At Flintridge Sacred Heart our students are our mission. We exist to educate young women for a life of faith, integrity and truth. Compelled by our Dominican charism of Veritas to seek truth, we act for a just world for the sake of the gospel of Jesus Christ. In particular, as a school sponsored by the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose, Flintridge Sacred Heart is a unique expression of the Sisters’ mission to “evangelize, preach, educate and promote justice and peace.”
Our fidelity to our mission calls us to work constantly towards becoming a more just, equitable, diverse and inclusive school community. Rooted in our Catholic identity, expressed in Catholic Social Teaching, and modeled by Pope Francis, we engage in the worldwide church’s mission of promoting cultures of encounter by educating and equipping our students for life in a complex, inter-connected world.
We value and choose diversity, equity and inclusion because these practices reflect our commitment to create and sustain a vibrant, collaborative and just community where the uniqueness of each person is honored as a sacred expression of God’s own imago, imago dei. Because the very reality of our God is “Trinity,” an eternal mystery of unity in diversity, we claim and choose to grow in our understanding of
how God delights in the diversity God creates,
of God’s tender care for all as they uniquely express the Divine image,
of God’s hospitality and welcome for all.
We choose diversity and commit to grow our practices of dialogue and restorative relationship building. We recognize that the diversity that delights our God can, at times, trouble and disturb us. Jesus is our model in his practice of healing relationships broken by misunderstanding, distrust and arrogance. As we learn to listen to the sacred stories of other human beings and practice non-judgmental hospitality, we contribute to right relationship and express our faith: “That every human being possesses an inalienable dignity is a truth that corresponds to human nature apart from all cultural change.” (Pope Francis)
We choose inclusion in the manner of Jesus and commit to do what he does: “encounter others.” Through encounter and dialogue, we expand the circles of belonging that are essential to our full humanity. Encountering our neighbor (often disguised as a stranger), as God’s own image, we extend bonds of relationship, recognizing fellow pilgrims who share with us one, common humanity. As Catholic Christians we believe that in Jesus, God communicates in a definitive manner God’s intention to bring all of creation into a sacred communion of life, reconciling us to each other so that we might together grow to become one true humanity.
We choose equity as a particular expression of the moral virtue of solidarity, which Pope Francis reminds us is also “a social attitude born of personal conversion [and] calls for commitment on the part of those responsible for education and formation” (World Day of Peace, 2016). The virtue of solidarity invites us to accompany our students and their families in the enfolding of their lives among us. It calls us to make resources available for our students so that their unique spirits and talents are centered and offered spaces that nurture their growth and maturity, intellectually, spiritually, socially and physically. The practice of equity, informed by the virtue of solidarity, releases expansive energies for all members of our school community.
As a community, Flintridge Sacred Heart will continue to define and refine the meanings of diversity, equity and inclusion for our school. As we do, we want to claim the values that Pope Francis writes about over and over again: We claim the practice of dialogue to foster a sensibility of listening deeply for the truth alive in and among us. We claim a spirit of encounter and hospitable welcome as the means of expanding our practice of inclusion. We claim the virtue of solidarity as a means of leaning into equitable practices, safeguarding the full flourishing of each and everyone of our students.