Christian Brothers High School Principal Newsletter

Volume 1

Issue 3

October 2016

• Rosh Hashanah

• Theatre production "Bound East of Cardiff
- 5 pm, theater

• End of 1st quarter

• Diocesan In-Service

• Fall Break

• Varsity Football at St. Benedict

       - 7 pm

• Lifeblood on campus
     - 8
am - 2:30 pm, PE gym

• Test Day for Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors
      - 12 noon dismissal
• Day of Service for Seniors
     - 8 am - 1 pm
• Installation of Bishop Holley
     - 2 pm, Cook Convention Ctr
• Parent-Teacher Conferences
      - 5:30 - 6:30 pm, 7 - 8:30 pm

• Coach Tom Nix 90th Birthday Celebration and Athletic Reunion
    - 6:30 pm, Heffernan Hall

• Homecoming Reunion
     - 5 pm, Heffernan Hall

• Varsity Football vs. Memphis Catholic
      - 7 pm, Tom Nix Stadium

• Homecoming Dance
      - 7:30-10:30 pm, Heffernan Hall

• Shadow Day for 8th grade students
     - 8 am, Heffernan Hall

• Varsity Football vs. MUS
     - 7 pm, Tom Nix Stadium


Because of the ongoing construction, the increased number of students, and the growing number of students driving, there is a limited amount of parking on the CBHS campus. Thus, we ask for everyone's patience, attentiveness, and awareness when maneuvering around the parking lots.


Previous Issues

From Principal

Chris Fay

At our School Safety Night on September 20th we covered many important topics regarding drugs and alcohol.  We are appreciative of District Attorney Amy Weirich taking time out of her schedule to share her experiences and wisdom with our new students.  We have the program video taped and if you would like to see it, please contact Ms. Ann Frayser and she can send you a link to it.

A topic that we touched on that I would like to cover in more detail is our Code of Conduct regarding Fraternity and Charity at CBHS.  Please know that we have boys from almost 100 different elementary schools represented in our student-body. This great diversity is a strength for our community. In the meantime, we are called to teach them to love each other in a fraternal manner. We recognize that some boys may require a little more formation than others. Our teachers, counselors and administrators are committed to this process of formation through love and example.

Our Code of Conduct reads:  

Students at Christian Brothers High School promote the spirit of Christian charity and fraternity among themselves each day at school and at all times when they are in the company of their classmates.  All CBHS students should feel safe, secure and accepted regardless of color, race, background, appearance, popularity, athletic ability, intelligence, personality, sexual orientation, religion or nationality.

CBHS considers the following to be serious failures in that spirit of charity and fraternity:

1. Any words to or about another student’s past, present or future that can be taken as discriminatory or hurtful
2.  Any physical actions towards another student that can be taken as discriminatory, inappropriate or hurtful
3.  Any use of any form of messaging to or about another CBHS student’s past, present or future or forgery of the student’s name  that can be taken  as inappropriate, discriminatory or hurtful
4.  Any form of theft or damage to the property of CBHS or any of its personnel/students
5. Any form of words or actions or messaging about faculty, staff or administration that can be taken as inappropriate, hurtful or discriminatory

As your son grows and learns at CBHS, please be mindful of our code. Each of us has a moral responsibility to help all of our boys understand the value of fraternal love. If your son is the victim of a non-fraternal or uncharitable act, please let us know. You may contact his guidance counselor and he or she can address the situation in a safe and confidential manner. We want the opportunity to help all of the boys grow in fraternal love and humility.


The following is the schedule for Parent Teacher Conference Night on Wednesday, October 19:

5:30-6:30 pm  Conferences
7:00-8:30 pm Conferences

Sign up/register via your Parent account beginning Oct. 14.


As many of you may know, Bishop-Designate Martin Holley’s installation as the fifth Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Memphis is only a few weeks away. (Click here for the letter from Bishop Holley.)

The installation Mass for Bishop Holley is Wednesday, October 19, at 2:00 pm at the Cook Convention Center. All are invited, and we encourage you and your family to attend this Mass as Bishop Holley begins his ministry to the people of West Tennessee. At this time, we are not sure if the Mass will be televised live. We will share that information on the website with you as soon as it is available.

