Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart’s May Crowning ceremony held Monday, May 3, is a visible reminder that Mary’s example continues to endure even 2,000 years after her Assumption. Further, this ceremony encourages each student to continue passing down Mary’s story by modeling lives of integrity, resilience, and virtue. May Crowning is a traditional way within the Catholic Church to honor Mary, the Mother of Jesus, by crowning her statue with a wreath of flowers.
There were some changes in this year’s observance due to COVID-19 protocols. The Crowning Court, seniors, juniors, and the parents/guardians of court members all gathered in the chapel for the prayer service. Others viewed it from remote locations in the school building.
“What makes Mary especially unique and relatable is that she was not a known or wealthy individual when she was called by God to serve him in a great way,” senior Kate Wenc said in her opening remarks. “Mary’s example is universal, meaning that anyone can look to her life to see how she demonstrated a life of love and service, purity of heart, and obedience.”
The service featured a moving reflection on faith from senior Natalie Williams about ways that God, faith and the life of Mary have given her strength. There also was a beautiful performance of “Mary, Did You Know?” sung by seniors Zoe Nwarache and Chloe Williams.
As the prayer service ended, the Procession of the Senior Court and Honor Guard began, leading the Woodlands Academy community outside to the statue of Mary near the front ravine. During the ensuing ceremony, each Senior Court member performed an assigned task: Kayla Imanzi had the honor of crowing Mary, Kayla Guerra read a special prayer, Colleen Sarver carried the crown for Mary, and Isabelle Ryan carried the banner.
The Honor Guard is comprised of two members from each Woodlands Academy class: seniors Maddie Moravek and Madeleine Scalise, juniors Lydia Asare and Stephanie Smith, sophomores Anne Kelly and Eleanor Proctor, and freshmen Campbell Eggers and Hailey Ross.