GC News

This year, Our Lady of Good Counsel High School is happy to welcome 23 new international students from six different countries. Hailing from China, Liberia, Turkey, Vietnam, Inner Mongolia, and the Caymen Islands, our new Falcons will join the 28 returning international students who have been an important part of the GC community for the last three years.

Headed by Yihung Mohs, GC's Global Program has brought in 51 students from all over the world since it began in 2014. Those students have woven themselves into the fabric of GC. They have started clubs, played sports, joined student government, excelled academically, and embraced the values of the school. This will be the first year that sees a cohort of international students graduate from GC.

Global Programs has brought a new level of diversity to the Good Counsel community. International students bring new perspectives to their peers. They give wonderful insight into cultures that would otherwise remain foreign to the majority of GC students. It is also special to see how local Falcons, those in the Global Buddies program and throughout the school, take in the international students, teach them about American customs, and provide them with a warm, welcoming environment that helps them adjust to life in a new country. Inclusiveness is an important part of the Good Counsel community, and no where does that value shine through more clearly than in the relationships formed by our American and international students.

Dr. Paul Barker | Good Counsel President
Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Barely a year ago, I wrote a midsummer letter to the Good Counsel community about horrific shootings in Dallas. Today, I write in response to yet another frenzied attempt to shred our frayed social fabric. Like you, I am appalled and angered at the hatred and violence this past weekend in Charlottesville.

We are all aware of the deep divisions in our culture – racial, socio-economic, religious, political – that have only become more prominent in recent months. Talking heads engage with issues, often in a parody of serious debate, in our chambers of government, via our news outlets, and on our streets. Gradually, I have found my own opinions and how I express them become coarsened. Social settings have the potential to erupt with antagonism. It sometimes seems that the easy solution is to keep one's opinions to oneself. Tread lightly. Make no waves. Say nothing.

At some point, one cannot stay silent. When the cherished right to free speech becomes a tool to marginalize, oppress, and take away the freedom of others, we have a moral duty to speak up. I have heard and read plenty of euphemisms to describe the Unite the Right rally. The eye test, however, makes clear that many involved were fueled by the vilest bigotry and hatred. We may wish that entities like the Klan and the Nazis were in the dustbin of history. Clearly, they are not.

What can we do at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School? The start of school is now just days away. Each year at this time my mind is on how we can become a stronger community. Our website and admissions materials lead with the phrase, "Become your best self." Striving to get to the depths of what it means to be the best community we can be means we must name and address hatred and injustice as they have no place here.

We have the lens provided by the Xaverian Brothers to help us see. Like the Brothers, our goal is for the Falcons of 2017-18 to mutually respect, help, encourage, and edify one another, and work together. That means being compassionate with one another in our difficulties, bearing with one another in our weaknesses, and affirming one another in our giftedness. Things that discourage us and try our patience will continue to happen beyond our walls. And they will sometimes happen here, too. It will require our founder's zeal to deliver on the promise of our new, Board-approved diversity statement and "identify and challenge all forms of prejudice, discrimination and injustice."

The essence of our mission as a Catholic school in the Xaverian tradition is to see each person as an expression of God's love: I give you a new commandment: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also must love one another. By this love you have for one another, everyone will know that you are my disciples (John 13:34-35).

I thank you for your support of the core values that have driven Good Counsel for almost sixty years. I look forward to all that we will accomplish together in the rapidly approaching school year.

During the 2016-2017 season, GC's Boys 200 Free Relay team of Tom McGovern '17, Brady Ott '18, Gabe Laracuente '19, Philip Saunders '17 posted one of the top 100 times in the nation. Their time of 1:25.37 in the 200 Free earned them All-American status.

In other swimming news, GC alum and Olympic Gold Medal winner Jack Conger '13 continues to impress in the pool. Jack won the 200 fly at US Nationals and represented the United States at the World Championships in Budapest, where he finished 5th in the 200 fly and 3rd as part of the men's 800 free relay.

Andy Stefanelli will be hosting GC's annual Youth Coaches Clinic.

Date: Sunday, August 6th from 1:00-4:00 pm at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School.

Good Counsel is hosting the 16th annual coaches clinic this Sunday from 1-4 P.M. While this is technically a youth clinic, it will be geared for high school coaches as well. This clinic will also fullfill the required USA Football Heads-Up certification course presented by RFL Player Safety Coach Guy Stefanelli.

RSVP: Please RSVP to astefanelli@olgchs.org to reserve a space.

The clinic fee is 25.00.

Registration: Begins at 12:30 in the Kane Center

On Tuesday, Mike Devlin crossed the finish line in Times Square at 12:30 PM. The finish line didn't mark the end of a 5K race or a marathon but instead was the end of Mike's run across the United States of America. In 95 days Mike ran 2907 miles through 12 states as a part of ProjectRun. Fewer than 300 athletes have ever completed the trek across the country, putting Mike in fairly exclusive company.

Mike's physical accomplishment is impressive, but the reason he did it is inspiring. Mike and his brother Joey launched ProjectRun in honor of their grandmother, who passed in 2014 from Bulbar ALS. The aim of the project is to raise funds and awareness for ALS throughout their journey. ProjectRun has raised $44,306 towards their goal of $100,000.

For more info about Project run, or to donate, please visit: ALSProjectRun.com

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