July 2018

Eagles Explore Their Faith at AMP Fest

11 students, along with hundreds of other teens, gathered this summer for a day full of games, live music, and Mass.

AMP Fest was held at the Transfiguration Center in Ludlow Falls. For many of the Eagles, this was their second year attending the event.

“I knew I wanted to attend my second AMP Fest this year because I had such an amazing time at last year's AMP Fest,” shared Claire Leingang ‘21.

The students were part of the St. Christopher parish and faced off against other parishes during games and leadership activities.

“We had a lot of fun playing games such as human foosball, bubble soccer, real life battleship, and more,” said Kate Schinaman ‘21.

Fr. Ethan Moore, the newly named director of Catholic Campus Ministry at Wright State University, not only held Mass for the event, but gave a unique introduction to the featured musical group, ALOB.

“My favorite part was when Father Ethan rapped an introduction for ALOB,” laughed Matt Reuter. ‘19.

“My most favorite was when ALOB performed his music,” Lauren Sass ‘21 said. “His group came all the way from California. He shared some really amazing experiences, from converting people to become Catholic to healing someone's foot.”

“My favorite part was the talk with ALOB,” agreed Madeline Frasure ‘21. “He said some really amazing things that just made me stop and think about my life.”

The fun-filled day concluded with Mass and reflection.

“Having Mass and all the music that they played was so powerful,” said Sara Francis ‘21.

“Celebrating Mass with Fr. Ethan is always a treat, but when you add ALOB and really good music, it is really touching,” Mikayla Jette ‘21 reflected. “Being able to kneel before the altar as the Eucharist is being lifted in the air and hearing the beautiful messages from God through music is one of the best feelings in the world. I am very grateful that I got to share this experience with so many other people.”

Posted July 23, 2018

Football Coaches Host Moms Camp

Before the Eagles football team takes the field for the 2018 season, mothers of the players had the opportunity to learn from the coaches at Moms Camp.

“Our goal was to educate our moms on some football philosophies and share what their son is doing when they are at football,” said head coach Marcus Colvin. “We wanted to teach our moms things such as referee calls, offensive and defensive play calls, as well as letting our moms know how they can best support their son and our program during the season.”

For Kelly Kadel, mother of Brendan ‘19, the camp was extra special looking ahead to her son’s senior year.

“Our boys are with the football coaches from now until November — more than they’re with us almost,” Kadel reflected. “It is great to hear what our boys are doing and to build that relationship with the coaches.”

“It is a great time to interact and meet the moms,” Colvin agreed. “This was also an event where the coaches were accessible and able to answer all the questions the moms have as it pertains to their son and football. We also gave the moms a chance to learn about their son's position by doing some on-field instruction.”

Due to the weather, the instruction was moved into the library. That didn’t stop the moms from running plays, passing and throwing the ball, just like their sons.

“I can’t believe my son gets to be a part of something unique,” Kadel shared. “He is so lucky to be a part of such a great football program and this experience is once in a lifetime.”

Colvin added, “It is great to get away from the everyday grind of football with a family event such as Moms Camp. The moms are always eager to learn and really get after it on the football field.”

Save the Dates!

Celebrate and cheer on the Eagles this season, including at two special events:

  • Thursday, August 16: the Eagles will scrimmage against the Yellow Jackets of Sidney High School following Meet the Eagles at Roger Glass Stadium - Home of the CJ Eagles. The football jamboree kicks off at 7 p.m. and admission is free.
  • Thursday, September 6: the Eagles will play under the Thursday night lights at Roger Glass Stadium - Home of the CJ Eagles as part of the FOX 45/ABC22 Thursday night lights football series. Kick-off is at 7 p.m. TV viewing information can be found here.

Posted July 17, 2018

Eagles Past and Present Participate in Pilgrimage to Ireland

Current CJ students and faculty, along with alumni, came together for a pilgrimage to Ireland this summer. The experience was through the group 4Mary Inc., which serves the spiritually and materially poor.

“The focus of the trip was to visit the Knock Shrine where Mary appeared in 1879,” shared CJ religion teacher Tim O’Loughlin. “In addition to the Shrine, we visited the Fr. Peyton Center, Ballintubber Abbey and Kylemore Abbey. We also completed a four hour walk that was an ancient pilgrimage walk tracing the footsteps of St. Patrick. He walked from Ballintubber Abbey to Croagh Patrick Mountain where he fasted for 40 days for the conversion of Ireland. The next day we climbed Croagh Patrick and had Mass at the top of the mountain.”

“My favorite part was the four hour hike,” shared Sara Francis ‘21. “It was painful and super hot, but fun. I grew closer to God and with people who I went on the trip with.”

