Since 2004, many Chaminade students have grown familiar with St. Martin de Porres Marianist School in Uniondale. Senior Leaders offer their afternoons to help with after-school activities, musicians lend their talents to special concerts at St. Martin's, and some graduates may even remember the early days of St. Martin's – helping the brothers in bringing the Marianist spirit to what was a parish school in danger of closing.
More than a decade later, St. Martin's is one of the largest elementary and middle schools in the Diocese of Rockville Centre and continues as an institution operated by the Society of Mary. The Long Island Catholic, the monthly magazine for the diocese, has profiled St. Martin's in its January issue emphasizing the difference of a Catholic education. The issue coincides with Catholic Schools Week, which is an annual celebration of faith-based education in the U.S. sponsored by the National Catholic Educational Association.
"Something remarkable is happening at a school in Uniondale," the article explains. "Enter this building and get a sense of joy, of enthusiasm, of energy. More than that, there's a sense of community – a school that has to be experienced."
Several Chaminade graduates are on the St. Martin's staff. Bro. Timothy Driscoll, S.M. '76 (pictured above), provincial superior of the Marianist Province of Meribah, is the school's chaplain. Mr. Peter Mansfield '83 is the director of buildings and grounds. Bro. James Conway, S.M. '76, Mr. Keith Lucchesi '95, Mr. Thomas Crimmins '97, and Mr. Christopher Bonacorsa '02 all teach at the school.
The pastor of St. Martha's Church asked the Marianists to assume operations for the parish school when it was faced with low enrollment numbers. It was the only Catholic school serving some of the most disadvantaged areas of Long Island. Enrollment now stands at nearly 400 students.
Just as it is at Chaminade, family spirit is central to the atmosphere at St. Martins. Click The Long Island Catholic cover page to read more (the full article runs on pages 12-15).