Xavier Prep supporters plan prayer vigil

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As the fight to keep Xavier University Preparatory School open continues, supporters plan to hold a community prayer vigil Saturday in the yard of the school’s Uptown campus.

“If you believe prayer changes things, please come out and show your support for Xavier Prep,” organizer Kim Dilosa said in a news release.

The school was founded in 1915, and the Feb. 20 announcement of its closure at the end of the school year stunned students, parents, and alumni.

The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, who own the school and made the decision, said in a written statement that the school “does not have a financially sustainable future.”

Days after the announcement, more than 500 people gathered — some flying in from other parts of the country — to discuss ways to keep the doors open at the all-female school.

At the Feb. 23 meeting, Principal Joseph Peychaud talked about raising money to buy the prime Magazine Street real estate for somewhere between $4 and $6 million, in addition to annual operating costs estimated at $2.7 million.

A fund was set up to collect donations at xavierprepfoundation.com, and a “Save the Last Dance” fundraising event was held March 8.

The prayer vigil, billed as an opportunity for supporters to “reflect on the scriptural roots of the fight,” will be held from 10:30 a.m. to noon at 5116 Magazine Street.