Pope John Paul II Changes School Name, Lions Remain Same

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HYANNIS – They will always be the Lions, but the up-and-coming Pope John Paul II High School will now be known by a slightly different name.

Fall River Diocesan Bishop Edgar M. da Cunha announced this weekend that on the heels of the April canonization of Pope John Paul II to St.John Paul II, the school would follow suit with the name change. He made the announcement today at a Mass for all Cape Cod Catholic school students.

“As a school community, we were pleased and proud to celebrate the Church’s recognition of John Paul II’s sainthood. I thank Bishop da Cunha for advancing this name change and making it official,” said Christopher W. Keavy, St. John Paul II High School Head of School. “St. John Paul is a role model of heroic faith for our students. He spoke compellingly to the youth of the world and his message resonates today.”

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For now, the school plans to introduce the name change gradually as circumstances dictate. For several years, the school has shortened its moniker to “JPII” imagining just such an event. The graduating class of 2015 has elected to retain the name Pope John Paul II High School for their diplomas as the final graduating class with this name.

“The school name reflects our desire for students to live their lives with role models in sight. The courage of St. Francis Xavier and the boldness of St. John Paul II provide great example for all.” Keavy said.

Hyannis’ St. John Paul II High School and St. Francis Xavier Preparatory School form one united, Catholic school serving students from grades five through 12.

“The canonization of St. John Paul II and the witness of his life exemplify the commitment of this outstanding school to call its students each day to their highest growth and development, academically, morally and spiritually,” said Diocesan School Superintendent Michael Griffin.

Cape Cod Broadcasting Media sports editor Sean Walsh contributed to this story. He may be reached via email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @coachwalshccbm