To welcome Bishop Holley to Memphis, we will celebrate his arrival with six different service outreaches over the first 100 days of his ministry. These opportunities have been organized by Catholic Charities of West Tennessee. Many will be participating in these, and we invite you to volunteer with your son to volunteer as a family and to meet Bishop Holley and help our neighbors.

Let us continue to pray for Bishop-Designate, Martin Holley as he prepares to begin his ministry as our fifth Bishop in the Catholic Diocese of Memphis.



From: Jamie Brummer, Dean of Academics


It’s hard to believe that the end of the first quarter (October 5th) is already upon us! The students have been incredibly busy with papers, labs, projects, 3-D printers, and more. Here are a few important dates for the coming weeks:

  • Senior Engineering Design Teams make their Project Proposals Monday, October 3
  • Dr. Robert Marchini, Professor Emeritus in physics from the University of Memphis will guest lecture in CBHS physics classes on October 6
  • PSAT prep for De La Salle Scholars takes place on Sunday, October 16 from 1:00-5:00 pm
  • PSAT Testing day (for underclassmen) is from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm on October 19
  • Parent-teacher conferences take place on the afternoon and evening of October 19
  • ACT test given at CBHS Saturday, October 22

Freshmen are getting acclimated to life at CBHS while Seniors are getting serious about college-admissions deadlines. Fall Break will offer a timely opportunity to rest and recharge as an equally busy second quarter gets under way.


New Teacher Profiles

Please help us welcome Philip Norton, Silas Njoroge, Aaron Falkenstein, and Br. Matthew Kotek to the CBHS family!


I am originally from Memphis, TN.  I am a 1990 Graduate of CBHS. I graduated from Christian Brothers University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering and married my best friend Julia both in May 1995. I received my Master’s Degree & Alternate Certification from Centenary College of Louisiana in May 2009. In addition, my wife, Julia and I have been serving in youth ministry since 1991. I am starting my 13th year in education after spending 6 years as a Bioenvironmental Engineering Officer in the US Air Force.  I am very excited about my first year at CBHS. I am blessed to be a husband, father, and teacher.  We are the proud parents of Elizabeth 14, Deuce 9 and John Paul 2. I enjoy spending as much time as possible with my wife and kids. Julia and I also have a passion and calling for Youth Ministry and currently teach Confirmation at St. Francis Assisi. In addition, I love officiating and coaching youth, H.S. and College Athletics. Aerosmith sings it best, “Life’s a journey not a destination.” I do not think that there was ever a more prophetic statement that could sum up not only my journey to CBHS but also my life.  I have had the pleasure of living in 4 different states (TN, AZ, CA, & LA) with 2 stops in 3 of the 4 states and one foreign country (The Commonwealth of Dominica).  No matter where life takes me, I have committed myself to a life of service.  My goal in life is to pass on my passion for life and the hope that springs from a life lived with purpose. The more people that I can personally impact and help to reach their full potential, the better the world around me will be.

Silas Njoroge

I was born in Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya. I am the second born in a family of five siblings. After completing primary school and high school, I joined college in Kenya for two years before moving to the US as a student in May of 2001. I completed my Bachelor's degree in Math, with a minor in education from the Lemoyne-Owen College in 2006, Memphis, and followed with a master's degree in Computer Science from the University of Memphis in 2012. I started teaching with Shelby County schools in 2006, working for a total of nine years at various schools, namely Hamilton High School, Carver High School, Kingsbury High School, and KIPP Collegiate High School. I am currently pursuing a Doctoral degree in Instructional Design & Technology at the University of Memphis. I am married and my wife is also an educator at Raleigh Egypt High school. I have a son who is a junior at MTSU and a daughter who is a senior at Bolton High School. My hobbies include Golf, soccer, and  learning new ways of using technology in education. A unique characteristic is that I am fluent in three languages, Kikuyu, Swahili, and English. 


