Join us for a magical evening of celebration and support the St. Joseph’s Annual Fund! All proceeds fund tuition assistance, academic programs, athletics, fine arts, campus ministry, student life, and more.
Twenty-five years ago, in August of 1993, the founders of St. Joseph’s Catholic School took a leap of faith and opened with only 13 students enrolled (all 9th graders) and a mere $800 in the bank. On Saturday, February 3rd, 2018, our school community threw a big party to celebrate 25 years of providing Catholic high school education in the Upstate. (Of course, SJCS added a middle school in 2003.)
Over 500 people attend the special Mass with Bishop Guglielmone, Father Newman, Fr. Duncan, and Fr. Andrew Fryml (Class 2008), who was a very inspiring homilist. 868 people RSVP’d for the party that followed in the gym and featured stirring remarks from Dr. Joby Moon, husband of founding board chair, Mrs. Margaret Ann Moon, and the bestowal of our first ever alumni Alumni Awards on Juliane Laskowski (Class of 2006), GP McLeer (Class of 2006), and Andrew Fryml (Class of 2008). Rod McClendon was the MC for an evening that included food trucks, a beer garden, and a line-up of bands all with ties to St. Joseph’s Catholic School. Lauren Gragtmans (Class of 2005) came all the way from New York city to perform. Brandon Blaso (Class of 2010) played the drums for Randamonium. And the front man of the headlining band, The Winter Sounds, Patrick Keenan, was in the first class at St. Joseph’s. I had fun showing Patrick the Red Door and taking his picture next to the brick with his name on it.
What began in a little house on Augusta Road has blossomed into a nationally recognized regional Catholic school located in the heart of Greenville County that now enrolls nearly 700 students in grades 6 through 12. Now in my 18th year as headmaster, I have had the honor of knowing and working with most of the women and men who have helped to make this school into the beacon of fine Catholic education that it is today. When I think of all the faces over the years, whether as trustees, volunteers, or teachers and coaches, who dedicated so much of their time, talent, treasure, and energy, it fills me with wonder, gratitude and humility at what a relatively small group of people can do when they believe in a common mission and are willing to sacrifice for it. It was a sheer delight to see so many of these men and women at the 25th Anniversary Mass and party. Looking out at all these faces that night, I was reminded of something I had just read by Fr. Spitzer about Heaven. “Jesus uses the image of the messianic banquet to convey the love and joy of the Kingdom of Heaven. (Heaven) will resemble a perfect banquet with all the foods we like, with all the people we would want to be with, and they will all be like family to us.” The 25th Anniversary Celebration felt like a little taste of this.
The founders of St. Joseph’s had a vision for establishing a school that would educate students who would make a difference by living lives of intelligent and creative service inspired by the love of God and love for others. As Mrs. Margaret Ann Moon liked to say: “Our graduates are destined to change the world.”
Throughout this 25th academic year, my thoughts have often been on our graduates. Are they living up to the hopes and expectations of our founders? With our oldest graduates still under 40 years old, it’s admittedly a little premature to tell what kind of lasting impact our graduates are going to have on Greenville, the state of South Carolina, and the country, let alone the world. Yet, as I talked to many of our graduates at their annual Christmas social and read through the nominations for the Alumni Awards, it’s evident to me that they are already on the right track to living up to the founders’ vision.
To this point, I have had unexpected encounters in recent months with graduates and heard stories about others who are already changing the world for the better. For example, I recently bumped into one graduate who told me that she is Greenville Middle School’s Teacher of the Year; another who is a theater teacher at Pickens High School; another who heads the Embrace Program at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic School; and countless others who are teaching at diocesan and public schools throughout the region, the state, and the country. Imagine their surprise, for example, when two St. Joseph’s graduates (members of the Classes of 2002 and 2011) discovered recently that they are teaching at the same Catholic school in Kentucky!
Then, there is the young lady who is watching her dream since middle school of building a home in the Upstate for unwed mothers finally come true. I am especially proud of the young man who as a college student donated his bone marrow to someone he didn’t know because he signed up with his college baseball teammates for the Be The Match program and discovered that his marrow was the perfect match. That same pride extends to the all-conference, senior captain football player at Carnegie Mellon who would tell you that one of his greatest joys in college has been getting to know Mikey, a young boy with a serious heart condition, through his involvement with Team Impact at The Children’s Hospital in Pittsburgh. A member of my senior staff told me earlier this year that she ran into a SJCS graduate at the GHS emergency room, where our graduate is working as a doctor. This young doctor is one of countless graduates who are or are in training to be doctors, nurses, pharmacists, psychologists, and physical therapists. Then there are those who are using their considerable talents to enrich the arts locally, statewide, and nationally, including the Executive Director of the SC Arts Alliance and the associate producer of the Broadway production of Anastasia.
