The accomplishments of hundreds of graduating high school seniors — recipients of tuition assistance from the Catholic Education Foundation — were celebrated during a Mass April 9 at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels.

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The celebration, themed “Our Schools, Our Future,” recognized 800 high school seniors from 27 high schools in underserved communities in Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.

The Eucharistic ministers, altar servers, choir members and ushers participating in the Mass were students from CEF-supported high schools. Msgr. Joseph Brennan, Moderator of the Curia and Vicar General for the archdiocese, presided at the Mass, which was followed by a luncheon honoring student recipients.

 “Catholic schools offer the best opportunity for children living in poverty to succeed in life,” said Denise Martin, CEF executive director. “Yet with an average household income of $24,000, thousands of families cannot afford the tuition payments.  CEF tuition assistance changes the lives of children and teens by making a Catholic education possible.”

CEF provides tuition assistance to the poorest children in neighborhoods throughout the Los Angeles region. Since its inception in 1987, CEF has granted more than 141,000 tuition awards totaling more than $146 million.