I was born and raised in Covington Louisiana, a small town roughly 30 minutes outside of New Orleans. I am the oldest of 4 children.  I have 3 younger sisters from my dad’s second marriage. My family is very tight knit who all live around the Covington-New Orleans area besides one uncle who lives in Miami. Growing up in Louisiana I had a passion for the outdoors, playing sports and being involved in theatre. Whenever I wasn't competing in some athletic event or acting in  one of the local theatre performances, I was in the woods hunting, fishing, camping or hiking. Both my parents work for Tulane, my father being the head IT manager for the Tulane Primate Center and my mother as an epidemiologist for the Tulane Primate Center.  I attended a Christian Brothers High school in Covington, Louisiana named St. Paul’s High School.  Following high school, I was recruited to play lacrosse in college and signed on with Millsaps College in Jackson Mississippi. I completed my undergraduate degree achieving a major in Religious Studies and minors in Secondary Education and Classics. During my college career I met my beautiful fiancé who lives in Bartlett, Tennessee. She was the one who got me to look into schools in Memphis and after a few phone emails, phone calls and one visit at Christian Brothers this past summer I knew that this is where I wanted to work.  I already knew and loved the feel of a Christian Brothers School from my own high school experience, so I knew that this was going to be a great place and a place that I wanted to be.  Although at times I do miss my family, I am looking forward to having a much larger family now through Christian Brothers, being so close to my fiancé as she finishes school and her family.  I know this is where I am meant to be and I am looking forward to a great year.  GO BROTHERS!


I was born in La Crosse, Wisconsin, about two hours south of Minneapolis-St. Paul. I’m the older of two boys, though I have a large extended family. Throughout my childhood, my family was very active in our local parish which was blessed to have the presence of the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration. From these sisters the seed for my religious vocation was planted. Upon graduating from high school, I attended Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota where I first encountered the Brothers. While in college, I also had the opportunity to study at the Universitat d’Alacant in Spain.

After graduating from Saint Mary’s, I moved to Memphis and was a member of the Lasallian Association of New Catholic Educators (LANCE) program--a partnership between Christian Brothers University and the Diocese of Memphis. During the two-year program I taught at Our Lady of Sorrows in Frayser. After I completed the program, I was formally accepted as a postulant with the Christian Brothers of the Midwest. I began my formation in Philadelphia in the fall of 2015, taking courses at La Salle University. After a semester in Philadelphia, I was assigned to Memphis to substitute for Mary Delgado who was on maternity leave. Following her leave, I was asked to stay at CBHS for an additional year.  At the end of this academic year, God-willing, I will receive the habit of the Brothers and begin the regional novitiate program in Chicago. The novitiate is a year-long formation experience that delves deeper into the study of religious life as lived by the Christian Brothers, focusing specifically on the vows and the charism of the Founder. As I prepare for the novitiate, I’m very grateful to be a member of the CBHS community!



From Mike Kelly, Director of Athletics

It finally feels like Fall! I know our Athletes are relieved to train and compete in cooler weather. It was a humid afternoon on September 17 that helped us knock off our Lasallian Brothers from Cincinnati 31-18. It was a huge win for our Football program and a testament to their months of preparation. Tough battles loom throughout October as we position ourselves for the post-season. Please make plans to help us celebrate Coach Tom Nix’s 90th birthday on Thursday, Oct. 20. The link to sign up and attend can be found here. This event will kick off a busy weekend of Homecoming/Reunion activities. We hope you can join us on campus.

The Brothers Developmental Center has become a reality. Our Athletes have moved in and are utilizing the finest facility in the area. Our students and staff will be able to work and grow in a spacious, well-equipped environment. It is obvious these facilities reflect the value that the Christian Brothers has always placed on the development of a well-rounded, mature young man. IT’S GREAT TO BE A BROTHERS' BOY!

Key October dates to remember:

Tuesday, Oct. 18    Shelby County Cross Country Championship at Shelby Farms
Thursday, Oct. 20  Coach Nix Birthday Celebration
Friday, Oct. 21        Reunion Weekend – Football vs Memphis Catholic
Friday, Oct. 28        CBHS Football vs MUS – arrive early, wear Purple, and Be Loud!


From Jeff Blancett, Director of Counseling Services

October 5 marks the end of the first quarter grading period for the 2016 school year.Grades should be posted by the evening of October 6.Just as a reminder, each quarter composes 40% of the semester grade with the semester exams composing 20%. If your son didn’t do as well as you, or he, had hoped, there is still plenty of time left in the semester to make significant improvements.

