SCHOOL NEWS

Hendricken returns to Cathedral grandeur

Posted 6/15/22

By ALEX MALM

After conducting commencement ceremonies for the past two years outdoors on the grounds of the Aldrich Mansion, the Bishop Hendricken High School graduation returned to the grandeur …

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SCHOOL NEWS

Hendricken returns to Cathedral grandeur

Posted

By ALEX MALM

After conducting commencement ceremonies for the past two years outdoors on the grounds of the Aldrich Mansion, the Bishop Hendricken High School graduation returned to the grandeur of the Cathedral of Saints Peter & Paul in Providence on Monday evening.

As the afternoon sunlight streamed through stained glass windows, following greetings from Principal Mark DeCiccio, under the direction of Mark McPhillips, director of campus ministry, a students stepped forward to place a bouquet at the sarcophagus of the late Bishop Hendricken.

Brigadier General Andrew J. Chevalier, a member of the 1986 Hendricken Class delivered the commencement address.  Chevalier, chief of staff for the Rhode Island National Guard, urged the graduates to be humble, confident and “to be yourself.”

Valedictorian Daniel M. Franchetti said he is grateful that his class was able to graduate in the cathedral. His uncle Shawn Patrick McKay who gave a speech from the same altar as Franchetti in 1992 was in attendance from South Carolina.

“To say he was influential in my decision to come to Hendricken would be a gross understatement, as I have always viewed him with admiration,” said Franchetti. “And though I, Daniel MinSoo Franchetti, may be from a world away, I am honored to succeed him as another Hawk and advance the legacy.”

In a somber moment Franchetti also recognized those who have passed away over the past year.

“If there is one practical thing to take away from this speech, it is to count what you have now. This year alone, I could correlate a death of someone to each month that has thus far passed, which is something I cannot say about any other year,” said Franchetti.  “As students, we will all eventually have to deal with loss. I wrote at length about it in a project this year, but I will summarize it: grief is a process. Grief and sadness did not fully reveal themselves in the moments of the person’s death nor their services, but they reveal themselves slowly in those small moments as time goes on. My grandmother used to call our house phone daily, and I would have to go downstairs to pick up the landline from my room. It was something trivial, and perhaps disruptive, but now in the quietest moments while I work in my room, I remember how a phone used to ring, but now nevermore. Never miss out on the smallest moments.”

Franchetti said that he was grateful to be able to attend Hendricken starting in the eighth grade.

“As a parting thought, I wish to recognize my fellow hawks who had the privilege of attending Hendricken for 5 years - it pleases me that the Man of the Year, valedictorian, and salutatorian this year all attended the SELECT Program,” said Franchetti. “ It is a legacy I hope is cherished and protected by future generations.”

 Hendricken's salutation Neil Dungca said that he took the advice given to them during their first day of school.

“Over the past four years, I've done what we were told to do on our first day at Hendricken - I got involved in everything I could - from clubs to sports, to the arts and more,” said Dungca.  “My involvement in extracurriculars taught me a lot, but one important lesson sticks out: while Hendricken has always encouraged us to get involved as much as possible, missing out on things is an essential aspect of the Hendricken experience, too.  Not everyone gets to represent a club, step onto the field, or put on a performance; within our brotherhood there’s just too much talent and not nearly enough time.  No two of us have had the same experience during our time here. With everyone having such varying experiences at Hendricken, finding something we could all relate to was quite difficult.  That something, however, would find its place in an area we probably all overlooked.”  

Dungca  also spoke about what has been one of the biggest points of discussion throughout the past two and a half years. Covid-19.

“In the latter half of sophomore year, as school shifted to computer screens and away from our community, it seemed like the brotherhood had disappeared and was unlikely to come back,” said Dungca.  “All those little moments in the classrooms, cafeteria, and just passing through the halls were virtually gone.  However, we did not succumb to isolation.  I’m sure most of us are familiar with the group chats or discord servers created by students for different classes, and something my classmates and I did during the start of the pandemic was get into a call and just eat lunch.  We’d leave our Zoom meetings at 12:30, grab something to eat, and sit together at our virtual lunch table.  Where any feeling of community and brotherhood was lost, we came together as best as we could.  Now, two years later, we can once again congregate in the cafeteria, crowding the lunch lines and struggling over seats in what is now the DeLucia Center. And while the floors, furniture, and student body are all new, that familiar sense of tabletop camaraderie remains, unshaken since it was formed way back in 1959.” 

Hendricken President and Pastor of St. Kevin Church Fr. Robert Marciano extended his congratualtions to the class. He  said that the class of 2022 graduating in the Cathedral was full circle.

“How fitting that we conclude the journey of this talented class here where it began four years ago and send you forth on the next phase of this life journey with our prayers and best wishes for health and happiness and success in the future,” said Fr. Marciano.

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