CJ Spanish teacher Libby Harbaugh agreed, “My favorite experience was climbing Croagh Patrick, which is a very significant part of St. Patrick’s history of spreading the faith throughout Ireland. The physical challenge of getting up the mountain was so little compared to the significance it held in Irish history, the beauty of the view and the chance to celebrate Mass in a small chapel at the top.”

O’Loughlin shared that this was the fifth year 4Mary Inc. organized a summer youth pilgrimage.

“Each year, we go to a different Marian Apparition site,” O’Loughlin said. “Our goal is to help our pilgrims become closer to Jesus, but with the help of His mother. The pilgrimage is very much a spiritual retreat and not a sight-seeing tour. We really push the kids to stretch themselves, spiritually, and to take the next step in their faith life.  Everyone enters the pilgrimage at a different place in their faith life and everyone leaves at a different place, but everyone grows. It is always a powerful week, but the most powerful day differs for each pilgrim. It is beautiful and inspiring to say the least.”

“I have a great relationship with the people I went with but most of all I have a better relationship with God,” Francis added.

“It is an honor to be surrounded by our students as they humbly and courageously continue to say, ‘Yes!’ to the new adventures and experiences God is calling them to,” Harbaugh reflected. “I know I speak for many of our faculty and staff when I say they lead and encourage me in faith and I feel God working through them daily.”

Posted July 16, 2018

Collection Drive Held for the Stork's Nest

Even though they are now graduates of CJ, four students from the Class of 2018 worked together to collect and contribute more than $1,000 worth of items to families with babies in need.

As part of their Capstone project, Patrick Boudinot, Sam Brown, Jacob Ely, Angelo Moore Knight, and Anthony VanDorpe created a collection to be held at Holy Angels Catholic School. Both Boudinot and Ely attend Holy Angels for elementary school.

The CJ students chose to collect items for the Stork’s Nest, the baby pantry at Dayton Right to Life. Items contributed by the Holy Angels students included clothes, crib sheets, wipes, and diapers. The value of the more than 700 items contributed was $1,047.

Posted July 16, 2018

Alumnus Wins Local Tennis Tournament

Carlos Estrada-Sanchez has continued his winning ways on the courts.

The 2016 Chaminade Julienne graduate – who posted a school record for career wins at first singles for boys – defended his open singles title at the 123rd Annual Montgomery County Tennis Tournament. Estrada-Sanchez battled to a 6-1, 1-6, 7-6 win over Fairmont’s Murad Nawaz in a marathon championship match that lasted close to three hours.

So, what did the two-time county champion do for an encore? Thirty minutes later, he and his dad, Luis Carlos Estrada-Ruiz, beat the father/son duo of John and Nathan Brumbaugh, 6-3, 6-2, to win the open doubles title.

Tennis is a family affair and so is winning.

“My dad has always been a great role model for me, he was the one who taught me how to play, so it was a pretty neat experience to win with him,” Estrada-Sanchez said. “In the past, it’s been a little tougher playing with him – a little nerve-wracking – but as I get older, we’re clicking a lot more.”

The now 20-year-old had great success with the Eagles – amassing two sectional titles and a 95-27 career record.

“He came within one match of going to state three times,” Eagles coach Jim Brooks said. “He was a rock solid number one player for CJ for four years.”

But collegiate tennis proved to be more challenging for Estrada-Sanchez who now plays for the Wright State Raiders.

“When I started in this new stage of college tennis, it was tough,” he said. “It hit me pretty hard when I was 0-13.”

But Estrada-Sanchez posted his first collegiate win on his birthday on a lengthy road trip to North Dakota. The Raiders also earned their first team win of the season the same day.

“That was a big win,” he said.

The county wins also lends credibility to Estrada-Sanchez as a coach. He is a regular at the Eagles Summer Tennis Camp and coaches at Kettering Tennis Center and Quail Run Racquet Club.

“I know how to put in the work and I know what it takes to be successful. I can share that with the kids I coach.”

Posted July 6, 2018


Students Serve Those Facing Poverty in Cincinnati

When thinking about a mission trip, most think that serving must be done far away from home. In reality, there are people who need help in every town, near or far away. For four students, they did not have to travel far as they spent a week serving and learning about poverty in Cincinnati.

The mission trip was titled Rooted in the Vine and was organized by the St. Vincent de Paul’s Ozanam Center. The Eagles served alongside students from other high schools and parishes including Moeller High School and St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. The mission trip was focused on the seven themes of Catholic Social Teaching - Life and Dignity of the Human Person; Call to Family, Community, and Participation; Rights and Responsibilities; Option for the Poor and Vulnerable; the Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers; Solidarity; and Care for God's Creation.

