Athol Murray College of Notre Dame

Athol Murray College of Notre Dame is a private, independent, co-educational boarding high school rooted in the Catholic tradition and open to students of all faith backgrounds. Athol Murray College of Notre Dame is committed to developing young men and women to become purposeful leaders with virtuous character. Athol Murray College of Notre Dame is located in Wilcox, Saskatchewan, Canada. It was founded by the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis in 1920 as St. Augustine school when they established Notre Dame of the Prairies Convent. The school was later renamed to honour the contributions of Father Athol Murray. A noted, stained glass window honours 67 of the college's alumni who died in World War II.

Athol Murray College of Notre Dame
49 Main Street

, ,
Coordinates50.0988°N 104.7201°W / 50.0988; -104.7201
School typePrivate, independent school, day, and residential boarding school
MottoLuctor et Emergo
(Struggle and Emerge)
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic
Founded1920 (1920)
FoundersFr. Athol Murray and the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis
PresidentRob Palmarin
PrincipalKate MacLean
Grades9 through 12[1]
Average class size16[1]
Colour(s)     Red
Team nameHounds
Last updated: February 4, 2019 (2019-02-04)


In 1920, the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis opened the Notre Dame of the Prairies Convent and St. Augustine's residential elementary and high school for boys and girls at Wilcox, Saskatchewan; a small town on the Canadian prairies 49 kilometres (30 mi) south of Regina  – the provincial capital.

Father Athol Murray was appointed to St. Augustine's parish in Wilcox, Saskatchewan, in 1927. The institution's name was eventually changed to honour his contributions.

In the beginning, the College had no running water or central heating. In 1930, fees were $18 per month, but many students couldn't afford to pay. Père (Father) Murray accepted students on the basis that they desired an education, not on their ability to pay. A side of beef, a chicken, a bucket of coal and produce were often accepted instead of money. Students came from everywhere and from every type of social, cultural and religious background.

Murray was assisted by Sister Mary Edith McCullough. Her teaching career spanned 30 years at Wilcox. Sr. Edith ran the elementary and high schools while Père spent most of his time with the students in the Arts programs. In 1933, Père Murray succeeded in obtaining an official affiliation with the University of Ottawa.

Père Murray believed in the Greek philosophy of developing the mind, body and spirit and envisioned a school that could develop great scholars and athletes through equal emphasis on the disciplines of academics, athletics and faith. Notre Dame's longstanding success in developing well-balanced individuals is a testament to that vision.

Though Murray died in 1975, his legacy lives on. Père's beloved Notre Dame College continues to produce many of North America's finest student athletes through a balanced program that emphasizes the values of good character, leadership and community living. Père's motto "Luctor et Emergo" (Struggle and Emerge) is still reinforced today.

The Institute for Stained Glass in Canada has documented the stained glass at Athol Murray College of Notre Dame.[2] Dedicated to 67 ex-students of Notre Dame College who served and died during World War II; the stained glass window by Colonial Studios, Ottawa, circa 1948 depicts St. Augustine.[3]


In addition to its academic programs, the College has many sports teams that the students play on. The most notable are the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League's Notre Dame Hounds. There are also a number of minor hockey teams playing under the SHA banner, as well as members of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League (CSSHL). Notre Dame currently fields three midget 'AAA' teams: two male teams (the Hounds and the Argos), and one female team (the Hounds). The midget 'AAA' program has won a total of five national championships: four on the male side and one on the female side.

Former Tampa Bay Lightning forwards Vincent Lecavalier and Brad Richards played together in the school's AAA Bantam program,[4] while numerous others have gone on to be drafted into the NHL.

Notre Dame also runs high school athletics programs in basketball, rugby, football, soccer, volleyball, baseball, softball, track and field and wrestling.[5]

Notable alumni


Other sports


The Hounds of Notre Dame have a rich history of music and have had a choir for many years. They also sing a "Prayer And Victory March" after every athletic competition. This song is derived partly from early Hounds and also contains the later part of the University of Notre Dame's fight song, due to the contributions toward Père's Tower of God by a Notre Dame alumni.

The Prayer and Victory March

"Dear Notre Dame, We hail the Alma Mater. Thy loyal sons, Thy banners proudly bear. We pledge to thee, Our love and our devotion, We beg thee hear and grant our prayers. Oh guide our steps, And lead us safely onward, Through all the years, With love and care.

What though the odds be great or small, Old Notre Dame will win over all, While her loyal sons are marching, Onward to victory, Cheer, cheer for old Notre Dame, Wake up the echoes cheering her name, Send a volley, cheer on high, Shake down the thunder from the sky! What though the odds be great or small, Old Notre Dame will win over all, While her loyal sons are marching Onward to victory, Notre Dame!"


  1. "FAQ". Athol Murray College of Notre Dame. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  2. "Catholic College Chapel, Notre Dame of Wilcox". Institute for Stained Glass in Canada. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  3. "Notre Dame College Memorial Window". National Inventory of Canadian Military Memorials. Veterans Affairs Canada. Retrieved 5 January 2017.
  4. "Sportsnet: Vincent Lecavalier - Tampa Bay Lightning". Archived from the original on 4 December 2007.
  5. "Athletics at Notre Dame". Athol Murray College of Notre Dame. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  6. "Francis GERMANN Obituary". The Regina Leader-Post. The Regina Leader-Post. 29 May 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2019 via
  7. "MacDonald, Cyril Pius 1928–2015". Saskatchewan Archival Information Network. Retrieved February 4, 2019.
  8. "2011/2012 Fellows". Action Canada. Retrieved 23 June 2011.
  9. Dupont, Kevin Paul (July 10, 2008). "Colborne grows on you ; Bruins have big plans after sizing up their No. 1 choice". The Boston Globe. The New York Times Company. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  10. Houston, William (February 27, 1989). "Saskatchewan farm boy could be top draft pick". The Globe and Mail. p. C1.
  11. "Curtis Joseph Stats". Sports Reference, LLC. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  • Père Murray and the Hounds, the story of Saskatchewan's Notre Dame College, by Jack Gorman, ISBN 0921835043
  • Père - A Père Murray Compendium, compiled by Jack Gorman ISBN 0921835108
  • Legacy . . . the treasures of Notre Dame, by Jack Gorman
  • The Hounds of Notre Dame - a movie based on the compelling story of Père Murray and the Hounds
  • Tales from the Shacks : Pere Murray's Notre Dame College, by Richard Dukes ISBN 0921835248
  • Notre Dame of the Prairies, by Alice (Stefan) Henderson ISBN 0919829082
  • The Rink: Stories from Hockey's Home Towns, by Chris Cuthbert and Scott Russell ISBN 0670875503
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