Notre Dame Regional High School

Cape Girardeau, MO

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“If all this were true, then it’s really important.”

2018 was a busy year for Fr. Andrew Williams, having been ordained a deacon on May 25, and ordained a priest on Dec. 14 at St. Mary’s Cathedral. Over a phone call with Fr. Williams, who, at the time, was on his way to see an also newly ordained friend, Fr. Joseph Stoverink, I talked with him about his upbringing, his call to the priesthood, and his time at Notre Dame.

What was your upbringing like in a Catholic family?

I was raised in a pretty practicing Catholic family. We always went to mass, and the only times we ever missed were when we got snowed in, in which case, our mother would make me and my siblings sit around and sing hymns! My parents were involved with marriage prep for other couples and with bible studies, so we definitely had that influence on us. In eighth grade, I was brought into youth group by Teresa Legrand, who was the youth minister over at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Cape Girardeau at the time. She invited several students to the Steubenville conference, and I just remember being very impressed by the joy and comfort felt by the other people there. I knew that whatever they had, it was something I was interested in.

When do you think you were initially called to the priesthood?

The call to priesthood started very early on; my father’s best friend was Fr. Rick Jones, and knowing him growing up put the idea in my head that this was possible. Also, we had so many young associates who were freshly ordained come through at St. Mary’s, and the impression that made on me as a young man was a very favorable one towards the kind of energy that a young priest should have. I was probably a sophomore at Notre Dame when I first mentioned to my mom that I thought I wanted to be a priest. The vocation director for the Springfield Diocese at the time made a visit to our house, and asked me: ‘Do you pray? How are things at school?’ He also pointed out that there weren’t any high school seminaries in the area, and he asked if I would be okay with staying at Notre Dame for the time being. I said I would, and we agreed to get back in touch after two years.

What were some of your interests in high school? I mean, was religion your focus, or did you study anything else seriously?

I think I was interested in theology from the time I was in grade school. I actually just told the St. Mary’s grade school through a homily that, around 6th grade, I realized that if what we were talking about was true, if the religion thing and all these stories and teachings about God and the Church were true, then it was really important. If this was true and people are going to live by it, then this is the most important thing. That was the realization I had, and it carried me into high school. I was involved in campus ministry with Miss Sarah Strohmeyer, and Mr. Danny Strohmeyer was also influential on me. He was another example of a young man in my life who was interested in theology. I was part of science club, gaming club, National Art Honor Society, NDTV, and, of course, theatre. But I always had an interest in theology, which was something I didn’t necessarily share with a lot of people.

Do you know where you’ll be assigned, or do you have yet to be assigned to a parish?

I have yet to be assigned, because I’m going back to school for one more semester. I’ve already completed my Master of Divinity, which is a 6-8 year program, and now I’m going to finish up my extra degree on scholarship by the diocese for a Sacred Theology Licensure (STL). I just need to take three classes this semester, finish my 60-page thesis, and then take the STL exam. It’s an oral exam which will test my general knowledge of the 2,000 years of Christian thought. The STL is meant to help me be of more service to the diocese; by studying spiritual theology, hopefully, I’ll be able to assist the Bishop in either writing documents, preaching at retreats, and giving spiritual guidance to people.

Do you have any advice for those considering entering the seminary, or those who are discerning?

I would tell anyone in high school to pray, and to take this seriously. I spent time every day at Notre Dame’s chapel. And, remember that the faith we’re presented with as kids has been tailored for us being kids - they have to explain it in a way for children. If someone never studied science again, except from what they learned when they were in grade school, they would grow up thinking that science was only these childish things they learned as a kid, not realizing that there was a whole other world of science that happens once you continue to study it. The same is true with our faith, our Catholicism, and our Christianity. But you have to keep going, or else you’ll grow up thinking that the childish way this was explained to you is all that there is. I would also remind them that there’s a whole lot of pain that, if we allow God into our lives by prayer, He will be present with us. And there really is a lot of comfort and support that comes from the relationship with Christ and the parish community that, when we allow that to just disappear from our lives, a lot of things become very difficult. Lastly, there’s no life worth living, that we aim at, that is going to be easy. Whatever path you choose - married life or priesthood - they’re all pretty difficult. But they’re also full of joy!

