Chaminade Travels to Washington, D.C.

Every four years, Chaminade students have the opportunity to witness history in person when they attend the Presidential Inauguration. Last week, 35 students in grades 9 to 12 and four members of the Chaminade faculty and staff traveled to Washington, D.C. for Close Up’s 2017 Inauguration program.

The group’s civic education includes study visits to the Lincoln memorial, Smithsonian Natural History Museum, Arlington National Cemetery, Capitol Hill, and more. The trip culminates with Inauguration Day on Friday, January 20, 2017. They will watch the swearing-in of the 45th president and vice president, the inaugural address, the inaugural parade, and attend Close Up’s Inaugural Ball.

Chaminade’s trip to the nation’s capital also provided them with the opportunity to visit with Chaminade alumnus and Duke University senior Kevin Lewallyn ’13.

Memorial Services for Bro. Skip Matthews


Memorial services will be held on each of Chaminade College Preparatory’s campuses to commemorate the life of Bro. Skip Matthews, S.M. All students, faculty, staff, alumni, and parents are welcome to attend.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Tutor Center (new location), West Hills
8:00 a.m.

Thursday, January 12, 2017
Fr. Allen DeLong Center, Chatsworth
8:00 a.m. (new time)

The Chaminade family continues to pray knowing Bro. Skip’s death is a beautiful entry into beholding the face of God and running (without his cane) to embrace his dear fried, Blessed William Joseph Chaminade.

Bro. Skip Matthews dies at 77: the face of Christ for others, especially for those in need

bro-skipSince 1994, Bro. Francis “Skip” Matthews, S.M. has been a fixture in the Chaminade family. He has graced the school with his infectious smile, boundless energy, and irreplaceable spirit.

Chaminade College Preparatory is deeply saddened to announce Bro. Skip died on December 14, 2016 in Cupertino, California. He was 77 years-old, with 57 years of religious profession. The entire school family will miss his presence on campus, be it through his work in Campus Ministry, supervisory time in the cafeteria, substituting in the classroom, or to discuss social justice, the Dodgers, or the previous night’s Chaminade basketball game. You could always count on a resounding, “Hello,” if you saw an older, white pick-up truck in the parking lot.

“Bro. Skip meant the world to Chaminade’s Chatsworth community,” says Middle School Principal, Mike Valentine, “To the students he was the official greeter,  the one who woke them up and started their day with an encouraging word and a smile. To the faculty and staff he was a true inspiration, mentor, and  confidant. I can’t think of a single adult on campus from the faculty, to the physical plant crew, to the support staff who didn’t have a special relationship with Bro. Skip.”

A native Angeleno, Bro. Skip was raised in Manhattan Beach. He attended grade school at American Martyrs, and later Junipero Serra High School in Gardena. He professed his first vows in 1959, in Santa Cruz. He studied with the Brothers of St. John of God at their Los Angeles hospital, and learned the fundamentals of nursing and caring for the elderly. In 1962, he made perpetual profession in the Society of Mary.

In his early ministry, Bro. Skip served in health care and directed the Marianist Infirmary in Honolulu, Hawaii. Ten years later, he became a paramedic at a remote facility in Zambia. He served there for 18 years, and also assisted with work at Matero Boys Secondary School, a Marianist school in Lusaka.

Chaminade President Rob Webb reflects, “Bro. Skip traveled the world, taking the charism of Fr. Chaminade with him. He lived a very full life bringing some of the most disenfranchised, disconnected people closer to God. He cherished his time at Chaminade as much as his time anywhere else. We are all blessed to have known him.”

In addition to his ministry at Chaminade, Bro. Skip volunteered at hospice and the Good Shepherd Shelter, a safe house for battered women and children. He also visited Skid Row twice a week to help the homeless and spend time with them. For more than 20 years, from December 1 to 24, Bro. Skip set up a table and offered to write cards to family members and friends of people living on Skid Row. This year, Bro. Skip could not do his usual work, but over the summer he collected clothes for to the Good Shepherd Shelter and cards for the Los Angeles Catholic Worker. The items were recently donated to both organizations by the Marianist Community.

Bro. Skip was honored in 2013 at the Annual Brothers Mass and Banquet with the Annual Brotherhood Award. Archbishop Jose Gomez and Bro. Larry Moen, C.M.F., presented him with the award, “Honoring Bro. Skip’s religious commitment to the service of the Lord as a Marianist Religious Brother and his faithful ministry in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles through education and outreach to the poor and the homeless.”

Share your All Souls’ Day prayer requests with the Marianist Community at Chaminade

img_7433Dear Chaminade Family,

Each year at this season, the Chaminade Marianist Community is closely joined in interest and concern with all members of the Chaminade College Preparatory family. November is a time to share with one another the memory of relatives, friends, former teachers and students who have been called by God to that eternal life we all hope to share.

All Souls’ Day, November 2, is a way for each one of us to remember our departed loved ones. To make our prayers more specific and significant, we invite you to submit the names of your deceased relatives and friends (including the class year of deceased alumni.) We will place these names on the altar in our Marianist community chapel and remember them as we celebrate the Eucharist throughout the month of November.

Let this be our offering to you. We are grateful for your continuing friendship and are privileged to minister to you through this on-going Chaminade tradition.

Please visit our website to fill out the form with the names of your deceased relatives and friends (including the class year of deceased alumni.)

Yours in Christ,
Fr. Ted Ley, S.M. ’58
Chaminade Chaplain

Bro. Jack Appointed to San Fernando Regional Pastoral Council

IMG_7415Most Reverend Gerald Wilkerson, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Los Angeles, San Fernando Pastoral Region, appointed Bro. John P. Dempsey, SM, Director of the West Hills Marianist Community, to a three-year term to represent Religious Brothers on the San Fernando Regional Pastoral Council. “Bro. Jack” lives with three other Marianists adjacent to Chaminade College Preparatory high school campus where he assists in guidance and alumni relations activities and coordinates an annual Career Night featuring alumni career representatives. The Marianist Provincial Council, St. Louis, re- appointed him to a second three-year term as community director effective August 15.  Previously, he was community director in Pittsburgh, six years, and Cleveland, eight years.

After graduating from the old Cathedral Latin School in Cleveland, Ohio, Bro. Jack entered the Society of Mary as a Marianist Novitiate in Marcy, New York. He professed first vows in 1962 and perpetual vows in 1967. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Dayton, in English and Theology, and a master’s degree in counselor education from Western Michigan University in 1971. From 1966-2010, he served in Marianist high schools in Cleveland, Hollywood, Florida, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, primarily in counseling and guidance services. In 2000, Bro. Dempsey was a Diocese of Pittsburgh Golden Apple Awardee and received a Certificate of Achievement which was “in recognition for outstanding teaching and service to the Church and community.” Summer activities took him to Marianist St. Laurence College in Dublin, Ireland to teach English as a Second Language to visiting Marianist high school Spanish students. He also served at the Marianist sponsored St. John’s Boys Home, Rockaway Park, Queens, New York where he direct the old Neighborhood Youth Corps. In the summer of 2006, he wrote a history honoring the Marianists’ educational legacy of service for 150 years in the Diocese of Cleveland.

Bro. Jack, who previously participated in the work of the Pittsburgh Diocesan Pastoral Council under the leadership of Bishop Donald W. Wuerl, said he appreciated the conversation he had with Bishop Wilkerson learning how inclusive the pastoral council seems to work in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.