September 14, 2018                                                 Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross


Dear families, students and faculty –


As mentioned in our Welcome Letter for the school year, we will bind together as a Christian community to serve the Lord.  When I think of the benefits of a school community such as ours, I often think of the dual pursuit of the Savior seen in the fifth Joyful Mystery of the Holy Rosary –The Finding of the Christ Child in the Temple.  Joseph and Mary, upon discovering Jesus was not with either one (because they travelled in different columns of people – men with the men, women with the women), trailed back through their respective caravans looking for Jesus.  So, both individually and collectively, they sought Jesus and, ultimately, found Him in the Temple “about His Father’s business.”


We too are each involved in our own individual search for Our Lord.  We spend our days and years seeking a greater relationship with Him.  And yet, we are also part of a family, a school, parish, town and society.  In that respect, each of us is necessarily involved in some way in each other’s search for Christ.  We can help or hinder their search.  They can help or hinder ours.  In other words, we are all collectively and individually searching for Christ.


In light of this, I offer further promulgation of something that is gaining a foothold among faithful bishops, priests and laity.  Fr. Illo, whom many of us know from his days at Thomas Aquinas College, has a homily that has made a wide impact across the internet.  In it he talks about his Archbishop who has taken deeply to heart the need for prayer and fasting – he himself, Archbishop Cordileone, has become a powerful practitioner of prayer and fasting in order to gain salvation for his flock.  Fr Illo, echoing so many others, goes on to plead to all of us faithful to reach back to Jesus’ own prescription and redouble our efforts in prayer and fasting.  In the same vein, Mr. Faulk shared the following with me this week, so I pass it on to all:

Many of us see the need for fasting within the body of Christ’s church to bring about healing.  I believe that it was Bishop Morlino, in his letter to the diocese of Madison, Wisconsin, who was the first to mention fasting on the Ember Days.


“I will be offering a public Mass of reparation on Friday, September 14, the Feast of the Triumph of the Holy Cross…and I ask all pastors to do the same in their own parishes. In addition, I ask that all priests, clergy, religious, and diocesan employees join me in observing the upcoming Autumn Ember Days (Sep. 19, 21, and 22) as days of fasting and abstinence in reparation for the sins and outrages committed by members of the clergy and episcopacy and I invite all the faithful to do the same. Some sins, like some demons, can only be driven out by prayer and fasting.”


We would like to invite you and your families to join the Saint Augustine community this coming Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, following this feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the Autumn Ember Days, in fasting for healing in the Roman Catholic Church.


For more info on Ember Days go to:





PICTURE DAY, SEPT 25- Picture day is September 25.  This is a FULL UNIFORM day.  Lower school families, drop-off will be at the upper campus this day.  After their pictures are taken, they will head back to the lower school.


KEYBOARD NEEDED FOR M.S. GIRLS CHOIR!   If anyone has an old Christmas gift that never gets used, like a full-sized electronic keyboard, we sure could use one!  Our old one died.  If we do not hear from anyone within a week, we will just have to go out and buy one.

ALUMNI NEWS — Dr. Helena Orellana (SAA Class of ’07) has been appointed as the Associate Clinic Director for the Institute of Psychological Sciences in Virginia.  Dr. Helena Orellana received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from the Institute for Psychological Sciences in 2017. She completed an APA accredited pre-doctoral internship through the Nebraska Internship Consortium in Professional Psychology, where she pursued a dual focus in adult group therapy and individual therapy for adults who experienced chronic childhood abuse. Dr. Orellana completed an APA accredited post-doctoral residency at the Togus VA in Augusta, Maine, where she specialized in the treatment of combat and childhood trauma.  Professional interests include the psychological and spiritual impact of trauma, psychodynamic and interpersonal theories, the supervision and training of graduate students, and the integration of a Catholic vision of the person with psychology, particularly through case formulation.


SUPER COLLEGE OPPORTUNITY – Calling all seniors!

Northeast Catholic College Early Decision Award – Deadline for Completed Application: November 1st  Current seniors who complete every component of their admissions application by November 1, 2018 will automatically receive a total cost of attendance reduction of 50%. This award will total $16,000 per year. Upon acceptance by the admissions committee, students must enroll by December 1, 2018 to accept this award. Students are considered enrolled after they submit a $500, non-refundable deposit. The Early Decision Award is exclusive of all other Special Awards.


LIFE CENTERS FUNDRAISER- Life Centers of Ventura County is hosting their annual Fall Fashion Show and Luncheon.  Tickets are $40 ($50 after Sept. 22) and tables are available for purchase.  Contact 805-486-2721 or visit for more information or reservations.


DIRECTORY UPDATE- Please update your directories for the Gonzalez family to reflect their new address:      849 E. Harvard Blvd #192, Santa Paula, CA 93060


VOLUNTEERS FOR FLAG FOOTBALL- We need a couple of parents who can help during the middle school football games to ensure that they run smoothly.  Contact Mr. Rossi for more information.




Sept 21- Family Dance at SAA!

Sept 25- Picture Day

Sept 26- College Night, 7:15 PM
Sept 28- Progress Reports


ORA PRO NOBIS –– We continue to keep all our friends and family in our prayers, especially our dear friend, Joe Kern, grandpa to the Kern, Orellana and Tulberg students and alumni of SAA. For the repose of the soul of Darlene St. Ogne, great-grandmother of SAA students, Brendan and Patrick Daly.  For Miss Skidd’s family.  We pray for the souls of all our friends, family and benefactors who have passed away, and for all those who have special needs right now.  For the Pope family as they mourn the loss of Mr. Pope’s uncle who passed away on Saturday.  For Lucy Ramirez, mother of Stephanie Sandoval, who had a tumor near her kidney removed. For the soul of Deborah Connor, Mrs. Rea’s step-sister.  For a special intention.  For Damien Cooper, age 8, who is battling cancer.  His father, Travis Cooper, teaches at Thomas Aquinas College.  We pray for our Pope, our Archbishop, all of our priests and religious, and, we pray especially for each other.