Jay Chadwick '26
We definitely went to church a lot, once or twice a week when I was growing up, not counting Sundays. We did that until we moved to DC and started at STA.
(Now that we have chapel services during the week, we aren’t as active during the week at our current church, St. Alban’s parish, as we were at the places where my mom had served as a priest).
Having a parent as a religious figure is part of what enabled me to have the chance to go to St. Albans. Without my mom accepting a job at St. Albans, I probably wouldn’t have known about the school (or thought of it as a good place for me). I would have stayed in Reston at my old school, or, if I had applied, I would have had to commute.
I didn’t realize until my mom interviewed here that my grandfather, great-grandfather, and great-uncle went to St. Albans. I’m grateful that I ended up here and for the friends that I have. I don’t feel that people make assumptions about me at STA because of what my mom does. It seems that they even forget about it sometimes.
What are the pros and cons?
Pros: I already know the hymns, and I get to know what will happen next in the service
Cons: Spending 2 hours every weekend going to church & Sunday school—that’s 104 hours over the course of a year—in addition to weekly chapels.
What do you like best about the religion you grew up with?
I like the stories—the ones in the Old Testament are especially interesting (like where Moses raised his arms up in the fight against the Amalekites and they would win as long as his arms are up).
What does religion do for you unrelated to your parents?
It provides calm during the week of chaos.
Before the pandemic, my religion enabled me to help people. At my church, the youth did Grate Patrol—it’s an event where we get together to make meals and deliver them with the Salvation Army to people who are homeless in DC. We go to a building and make the food, we eat dinner, then go out on a bus for about an hour to specific stops and give people the food.
Other things going to church has done for me is that I’ve made friends in the youth group and for a time, before the pandemic, it let me see a friend I hadn’t seen before going to St. Albans.