Today, June 24th, the Church celebrates the Feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist. This feast is the day in 1841 that Archbishop John Hughes founded St. John's College on a "hill of roses" in the Bronx, NY. Dedicating its mission to the patronage of John the Baptist, Archbishop Hughes welcomed six young men to become its first students. This makes today the birthday of Fordham Preparatory School and Fordham University.
This past school year, after a discernment process which included trustees, faculty, staff, and students, Fordham Prep adopted a new mission statement: Fordham Prep forms leaders committed to faith, scholarship, and service through a college preparatory education in the Catholic Jesuit tradition. We have no doubt that Archbishop Hughes would recognize in this statement the purpose for which he established St. John's College so many generations ago. He would also see this mission lived out in our students. Like Archbishop Hughes, let us seek the intercession of John the Baptist: for the future success of this precious mission; and for the well-being and care for all those who have been touched by it. Let us seek as well the intercession of St. Ignatius Loyola, whose faithful sons came to the Rose Hill campus in 1846, in response to a request from Archbishop Hughes to staff his new college. Through the gracious assistance and prayers of St. Ignatius Loyola, may we continue, for new and unseen generations, to develop men for others who are dedicated to the greater glory of God.
To learn more about the founding of Fordham Prep, we invite you to view this short video.