Annunciation Church

Who Are We, the Piarist Fathers?

We are the clerical Religious Order founded in the Seventeenth Century by St. Joseph Calasanz (1557-1648), and our mission is to educate children and youth, especially the poor, to whom we consecrate ourselves by a special fourth vow.

At the beginning we were called the "Religious Priests of the Pious Schools" or, more often, "The Fathers of the Pious Schools", but since it was a very long name by popular standards, the term "escolapios" (school-pious) was soon coined by adding the two terms. The name "Pious Schools", given by Calasanz to his work, meaningfully summarizes its mission. That is, we are a "School" (we are dedicated to a comprehensive education) that in addition, is "Pious" (we undertake at the same time a pious mission, especially dedicated to the poor).

In Latin countries, the popular name used included the two terms (School and Pious), rendering, "escolapios" (Spanish), "scolopi" (Italian), while in countries of Anglo-Saxon tradition, only the term "Pious" was taken, rendering "Pijarzy" (Polish), "Piarist"(English), "Piaristes" (French).

Today the Order is found in four Continents (Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas) and in 34 countries. We are a religious order of 1,420 members.

Our Founder

Saint Joseph Calasanz, founder of the first Christian public school and of the Piairst Order, was born in Peralta de la Sal, in Spain, in 1557. Nine years after being ordained as a priest, Calasanz went to Rome, where he was moved by the misery of young people in the city's poorest neighborhoods. He heard the voice of the Lord telling him: "Joseph, offer yourself to the poor. Teach these children and protect them."

Thus, Calasanz founded the "world's first free public school" at the Church of Saint Dorothy of Rome. His educational goal was reflected in his motto "Piety and Learning" that today was read as "Faith and Culture" he called his work "Pious Schools"

His Educational ideas were based on respect for the personality of each child, seeing in every one of them the image of Christ. With his Pious Schools, he tried to fulfill the physical and spiritual needs of the young in his care. Calasanz was a friend of Galileo Galilei, the great scientist, and subjects such as science and mathematics, as well as the humanities, played an important role in the education of youth. To continue and deepen his educational aims, he founded the Order of Pious Schools, a religious order whose members, known as the Piarist Fathers, take four solemn religious vows: poverty, chastity, obedience and dedication to educating the young.

Calasanz died in Rome on August 25, 1648, convinced that the Order and his dream would not die with him. He was Proven right when in 1767 he was made a saint, and Pope Pious XII declared him a "universal patron of all Christian popular schools" in 1948. Pope John Paul II stated that Saint Joseph Calasanz followed Christ as a model and tried to instill in young people not only the knowledge of science but also the wisdom of the Gospel, teaching them to appreciate the loving action of God. The Church celebrates his feast day on August 25th.


What Do We Do?

Today, public education is considered the norm in most countries. However, St. Joseph Calasanz and the first Piarist Fathers started something the world was not aware of at the time. They believed that a society could only advance if all its members, without exception, were educated, especially the children. That is why they began what many considered the first public education needy children and youth in order to have skilled Christian Citizens.

The dream to continue offering a Christian education to all children is still alive today. We, the Piarist Fathers, follow Jesus Christ through our mission of educating youth in the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia. We have been leaders in education for over four centuries, and still today our concerns are the hopes and aspirations of the young. Our religious life shared in community is witness of the Gospel in many ways: by following our commitment to education, by being in the classrooms, by inspiring young people in youth groups, and by guiding children and youth to experience God.

We, the Piarist Fathers, have discovered Jesus in the faces of children and we answer our Lord's call to serve them by offering an education for life.

How Do We Meet Our Goals?
The way that Annunciation Church continues in our Founders and Christ's footsteps, is by continuing in the christian education of our children and our youth. 

The church also likes to welcome many young children an young adults to serve in our community and also serve in our parish. We provide many activities for youth an adolescents to participate and continue in their spiritual growth. We have our alter servers, that help out during mass and assist the priest in moments during the mass. We also have our youth group Adolescents of The Future , were we have discussions on religious matters as well as real world matters. Furthermore, we deem it necessary to foster and promote the Gospel Values of love of God, love of neighbor, and love of one's self through actions and services to others. We, the Piarist Fathers, help guide an educate our youth in different ways, whether it be with activities such as sports, movies, group discussions or just 1-on-1 time we continue to model our  future leaders with the help of Jesus Christ.

"Let the little children come to me. Don't stop them, because the kingdom of heaven belongs to people that are like these children" (Matthew 19:14)
Our Mission

As a Roman Catholic Church, The Annunciation Church is open for the community, we are dedicated to provide a home for people of all economical, racial, and social backgrounds. We are a multicultural community united by our faith in God, by our desire to be faithful to the Gospel and by our Catholic Traditions. We believe that all together we try to emulate the teachings of Jesus into our daily lives. 

Thus we invite everyone, so that we may equip them with a faith that works in every day life, also that we may send them into the world to become servants of God, by serving each other, our church, and our community. Our Baptism makes us all active and responsible members of the church. It calls us to spread the Good News, to serve the needy, to grow spiritually and to love God and our neighbor. For this we strive to become a beacon of God's light, and by giving christian the proper tools do His work we continue to accomplish these goals.

Furthermore, to be more like Jesus Christ, we will continue to seek His directions, and keep displaying His Love to our fellow brothers and sisters and all of mankind.