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All-School Liturgy was held today for the Feast of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. Father Andrew Williams ('08) was co-celebrant with Father Rick Jones ('81). This was Fr. Andrew's first Liturgy at his alma mater as he was ordained on December 14, 2018. The school presented him with a chasuble depicting the life of Mary, including the Wedding at Cana, The Visitation, The Nativity, The Annunciation and The Coronation.  After Liturgy, students participated in St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Trivia with Brother David.

The Patron Saint of Catholic Schools, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton was born Elizabeth Ann Bayley and grew up in a wealthy family in New York. She married William Seton and they had five children. By the time she was 30, Elizabeth was widowed, penniless, and had five small children to support. She opened a school for girls in Maryland, marking the start of the Catholic parochial school system in the US. In 1809, she took her vows becoming Mother Seton and founding the Sisters of Charity, the first community for religious women in the United States. 

In 1975 she was canonized by Pope Paul VI, making her the first citizen born in the US to be given the title of "Saint." 

"Be Children of the Church." - St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

“Faith lifts the staggering soul on one side,
Hope supports it on the other.
Experience says it must be,
and Love says let it be.” - St. Elizabeth Ann Seton





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Saturday, January 26, 2019
Drury Plaza Conference Center
6:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m.

Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

The Winter Extravaganza help raise funds for much needed TECHNOLOGY at NDHS.  Please join us for an evening of Live Entertainment featuring Shades of Soul, Heavy Hors D'oeuvres, Open Bar, Auction, Tuition Raffle, and More!

Special room rates available at Drury Plaza Hotel, see the code on your receipt.

Tickets (must be 21 or older to purchase):

VIP Table of 10 - $1,250 
The full table must be purchased at one time. VIP tables are indicated in blue on the seat selection chart.
VIP Table includes preferred seating, champagne and more! 

Regular Seats - $75 per person

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2019 ND Tuition Raffle

You can win FOUR years of Notre Dame Tuition!

Ticket is transferrable. This makes a great gift!!

Redeemable through 2034. 

Drawing is January 26, 2019 during the Extravaganza. You do not need to be present to win.     

Tickets are on sale NOW - $100


Purchase Raffle Ticket


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Alumni Ordained This Weekend

Congratulations Andrew Williams ('08) on your ordination to the priesthood.  Andrew was ordained on Friday night and celebrated his first Liturgy on Saturday.

We are so proud and wish Andrew all the best!


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Wednesday, November 21
Liturgy at 10:15am, Reception following

It has become a tradition at Notre Dame Regional High School for alumni to return to the school for the annual Thanksgiving Mass. Brother David will bless all our returning alumni during the mass and the NDHS Education Fund Foundation will host a short reception for visiting alumni immediately following the Mass at Notre Dame.

We look forward to welcoming back our alumni!

We welcomed over 90 alumni during our Liturgy. We are thankful for all who were able to attend. Thank you for coming!!

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While working on his undergrad degree, 2010 Notre Dame graduate Jacob Seyer released his EP of solo guitar music, “A Change In Season,” in 2013. Showing success locally, he knew it was something he wanted to turn into a full album someday. Five years later, he has just released his second album, has finished his Masters in classical guitar performance, and is enjoying life as a professional musician.

Much of the content for Seyer’s new album developed from a series of events, which occurred shortly before and after completing his Bachelor's at Southeast Missouri State University in 2014. Following graduation, he took a year off, and then moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in 2015 in pursuit of his graduate degree at the University of British Columbia School of Music. The move to Vancouver brought him closer to his fiancé at the time, Deavyn, who he met as a music major at Southeast. Regarding the inspiration for his new album, Seyer said there was plenty to share.

“There were so many stories to tell. Stories of tragedy, overcoming tragedy, happiness, getting married, and hurting from past experiences,” Seyer said.

After receiving his grad degree in 2017, Seyer built up ideas and motives that he wanted to include in his new album.

