Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Thanksgiving Liturgy to Close Academy Celebration Yearlong Observance of 175th Anniversary

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Thanksgiving Liturgy to Close Academy Celebration Yearlong Observance of 175th Anniversary

Article excerpt

The life and times of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne is as familiar to Sacred Heart Academy students as a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale.

During the school's autumn pageants, most academy students have portrayed a character Philippine Duchesne encountered in her life. Teachers say the students leave the school with a deep sense of its history.

Philippine Duchesne founded the academy in the fall of 1818 on the banks of the Missouri River in St. Charles.

This year the Academy of the Sacred Heart celebrated its 175th anniversary. The ceremonies, pageants and parties will come to a close this weekend with a liturgy of Thanksgiving at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Shrine of St. Philippine Duchesne, North Second Street, St. Charles.

Bishop Edward O'Donnell, St. Louis Archdiocesan administrator, will preside at the Mass. Students, parents, alumni and friends will attend.

A cocktail reception from 6-7:30 p.m. will follow the Mass in the Griesedieck conference room. Students in the sixth grade of Sacred Heart Academy will end the program with a presentation titled "Philippine Duchesne - Her Contemporaries Remember."

Through the years, academy historians have reviewed the voluminous writings of Philippine Duchesne in an effort to better grasp the significance of the school's founding, said Jane Cannon director of public relations for the academy.

The sisters of the Sacred Heart were originally recruited in France by Bishop Louis William Balentine DuBourg to serve in the St. Louis diocese.

Because of a housing shortage in the bustling frontier town, DuBourg was forced to transport the nuns to St. Charles where they took up residence in a crude log cabin on the river.

The Duquette Mansion - so called because it was the largest house in town - served as school and home for five nuns and three borders.

According to Philippine Duchesne's memoirs, the school opened on September 14, 1818. …

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