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“We strive each day to embrace the
Unique identity of every person” 

Head of School Reflection: All guests are to be welcomed as Christ. – RB 53:1

All guests who present themselves are to be welcomed as Christ.
(RB 53:1)

Eleven simple words from Saint Benedict’s Rule, written more than 1,500 years ago, about how to great visitors. It would be easy to interpret them as little more than a call to good manners, a simple instruction to be nice or polite or friendly to guests. That, however, would vastly understate their deeper and richer meaning. Yes, they demand a spirit of friendliness and openness to the people we meet and greet each day. But they ask much more than that from us. To truly welcome someone requires a profound commitment to empathy and understanding. To look beyond first impressions and superficial judgments. To put yourself in their shoes to try to understand their experience and even your own. To approach others first from the vantage point of honor. To move beyond “hello and how are you” niceties.

For 164 years, the call to welcome has served as a sentinel value at Saint John’s Prep. As a community of students, families, faculty, and staff, we are called not only to sincerely greet all but more importantly to engage deeply and profoundly the people we encounter each day. Saint Benedict’s call to welcome demands deep listening with the ear of our heart to the voices of all those around us, particularly the voices of the suffering and the oppressed. It teaches us to actively open our hearts – to ourselves, to others, and to our God. We are called to do all of this through the prism of love: love of neighbor, love of self, and love for creation, which together define a well-lived life and a commitment to a common goodness.

We believe that an exceptional education requires an understanding and appreciation of cultural differences and values many voices, perspectives, and experiences. We have dedicated ourselves to a learning experience rooted in the Catholic Benedictine tradition that reflects respect for all people, honors each person’s dignity and gifts, and teaches our students to discover new truths by engaging others across difference.

At Saint John’s Prep, we strive each day to embrace the unique identity of every person, guiding our students to develop the cultural agility and moral foundation to live, lead, and thrive as individuals and in community. We know that when we act this way, when we truly welcome and support each other, we can begin to make a bigger difference to the people and communities around us. We can indeed change the world.

Jon McGee
Head of School

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