“With the momentum I had from school, I knew I wanted to proceed with it then,” Seyer said. “Also, it all just turned around when I moved to the northwest. There are mountains all around me; it’s so surreal! There’s so much inspiration.”

Until settling in Vancouver, he had never lived outside of Missouri. But, although moving to a different city was a big help, the biggest reason he was able to get through the process was having a set goal in front of him.

“I didn’t have a choice but to survive,” Seyer said. “Pursuing a goal forces you to focus on the thing you went there for. Or else you’ll lose your sense of ground.”

Over the next year, Seyer put hours of his time into practice. He’s the only musician featured on the album, but he wasn’t completely alone in the process. Deavyn, now his wife, aided him in rethinking various parts. His sister, 2016 Notre Dame graduate Jordan Seyer, created three different canvas prints, which would be laid behind her brother’s original artwork for the cover art. Seyer started closing his project in June of 2018.

The LP contains 18 tracks, which were all recorded within three days at Turtle Recording Studios in South Surrey, British Columbia. Seyer titled it “Migration,” and it was officially released July 9. Since the LP’s release, he estimates to have had 150 sales in-person and online.

He’s recently been picked up by Naz Music Inc., a local British Columbia publisher, who will distribute his album to all streaming platforms and to television and film producers in over 40 countries. They hope to have “Migration” streaming by Christmas this year.

Now out of school, Seyer is planning to take a year to tour with the new content on “Migration,” and with earlier music from his EP.

“With 80 minutes of music, I can really milk it with concerts and workshops,” says Seyer. “Also, since I’m an independent artist, performing really helps to get my name out there.”

In this regard, he’s already hit the ground running. Shortly after the release of “Migration,” Seyer completed a visit to Retiro in Antioquia, Colombia in August for a conference called “Semana de la Guitarra.” Here, he attended workshops, master classes, and participated in several concerts at the Culturo Center El Retiro.

Seyer’s plans for the future include transcribing his music from “Migration” into sheet music for guitarists to study and learn, and he also has his hopes set on a European tour for next summer.

During his time at Notre Dame, Seyer was involved in gaming club, light and sound crews for the spring musicals, and pep band, from whom he received a donation for the release of his album. He says pep band taught him to have fun with music before anything.

“When I saw that they had donated [to Kickstarter], I laughed and showed everybody I knew,” Seyer said. “I sent Profé [the pep band director] a big message on how important that was to me. I was floored; it was my biggest donation!”

Back home, he thanks his family, Cynthia King, who had a big influence on him, and Profe, who he says helped keep music fun.

To read more about “Migration,” visit:

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Notre Dame Regional High School is proud to announce our 2019 Athletic Hall of Fame inductees.  

Ryan Bass 09 - soccer/baseball
Austin Greer 09 - basketball/baseball
John Unterreiner 09 -soccer/basketball
Dylan Drury 09 - baseball
Logan Davis 09 - cross country/track
Erika (Reinagel) Westrich 09 - softball
Mark Himmelberg 08 - soccer/basketball/baseball

Bill Davis (Coach) - cross country/track

Hall of Fame game will be on Saturday February 16th at 2pm.  Congrats to this years amazing group of athletes and coaches.

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On top of numerous military decorations, Notre Dame graduate Kimberlee Joos was a recipient of the Alumni Merit Award during homecoming weekend at Southeast Missouri State University.

Joos graduated from Notre Dame in 1987, and from Southeast in 1991 with a Bachelors of Science in Psychology. While in college, she was involved in the Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC), which allowed her to enter into the U.S. Air Force in 1992.

Although Joos began her service in the Air Force as a Second Lieutenant, she rose through the ranks over a 23-year career, serving in more complex missions as she earned more responsibility. In 2013, Joos was appointed as the 17th Training Wing Commander, a position in which she ran a nearly 6,000-person Air Force base in San Angelo, TX for two years. She retired in 2015 as Colonel.  

She’s been stationed in many locations across the globe, including Japan, Germany, Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq.

