The Xaverian value for this school year at Xavier High School will be “simplicity,” and Brother Philip Revell, C.F.X., has written a prayer to be utilized throughout the 2021-2022 academic year:
“Loving God, look upon us with kindness and draw our hearts to you, that we may treasure your love and goodness above all else. Keep us in the way of your beloved Son who taught us to seek your Kingdom above all created things, and fill us with the generosity that sees the face of Jesus in all whom we meet. Give us a spirit of generosity to respond to the needs of the poor and afflicted and help us to live simply so that all people may share in the bounty of your creation.”
As Brother Philip reflected on the past 18 months or so in which COVID has played a role in all of our lives, he said the experience has made us think what matters most in life.
“People have had to learn how to respond to sudden illness and death and that has certainly made us more conscious of the fragility of life and our responsibility to live and act for the good of others,” Brother Philip said by email from England. “It has perhaps awakened faith in some people … there is some suggestion that many more Catholics have followed Mass and devotions on the internet than would otherwise have gone to church in person.
“It has made us a lot less selfish and shown us that the lives of others are often in our hands, quite literally. We certainly did have to slow down and that has given us time and space to think about and appreciate the value of life and put into context the things we perhaps mistakenly thought most important.”
The “Partners In Mission: Understanding the Xaverian Way,” document created in 2019 with contributions from Brother Philip, mentions this: “Making choices that favor the common good of humanity and our common home, simplicity calls us to work for justice for all people and nations.”
Brother Philip expanded on that when talking about the impact of COVID.
“On a global level it has highlighted the injustice of our world, and the ever greater gap between rich and poor. Availability of medical care has been shown for what it really is. Governments in the rich nations should take a serious look at expenditure and commit themselves to the UN Millenium goals, re water, food, healthcare in order to narrow the gap.
Both the US and UK need to reconsider what justice for all means in the question of refugees. They are increasingly demonized in our societies and in the present health crisis their existence becomes ever more precarious.”