Archbishop Hebda Visits Academy of the Holy Angels To Kick Off Proclaim Jubilee Year

October, 2015 

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DEMAREST, NJ — Archbishop Bernard A. Hebda,  Co-adjudicator for the Archdiocese of Newark, visited Academy of the Holy Angels Friday, October 2nd, helping to kick off AHA’s Proclaim Jubilee celebratory year, marking its 50 years on the Demarest campus.  His visit also commemorated the anniversary of the founding of the all-girls, college-preparatory school on October 2, 1879 when its first Principal, Sister Nonna Dunphy, purchased the 11-acre Fort Lee estate of scientist and surgeon, Dr. Henry Anderson, for $10,500. (The school opened to students in November 1879 and remained at its Fort Lee location for 86 years until its transition to Demarest a half a century ago.)

 “I’m thrilled to be invited to Holy Angels to celebrate with you, “ Archbishop Hebda said upon his arrival at AHA. “It’s a wonderful opportunity to gather as the Holy Father, Pope Francis,  did last week. This is a school that knows something about hospitality throughout its long history,” he added as he warmly greeted students, parents, and alumnae.

The entire student body, including faculty, staff, parents and multiple generations of the school’s alumnae, gathered in AHA’s auditorium as Archbishop Hebda celebrated the liturgy at a full-length mass during which 17 AHA students became Eucharistic ministers.      

The Archbishop reminded the students of the Pontiff’s message during his US visit. “One of the great gifts Pope Francis brings us is to identify everyone in Christ…And the great gift of this Academy is the ability to discern God’s plan for us. You have an opportunity to learn all kinds of wonderful subjects and an opportunity to encounter Christ in every community that makes up this school.”

At the conclusion of the ceremony, Melinda Hanlon, President of Academy of Holy Angels, presented the Archbishop with an Academy of Holy Angels’ cap and shirt.The student body and guests spoke to the Archbishop in a celebratory reception in the school’s expansive AHA Learning Commons.

For  more than 136 years,  the Academy of the Holy Angels, sponsored by  The School Sisters of Notre Dame, has been educating  young women from all religious backgrounds in a rigorous, college-preparatory program.  Located on a college-like campus,  AHA is a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence and a National  Service Learning Leader School that empowers young women to lead in academics,  arts,  athletics, spirituality, and service.  For more information, visit www.holyangels.org.

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Jennifer Crusco
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201-768-7822 Ext 267
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