When it comes to impacting the business community, there are a whole host of young women and men who are beginning to make their mark on Greenville. For example, I bumped into one young man with his wife and two small children recently at a sporting event who told me that he is now the Chief Operating Officer of Tribe 513, and we talked about his classmate who is rapidly developing a successful local real estate company and their mutual friends who are working with him. A few days after that I was with a friend whose cancer research center recently joined forces with GHS. He told me how impressed he was with the SJCS graduate who was responsible for publicizing the new partnership.
What pleases me most, however, is what I see every Sunday morning at Mass. From where I sit at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, everywhere I look I can see our graduates participating in Mass. They are there with their parents, their new spouses, and in some cases, they are juggling small children, such as the member of the Class of 2006, who often sits directly in front of me with her husband and three of the cutest young children you’ll ever see.
So, yes, when I think about our graduates, I do think they are beginning to fulfill our founders’ vision of changing the world for the better. A few of them are doing this in what we would consider extraordinary ways, but most are finding a way to change the world through doing ordinary things with great passion and love.
In closing, in this anniversary year, I’m also mindful of all the things that didn’t go right and the mistakes we made over the years. I personally wish I had a few do-overs in order to try to retain good teachers and staff who got away, and I’d like another chance at how I handled a few discipline situations. In thinking of these and other regrets and missed opportunities, I’m reminded of something else our founding board chair used to say to me often: “We’re not doing this, God is.” Literally, thank God! For if we were left up to our own devices, I’m certain that we’d have never made it to this milestone year. Thank you to all in the community who made these 25 years possible through your generous support. May you take satisfaction in the fact that St. Joseph’s Catholic School is changing the world for the better one graduate at a time.
Keith F. Kiser, Headmaster of St. Joseph’s Catholic School
Providing and promoting a family-centered, Catholic approach to chastity education
Do You Need Help in Talking to Your Child About Chastity?
Would you like to jump-start communication with your son or daughter? Do you need help in talking to your child about chastity, sexuality, marriage, dating and other important topics? Would you like to spend time with other families who share your values and want the best for their children? Would you like to do all this in an environment that is relaxed, fun and respects the dignity of everyone present?
If you answered YES to any of these questions and you’re the parent of a 7th or 8th grader, we encourage you to register for the Real Love & Real Life parent-teen chastity education program, to be held at St. Joseph’s Catholic School on Wednesday nights – Feb. 21, 28, & Mar. 7 from 6:45 – 8:45 pm.
This fun and truly unique three-session program is for you to attend with your 7th or 8th grader. You’ll see and hear skits, videos, participate in group breakout sessions and interactive games. It will bring you together with other families to learn about love, life, chastity and God’s gift of sexuality. You and your teen will have the chance to enhance your communication skills, discuss true worth, guidelines for future dating and lots more. Here, one parent shares what they liked most about the program: “It opened a door for me that wasn’t open before between my daughter and me. I definitely feel more comfortable and confident discussing chastity with her.”
The Real Love & Real Life program is presented by Family Honor Inc., an organization that has provided and promoted a family-centered Catholic approach to chastity education since 1988. The deadline for registering is February 7th. Space is limited so register soon online at www.familyhonor.org. There is a registration fee of $45.00 for the program, which can be paid upon checking in at the first session. Scholarships may also be available. For more information, contact Phyllis Stanton at email@example.com.
Over Fall Break weekend, 9 high school students attended their first High School Model United Nations hosted at Clemson University. The students represented the countries of China, the United Kingdom, and Turkey. Environmental, Economic and Social issues were debated and resolutions written, all with an eye towards sustainability. SJCS hopes to continue to participate in Model UN conventions.
SJCS Boys and Girls Cross Country both brought home the State Championship titles in the state cross country meet Saturday at Sandhills Research Center!
Last year, our Lady Knights became the first girls team to win seven consecutive state titles in the Class AA/A championship, and didn’t slow down one bit for this year, claiming five of the top ten finisher slots.
If your family is searching for an experience of academic excellence, rooted in faith and supported by a loving community that will encourage your child to grow mind, body, and soul… then you might be a FUTURE KNIGHT.
Celebrate 25 years of St. Joseph’s with stories of the earliest days of the school, starting back when it was a dream in the hearts of four women sitting around a kitchen table.
By giving to the Annual Fund, you are ensuring we continue to fulfill our mission to pursue academic excellence and to form the minds, hearts, and souls of our students in the likeness of Christ.
The SJCS Fine Arts Department and Jubilate Arts Guild hosted the first Coffeehouse of the school year on Friday, September 8th. The open-microphone event was hosted by seniors Robby Matlock and Sydney Read. High school students performed a variety of acts to entertain the crowd. Highlights included vocal and instrumental solos, duets, a group performance of “Hot Cross Buns”, magic tricks, and jokes. Members of the Fine Arts Honor Societies are responsible for the running of the Coffeehouses each year. Join us for the next Coffeehouse events: October 13th (Middle School) and January 12th (High School)!
