It was with great sadness and disappointment that I learned in the media of the closing of St. Helen’s School. I also have hope in learning of renewed efforts by school parents and staff to save this remarkable institution in southeast Fresno.
As pastor of St. Helen’s parish for nearly nine years (1999-2007), I was delighted to be a part of this then-flourishing school community. Under the creative and dynamic leadership of an exceptional principal, with a dedicated faculty and staff and families willing to bear the sacrifice of paying for a quality education, the students of various faiths and cultures received the best education possible as well as a faith-based environment that formed the whole person – body, mind and spirit.
Any diminishing of educational services is to be mourned, particularly in that economically challenged area of our city. The loss of this jewel of a holistic educational environment is additionally tragic in these times when character building and growing humane and wise leaders for the future is particularly crucial.
In this Lenten season, may St. Helen’s school community pass through this trying time and rise up to flourish once again.
Rev. David Norris, Fresno