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Guest Blog Post – Why is a strong spiritual life so important for boys?

Throughout this school year, we will feature guest bloggers to share different perspectives on or experiences with boys education on our Head of School blog. Our next guest blogger is Angela Scott, Regis Website Director and Coordinator of Education to Mission, who writes about the importance of a strong spiritual life for boys.

Fr. James Martin, S.J. writes that “...hope is grounded in God.” After a recent Welcome Wednesday, I listened to an eighth grade student reflect passionately and thoughtfully about his faith life and it gave me great hope for our school community and the boys who are transformed through their Regis Experience. In his compelling response to a prospective parent’s question about what faith in God meant to him, this Regis Middle School student shared that his faith in God is really all about love. For him, his relationship with God is strengthened because he has “conversations with God” and can ask for forgiveness when he makes mistakes.

Dr. Lisa Miller, author of The Spiritual Child, has studied spirituality for over three decades. Her research provides persuasive evidence that spirituality plays a significant role in a person’s mental and physical health. She asserts that children who have a positive, active relationship to spirituality:

  • Are 40% less likely to use and abuse substances
  • Are 60% less likely to be depressed as teenagers
  • Are 80% less likely to have dangerous or unprotected sex
  • Have significantly more positive markers for thriving including an increased sense of meaning and purpose, and high levels of academic success. 

As a Catholic, Independent, Sacred Heart school, we are privileged to be able to support our boys in their faith formation each and every day. Faith formation and spiritual development at Regis are rooted in the Sacred Heart Goals and Criteria. Goal I boldly states: Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a personal and active faith in God. The Goals and Criteria call us to “nurture the spiritual lives of our members through the exploration of one’s relationship to God, to self, to others and to creation.”   Our Middle School student who answered the parent’s question about faith by recalling his “conversations with God” illustrates how clearly even a young person can be engaged in his own quest for spiritual fulfillment and faith.  

Regis offers many opportunities for boys to engage in and nurture their faith life. Daily prayer as a whole school community, prayer before classes, and moments of espacio are structured and shared moments in our daily life that provide important modeling of different ways to engage in prayer and different ways to cultivate a relationship with God. Regis boys participate in traditional prayers like the rosary and are also able to engage in spontaneous prayers and share intentions for others in smaller groups. Regis celebrates mass regularly and offers the sacrament of reconciliation during Advent and Lent. Retreats, daily religion class, formal prayer, and informal prayer opportunities all compose the array of options for boys to engage in and grapple with their faith.

Religion class is part of the academic life at Regis starting in Early Childhood, and our religion teachers are known and remembered for their depth of knowledge about the Catholic faith and their own deep sense of spirituality. Our faculty model the joy that a rich spiritual life can bring, and they provide strong support for our boys in their faith journey. Our students need to feel like they belong in order to grow spiritually, and their teachers create a community of inclusion. At Regis, faith is for everyone and is interdenominational—it does not matter if you are an extrovert or an introvert, an athlete or more academically inclined—spiritual development happens in community and in quiet contemplation. Boys from different faith traditions walk together in a diversity of beliefs and discover they grow in spirituality in the same way. 

Sr. Janet Erskine Stuart, Superior General of the Society of the Sacred Heart in the early 1900’s, noted: 

“I think the longing feeling is one of the deepest things in us...the thirst for God, because we know so well that nothing less will satisfy us... And the knowledge that we can only partially reach it in this life is the aching part of it... That profound discontent is the very best thing about us; it is the ‘thirst for the strong living God’ which makes compassion, and it is ‘the fire’ that makes apostles.”

At Regis, our mission is rooted in revealing God’s love to others through our actions and our prayers. We want to find ways to quench that “thirst and longing” for God so that we form compassionate, authentic leaders with a deep sense of service for others. We aim to help our students know God, and we also help them cultivate and foster a relationship with God that will sustain them as they mature so that as they reach beyond the walls of the Regis campus, they can be faith filled young men who provide hope for others in the world. This sense of personal connectedness to God that satisfies the “thirst and longing for God” and cultivates a sense of compassion for others gives me great hope for our boys and the world we live in. St. Augustine said, "our hearts are restless until they rest in God,” and at Regis we help boys find a place to rest their hearts and open them up for a hope-filled future for our world.  


Angela Scott Regis Website Director Education to Mission

Angela serves as Website Director and as a pivotal part in Regis' Formation to Mission Committee. She holds an M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction and a Science Specialist Certificate from Louisiana State University. A member of the Sacred Heart community since childhood, Angela is a graduate of the Academy of the Sacred Heart in Grand Coteau. She is also a proud Regis Alumni Parent of Mark, Class of 2018. She has been part of the Regis community since 2008, as both a parent and classroom educator.