, Bishop Lynch High School promotes the development of the total person by bringing together a diverse community in a rigorous, college preparatory environment where students are taught to strive for excellence, seek truth, and work for justice in the world. - Founded in 1963