September 10, 2010

Bishop hopes new Nouvel High School chapel will ‘enliven Catholic identity and mission’ for students

SAGINAW — As part of a renewed effort to strengthen Catholic identity, one classroom inside Nouvel Catholic Central High School underwent a major renovation this summer. The room was transformed into a chapel for students, faculty and staff so they might have the opportunity to spend quiet time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament during the school day. Weekly Masses for the school community will be celebrated during the school year.

“It is my sincere hope that students, faculty and staff will frequently visit St. Paul Oratory, and that they may find that the presence of the Blessed Sacrament enlivens the Catholic identity and mission of Nouvel Catholic Central High School,” said the Most Rev. Joseph R. Cistone, Bishop of Saginaw, in a recent letter to Nouvel Principal Irene Hensinger and Sister Yvonne Mary Loucks RSM, Director of Catholic Identity and Mission for Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Saginaw.

Bishop Cistone is set to dedicate the private chapel and celebrate Mass there on Monday morning. The dedication comes on the 50th anniversary of the first Mass celebrated at the school, which first opened its doors as St. Paul Seminary in 1960.

The seminary ceased operation in 1970 and the building became the new site of Ss. Peter & Paul High School. In 1984, following the merger of three Saginaw-area Catholic high schools, the name was changed to Nouvel, which remains today.

Nouvel Catholic Central was named in honor of Father Henri Nouvel, a Jesuit missionary credited with celebrating the first Mass in the interior of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula at the Saginaw River Valley on December 3, 1675. A monument stands today on Saginaw’s Ojibway Island to commemorate that event.

Several Diocese of Saginaw priests who attended the seminary have been invited to attend Monday’s Mass as well as Nouvel students, faculty and staff and Saginaw Area Catholic School leaders.

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