St. Thomas More High School might have closed their doors in 1975, but the St. Thomas More Alumni Association (STMAA) is still going strong. Since 1980, the Alumni Association has awarded more than $1.4 million in scholarships, which goes a long way to helping students to continue the tradition of receiving the benefit of a Catholic education in Philadelphia.
Recently two students from Our Mother of Sorrows/Saint Ignatius Catholic School (OMSSI) and four students from Saint Frances Cabrini Catholic School (SFC), formerly Saint Donato, were lucky enough to be awarded scholarships from the Alumni Association.
As part of the process, the students were asked to write an essay on what their Catholic education means to them. Cameron and Akwasi, both eighth grade students at OMSSI, said that their Catholic education helped them to grow their faith and belief in God. Akwasi is excited to have been accepted to his first-choice high school, Archbishop Carroll, where he will have the opportunity to continue his Catholic education and Cameron fell in love with West Catholic High School when he visited in seventh grade and would like to continue his Catholic education there. Read their inspiring essays here!
The scholarships, presented by Gerry Wood (St. Thomas More and Our Mother of Sorrows alum) and Anthony DeCurtis (Saint Donato alum), will help fund their Independence Mission Schools (IMS) Catholic education. The recipients of the scholarships and their families will be honored and recognized for their academic accomplishments on April 28, 2019 at the STMAA’s Annual Communion Mass and Breakfast.
The ties between the STMAA and IMS run deep, as John Millon, President of the Alumni Association, is also a proud graduate of Saint Donato School. In fact, many members of the Alumni Association are graduates of the IMS schools.
In 1936, when Our Mother of Sorrows was about to open a new parochial school building, it was determined that the need was greater for a boy’s high school in West Philadelphia. As a result, St. Thomas More High School for Boys was formed. The first St. Thomas More Communion Mass and Breakfast was held at Our Mother of Sorrows Church in 1982. 300 hundred people were expected to attend Mass – instead 1,200 people showed up and listened to Mass from the sidewalk outside!
The Independence Mission Schools are extremely grateful to be supported by such a wonderful and strong Alumni Association. Saint Thomas Forever More!