The major event in the month of October is the National Test day.On Wednesday, October 19, grades 9 through 11 will be administered the PSAT.The freshmen will take the PSAT 8/9, which is a practice test for the PSAT/NMSQT.The sophomores will be taking the PSAT/NMSQT, however, like the freshmen test scores, at the sophomore level, these scores are not reported to anyone and are not used for the NMSQT.Juniors taking the PSAT/NMSQT is a completely different matter.Juniors taking the PSAT/NMSQT are competing with other Tennessee high school juniors to become national merit semi-finalist.

Even though the freshmen and sophomores scores are not being reported, please encourage your son to take this test seriously.Their score can help him as he prepares to take the PSAT his junior year.

Sophomores and Juniors received the PSAT/NMSQT Student Guide in their homeroom on Monday, October 3.The Student Guide lists information regarding PSAT, Test-taking tips and advice as well as practice test.If your son was absent and did not receive his Student Guide, he can get it from his homeroom advisor.There is no Student Guide or practice test for the freshmen PSAT 8/9.However, your son can download a practice test at

Please make a note that the test day on Oct. 19 is a Wednesday and we will begin school at 8:00 am.It is NOT a late start day.Please make sure your son is at school by 7:45 am and remind him to report to his homeroom with two No. 2 pencils.School will be dismissed around 11:15 am.

That same day (October 19th) is also Parent Teacher conferences.You can login into your parent portal to sign up for 10 minute conferences with your son’s teachers to discuss progress and any concerns that you might have.Teachers will be available for conferences 5:30 to 6:30 pm and 7:00 to 8:30 pm. The sign up site should be posted online by October 14.

The next ACT that your son can register to take is December 10.Regular registration for that test date is open until November 4 with late registration open from November 5 - 18.With more than a month to register, save yourself $28 and register before November 5. To register go to:

Until next month, enjoy the cooler weather and fall break. As always, should you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.


From: Lindsey Neuman, Lasallan Animator

Words from St. John Baptist de la Salle

“It is in the company of Jesus that you work for the glory of God.”


The Brothers’ Way

The young boys who enter CBHS are challenged to grow into young men of faith and character. Throughout their experience as a Brothers’ Boy they will learn about the Brothers’ Way—a set of virtues that each Brothers’ Boy should embody in his life. Each month throughout the school year, teachers and students will focus on a different virtue in order to expand their understanding of themselves and the world around them. These virtues each connects to one of the 5 Lasallian Core Principles.

The months of October and November, we focus specifically the Lasallian principle—Respect for all persons. Throughout October, we will study the virtue humility and how virtue is a quality by which a person considering his own defects has a lowly opinion of himself and willingly submits himself to God and to others for God's sake. Students will be challenged to practice humility in their lives. Discuss with your son how humility can lead you to a stronger relationship with God.



Prayer of Humility

 Lord Jesus, when You walked the earth, Your humility obscured Your Kingship. Your meekness confused the arrogant, hindering them from grasping Your purpose, Your nobleness attending to the destitute. Teach me to model after Your eminence, to subject my human nature to humility. Grant me a with a natural inclination to never view myself greater than anyone. Banish all lingering sparks of self-importance that could elevate me greater than You. Let my heart always imitate Your humility! Amen.

Lasallian Days of Peace

From September 21 through October 21, the Lasallian Community will celebrate the 10th annual Lasallian Days of Peace. During this month, Young Lasallians from all over the world are invited to celebrate peace through concrete means, while focusing on a specific theme every year. This year’s theme is: Our Voices of Mercy Are Calling for Peace. Throughout the month, we will be focusing on this theme as a community at CBHS.


Lasallian Youth

Over fall break, several members of Lasallian Youth will be going on the El Otro Lado border immersion experience with San Miguel Tucson, where they will learn about issues of poverty and hardship near the Mexico Border. Please keep the students and faculty on this immersion experience in your prayers over the break. Click the link for more information about this excursion.


