Fall 2010 Corbie Chronicle

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Fall 2010 issue of the Corbie Chronicle, a magazine published by St. Anselm's Abbey School in Washington, DC.


  • St. AnSelmS Abbey School WAShington, D.c. FAll 2010 Vol. 19 no. 1

    corbie chronicleTHe

  • St. AnSelmS Abbey School4501 South Dakota Avenue, NEWashington, DC 20017202-269-2350www.saintanselms.org

    The Corbie Chronicle is published two times a year by the Communications Office of St. Anselms Abbey School.

    We welcome correspondence and submissions from the St. Anselms Abbey School community. Please direct letters, class notes and other communication to James Leathers, 04, at the School or via email at jleathers@saintanselms.org.

    Photography in this publication has been provided by the St. Anselms Abbey School yearbook and newspaper staffs, as well as by David W. Powell and school faculty and staff.

    We apologize in advance for any errors and/or omissions.

    contributors: Valerie Brown, Peter Collins, 74, Jeffrey Harwood, Kirk Otterson, Bryan TaylorDesign and layout: James Leathers, 04Production and Printing: Camera Ready Graphics, Bethesda, Md.

    on the cover: Fall foliage outside the monastic library in early November.Photo: Fr. Peter Weigand, OSB

    The Corbie ChronicleFall 2010 Volume 19, Number 1

    A Message from the President 3 Fr. Peter Weigand, OSB

    Reflections from the Headmaster 4 Mr. Louis Silvano

    Campus News 5

    Panther Sports 12

    Fall Scholarship Gala 14

    Class Notes 16

    In Memoriam 18

    Above: Ebenezer Scrooge (Alex Girardot, Form VI) and the ghost of Jacob Marley (Cameron Johnson, Form IV) in the Priory Players production of A Christmas Carol.

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    A Message from the President

    Most Gracious God, do not abandon what You have sown, but cherish and increase it, perfect and preserve it. We can begin nothing good without You; neither can we bring anything to fruition, nor maintain it, without You.

    Saint Anselm of canterbury, 10331109

    With this fall issue of the corbie chronicle, I will bring you up-to-date on what I have done and experienced since June 30th as the President of St. Anselms Abbey School. Our Headmaster, Mr. Louis Silvano, will update you on the academic side of things. Now that I am in my 70th year of life, having spent 46 of these years at the Abbey, I have an enduring perspective. As Black Elk, an Oglala Sioux Indian, said in the late 1890s, Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back to where they were. In late August, we began another fall term; we have had another Career Day, another Gala, another Open House, another series of faculty meetings; and soon we will have another week of semester exams, another All-Alumni Reunion, another round of college placements, and another commencement in this never-ending circle of events. And within this circle of happenings, the monastic community started in September to celebrate its 86th year as a Benedictine foundation in Washington, just as the school began its 69th year.

    By now, all of you should have received the Schools 2009-2010 Annual Report in which I wrote about the major events of the last academic year and shared some perspectives on what is going to happen this year. I started this past summer with alumni gatherings in the San Francisco, Portland, Oregon, and Chicago areas. I also stayed at the home of our great friends Mr. Brian Devine, 59, and his wife Sylvia in Rancho Santa Fe, California, and attended the 70th birthday celebration of Mr. David Harnett, 58, in Philadelphia.

    Soon after the start of this school year, the Alumni Association held a most inspiring career Day, which you can read about later in this issue. Currently, our Director of Alumni Affairs, Mr. Lawrence Hamm, 68, is hard at work planning the schools third annual All-Alumni Reunion Weekend this coming April 29th, 30th, and May 1st; I hope all alumni will keep these dates open and attend the weekends festivities.

    As you know, earlier this year Mrs. Valerie Brown joined my staff as Director of Development, and this October 23rd, she and her assistant, Mrs. Kimberly Walhout, organized a very successful Fall Scholarship gala. This year the school honored His Eminence Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, the former Archbishop of Washington, for his dedication to Catholic education.

    I said the following to our guests that evening: Last April, we celebrated 900 years of our patron Saint Anselm of Canterburys impact upon the Church and the world. As Abbot of Bec and as Archbishop of Canterbury, Anselm believed that excellence in education was a moral and social responsibility. It is fitting that this year we should honor another archbishop and leader in the Church. Both Saint Anselm and His Eminence have been true educators in their times. Their minds, souls, and hearts have always been devoted to the Catholic Church and to Catholic education.

