Saturday, August 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Holy Ghost!

The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Right Judgement

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Ghost

0 Lord Jesus Christ, Who before ascending into heaven, promised to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me, that He may perfect in my soul the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom, that I may despise the perishable things of this world, and aspire only after the things that are eternal; the Spirit of Understanding, to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth; the Spirit of Counsel, that I may ever choose the surest ways of pleasing God and gaining heaven; the Spirit of Fortitude, that I may bear my cross with You, and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge, that I may know God and know myself, and grow perfect in the science of the Saints; the Spirit of Piety, that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable; the Spirit of Fear, that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God, and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your spirit. Amen.

The Confraternity of the Holy Ghost was canonically established in the Chapel of Holy Ghost Missionary College, Cornwells Heights, Pennsylvania, on October 8, 1912. By Apostolic Letters of His Holiness Pope Pius XI it was elevated to the rank of an Archconfraternity on June 13, 1922.

Homecoming 2009- Saturday, September 12th
Homecoming Schedule of Events

9:30 am - Alumni Soccer Game, please contact Fran Nick at
12:00 pm - JV/Varsity soccer vs. Father Judge
4:00 pm - Red Mass celebrated with Cardinal Rigali
5:30 pm - Anniversary Celebration and Homecoming Celebration
5:30 pm- Alumni Cocktail Reception for all alumni with highlighted classes celebrating their Milestone Reunions
1959, 1964, 1969, 1974, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, 2004

Any questions for more information about the cocktail reception, please contact Shannon Corcoran at or Fran Nick at

For more information or to volunteer for Homecoming, please contact Ken Ferrara at 215-639-2102 ext. 203 or ar or click here for schedule of events.
To download a registration card, please click here.

Happy Anniversary to my alma mater. How my parents sacrificed to send me there -- how I didn't appreciate their sacrifice until many years later.

I always get a chuckle when I read an article that children can't learn in a particular school because the building is too old. Perhaps not maintained well, but no too old. While Ghost as a prep school may only be 50, it has its roots dating back to 1898 as a seminary in Cornwells Heights for the Holy Ghost Fathers. Part of the bulding was funded by St. Katherine Drexel and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament -- a great friend to the Holy Ghost Fathers as back then they had a similar charism. Holy Ghost Fathers operated the St. Joseph’s House for Homeless Industrious Boys, an orphanage in North Philadelphia, and St. Peter Claver Parish in South Philadelphia, the first Catholic parish for Blacks in Philadelphia.

"St. Peter Claver Church, at 12th & Lombard Streets, had formerly been
used by a Presbyterian congregation. With the help of wealthy benefactors,
including Saint Katharine Drexel, the building was purchased and

The community was served since 1889 by the Holy Ghost Fathers, or
Spiritans. The Church was blessed for public worship by Archbishop Patrick Ryan
on January 3, 1892, two days before the opening of the III Black Catholic
Congress. The opening Mass was celebrated by Father Augustus Tolton,
the first recognized Black Catholic priest in the United States. (44 note -
arguments could be made for Patrick Francis Healy, SJ being the first)"

But a school is more than just bricks and mortar... it is about people. When I think about HGP I think about some of those great people. Mr. Grabowski and our counseling sessions, Fr. Herbert Charles, CSSp -- giving us a few minutes to sit and chat, Mrs. Martucci -- who we know really ran the school, Fr. Henry Brown, CSSp -- the former Navy tail gunner and NSA operative, who kept the Japanese out of NE philly, and the toughest teacher... who everyone came back to see, and John Buettler, who suffered more than most teachers as he had to teach me both religion and Latin -- who is still there, mentoring young men. I also think of, and keep in my prayers, fellow alumnus Bill Christy, CSSp, HGP '82. Bill served in the USMC right out of Ghost and when he attended our 10 year reunion was a Holy Ghost Father. The link provided shows a picture of Fr. Bill saying Mass in Tanzania. He was back at Duquesne for a while and is now off serving the Aborigines in Australia.
So Happy birthday Holy Ghost Prep and congratulations to the Holy Ghost Fathers (Spiritans)!

Cor unum et anima una!

The Chapel of the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. I imagine that most alums would have wanted to have their wedding masses here, if not for the archaic rules of the Philadelphia Archdiocese.

Fr. George Spangenberg, CSSp -- the first priest I ever met who wore French cuffs.

in the Fr. Henry J. Brown Conference Room

Breaking in to the art room to get supplies to paint "the dog" again at our reunion.

Fr. Herbert Charles -- who concelebrated our wedding mass at OSJ.

John Buettler, HGP '64

John Buettler, Holy Ghost Preparatory School faculty Guidance Counselor and former English Professor Bensalem, Pennsylvania

"Lay people bring an energy to the community."John Buettler has been a faculty member at Holy Ghost Preparatory School for 33 years. He is an alumnus of the school as are his four sons. His wife is Holy Ghost's librarian, so his ties to this Spiritan school are strong.As a member of a Spiritan Lay Associate group that includes other faculty members, John works to uncover how Spiritan spirituality relates to teaching. "Lay people bring an energy to the Spiritan community that comes from being present in and aware of the world.

The spirit goes where it will, which is compatible with the life of a lay person who has kids, family, a job. It is a spirituality that interprets life as it is lived. The Spiritans have had a vital formative role in my life. They have been more of a father to me than any other man in my life. They performed my marriage, baptized my children, celebrated my 25th wedding anniversary, and married my first child. They are very dear to me."

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