Celebrating graduations in South Carolina

CHARLESTON — All over the Diocese of Charleston, hats and gowns are replacing prom dresses and tuxes as the senior classes prepare for graduation.
St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Greenville will be the first to hold commencement exercises, followed by Bishop England High School in Charleston, St. Francis Xavier High School in Sumter, and Cardinal Newman School in Columbia.
Sister Julia Hutchison, superintendent, said the whole Catholic community should be proud of the students and everyone involved in bringing them to this point in their lives.
“It’s a great day of accomplishment for them,” said Sister Julia of the Sisters of Notre Dame.  
The number of seniors graduating this year range from 200 at Bishop England to 12 at St. Francis Xavier. St. Francis and St. Joseph’s are both private schools that fall under the umbrella of the diocese, while Bishop England and Cardinal Newman are diocesan schools.    
For some principals and teachers, it’s hard to believe this diverse group of students that started as rowdy freshman have matured into the young men and women they are today.
“We’re very proud to call them our graduates,” said Keith Kiser, St. Joseph’s headmaster.

Graduation ceremonies

St. Joseph’s Catholic School: 10 a.m. May 31 at Prince of Peace Church, 1209 Brushy Creek Road, Taylors. Redemptoris Custos Award: Margo Toney. Father Fox Award: Caitlin McCaustland. Outstanding Christian Athlete Award: Gabby Lutz. Speaker: Father Christopher George Phillips. Baccalaureate Mass: 7 p.m. May 30 at Prince of Peace Church.

Bishop England High School: 5 p.m. June 1 at the school football stadium. Valedictorian: Liza Jill Navarro. Salutatorian: Riley Morgan Csernica. Speaker: Principal David Held. Baccalaureate Mass was May 18.

St. Francis Xavier High School: 7 p.m. June 7 at The Opera House of Sumter. Valedictorian: Shayler Pierson. Salutatorian: Claire Long. Speaker: Deacon Mike Kulungowski. Baccalaureate Mass: 8:15 a.m. June 6 at St. Anne Church, 216 E. Liberty St.

Cardinal Newman School: 2 p.m. June 8 at The Township. Valedictorian and salutatorian have not been announced. Speaker: Judge Paige Gossett. Baccalaureate Mass: 7 p.m. June 7 at St. Peter Church, 1529 Assembly St.