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May 07, 2022

Holy Angels Hosts Easter Liturgy/Grandparents’ Day

 The Class of 2022 observed their final Grandparents’ Day (Friday, April 29) at Holy Angels with visits from cherished relatives from near and far. The day began with breakfast in the Student Commons organized by the AHA Advancement Team, followed by a combination Easter and Grandparents’ Day Mass organized by AHA Campus Ministry.


AHA President Melinda Hanlon welcomed everyone with the enthusiastic words, “I love Grandparents’ Day.”


President Hanlon fondly remembered the special bond she shared with her own grandmother, and said she looks forward to becoming a grandmother one day. Reflecting on the Blessing of Mother Theresa Gerhardinger, Hanlon focused on the words, “May your guardian angels accompany you.” She suggested that the students think of their grandparents as guardian angels.


“I know that’s how I carry my grandmother with me,” she said.


Father Stephen Fichter, pastor of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary Church in Wyckoff, celebrated Mass in the auditorium. Attendance was limited to AHA seniors and their guests to comply with COVID-19 safety protocols, but the entire school community participated via live stream.



Father Stephen’s message centered on the importance of dialogues with God and others, including those who embrace different points of view. He pointed to the polarization of modern society, urging everyone to strive to engage in civil, non-judgmental dialogues. He noted that we will never get anywhere without truly listening to each other.


When he was making the decision to enter the seminary, Father Stephen consulted with his grandmother. He said her advice was, “Go do what’s in your heart.”


Grandparents, he said, have wisdom and experience that cannot be found in any textbook.


Several seniors who were commissioned as Eucharistic Ministers in October 2021 distributed Communion. They include Jacqueline Arbogast, Kara Battaglia, Zeida Ben-Fredj Lopez, Gabriella Borges, Caelan McHugh, Nicole Romano, Gabriella Rigoli, Julie Rubino, Nina Sango, Anna Tenaglia, and Grace Watson.


The Music Makers and Handbell Choir provided vocal and instrumental music for this annual event. Music Makers include Lizelle Bacolod, Myra Bocage, Nora Giannantonio, Arielle Maravilla, Caitlin Neville, Georgette Ochs, Emma Yale, and Eva Zazzali. Handbell Choir members include Emma Yale, Josephine Noble, Arielle Maravilla, Caitlin Neville, Lizelle Bacolod, Gabriella Borges, Zuliema Noriega, Myra Bocage, Emily Kim, Ellie Sawyer, and Gabriella Ragucci.
This year’s readers and altar servers were Deanna Frassa, Mia Chang, Cara Chang, Daniella Marinuzzi, and Chaelin Park.


After Mass, visiting grandparents accompanied their granddaughters to their second period classes.


Founded by the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1879, the Academy of the Holy Angels is the oldest private girls’ school in Bergen County. While AHA is steeped in Catholic tradition, this prestigious school serves young women from a broad spectrum of cultural and religious backgrounds. Over time, thousands of women have passed through AHA’s portals. Many go on to study at some of the nation’s best universities, earning high-ranking positions in medicine, government, law, education, public service, business, arts, and athletics. The Academy’s current leaders continue to further the SSND mission to provide each student with the tools she needs to reach the fullness of her potential—spiritually, intellectually, socially, and physically, by offering a first-rate education in a nurturing environment where equal importance is placed on academic excellence, character development, moral integrity, and service to others.