Due to the threat of continued severe weather and wind, power outages and unsafe road conditions from Hurricane Irma, St. Joseph’s Catholic School and offices will be closed on Tuesday September 12.
- Would you like to meet and get to know a few other St. Joseph’s parents?
- Would you like some advice or ideas on how to become a more effective parent?
- Would you like to figure out if it’s “just your kid” or if other kids act in similar ways?
- Or, are you simply in need of a little support, encouragement, and fellowship with other parents?
If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, then the newly forming Parent-2-Parent program at St. Joseph’s might be just for you.
This small group, discussion-based program had been an important part of family outreach and support at St. Joseph’s in the past. It is now starting up again.
The plan is to form several small Parent-2-Parent groups which will meet monthly at the homes of volunteers. Each meeting will begin with a prayer and include a short presentation, which will then be discussed by the group, with parents having the opportunity to share their experiences as well as learn from the experiences of other parents.
Some of the topics to be covered will be:
- Student Anxiety: How Much Pressure is too Much?
- Effects of Teen Screen Time and Can It Be Helped?
- Friendships, Dating, and Other Relationships: What Boundaries are Needed?
- In the Age of Social Media: Helping Our Children Develop a Healthy Self-Image
- Creating a Home with Open Communication
- And more. . .
There will be an information meeting at St. Joseph’s at 7:00 PM on Tuesday, September 12 in the JPII Center. We will explain further how the program works, as well as begin the process of forming groups and establishing meeting times and locations.
If you cannot attend the meeting but would still like to be involved, or would like more information, contact Tami Kiser.
Varsity Boys Baseball (3rd in Region, District Champions)
All-State – Jack Culumovic
All-Region – Jack Culumovic, AJ Minerva, Paul Minerva
Region Player of the Year – Jack Culumovic
North/South Baseball Selection – Jack Culumovic
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Jack Culumovic (1st team)
Most Outstanding Player – Anthony Minerva
Knight’s Armor Defense Player – Jack Culumovic
Knight’s Leadership Award – Luke Bynum, Jonathan Monts
Pitcher of the Year – Matthew Marchal
Varsity Boys Golf (1st in Region, 2nd in State)
All-State – Ryan Gorman, Ben Loudermilk, Sean Miller
All-Region- Ryan Gorman, Ben Loudermilk, Sean Miller
Region Player of the Year – Ben Loudermilk
Region Coach of the Year – Mark Matlock
North/South Golf Selection – Sean Miller
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Sean Miller (2nd team)
HSSR-SCHSL All State Boys Golf – Sean Miller
MVP – Ben Loudermilk
MVP – Ryan Gorman
Leadership Award – Sean Miller
Newcomer of the Year- Joey Clary
Varsity Boys Lacrosse
All-State – Christian Castillo (1st team)
Lacrosse Coaches Association All-State – Christian Castillo, Luke Bikulege
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Christian Castillo (1st team), Luke Bikulege (2nd team)
Offensive MVP – Christian Castillo
Defensive MVP – Grayson Kinsler
Unsung Hero – Christian Gillespy
Most Improved – Peter Baer
Varsity Girls Lacrosse
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Monica Frazier (1st team)
Team MVP – Monica Frazier
Offensive MVP – Lizzie Reinstein
Defensive MVP – Mary Corasaniti
Most Improved – Sophie Coburn
Varsity Boys Soccer (1st in Region, 2nd in State)
All-State –Drew Luzzatti, Nathan Meglic, Henry Smith, BJ Tally
All-Region- Alfredo Diaz-Santillian, Drew Luzzatti, Henry Smith, BJ Tally
Region Player of the Year – Drew Luzzatti
Region Coach of the Year – Frank Kucinic
North/South Soccer Selection – Diego Franco
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Drew Luzatti (1st team), Henry Smith (2nd team)
HSSR-SCHSL All State Boys Soccer – Nathan Meglic, Henry Smith
MVP Offense – Alfredo Diaz-Santillian
MVP Defense – BJ Tally
Team MVP – Drew Luzzatti
Coaches Award – Diego Franco
Varsity Girls Soccer (1st in Region, 2nd in State)
All-State- CeCe Hendricks
All-Region- Jane Cajka, CeCe Hendricks, Agnes Stanton, Anna Thompson
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – CeCe Hendricks (2nd team)
Region Player of the Year – CeCe Hendricks
Region Coach of the Year – Rick Morris
HSSR-SCHSL All State Girls Soccer – CeCe Hendricks
Varsity Girls Softball (3rd in Region)
All-Region- Jackie Curry, Megan Palash, Sydney Richardson
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Jackie Curry (1st team), Sydney Richardson (2nd team)
