The Class of 2019 and high school students new to SJCS participated in one of St. Joseph’s most cherished traditions on Thursday, August 20: the Red Door Ceremony. Before celebrating All-School Mass, the students crossed the Red Door’s threshold to the St. John Paul II Center after hearing these words on the tradition and history of the Red Door by Academic Dean, Steven Jones:
On August 22nd 1993, St Joseph’s Catholic School opened its doors. On that morning, the first thirteen students entered through this same red door. At the time, this red door was the entrance to a little house next to the Lutheran Church on August Road. Since then, by God’s providence, the generosity of many friends and family members and the hard work of countless people, St. Joseph’s has become a beacon for fine Catholic education in the Upstate.
Every door is a symbol of a new beginning. As you enter through this historic red door, we invite you to more fully enter this new world—a world of adventure, friendship, true education and discovery. Christ calls himself the door and the way to eternal life, and he invites us to step out of our normal expectations and follow him. To quote St. Pope John Paul II, after whom this space is named: “Do not be afraid! Open wide the doors to Christ!”
Students of the class of 2019, those who have joined us in other grades—we hope your experience here teaches you that, as Pope Benedict XVI said when announcing the “Year of Faith” a few years back that: “the door of faith always remains open to you.” Pope Francis more recently asked the church to open its doors widely so that all men and women can experience the freshness and zest that results when Christ is one’s friend and companion on life’s journey. We pray that you as you walk these halls that you will experience the love of God and the true joy that comes from entrusting your life to him.