With the dawn of modern times, various sciences have tried to place themselves at the acme of intellectual knowledge. The world has witnessed with astonishment the birth of new and highly specialized sciences, which, while explaining very narrow sectors of reality, failed to give reasons for the whole of reality and for things beyond those we can see and touch. It was then that the Christian ideal of an integral formation of the human being, as a person and as a partner of God, was shattered, “Measuring reason” took the rudder of human knowledge; reality was reduced to what can be measured or counted. What mattered was “to know more things,” not to know more deeply what things are, not to know them better. A frenzy of “information” ensued. The present education given to our youth is but a debased product of Modern and Enlightenment mentality: truth reduced to certainty; goodness understood as pleasure and selfishness; eternity deceitfully seen as unlimited temporality (hence the obsession with sports, fitness, and health), liberty conceived as irresponsibility (immorality being thus justified). Contemplation has become purely and solely action; transcendence is dissolved into immanence (and a non-religious attitude is established as a “common social truth”); being has vanished, and only appearance is left (fiction and sensuality now dominate the life of man); values are reduced to usefulness (money is the measure of work); man is but another animal, although more evolved.
In the educational sector, the consequences have been most desolate. This System of ideas we have briefly described could not succeed unless the younger generations were easily controlled in order to serve its purposes. Utter and sheer annihilation of any vestige of education became the most effective way of achieving that control, for a man who does not think nor use his imagination poses no threat to the System. Technical achievements, nevertheless, would still be encouraged, since they would eventually be turned into instruments to dominate the mind and the will of the youngsters. Thus, it is not surprising to find students at College level who cannot write or read according to basic standards; who do not know the borders of their own country; or who never have heard of Plato, Aristotle, Saint Thomas, Kant, etc.
Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin took shape as a reaction against all these ideas. It seeks an integral education of the human being, considered as a person that carries the image of God, with an eternal destiny: to fall in love with his God.
Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin is the result of a long-cherished dream of the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest: to make available to young people an integral and total formation based in Catholic values and tradition. The human being, created in the image and likeness of God, has been gifted with intellect and will to know and love God and all His creation. We are convinced that only by developing both powers to their paramount heights can the human being reach his full stature as image of God. And because Jesus Christ is the perfect image of God, the end and essence of the education imparted at Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin is the formation in our students of the perfect image of Jesus Christ. Such a lofty endeavor will be achieved on both an intellectual and moral level.
On the intellectual level, the faculty will exert themselves to the greatest degree in order to furnish the students with the deepest and most comprehensive education. It will be based in a straightforward and non-compromising love of truth, goodness and beauty as the Catholic tradition understands those transcendentals, and always in the purest and most excellent academic terms. Students will be asked to use their talents, skills and intellects to their fullest capacity, in a measure yet unknown to them. They will work at their studies to the point of weariness, which is the only Christian way of working. Work in itself is beautiful because through it man becomes a partner of God in the natural creation and in the building of His Supernatural Kingdom. As the divine work (creation) is one of love, so our work at Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin is also a product of love for God; and that is why dedicated work is not only a blessing but a sign of love for God as well. We must not lose sight of our goal: to perfect the image of Jesus Christ in our youth. Great things like this cannot be understood or achieved but through work, and maximum performance in study, if the Christian happens to be a student. And here is the tragedy of modern youth: they have been distracted, both from work and from weariness, and now it has become very difficult for them to find God, and tedium, along with inner emptiness, has settled into their lives.
At Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin we will demand, intellectually speaking, everything from the students, because, contrary to the world´s attitude of mistrust and deceit toward youth, whether the world admits it or not, we believe that youth is a time for generosity, for self-giving to high ideals, for setting out after great adventures. We believe that young people are quite capable of falling in love with God and offering Him, out of love, the best of their intellects and of their hearts.
As for the moral level, the goal of Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin is to see realized in its students what the Apostle said about himself: Vivo autem iam non ego, vivit vero in me Christus (Ga2:20). Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin is a school to form young people after the perfect man, Jesus Christ. No means will be spared in fostering the natural as well as supernatural virtues of the students: love for God and neighbor, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness, self-control, honor, love of truth, endurance, manhood, generosity, self-giving, etc.
While providing an intellectual and scientific education that will rank among the best in America, Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin cannot be considered only as a business established to produce good material for “top” Colleges. It is a center of formation for young Christian people who are in love with their Lord, and have put at His service their best trained intellects and their virtuous hearts. For that reason, Shoreless Lake School Wisconsin addresses itself to those who have received a childlike heart; who still believe in poetry; who never think of themselves; who are not afraid of great things; who have chosen the shoreless sea of the divine Love instead of remaining in stagnant pools; who never measure God with human standards; who look at things without selfishness and with true love; who understand that nobody loves perfectly unless he dies for love of the beloved; who have not turned into prosaic people, ordinary and lukewarm, but who think that the world and the things in it are exuberant with poetry, and that to young people is entrusted the mission of discovering it and singing it. They are the real idealists, those who forget about themselves; who think of giving themselves with no concern for receiving; who do not worry about money; who look beyond the horizon; who refuse to accept that love should consist of pleasure and egotism; who reject looking at life as it is, but want to shape it as it should be. They hear the call of the Apostle Saint John: I am writing to you, young people, because you are strong, and God´s word remains in you, and you have defeated the evil one. (1 John 2:14)
Rev. Alfonso Gálvez
SHORELESS LAKE SCHOOL WISCONSIN