Mercy tradition lives on


Photo taken from WCPO.COM

Mercy prepares for their final year.

If you live on the Westside of Cincinnati, you probably are related to or know someone who went to Mother of Mercy High School. Mercy High School was started by the Sisters of Mercy and has been educating students since 1915. Through the years the school has graduated countless students. However, in early March of last school year, it was announced Mercy will close at the end of this school year and a new school will open for the 2018-2019 school year. The school will be called Mercy-McAuley and will be located at the current McAuley High School location.

But this article is not about the school merger. It is about Mercy, our neighbor school, and its final year. I wanted to get an inside look at the school and how students are preparing for its closing. What I found is that this school year, Mercy is celebrating itself and planning extra events and activities for the students and alumni.

On the first day of school and on Mercy Day, the school had picnics. Alumni were invited to participate on Mercy Day and food trucks were brought in to offer food choices. The Father Daughter Dance will be at Mercy this year instead of the Woodlands. The activities that stand out are the events that being planned with McAuley. Before volleyball and soccer games against McAuley, both schools are tailgating with each other. Other clubs and activities will be planned throughout the year. So far this year, it seems like the two schools are trying to get know each other.

I wanted to ask a student what it is like to be in Mercy’s final year. I talked to Mercy senior, Jessica Whitman.

“Everyone has a positive outlook on the merge, but the mood is bittersweet as we appreciate our last year in our beautiful building containing so much history and legacy within its walls. However, Mercy is defined by the people and we won’t lose that,” said Whitman.

Whitman said Marcy’s school spirit is at an all time high. “I think that our school spirit has always been strong but it’s extra special this year as we all attempt to make the most of our last year and show our pride and love for our school and our Mercy sisters,” said Whitman.


Photo taken from
The Mercy pride and school spirit is in full force this year

The school has also had its special moments in sports. The volleyball team is currently ranked fourteenth in the country. On September 12, the volleyball team beat Seton on its home court for the last time. On September 28, the team beat Ursuline, who was undefeated at the time. The team is looking to win GGCL and a state championship. The last time Mercy won state in volleyball was 2007.

To talk more about school spirit in sports, I talked to senior volleyball captain Kiki Carle. I asked her if this season has more meaning and school spirit because of the final year. “It’s a very emotional year. It seems like everything we do is bigger because everyone knows it is the last time. Everybody is watching everything we do so it feels like we are under a microscope.”

It is not just the students that are affected by the closure. It is also some of the coaches and alumni. Many of the Mercy coaches have coached many years and have gotten to know the students very well through those years.

Former softball coach and student, Elizabeth Mahon, had a lot to say about her experience at Mercy.

“I enjoyed coaching for Mercy. I played softball there, so it was a neat experience being able to coach at my alma mater. I got to coach for five years and it was rewarding to watch my girls grow into young women. The school has been around for over a hundred years and many women were given the opportunity to play sports. It’s hard to imagine that the tradition will end.”

Next year, it really will be strange not having a GGCL sports team named Mercy. The rivalry with Seton will be discontinued. The rivalry with McAuley will be transformed into the same team. Many people do not know what will happen with the sports program once the schools combine. Will they have more teams? How will they have tryouts etc.?

To learn more about next year, Mahon noted that there will be a mixture of girls on the teams and that it will be interesting to see how the sports teams adjust. Some of the students will have played three years against each other and know they might have to compete with each other for a spot on the new team. As of now, we do not know the full details concerning the structure of the new athletic teams.

Even though Mother of Mercy will no longer be on the map next year, people will still know the legacy. Mercy has proven to be one of the top all-girl schools in the Greater Cincinnati Area. It seems like the students are coming together as a school to celebrate those traditions. Mother of Mercy School has left a mark on all of its students.

Whitman said, “Knowing that our school is closing in June is really sad and makes everything this year bittersweet. Everyone has a positive outlook on the merge, but the mood is bittersweet as we appreciate our last year in our beautiful building containing so much history and legacy within its walls. However, Mercy is defined by the people and we won’t lose that.”