The Xavier School Prayer
We ask you to protect the students, faculty and staff at Xavier High School.
Guide us to salvation by following the example of Jesus Christ, your Son.
Inspire us with your grace, to seek both academic success and spiritual wisdom as we use your gifts and talents in service to others.
Help us to find the strength and passion to be leaders and pioneers like Theodore James Ryken, the Xaverian Brothers and those who founded our school.
May we, in turn, accept the challenge to spread the Word of God and make the world a better place for all people.
We ask this, through Christ, our Lord.
St. Francis Xavier
Pray for us.
The school prayer, said each day at the end of school, was written by Chris Danko ’11 and Francis Rowland ’11.
There always had been a prayer at the start of the school day but not at the end. As Peter Langevin, now a priest and then a religion teacher at Xavier, remembers it, the idea came out of a student retreat. Langevin was at Xavier from 2004 to 2012 and ordained in 2016.
“What did we want to leave people with at the end of the day,” Langevin said of one of the guideposts for what the prayer might be. It also would be about honoring the past and moving forward.
Principal Brendan Donohue talked to Campus Ministry about having a prayer said to close school. The brainstorming eventually led to a class assignment.
“We had all the seniors write a prayer as a religion class activity,” former Director of Campus Ministry Andrea Hoisl said. “We did it during Founder’s Week in December as an activity to thank the brothers for all they have done.
“We had a committee of people looking through the 200-plus prayers. The committee was Fr. Peter, myself, Br. Thomas Fahey, who was the head of admissions, as well a few faculty from the English Department. We had a pool of about 40 good ones after the first round of reads. Then we had about 15 after the second round of reads. By the third round, we had it down to two, but we all felt neither fully captured the sentiments we wanted in the school prayer. The criteria was gratitude, history and thanksgiving for the past, while providing a connection to the future … So we called both boys in and asked them if they would mind if we ‘morphed’ the two prayers into one, and they said fine. They were actually very honored that their prayers were the winners. “
Rowland, a graduate of Providence College, said he drew upon prayers of St. Thomas Aquinas for inspiration and he wanted to “give homage” to that. He said that is where the “guide us to salvation” part comes from. As he remembers it, the back half of the prayer, starting with “Help us find the strength” comes from Danko’s prayer.
“The finished product came out very well and I really do like it,” Rowland said. “I am glad Xavier still uses it. I think it’s a powerful prayer and one that, because it’s so broad-ranging but touches on Xaverian traditions, it can always be said.
“I’m very honored that they chose it, and it has achieved such a continued use.”