The Marianists of the Province of Meribah invite you to join them in creating a new vision for Catholic Education on Long Island.
St. Martin de Porres, a Dominican brother who died in Peru in 1639, seems an unlikely patron for a new Marianist school on Long Island. However, Martin’s life yields many rich images for our new school serving the children of Uniondale and Hempstead. As a young man of mixed racial parentage who could not be ordained a priest, Martin experienced the sting of prejudice. As a Brother who spent much of his life ministering to the physical and spiritual needs of the Africans brought to South America as slaves, Martin knew the pain and loneliness of those living far from home. As a holy man who strove to build community among his Brothers, among the many peoples of the city of Lima, and even among the many animals that flocked to his garden, Martin spent his life in the service of the Church.
Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, the Founder of the Marianists, lived in the turbulent years of the French Revolution. Faced with rebuilding the Church in a society which had turned its back on religion, Fr. Chaminade chose education as a privileged means of bringing young men and women back to Christ. By winning the hearts and minds of young people, he hoped to transform not just their lives but the life of the entire community. Inspired in all things by his devotion to Mary, Fr. Chaminade looked to the Holy Family of Nazareth as a model for his schools. By forming men and women as faithful and compassionate teachers, Fr. Chaminade envisioned each school as a family where children would grow in their faith in an environment of loving concern. Just as each family is different, each school would be different, in response to the varying needs of times and places. A common Marianist philosophy of education, however, would underpin every aspect of each school. For almost two hundred years, Marianist Priests and Brothers along with their colleagues have labored to create schools where children learn to love God and to serve their brothers and sisters by developing fully the talents and abilities that God has given to each of them. On Long Island, the Marianists have operated Chaminade High School since 1930. The contribution of Chaminade’s almost 18,000 alumni to the Church and to society testifies to the fruitfulness of Fr. Chaminade’s vision. In 1987, Bishop McGann asked the Marianists to assume control of St. Agnes/Maria Regina High School. The growth of Kellenberg Memorial High School and of the Bro. Joseph Fox Latin School stems from the successful implantation of Marianist principles of education into a coeducational high school and middle school.
St. Martin de Porres Marianist School extends Marianist education to children beginning with pre-school. We want to create a school that is a vibrant and faithful Catholic community where children and their teachers grow in an atmosphere of loving concern. St. Martin de Porres Marianist School will be a family where children from different backgrounds and parishes learn together what it means to share “one faith, one Lord, and one baptism.” St. Martin de Porres will be a school thoroughly rooted in the Marianist tradition of Chaminade and Kellenberg Memorial, but open to the new possibilities offered by this new mission. Just as St. Martin strove to build new relationships, his new school offers new ways for parishes and a religious community to work together. With the intercession of Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, the Marianists pray that St. Martin de Porres Marianist School will not only revitalize Catholic education in Uniondale and Hempstead, but in our other schools and throughout the entire diocese.
May God and His Blessed Mother continue to watch over SMMS as we embark on our 10th year!