Spiritual Life


Girl speaks on dais, Santa Catalina School Chapel



Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.
—St. Catherine of Siena, patron saint of Santa Catalina

Our Catholic Identity

As an independent Catholic school, Santa Catalina embraces a number of core values that serve to distinguish and differentiate us.

A Particular Academic Approach

The Catholic Intellectual tradition teaches that life has meaning and purpose, that there is a moral right and wrong, and that faith and reason are complementary in the search for truth.1 We believe that our approach to teaching provides an enriched academic experience for all of our students.


A spirit of welcome and openness is characteristic of Santa Catalina School. We embrace the true meaning of the word "catholicity" (from the Greek words kata and holos, meaning "inclusive of everyone") with an invitation and welcoming spirit to all of our students. With a grounding in the particularity of our Catholic heritage, we affirm and celebrate and embrace the rich religious diversity of our student body.2


Students at Santa Catalina learn of their responsibility to serve others. We believe that service activities help raise the consciousness of our students to the plight of those less fortunate, with the impact of these efforts ultimately being realized in the school community and beyond.


At Santa Catalina, we believe that students learn and grow best in a loving and supportive community. This emphasis on the value of relationships has been Santa Catalina’s charism, or “special gift,” since the founding of the school. It has been one of our enduring strengths and it is what has made attending Santa Catalina such a special experience for so many.


1 As a Catholic school, Santa Catalina holds that faith and reason are mutually illuminating and that each offers the potential to reveal what is true and sacred. In the search for the truth, the Catholic Intellectual Tradition draws from the wisdom of the past and enters into dialogue with every academic discipline and with all forms of belief and nonbelief.

2 The Dominican Sisters of San Rafael established Santa Catalina in 1950. In 1976, after negotiations with the Dominican Order, Santa Catalina became an Independent, Catholic School with a Board of Trustees providing oversight. Today the school is listed in the Catholic Directory, operating in good standing within the Diocese of Monterey.