Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco visited The St. Austin School on Friday morning, March 24. He offered Mass for the students and had a chance to visit the classrooms. That evening, he was the featured speaker at the school’s sixth annual Benefit Dinner.
In his dinner remarks, the archbishop reflected on how St. Austin is following the footsteps of its named patron, St. Augustine of Canterbury, and how the school is seeking to help craft “students whose lives are attuned to the movements of God’s grace, in which their talents and character are employed to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ by word and example.”
The archbishop reflected on the three factors that set apart Catholic schools, three factors that are evident in the curriculum and culture of The St. Austin School: “The school sets high academic expectations for all students, no matter their cultural, linguistic or ethnic background; that Catholic schools teach young people to apprehend truth using both faith and reason; and that principals, teachers and other staff are interested in being involved with the students and their families outside as well as inside of the classroom.”
The archbishop also spoke about the importance of two virtues that are considered countercultural today, humility and chastity. “Catholic schools, with few exceptions, are the only schools that attend to forming their students in these virtues. Unlike most other schools, this is part and parcel of what Catholic schools are all about.”
Appointed to San Francisco in 2012 by Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Cordileone chairs the USCCB's Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage and sits on the Committee for Canonical Affairs. He is a member of the Board of Trustees, Catholic University of America; the Governing Board of the International Theological Institute; and the Subcommission on the Liturgy for the Anglican Ordinariates.
The archbishop is widely known for defending the Church’s position on traditional marriage, even while shepherding one of the most politically liberal regions in the nation. He has also courageously worked in his diocese to ensure that teachers in Catholic schools remain faithful to the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
To read Archbishop Cordileone’s entire remarks, click here.
Click here for the video shown at the Benefit Dinner.
Previous guest speakers at the annual St. Austin dinners include television commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano, 2016; author Ruben Quezada, 2015; Capt. Guy Gruters, former Vietnam POW, 2014; Rwandan refugee and author Immaculee Ilibagiza, 2013; and Cardinal Raymond Burke, 2012.