On the first full day of the mission trip, the group completed service at two sites in the West End - the community where St. Vincent de Paul is located. They then traveled to Over-The-Rhine, a community once known for poverty and violence that was now transformed into an “up-and-coming” spot for residents and visitors alike. Ozanam Center leaders noted that many who used to live in Over-The-Rhine moved over the recent years due to property tax increases, and most of those residents didn’t have much say over their departure.

That same day the students heard from Sam, a man who had once experienced homelessness. He shared that one horrible incident in his life started a domino effect of tragedies, including homelessness.

“It was very incredible to hear what he went through and for him to share his story,” noted Staci Greene ‘20.

The day ended with students spending time with children at the Santa Maria Community Center in Lower Price Hill and a poverty simulation at the Ozanam Center.

“We all got a real person who is or suffered from poverty,” Greene explained. “We had to figure out how to pay rent, keep our children healthy, and how to get a job with a permanent record.”

Tuesday was a rural day for the group as they spent most of their time in Brown County. It’s not only one of the largest counties in Ohio but it’s also one that has a significant amount of residents affected by poverty. The group visited two farms, the Hope Emergency Program - a food, clothing and furniture shelter, and St. Mary Catholic Church for a potluck dinner.

“It was an eye-opening experience seeing how hard these farmers work to do what they do,” said Sully Dean ‘20. “They put in 18-20 hour days to ensure that their product gets sold. That to me was amazing!”

Many of the students said that Wednesday was one of the most impactful days on the mission trip as the group did home visits with volunteers from St. Vincent de Paul. During a home visit, volunteers meet with people who have requested assistance from St. Vincent de Paul.

“We each went into the living spaces of our neighbors experiencing poverty and were able to form relationships with them,” added Elizabeth Murray ‘20. “It was very educational and eye-opening experience. We then went to a playground/water park with some of the kids from the Santa Maria Community Center. I loved doing this and being able to make a small impact in these kids’ lives.”

The following day, the group traveled to the Hamilton County Justice Center with the focus on the Catholic Social Teaching of Life and Dignity of the Human Person.

“We got to experience what our incarcerated neighbors live like while in jail,” shared Sophie Haws ‘20. “After touring the jail and learning a little more about the life of an inmate, we went to Friendship Park and learned more about incarceration related to race. Did you know that the war on drugs has been waged primarily in communities of color where people of color are more likely to receive higher offenses?”

Haws concluded, “I can honestly say that this experience was life changing and I can't wait to carry on what we have learned and what we will continue to learn in the future.”

Murray agreed, “Throughout the week I was overcome with the resilience of the human spirit that I have witnessed in my neighbors experiencing poverty.”

The 12 students shared that they hoped to continue working together as a group to continue combating poverty not only in Cincinnati, but in their hometowns too.

Posted July 1, 2018

CJ Celebrates State Tournament Win

Updated (July 10): The Eagles state winning baseball team will be honored by the Dayton Dragons during the Dragons' game on Monday, July 16. Ticket information can be found here.

Update (June 3): Congratulations to the Eagles baseball team! They won the state championship game against Wapakoneta, 3-1.

A community celebration will be held on Thursday, June 7 at 7 p.m. at the Mary, Our Lady of Victory gym.  All are invited.

First report: Members of the Eagles baseball team have called it the Revenge Tour.

“Since the season began, we’ve had a countdown to Huntington,” said David Ernst ‘18.

For the team to return to the state tournament for a second year in a row was the goal. To play Tallmadge High School again, and defeat them after losing to the Blue Devils in the state championship in 2017 is the first step. CJ will have that opportunity on Friday, June 1 at 7 p.m. when the Eagles and Blue Devils face off under the lights at Huntington Park in Columbus.

“It’s pretty exciting,” shared head coach Mike Barhorst ‘85. “We had to toil through a lot of sub-500 seasons, but these last five years where we’ve made several post-season appearances, including two state appearances - it’s just been crazy.”

Team captains Ernst, Ryan Peltier ‘18, and Ben Thomas ‘18, feel the same way.

“We didn’t want our season to end - we knew we had to go back to state,” said Thomas.

“After we walked off the field last year, that was on everyone’s mind - to play Tallmadge again,” added Peltier. “And now we get the actual chance.”

Barhorst said despite losing talented seniors last year, the team rebuilt as current seniors stepped up and new additions rounded out the team.

“We’ve definitely improved our hitting,” Barhorst shared. “We didn’t have as many guys through the batting order last year who could contribute against big time pitching. Everyone in the lineup this year has been contributing and hopefully that will let the pitchers and defense be able to do their job.”

The seniors said while it’s a great feeling to continue playing baseball despite already graduating from CJ, there is still something left for them to do.

“When we graduated, we were talking and I said we have two more things to do - win regional and state titles,” Ernst said. “We have already done one of them.”

Good luck, Eagles!

Posted May 31, 2018