Bishop Gorman High School celebrates its 69th year, today, making it the oldest Catholic high school in the Archdiocese of Las Vegas. And Viatorians were there from the beginning.

Associate Kim Martinez talks to seniors.

It was 69 years ago, that the Viatorian Community was tapped to administer the first Catholic high school in Southern Nevada, Viatorians were among the founding faculty and administration when the school opened Sept. 7, 1954. They would run the high school for the next 45 years and were involved in creating its mission and values, namely to teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, prepare students for higher education, and create a community where service is valued and celebrated.

As the school celebrates its historic anniversary today, Viatorians helped seniors understand the school’s roots. Associate Rosy Hartz, Faith Formation Director for nearby St. Viator Parish, served as lead director, with the help of Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, Director of Vocation Ministry for the Viatorians, led a small group.

Viatorian Kim Martinez, a former campus minister at the school and current religion teacher had started the senior retreat 10 years ago, and she had two goals in mind.

Br. Peter Lamick helps prepare candles for Taize prayer.

“First, to try and instill a sense of leadership in the seniors early in the year, so that they would take the lead in how to treat younger students through the year and to be role models,” Martinez says. “Second, I wanted to give them the opportunity to have a more inwardly reflective experience so they could really look at the changes that were coming up for them and have some time to process some of their fears and feelings.”

Much like Kairos, last week’s retreat included talks from students and teachers, as well as small and large group discussions. Br. Lamick led one of the small groups, while Hartz led a session that included prayer workshops and Taize prayer, which are core elements of the Viatorian Youth Congress every summer.

“They provide a way for young people to encounter God and equip them with different ways of living and deepening their faith,” Br. Lamick says.

Fr. Jacob Knee, Campus Ministry Director, and Mary-Kathleen Mizzoni, Junior/Senior Campus Minister, appreciated the input from Hartz and Lamick, both from a spiritual and historical perspective.

Associate Rosy Hartz leads a prayer workshop.

“Rosy and Br. Peter were awesome and the Holy Spirit was working through them,” Fr. Knee said.

His colleague, Ms. Mizzoni added: “What a benefit it was for our students to be able to connect with Bishop Gorman’s Viatorian heritage.”

Overall, the chance to interact with young people underscored Br. Lamick’s commitment as a Viatorian. As a community, Viatorians pledge to accompany young people in their faith development and promoting active membership in their respective communities.

“This was a great example,” Br. Lamick said, “of Viatorians supporting and serving the local Church — and youth ministry.”