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What We Mean When We Say “We are…Paul VI!”
Every school has its special customs, trademarks and yes, maybe even quirks. Here’s a short list of what makes Paul VI – Paul VI!

by Staff

The sandwich station rhymes:  It’s called Toast Post, our custom sandwich station, and it’s probably as well-known as anything else about the school. Insider tip: You say “Toast Post” instead of “sandwich,” as in, “I’ll meet you in 10 minutes, let me grab a Toast Post first.” 

We’re sort of a two-saint school: St. Paul VI is our patron saint, of course, but we also love St. Lucy Filippini, and she’s mentioned in school prayers every day, right alongside St. Paul VI. A nun who started schools for girls in Italy back in the 1600s, St. Lucy founded the order of sisters who have taught at Paul VI since the school opened. Her statue has pride of place in the school lobby, where a small child once climbed right up on the pedestal to get a better look. We don’t think St. Lucy minded.

There’s a particular way to say our name:  It’s pronounced “Paul Six.” Not “Paul the sixth.” Fewer syllables, no consonant blend, all around easier to say. Go ahead, try it out. Better, right?   

The mascot doesn’t have a nickname, but a lot of things are named after the mascot:  Our mascot is simply “The Eagle” and we’ve had no complaints about this from our feathered friend, given this long list of eagle-related names: There’s our school newspaper, “The Talon”; the alumni magazine is called “The Soar”; PVI families receive “The Pinion” newsletter;  the gym is informally known as “The Nest”; there’s a scholarship called the “Aquila” (that’s Latin for eagle.)  No, there’s no nickname, but this is one mascot whose influence is wider than his wingspan.

Then, there’s the layout:  The Eagle influence doesn’t stop at titles. The building itself is constructed with a floorplan that resembles a “W”, or as the school history insists, “an eagle in flight.” It may not be the simplest floorplan around, but alumni who come back to visit are justly proud that they can still find their way around.

Our favorite song is not exactly a catchy tune: Students learn the words and music to the school alma mater at freshman orientation. It’s a formal song, written in a key that has four flats, and features lyrics like “pledging anew, united shall we be.” Learning it is a labor of love, and the homeroom who sings it the loudest in the annual freshman contest wins a round of cookies from the PVI dining hall. Well worth the extra effort and that little bit of bribery, when you hear 1,000 plus high school students belting out “Thy praises we proclaim.” That is how we “wing our way to glory” at Paul VI.

Paul VI High School
(856) 858-4900

Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Family Magazine, Volume 14, Issue 4.
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