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High School Preaching Conference
Alumni reunite at Colegio San Antonio in Puerto Rico

National Dominican High School's Preaching Conference Alumni from three Dominican schools were recently re-united in Isabel Puerto Rico when members of the preaching teams from St. Agnes Academy and St. Pius X High School in Houston, Texas, made a pilgrimage to the Colegio San Antonio in Isabela, Puerto Rico.

Texas students experienced the warmth and hospitality of beautiful Puerto Rico and its people for four days of prayer, study, community, and preaching. Highlights of the pilgrimage include joint outreach and service to the elderly, participating in a special liturgical prayer service for Haiti, attending classes in Spanish, nightly home-group sessions, a morning of reflection, a nighttime living rosary on the beach, sampling typical Puerto Rico cusine and touring the historic and beautiful island attractions with friends old and new alike.

"The hospitality of the Colegio San Antonio was very gracious. We are so fortunate to have this opportunity to bring our students to the island of enchantment and most especially to be with our Dominican family here for these few days," said Patrick Spedale, director of campus ministry at St. Pius X High School.

The students from Texas created a joint action plan at the 2009 National Preaching conference that included making a pilgrimage to Puerto Rico. “I really was skeptical that we could make this trip happen and when we discovered we were actually going to come to Puerto Rico I was unbelievably excited. I admit I was excited about the social aspect at first, but in hindsight, social reunion and interaction were only the tip of the iceberg of what is an unforgettable and life-changing experience for me,” said Steven Gergen, a junior from St. Pius X High School. “On a scale from one to 10, I'd give this experience a 100!” said Julie Matthew from St. Agnes Academy.

Texas students accepted the invitation to visit Puerto Rico by the preaching conference alumni of the Colegio, their mentors Sr. Luby Rodriquez, O.P., Daniel de la Cruz, and the principal of the Colegio Sr. Ida Negron, O.P. The two Texas schools presented gifts to the Colegio community of a handmade wooden cross and a custom designed candle that bears the crest of all three schools.

Spedale reflected that “The Colegio’s gift to our Texas contingent was the welcome, hospitality, and love they were so generous in lavishing on us. How truly wonderful it is to belong to the Dominican Family.”

For more information about the Dominican High Schools Preaching Conference, visit www.domlife.org/opteens/