Holy Cross School, Rumson, marks 75 years of Catholic education

They’re Excited! • Pictured is the Holy Cross student body forming the number 75 in honor their school’s 75th anniversary. Photo courtesy of Holy Cross School

Holy Cross School, Rumson, will continue to celebrate its 75th anniversary year with a Jan. 29 Mass and Open House for prospective families.

The Jan. 29 anniversary events, which will also open the school’s observance of Catholic Schools Week, will begin with 10:30 a.m. Mass in Holy Cross Church, 30 Ward Ave., with Father Michael Manning, pastor of Holy Cross Parish, as principal celebrant. Holy Cross students will serve as readers, altar servers and choir. Immediately following the Mass there will be a cake and coffee reception in the school gymatorium.

An open house for prospective families will also be held that day in the school at 40 Rumson Road from 12:30 to 2 p.m., with tours by student ambassadors and a meet-and-greet with teachers and administrators. To make a reservation for the Open House see the school website at holycrossschoolrumson.org or call 732-842-0348 to register.

Other Catholic Schools Weeks activities include a Parent Visitation Day, Spirit Day and Student Appreciation Day.

Among the ways in which the school has been commemorating its 75 th year include the Anniversary Gala held in November at Navesink Country Club. The evening included a buffet dinner welcome by Beth Camillone, PTA president and Holy Cross alumna and a silent auction.

“It’s all about the kids!” Camillone said in her welcoming remarks at the gala.

Holy Cross school was first dedicated Sept. 8, 1941 by Trenton Bishop William Griffin and held 71 students in kindergarten through grade four.

After an earlier attempt to start a school in the late 1880s failed, a school for Holy Cross Parish was revived when its pastor was deeded a plot of land and an estate from an Episcopalian neighbor along the banks of the Shrewsbury River. The manor was redesigned to accommodate classrooms and a convent for the Sisters of Mercy who taught there, and served the school for more than 20 years.

Subsequent growth in enrollment prompted then-pastor Msgr. Joseph A. Sullivan to form a fundraising team for a new building, rededicated by Bishop George Ahr on Sept. 19, 1953, which held an auditorium, classrooms, a library and a health clinic. Father Manning celebrated another rededication in 2006 of an expanded school with a gymatorium, media center, four new classrooms, a science lab and a full update to 21st century technology.  The school, named as a 2015 National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence, regularly places in the top 15 percent of all schools nationwide on the Terra Nova standardized tests.

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