Bellarmine Preparatory School will honor recently deceased alumnus the Rev. Bill “Bix” Bichsel and other graduates of the school with a peace pole to be dedicated on the Bellarmine campus Thursday (May 7).
The dedication will take place after the 9:30 a.m. student Mass in Bellarmine’s St, Aloysius Chapel.
Bichsel, a well-known peace activist and priest who died in February, was a 1946 graduate of the Catholic high school.
The peace pole is an Eagle Scout project led by Bellarmine senior Brian Loughridge. Boy Scout Troop 10 of the Pacific Harbors Council provided the labor, and the Bellarmine Class of 2015 supplied the material. The school’s Social Justice Club commissioned the pole, and social studies teacher Robert Payne oversaw the project.
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The pole’s carvings are based on olive trees and contain the word “peace” spelled out in eight languages, along with four universal symbols of peace. The names of other deceased alumni will also be included in the sculpture.
“The overall concept is that when students view the pole, they will keep in mind the prayer for peace of many different cultures and hopefully find themselves as part of some greater peaceful whole,” said art teacher Ben Meeker.