Senior Day of Service

On Wednesday, October 19, the senior class will participate in the 2 nd senior day of service. That morning, while all the underclassmen are taking the PSAT test, the seniors will be sent out to approximately fifteen different work sites throughout the city of Memphis to complete service projects. Seniors will gather in Heffernan Hall at 8 am for an opening prayer and breakfast. They will return to school and have lunch and a closing prayer before dismissal at 1 pm. The seniors will be completing their service work as a part of the 100 days of service in honor of Bishop Martin Holley’s installation as the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Memphis.


Jubilee Year of Mercy Reconciliation Service

As a part of Pope Francis’s Jubilee Year of Mercy, there will be a reconciliation service held for all students on Thursday, October 27. Juniors and seniors will have the opportunity to receive the sacrament of penance during 2 nd period, sophomores and freshmen will have the opportunity during 3rd period.

Thursday Morning Mass

We will continue offering Mass every Thursday morning at 7:20 am in the Brothers’ chapel. Each week the Mass will be offered for the intentions of a different organization or team on campus, but all are welcome to attend.

Thursday, October 6, Mass will be offered for the intentions of the student ambassadors.
Thursday, October 13, Mass will be offered for the intentions of the Key Club and OYPS.
Thursday, October 27, mass will be offered for the intentions of Lyne House.

Canonization of Brother Solomon
On Sunday, October 16, Pope Francis will canonize Blessed Brother Solomon Leclercq, FSC. Click on his name to learn more about this special celebration.

St. John Baptist de LaSalle, Pray for us. Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.


From Tim O'Kane, Assistant Dean of Students

House Cup Standings:

Events for Clash I included: Freshman Orientation, Victory Dance participation, Courtyard Fair dunk tank results, Advisory trivia, Bowling Intramural, Mission Collection, Halftime Golf chipping contest, Football attendance @ Houston and another Advisory on the Honor Council.As the winner of Clash I, Maurelian House has earned a free Homecoming ticket for each of its members.


Intramural Activities:

Basketball intramurals begin Thursday, September 29th for Juniors and Seniors and Saturday October 1st for Freshmen and Sophomores. See below for the schedule.JR/SR League will normally play Thursday afternoons with start times at 5:00 and 5:45 and possibly 6:30 (if necessitated by # of teams).Freshmen and Sophomore Leagues will normally play Saturday mornings with start times at 9:00, 9:45, and 10:30. Dates and times are subject to change.

Junior/Senior League
Thursday, 29 September
Thursday, 13 October
Thursday, 20 October

Freshmen and Sophomore Leagues
Saturday, 1 October
Saturday, 15 October
Saturday, 22 October

Victory Dances / Pep Rally:

Two very successful Victory Dances were held after the White Station game on August 19th and Sheffield on September 23rd.For White Station, the theme was X.For the Sheffield dance, the theme was neon.

An outstanding Pep Rally was held before the away football game vs. Houston High School.The theme was Star Wars; Darth Vader (with a Houston H on his back) and Luke Skywalker made an appearance.Ask your boys…it was very well done!


Mountain Biking Club:

The Christian Brothers High School Mountain Bike Team is enjoying its 4th year of competition as part of the TN Interscholastic Cycling League.  14 riders are competing in 4 races across the state during the fall semester.  This year’s team performed well during Race #1 at Chickasaw Trace State Park in Columbia, TN.  Seniors Matthew Slavick (4th place – Varsity division) and Ellis Huey (4th place – Junior Varsity division) are leading the team in points, while a strong freshman class of 5 riders continues to learn and improve with each ride.  The Brothers’ next race is on October 2nd at the Baker Creek Preserve in Knoxville, TN.  Any students interested in attending the team’s weekly practice rides at Shelby Farms and the Wolf River should contact Coach Shawn Morgan.  Go Brothers!!!

Pictured below is senior Matthew Slavick as he finished 1st in last year’s JV State Championship in Sewanee, TN.


Upcoming Events:

Upcoming October BLC sponsored events include Basketball Intramurals over the next four weeks followed by Intramural Paintball on October 19th, and Homecoming activities later that weekend beginning Friday October 21 with a pep rally and ending with a Homecoming Victory Dance Saturday night.