One Queens school is going above and beyond to incorporate the Pope's message into their everyday lives. NY1's Shannan Ferry filed this report. 

Pope Francis' first visit to the United States is underway - and St. Francis Prep High School in Fresh Meadows is buzzing with excitement.

"The pope is coming here in New York City of all places! It's amazing," said John Sullivan.

Although the facility isn't a stop on the Pope's itinerary, students say they feel a special connection to the pontiff since they attend a Franciscan school.

"He's so humble and so simple, and he's living just like St. Francis did, and showing mercy," said Kathryn Healy.

That admiration has taken on a stronger significance now more than ever before.

Along with this welcome banner hanging outside the school, the Pope has also become the focus of classroom discussions.

"Talk about like how he's been on Twitter, and like, connecting to the youth through the Internet and social media," said Chloe Sweeney.

Some faculty members will see the pontiff in person.

Father Bill Sweeney will attend the Pope's mass at Madison Square Garden, while Brother Joseph Bach has a ticket to St. Patrick's Cathedral.

"Listening to the message that he's going to tell us today - um, I think that gives me a wonderful opportunity to bring that back to the students," said Bach.

Staff also set up this display case in the lobby with facts and a cardboard cut out of the Pope - which they say will stay here beyond his U.S. visit.

"It's very funny watching the kids taking selfies of themselves with the Pope, and then there's simple things that people might not know about the Pope, that he speaks 7 different languages, that, uh when he has a child he lost one of his lungs," said Rev. Sweeney.

The Pope will return to the Vatican on September 27th.

Meantime, these students say they'll continue to honor Francis both inside and outside of the classroom through service and prayer.