    I said to His Eminence, I bow to your wisdom, but it seems to me that there is a Divine discontent with the status quo, there must be a Creativity that is always fresh, that invites our own complicity in making a world new! And as Benedictines, we help to do this through our ora et labora, our constant prayer and our educational work.

    Let me take this opportunity to thank everyone who was able to attend this years Gala for sharing in our Benedictine mission

    of recreating our world. I thank His Eminence, I thank all of our donors, benefactors, sponsors, parents, our Board of Trustees, faculty, students, and friends for helping the monks in their work. It could not be accomplished without each and every one of you.

    There were over 300 guests at this, the 28th Gala in the Schools history and my fourth Gala as President. I want to thank Fr. Luke Travers, OSB, former headmaster of the Delbarton School and current subprior of St. Marys Abbey in Morristown, N.J., for his most fitting introduction of Cardinal McCarrick. I also want to thank Mr. Paul Quinn, who donated his services as our splendid auctioneer. But more importantly, I am so grateful to all those who supported the Gala, which has already netted $135,000 for current scholarship aid to needy students.

    For a Benedictine school, the sole purpose of every aspect of its program, every segment of its day, every activity, project, or department must be to encounter God through love of learning in a wholesome atmosphere of holiness, happiness, and hope. As Cardinal McCarrick said, We have never needed what St. Anselms Abbey School has to offer more than we do now. Your gifts to the Fall Scholarship Gala ensure that many students who otherwise could not attend are able to be here at St. Anselms today.

    Our new past parent organization, Form Vii Forever, enjoyed its first social event of the year with a Mass and Brunch on September 19th. Fr. Michael preached at this Mass, and 125 past parents attended. Our next event was be a cocktail reception following the student Christmas concert on December 11th.

    As President, I wish to report that Mrs. Valerie Brown also organized two joint public relation events for the Abbey and School. On September 12th, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Borger hosted an exhilarating cocktail reception for major donors. Recognition of our loyal constituents was long overdue. Then on September 23rd, Mr. and Mrs. Morgan OBrien, 62, held a moonlight cocktail and buffet reception aboard their yacht, where I announced the beginning of the silent phase of an upcoming capital campaign for the Abbey and School: one location, two Vocationscaring, building, and Planning for tomorrow.

    By the time you receive this Corbie Chronicle, you should have received our Annual Fund appeal literature. In my letter to you, the monks are asking you to contribute to the 2010-2011 Annual Fund. Through your gift, you have an opportunity to designate where your Annual Fund donation should be applied: 1) Overall School Needs; 2) Current-Year Financial Aid, or 3) Support of the Monastic Community. All three of these compelling needs require your help.

    I hope I have not overwhelmed you by what I have written heresince I have retired as Headmaster, it seems that my jobs have only multiplied! I wish you all a blessed Advent season, and I hope to see you at one of our many events this spring.

    Pax in Sapientia,

    Fr. Peter Weigand, oSbPresident

    Dear Alumni, Parents, benefactors and Friends of St. Anselms Abbey and School,

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    Reflections from the Headmaster

    In November, the Priory Players presented the world premiere of a new musical production of Dickens A Christmas Carol. St. Anselms was invited to present this premiere by the English composer Piers Chater Robinson, and our drama teacher Mrs. Diggle enthusiastically accepted. The cast and crew worked collaboratively to produce an effective recreation of the well-known Dickens tale. The story of Scrooges transformation and ultimate redemption is a universal parable that speaks to us all.

    When the Spirit of Christmas Present visits Scrooge, Dickens focuses our attention on the plight of the poor and needy in presenting the two allegorical twins Ignorance and Want.

    Dickens believed that it was only through education that poverty could be eradicated.

    This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.

    Dickens echoes the words of Christ in Saint Lukes account of The Sermon on the Plain: But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. But woe to you who are filled now, for you will be hungry. In the final judgment scene of Matthews gospel, Jesus reminds us: For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink As Christians, we are called to serve the poor and the needy among