Saint Stanislaus Kostka, Pray for Us!


Eamon Mohrbacher, Staff Writer

Who is Saint Kostka, and why is he honored with a holiday? 62% of Prep students who were polled are asking this same question.

To understand more of the reasoning behind this Prep-exclusive holiday, Father Celio was asked to give a background on St. Kostka, the Patron Saint of Youth and Seattle Prep’s very own patron saint.

Fr. Celio explains, “Stanislaus was…a kid who was born in Poland, and he moved to Austria, Vienna, to move to a Jesuit high school….He got sick while he was there, and thought he was going to die, and had this mystical experience while he was in bed, where he prayed to St. Barbara, and had an experience like there were angels bringing the baby Jesus to him. He took this as a sign to enter the Jesuits.”

What does St. Kostka represent for the Prep community? Aside from being the school’s patron saint, Fr. Celio shared his ideas about St. Kosta’s relation to current students. “I think he’s someone who knows and believes what he’s called to and goes after it. Similarly, people at Prep are really passionate and committed, and really go after what they feel drawn and called to.”

He continued, “He’s someone who we think about being a good Jesuit, and even though he was a Jesuit only for a few months, he’s a saint. So, it’s not always about what we accomplish or the amazing things we do, but on a deeper level having a life of faith and being committed and loving, like all the things we talk about in the Grad at Grad.”

Although his feast day is in November, St. Kosta Day is celebrated by Prep on a different date, depending on the school calendar each year. This year, students celebrate St. Kostka day with a day off school on March 13th. Prep’s Principal, Dr. Luby, clarifies, “We use that March day as a good time when we think the school could use a little break.”

Dr. Luby adds, “I do know that we’ve intentionally tried to be thoughtful about our Jesuit Catholic identity, and so to me, an annual day off after a patron saint makes a lot of sense.”

Either way, 57% of Prep students shared that they will spend their day off sleeping and relaxing, while 27% will be spending time with friends, and 9% will be catching up on homework. The other 7% plans to go on college visits. Whatever you do on St. Kostka day, take a moment to remember our patron saint and how he inspires us to be our best.

In the Healy Chapel, there hangs a stained-glass image of St. Kostka along with the Blessed Mother, holding the Christ child and St. Therese of Lisieux. This stained-glass was gifted to Seattle Prep by the Schiro Family. It is a reminder that we are all part of God’s family. Saint Stanislaus Kostka, pray for us!