There are two boys houses (St. Simeon and St. John the Beloved) and two girls houses (St. Anna and St. Mary Magdalene) at Living Nazareth. These saints were chosen because of their tender and constant devotion to Our Lord and Our Lady which we hope our students will learn to emulate. The houses will give students an opportunity to be part of a more intimate community within the context of the school as a whole and will offer occassions for healthy competition among students. More details on each of the house patrons is included below.
St. Simeon “was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel. And the Holy Ghost was in him. And he had received an answer from the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord.” (Lk. 2:25-26) From this short description of him in Sacred Scripture we learn that in addition to being just and devout, he was a man of faith and hope. He knew well what God had promised and waited eagerly and patiently for Him to fulfill His promise. We know that the Holy Ghost was in him and more importantly, that he listened carefully to His voice and His inspirations and acted on these. We also know that when Joseph and Mary brought the child Jesus into the temple, Simeon rushed to take Jesus in his arms and sing praise to God declaring “Now let your servant go in peace, your word has been fulfilled. For my eyes have seen the salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of every people.” (Lk. 2:29-31) In this canticle, which the Church echoes each night in her Liturgy of the Hours, Simeon gives evidence of the gifts of wisdom and understanding. Wisdom to know the purpose of his life and to order all other things towards that purpose and understanding in being able to discern the presence of God in what appeared to be an ordinary child. In moving to take the child in his arms and praising God, we see evidence of his devotion, love, awe, and reverence. These are the virtues the men of St. Simeon’s House seek to cultivate in themselves, in imitation of their patron: justice, devotion, patience, faith, hope, love, awe, reverence, understanding, and wisdom.
Sacred Scripture refers to St. John as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” It is clear that John had a special place in the heart of Our Savior, who allowed him the privilege of reclining on His breast at the Last Supper and entrusted Our Blessed Mother to his care with His dying words on the Cross. In John’s relationship with St. Peter we see evidence of his humble deference when he waits at the empty tomb for Peter to enter first and of his loving concern for others when he arranges for Peter to be let into the court of the high priest at the onset of Our Lord’s Passion. It is his Gospel account that relates to us Jesus as the Word made flesh as well as His Bread of Life discourse, revealing to us his great insight into and understanding of divine truths. In imitation of their patron, the men of St. John’s House strive to cultivate the virtues of tender devotion to Our Blessed Mother and Our Lord, humility, meekness, loving concern for others, wisdom, and understanding.
St. Anna was a widow “who departed not from the temple, by fastings and prayers serving night and day.” (Lk. 2:37) We see here her single-hearted devotion to God which was manifested by her constant service, prayer, and sacrifice in the temple over several years, even after the great sorrow of her early widowhood. This devotion led her to recognize the Christ when He was but an infant being presented in the temple and moved her to speak of Him to all those who looked for the Redemption of Israel. Likewise, the women of St. Anna’s house strive to emulate the courage and charity of this holy prophetess in proclaiming Jesus to all those who long for His saving power in their lives as well as her purity of heart, temperance, devotion, and humble service.
St. Mary Magdalene is a wondrous model of the transformative power of God’s love and mercy. It is said of her “Many sins are forgiven her, because she hath loved much.” (Lk. 7:47) Scripture frequently attests to this love in her constant loyal presence and service to Our Lord, even during His Sacred Passion when almost all others left Him alone. She was the first person recorded in Scripture to have seen the Risen Lord and was entrusted to bring the joyous news of the Resurrection to the apostles. The women of St. Mary Magdalene House strive to emulate her penitential spirit, loving confidence, sincere devotion, and unwavering fidelity.