Viva Italia! A Picnic With Our Italian Friends


Chesterton Academy families gathered on July 8th, 2017 with others from across the Twin Cities for a picnic to celebrate the visit of five Italian Chestertonians, including Mr. Marco Sermarini, the President of the Italian Chesterton Society and the co-founder of Chesterton Academy’s sister school, Scuola Libera Chesterton. In 2008, both Chesterton Academy of the Twin Cities and her sister school in Italy were founded without any knowledge that each other existed. Dale Ahlquist, the co-founder of Chesterton Academy and the President of the American Chesterton Society, finally met his Italian counterpart in St. Peter’s Square in 2013. This was the first of many meetings and collaborations between the two Chestertonians. When the Chesterton Academy juniors travel to Rome for their yearly pilgrimage, they have the opportunity to tour the city alongside their Italian friends. Several Chesterton Academy families have been able to host Italian students during their visits. Chesterton Academy graduates, including Hannah Wolney (class of '17) and Abby Niemann (class of '18), have traveled to Italy to teach at the Scuola Libera Chesterton. The relationship between the two schools has been uplifting and fruitful, and the Saturday gathering celebrated this relationship.

The evening picnic was organized by David and Mara Hertelendy, parents of Julia Hertelendy (class of '21).

In the photo above, Francesco, an Italian Chestertonian who plans to enter the monastery of Norcia in Italy, is reunited with Julia Hall and her daughters, who hosted him on his previous visit to Minnesota.

For more information about Chesterton Academy’s Italian sister school, check out this article featured in the Catholic Spirit.