|Dear SBCA Community,|
I am very excited to share a message with you from the President of our Board of Trustees, Dan Bachiochi. We are thrilled to embark on this journey and excited to see what Our Lord has in store for our school.
|February 26, 2021|
Dear St. Benedict Classical Academy Community:
I am writing to share exciting news. When St. Benedict Classical Academy was founded in 2013, it was beyond imagining that less than 10 years later we’d be educating 164 students, and with demand for our education far exceeding our capacity. In 2014, when we moved to our current space at 2 Pleasant Street, it was inconceivable that we’d ever need more space. Yet, for the past few years we’ve been bursting at the seams, had to rent additional space in the neighborhood, and still had to sadly turn students away.
As the saying goes, “when demand exceeds capacity, it is a great problem to have.” For several years now our Board of Directors has been evaluating growth options for our school. We initially focused on available real estate, but our only options were industrial and office park buildings, which do not fit the nature of education we offer.
To our great surprise, in January of 2019 we received the glorious news that a benefactor was willing to make a bold and extremely generous gift to the school so that it could acquire buildable land. And not just any buildable land — fourteen acres in the heart of Natick, less than a mile away from our 2 Pleasant Street location. That gift of the Winona Farms property gave us renewed hope and faith that God would continue to provide for the school, as He has since its founding. Strengthened and humbled by this generosity, we have been working intensely toward imagining, sketching, and planning the most fruitful use of this beautiful land. Our journey started with our children in mind: what sort of space would further our quest for academic and moral excellence, inviting children to put Christ at the center of their daily lives? After developing an initial set of architectural principles that would reflect our school’s mission, we retained a classically-oriented architectural firm, Harrison Designs, to work with us in developing a Master Plan for our Winona Farm property. They were tasked with physically modeling all that St. Benedict’s represents.
It is with extraordinary joy and excitement that today I share with you the initial fruits of the intense labor of the past year. The renderings below offer a preview into the vision we have developed for the future of our community.
Figure 1: Rendering of the front of the building as viewed from Union Street
Figure 2: Aerial view of the school building and its chapel
Figure 3: Master Plan for the Winona Farm site
Figure 4: Phase I
I hope you will agree that the architectural plans above fit well both with the New England tradition and with our Catholic heritage. Now the only detail remaining is how to pay for them to become reality. As always we trust that God will provide, but we are also keenly aware that a strong biblical theme is God asking for our cooperation to renew the world.
To achieve the ambitious goal we have set for ourselves, to build an extraordinary place of education for our children, we need to start with prayer. I would like to invite your participation in a coordinated campaign of prayer. We have designed a prayer card to help St. Benedict families and friends to pray on behalf of our community. We wish to ask God to provide the financial resources needed to build our future school. We have calculated that around $8,000,000 are needed to achieve the first phase of this plan. The current school budget, which includes our normal fundraising and the necessary increase in tuition, takes care of the operating expenses of the school but does not allow anything extra towards this project. A detailed fundraising plan for the new school is being prepared.
We are sure this reveal will lead to many questions, the very first of which is naturally, “When might our new home be open?” The answer to this will largely be a function of how soon we can raise the funds. Let me assure you that this is currently the Board’s top priority. As a point of reference, if we had all the necessary funds raised and the town permitting approved, we estimate it will take a year and a half to construct the new building and to have it ready for school.
We would be extremely grateful if you could help us bring this project to fruition by participating in our campaign of prayer and sharing our vision with those you know. The Board welcomes conversations with anyone who might be in a position to donate financial resources toward this endeavor. So please make an introduction if you are able and coordinate through our Headmaster, Jay Boren.
We are planning future events, as COVID allows, to get together and share more details about our plans over the next 12 months.
Please join us in prayer and petition for this next critical phase in the life of SBCA. May God continue to abundantly bless our school and its community.
St. Benedict Classical Academy Board President and Founding Parent