The Dominican Friars of St. Martin de Porres Province honored Brother Roger A. Shondel, O.P., with the St. Martin de Porres Award at the November 9th Southern Dominican Province Gala. The award salutes the recipient’s lifetime of recognizing the spiritual needs of the New Orleans community. Also honored at the gala was Mrs. Yvonne Blount, O.P. who has served as a lay Dominican for more than 50 years.
A native of Indiana, Bro. Roger entered the Dominican Order in 1962 after graduating from high school. In 1964, he professed his simple vows and made his solemn profession of vows in 1970. During his early years in the order, Bro. Roger, an accomplished tailor, made the Dominican habits for his community. As a Dominican Friar, he has served in the field of education for nearly 50 years, counseling and educating students in Illinois, Texas, and Louisiana. Bro. Roger has a Masters of Education in Guidance and Counselling from Loyola University Chicago and is a National Certified Counselor and a Licensed Professional Counselor. At St. Mary’s Dominican High School, he has served as a guidance counselor for the past 35 years.
Reflecting on being an award recipient, Bro. Roger shared,
“To be listed among past recipients such as Gayle and Tom Benson, Archbishop Gregory M. Aymond, Harry Connick Sr., and Harry Connick, Jr., to name a few from the past 30 years, certainly humbles me.
This great honor named on behalf of St. Martin de Porres, Patron Saint of mixed race people, public health workers, and all those who seek racial harmony, and the Patron Saint of the Southern Dominican Province, reflects what it means to be a person of perseverance, patience, happiness and joy. St. Martin de Porres certainly exemplified all of these qualities. He was a man of great humility, who righted wrongs and injustices whenever confronted by them.
To be recognized in my lifetime as a person who has tried to recognize both the spiritual and temporal needs of those with whom I have worked and collaborated with, I thank God for the continued blessings which allow me to continue working on behalf of others for the last 35 years at St. Mary’s Dominican High School.”