Why She Served

Joos joined the Air Force largely for financial reasons. In addition to her governor’s scholarship from SEMO, she discovered the possibility of receiving another scholarship through ROTC to further aid her in paying for college. She specifically chose the Air Force for sentimental reasons: to follow her father, Jimmy’s, footsteps.  An interest in travel wasn’t out of mind, either.

“I think a lot differently now than I thought as a 20-year old. When I was in my twenties, I was looking for a way to see the world and to help pay for college,” said Joos.

But why she decided to enter is much different from why she decided to stay.

“I love the United States of America. I’m really passionate about the country and our democracy and how we do things, especially as a military,” said Joos. “We ended up being a powerful ambassador to this way of life and our form of government, and I think all of that is pretty awesome.”

What kept Joos motivated day-to-day were the people she worked with as she traveled up in rank.

“I then had people who worked for me, and I felt like I was a better person working for them,” said Joos.

Briefing the Secretary of Defense

One significant event during Joos’ career included briefing the Secretary of Defense, William J. Perry, in 1995 after a U.S. F-16 pilot was shot down during the Bosnian War.

“I got to basically tell him what happened, based on all of our ways of collecting information. At the time, I was 26 years old, and here I am, a couple of years out of SEMO, and I’m standing in front of the Secretary of Defense,” said Joos. “That was a situation I never thought I would be in, especially that quickly.”

On Her Retirement

“You hope that everywhere you’re at in your life, you’re serving in the capacity that God wants you to be serving in,” said Joos.

This idea was heavily considered when she approached the end of her military career.

“So, as I got up in rank and in responsibility, it was amazing,” said Joos. “But I got to a point where, even though I loved what I was doing, I just felt pulled to do something else.”

This is where she made her decision to retire. She now spends time with family in Texas, and volunteers at various organizations, including the Texas Veterans Commission and St. Lawrence Church in Denton, Texas.

Although, this isn’t the extent of how Joos offers her talents. After a 5-month certification process, she recently earned the title of Master Gardener in the state of Texas.

“I grew up on three acres outside of Kelso, Missouri, and my mom, Leona, was the most amazing gardener. We had a huge vegetable garden every year,” said Joos. “She taught me so much about gardening, and I inherited her passion for growing things.”

Joos serves as secretary for the Denton County Master Gardeners Association, an organization that provides education on sustainable horticultural practices.

How Notre Dame Readied Joos For Her Future


Joos credits much of her solid foundation in academics and character to Notre Dame, which continues to reinforce these virtues.

“As you get out into the world and you’re not surrounded by people who can give you advice on how to handle really complex situations, you’re kind of on your own, based on the foundation you were given,” said Joos. “As things got more and more complex as I went up in rank, I really found that the way I’d been prepared was a huge benefit that I think went to a lot of my success.”

She said Notre Dame also prepared her to be a good leader, a quality she thinks is within everyone. Joos defines good leadership by two qualities:

“I know one of the very first things that a leader has to do at all times is to do the right thing, even when no one’s looking,” said Joos. “And, leaders don’t always worry about finishing first-  they should instead worry about making sure everybody finishes.”

Serving Her Country Through The Catholic Faith

During her time in the military, Joos said although she couldn’t talk much on her religion, she always tried to be an example of Christ to everyone she met.

“In the military, because of our nation’s freedom of religion, not everybody I worked with was Catholic, or even Christian. So I couldn’t necessarily outwardly talk about my Catholic faith,” said Joos. “But what I could do was demonstrate it in my actions.”

So, Joos tried to be that example of Christ to everyone, through all she did.

“I hope that people who would watch me would see me and go, ‘Wow, she’s setting a great example. What drives her? What’s her source of joy? What’s her source of morality?’” said Joos. “And, of course, that force was Christ.”

Military Decorations


According to the Texas Veterans Commission, Joos’ military decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with 5 Oak Leaf Clusters, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal with 1 Service Star, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Korean Defense Service Medal.

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Blood Drive at ND Tuesday

National Honor Society will host a Blood Drive at ND on Tuesday, October 23 in Drury Hall from 8am-2pm.  

Walk-ins are welcome.

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