Scholar Athlete Award – Jackie Curry
Coaches Award – Megan Palash
All Heart Award – Sydney Richardson
Varsity Boys Tennis (2nd in Region)
All-Region – Maclean Armstrong, Mack Self
State Singles Selection – Maclean Armstrong
MVP – Maclean Armstrong
Leadership – Mack Self
Most Improved – Austin Helmer
Varsity Boys/Girls Track (Boys, 2nd in Region, 1st in State,
Girls 3rd in Region, 8th in State)
Region Track and Field Male Athlete of the Year- Liam Martin
All-State – Annika Bissinger, Ford McCoy, Brendan McTigue, Zac Palmer, Josh Powers
All-Region- Annika Bissinger, Davis Cooney, Quint Greggs, Liam Martin, Ford McCoy, Nick McElveen, Brendan McTigue, Dylan McTigue, Zac Palmer, Jacob Peterman, Josh Powers
SCHSL Class AA Track and Field Coach of the Year – George Carr
Greenville News Upstate Sports Award – Annika Bissinger (2nd team), Ford McCoy (2nd team), Brendan McTigue (2nd team), Zac Palmer (2nd team), Josh Powers (2nd team)
HSSR-SCHSL All State Girls Track – Annika Bissinger
HSSR-SCHSL AA Boys Track Athlete of the Year – Ford McCoy
HSSR-SCHSL AA Boys Track Coach of the Year – George Carr
MVP – Annika Bissinger
Coaches Award – Annamarie Bell
Coaches Award – Madison Turcotte
Most Improved – Averi Brice
MVP – Ford McCoy
Coaches Award – Liam Martin
Coaches Award – Jacob Peterman
Most Improved – Brendan McTigue
Region 1-AA Male Athlete of the Year – Ford McCoy
On Friday, June 9, 2017, the Reverend Mr. Andrew Fryml, SJCS Class of 2008, was ordained to the Sacred Order of the Priesthood in the Catholic Church by Bishop Robert Guglielmone in Charleston, SC. The entire St. Joseph’s family extends Deacon Fryml and his family our most heartfelt congratulations and profound gratitude for his gift of self in the sacred priesthood!
Father Fryml’s first Mass of Thanksgiving was celebrated at his home parish of Jesus Our Risen Savior in Spartanburg on Sunday, June 11th at 12:00 PM.
We look forward to welcoming you home to St. Joseph’s to celebrate Mass in the near future!
Congratulations to Christian Gillespy, St. Joseph’s first Morehead-Cain Scholar! The Morehead-Cain Scholarship was the first merit scholarship program established in the United States, founded at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The Morehead-Cain Scholarship covers all expenses for four years of undergraduate study at UNC-Chapel Hill. It also features a distinctive program of summer enrichment experiences designed to support students as they learn and grow. During the course of four summers, scholars will have opportunities to complete an outdoor leadership course, commit themselves to public service in the U.S. or abroad, conduct research at sites around the world, and gain experience in private enterprise. (www.moreheadcain.org)
To be selected as a Morehead-Cain Scholar, recipients must demonstrate exceptional leadership, moral force of character, academic achievement, and physical vigor.
Congratulations to the 99 members of the St. Joseph’s Catholic School Class of 2017! Baccalaureate Mass was celebrated Friday evening, May 26, 2017 at 6:00 PM in the John Paul II Center, and the Commencement Exercises were Saturday, May 27, 2017, at 10:00 AM in the gymnasium. Headmaster Kiser and the entire faculty and staff were pleased to welcome the many families and friends to our campus to celebrate the achievements and exceptional character of this year’s graduating class.
This year’s Father Fox Award recipient, Sophie Coburn, delivered the Salutation address, and the Farewell address was given by the recipient of the Redemptoris Custos Award, Breanna Anderson.
The Class of 2017 has earned the following accolades:
100% college acceptance.
$11.5 million in college scholarship money.
86 students (87% of the class) received scholarship offers, with an average award package of over $137,000 per student.
Of those 86 students, 82 seniors (83% of the class) received a South Carolina state scholarship award: 18 Palmetto Fellows Scholarships, 60 Life Scholarships, and 4 Hope Scholarships.
4 students were awarded a “full ride” (full tuition or tuition and room and board) to at least one college.
15 members of the class committed to continue their athletic careers in college.
The Class of 2017 was also distinguished by the addition of 19 new colleges and universities to the ever-growing list of schools to which the previous graduates were accepted, including Emerson College, Queens College of the CUNY, University of Northwestern, and the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Both video and photography from the ceremony will be available shortly, so please check back soon!