Holy Rosary School students participate in Cathedral concert

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary School students from Sun Valley were among participants at a concert at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels March 20.

John Burland, music composer and educator, brought students from the Sydney (Australia) Archdiocese to join with local Catholic school students in a songfest: “Alive in Christ: Celebrating Our Catholic Faith Through the Gift of Song.”

Other Catholic schools participating in the event included Holy Name of Jesus, Ascension, Immaculate Conception, San Miguel and Cathedral Faith Formation Children.

A Burbank-based non-profit organization, Education Through Music-Los Angeles partners with inner-city schools with the mission to provide and promote music in disadvantaged schools as part of the core curriculum for every child to enhance students' academic achievement and creative and overall development.

Bell-Jeff HS begins Amgen Biotech Experience

Thanks to the Amgen Foundation, biology students at Bellarmine-Jefferson High School recently embarked on a three-week program, the Biotech Experience, giving them access to state-of-the-art equipment used in professional and university laboratories.

The educational outreach program provides equipment, curriculum assistance and supplies to high schools and colleges and integrates a hands-on, inquiry-based molecular biology curriculum designed to introduce, with teacher support, the excitement of scientific discovery to students. Bell-Jeff is one of 84 schools in Southern California participating in this program.

With the assistance of master teacher Dr. Jeffrey Morse, who has a degree in microgenetics, students learned how to use micro pipettes on the first day. By the end of class, students were practicing using the pipette to place a dye into gel wells, a skill they will need to master in order to do DNA profiling using gel electrophoresis, a process that separates material by size and charge. By the end of the program, students will learn how to isolate their own DNA and will be able to put it in a bottle to take home.

St. Francis HS to host sports medicine competition

St. Francis High School in La Cañada will host the 13th annual Sports Medicine Competition on April 5, 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

Nearly 550 students from 35 different schools are registered to attend this year’s event, endorsed by the California Athletic Trainers’ Association. The competition involves written, oral, practical and taping components and provides participants with the opportunity to learn more about sports medicine and athletic training.

In addition, Eli Hallak, the head athletic trainer at St. Francis, will be hosting the annual High School Sports Medicine Seminar on April 15, 12:30-5:15 p.m. at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. All high school students/teachers/athletic trainers are invited to participate, which will be followed by the L.A. Clippers vs. Denver Nuggets basketball game.

St. Bernardine of Siena holds faith event on Pope Francis

St. Bernardine of Siena Church in Woodland Hills will present an adult faith formation event on “Pope Francis: The Man and His Message,” in the parish center on April 7, 7:30 p.m.

The talk will be given by Father Leslie McNamara, brother of St. Bernardine’s pastor, Msgr. Robert McNamara. Father Leslie will share his insights on Pope Francis, his life in Argentina and his first years as pope.

St. Bernardine of Siena is located at 24440 Calvert St., Woodland Hills. Information: (818) 888-8200.

Chaminade appoints new president

Robert Webb, currently vice president of institutional advancement at Chaminade College Preparatory, has been named the school’s fifth president. Webb succeeds James Adams, who has been Chaminade’s president since the 1996-97 school year.

Webb, who has served 14 years at Chaminade, is a Southern California native who holds a bachelor’s degree in speech communication from Cal State Northridge, and a master’s degree in educational administration from Azusa Pacific University. He and his wife Sarah, a school psychologist, are the parents of two Chaminade students, Luke and James.


‘Spiritus’ award dinner honors volunteer couple

The Sisters of Social Service Auxiliary’s annual Spiritus Award Dinner on April 12 will honor longtime volunteers Celeste and Tom Von Der Ahe, in recognition of their continuing support of the religious congregation’s work to improve the lives of the most needy of God’s people in greater Los Angeles.

The Von Der Ahes, parents of two daughters and four sons and grandparents of 18, have devoted themselves to many volunteer endeavors, especially within the Catholic community.

Tom, a Cardinal’s Award recipient in 2011, is serving as a project manager, along with his son Tom, Jr., for the renovation of the family’s parish, St. Charles Borromeo in North Hollywood. Celeste has been involved with the Ignatius Guild at Loyola High School, the Providence St. Joseph’s Guild and the Christ Child Society.

For further information regarding the Spiritus Award Dinner, contact Jamey Fitzpatrick, (818) 285-3358.

St. Bridget of Sweden hosts author, wins spelling bee

St. Bridget of Sweden School eighth grader Jed Durante was the winner in the recent Van Nuys Council Knights of Columbus Spelling Bee, one of two honors accorded the Van Nuys school.

Students also welcomed a visit from Patricia Reeder Eubank, published author and illustrator, who spoke to the eighth grade English class on March 12, and gave each student their own personalized copy of her book, “The ABC’s of Halloween.”

The author was inspired to visit the class after receiving a letter from students who were working on their descriptive writing and creating their own version of her Halloween book.

Eubank told the students that “everyone has a story,” and she explained the process of starting a book all the way through to getting it published. Her message to the students was to keep working on projects they truly believe in.