On Saturday May 21, Saint John Paul II Catholic High School in Greenville, NC, graduated its third senior class. The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Raleigh, celebrated the Baccalaureate Mass at John Paul II Catholic High School Performing Arts Center. Concelebrating Mass were Fr. Romen Acero, Pastor; Saint Gabriel Church, Fr. P. Nicholas Cottrill, Spiritual Director, JPII High School; Fr. Jim Buchholz, Pastor, Saint Peter Church; Fr. Brenden J. Buckler, Administrator, Mother of Mercy Church; Fr. Bill Quigley, CICM, Campus Minister, East Carolina University; Fr. Gaston Nsongolo, C.P., Chaplain, Vident Medical Center and Very Rev. Greg Lowchy, V.F., Pastor Saint Therese Church.
In his homily, Bishop Burbidge addressed the students, “Graduates, as you walk through the next stage of life, we encourage you to be leaders. However, do not forget that in our faith journey, we are always followers. It is the Lord who leads; we follow with childlike trust in the One who embraces us as his very own sons and daughters.” Bishop Burbidge continued, “So, let Jesus show you the way and you will never get lost in life; let His Word and commands guide you and you will always know the truth; let the Lord nourish you with the Sacraments, especially the Holy Eucharist, and you will have life both now and forever.”
The ten graduates of the Class of 2016, have been awarded over $400,000 in scholarship money and have been accepted to the following universities: East Carolina University, Pitt Community College, UNC Pembroke, UNC Chapel Hill, UNC Wilmington, UNC Greensboro, UNC Ashville, Western Carolina University, Elon, Barton, St. Mary’s, University of Dallas, Cleveland State, John Brown University, Belmont Abbey, St Francis University, Ava Maria University, Meredith College and Villanova University.
The John Paul II Catholic High School Class of 2016
Kaleigh Brooke Austin
Grace Nicole Bowen
Jerry Olmedo Davis
Philip William Elliott
Laryssa Paige Entler
Shaelynn Marie Heffernan, Salutatorian
Mikayla Lynn Harrell
Enrique Villeda Lopez
Matthew Jackson Rous
Sophia Marie Saeed, Valedictorian
Founded in 2010 as the Diocese of Raleigh’s second Diocesan high school, Saint John Paul II High School opened with 23 students and graduated its first class in 2014.
This year the school began classes at its East Campus serving as the facility for academics and performing arts. Athletics continue at the main campus for the high school as well as St. Peter Catholic School.
The regional Diocesan high school attracts students from across eastern NC. Most students are from Pitt, Lenoir or Beaufort County.