Page 9 - The Gonzaga Record 1990
P. 9
helpers were brutall y assassinated. we are reminded of th e hi gher goal s
of education which. I hope. underpin our work in Gonzaga - the urgent
call to exercise mature leadership th at is un se lfi sh. magnanimous and
conce rn ed for the needs of all groups in soc iety. and the price sometimes
to be paid for championin g the needs and cause of the di sadva ntaged and
vo ice less. If the ed ucati on offered in Gonzaga leads our students in th ese
directi ons th en the sc hool motto ·semper et ubique fid eli s' is more th an
an empty formula. If not ....
It has oft en bee n stated that the bas ic goa ls of Jesuit sc hools are an
excell ence whi ch seeks to develop all of a student's talents to th e full,
a generosity of in vo lve ment in the eo-curricul ar life of th e sc hool so as
to seek a broad and human development . and a form ati on in th e Fa ith
whi ch will lead th em to become more or less ·men for oth ers·.
My fea rs fo r the students leaving are th at they would develop littl e.
humanl y or spirituall y. that th ey woul d remain narrow. and be sucked
int o un ge nerous pattern s or lifestyles. sed uced by the so-call ed greedy
yuppi e mentalit y. and se ttling for th e gli b and superfi cial in dea lin g wi th
import ant iss ues.
But these fea rs are out we ighed by our hopes for our stud ents: th at th ey
develop their gifts. and fl ower into men of int eg rity and compass ion and
generosity and vision: men who will come to term s humbly with fai lu re
and weakn ess as we ll as with success, wh o will have an eye. a spec ial
eye, for th e weak and vuln erabl e in soc iety, who will have a pass ion for
the truth. whatever the cost, who will have a sense of res ponsibility for
the qu ality of li fe and leadership in lreland and abroad. wh o will have
an openness to th e rad ica l call in their deeper selves, wh erever it lea ds,
whi ch will surely if oft en imperceptibly come - men who will see th e
Church, th eir Church, as a context of enri chment and chall enge rath er
th an as a source of embarrass ment and constraint , men who will be
increasingly moti vated by the valu es of the gospel, Christ's va lu es, in
a wo rld often not at all favourable to such values-men wh o will foster
th e humble and cru cial qu ality of attenti on Simone Weil spea ks about,
whi ch makes possibl e th e encounter with the God of all conso lati on and
creati vity - our God - where He awaits us pati entl y and with great
affecti on at the depth of our being. And when peopl e say: 'he mu st have
been at sc hool in Gonzaga' - those will be the kind of qualiti es they'll
be referring to, not something else .
However, unl ess these hopes are often translated int o concrete choices
and dec isions th ey remain merel y pi ous aspirati on. For these hopes to
be reali sed in our students at all of course, th ey would need to be prized
and thought about often by the adults around them , parents, teachers and
past pupils.
A headmaster of Eton, in reply to the qu estion of wh at they we re at
in the school is reported to hav e an swered: 'we are preparin g our stude nts
to die well. ' Not a bad an swer that, if needing qualificati on. As backdrop
to all its activities and aspirations, a Catholic, Jesuit sc hool such as the

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