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Help St. Andrew’s Academy in its first year: LifeFunder

“You see, we will remain in old age what we were at seventeen years old. When, very young, you have had the taste [of perfection] that I speak of, you don’t lose it very easily.” – André Charlier (1895-1971)

(LifeSiteNews) — This September, twelve boys will set out on an adventure – an adventure in education.

These twelve young men will be the first freshmen class of a Saint Andrew’s Academy – a new Traditional Catholic boarding school for high-school boys in rural, northern Kentucky.

These young men are ready to give themselves generously to a way of life that will challenge them spiritually, intellectually, and physically. In addition to studying traditional subjects such as Latin, literature, history, music, religion, and mathematics, they will also participate in the operation of a small farm and practice traditional trades such as woodworking, leather-crafting, and blacksmithing.

They have welcomed the opportunity for some time away from electronic devices, social media, and the toxic influences of popular culture in order to experience the deeper joy that comes from fulfilling man’s natural desire to reflect, wonder, think, converse, and develop friendship – all things that take time and attention, but things that bear much fruit. They will have the freedom to have an authentic experience of reality.

Socrates wrote that “Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.” With this in mind, St. Andrew’s Academy offers an educational experience filled with things to inspire wonder: compelling academics, good music, friendship, thoughtful conversation, beautiful traditional liturgy, hard work, and a generous helping of adventure – a way of life to captivate and nourish the mind, heart, and soul of a young man.

The academy aims to cultivate a genuine and masculine love for the true, good, and beautiful in the hearts of her students, realizing, as John Senior writes, “the rich potential of their age, which is to know and love the Maker and the things He made with their whole heart, strength and soul as boys.”

The old axiom, “a sound mind in a sound body” underlines the reality that man is an integral being, and echoes the truth that grace builds on nature. Cardinal John Henry Newman wrote, “The heart is commonly reached not through the reason but through the imagination,” which St. Thomas Aquinas defines as the “storehouse of forms received through the senses.” An integral education is one that addresses man as a whole, nourishing his mind, heart, body, and soul.

The way of life at Saint Andrew’s will offer boys many powerful experiences of the good – experiences that foster a rightly formed imagination and give context and meaning to study. Studying the stars (under the stars), climbing mountains, singing sacred and folk music, memorizing poetry, camping under the stars, and witnessing the birth of a calf are examples of authentic experiences that draw the whole person toward the truth.

Regularly attending and serving the Traditional Latin Mass with their friends, beginning and ending each day by singing the Divine Office, and celebrating major feasts with banquets will offer boys an opportunity to enter into the life of the Church, to better understand, appreciate, and love its beauty.

The Academy recognizes the importance of regular, direct contact with truth in its elemental and tangible form (and the benefit and satisfaction to be gained from some good hard work) on the farm and in the workshop. Tending and caring for plants and animals is something that most of men have done for most of time. These elementary and fundamentally human activities provide nourishment not only for the body, but also the mind and soul because they provide regular experience with reality, experiences that are a prerequisite to reflection and abstract thought.

Words, parables, allegories, metaphors – they all rely on some level of experience to be meaningful, and the more poignant the experience, the more meaningful they become. Farming puts one in close proximity to realities like birth, life, death, the seasons, patience, and the satisfaction gleaned from good hard work. The work follows a natural rhythm and fosters an attentiveness to the mysteries and realities of nature. Working with animals and the hummus (the soil) helps us better understand our place between earth and heaven – it makes us humble, which is a large part of working out one’s salvation. An imagination formed by these rich experiences of reality provides fertile soil for a growth in wisdom, and academic pursuits are rendered fecund when the heart has tasted the “dearest freshness deep down things.”

Our school motto “Venite et Videte,” is an invitation to young men to “Come and See,” to discover the “ever present wonders of reality,” to realize, again, as John Senior states, “the rich potential of their age, which is to know and love the Maker and the things He made with their whole heart, strength and soul as boys.”

We have been given use of a large building and property in rural Kentucky, and a small faculty of friends have rallied around our mission of education, many volunteering their time and working for very low wages. That being said, establishing our trades programs and farm, purchasing textbooks, paying salaries, furnishing the building, and realizing our goal to accept students from any economic background depends on the success of our fundraising efforts. We have students arriving in September, and we still need to raise $200,000. In addition to making personal appeals and reaching out to prospective donors, we have launched a digital campaign on LifeFunder.

We are seeking pioneering souls, fellow founders who recognize that in many ways, the future of the Church, our country, and our families depend on men who are firmly convicted of the truth, and who understand, love and are willing to sacrifice for the good, true, and beautiful. Would you be willing support the founding of Saint Andrew’s Academy?

Help St. Andrew’s Academy in its first year: LifeFunder