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Instaurare The Christendom College Quarterly Magazine

Summer 2013

Celebrating 35 Years with Our 34th Graduating Class History Professor Unlocks Byzantine Mysteries English Professor Dr. Robert Rice Retires Reecting on a Semester in the Eternal City Summer 2013


From the President The following is an excerpt from this year’s President’s charge to the graduates.


Fr. John Hardon, a great friend of our College and a very holy priest, once said, “Ordinary Catholics will not survive this age, only heroic Catholics will survive.” In this year of faith, it is good to draw strength from our tradition. Pope Leo the Great wrote of the strength, which faith imparts to those who follow the Risen Christ. He tells us, “This faith was increased by the Lord’s Ascension and strengthened by the gift of the Spirit; it will remain unshaken by fetters, imprisonment, exile and hunger, fire and ravening beasts, and the most refined tortures designed by brutal persecutors.” Throughout the world, women no less than men, the tender girls as well as boys have given their lives for the struggle for this faith. And we have many examples of such heroism. I am still haunted by the story of little Blessed Jose Sanchez Del Rio. Being marched through the streets by the Federales with his lacerated feet, being struck by machetes. This heroic young boy died proclaiming, “Vivo Christo Rey!” Long live Christ the King!

‘ I exhort you to bring that loving, joyful courage

which springs from your faith to your family, friends, coworkers, your marriage, and your workplace.

Even in more recent times, we have the example of the noble Servant of God, Fr. Vincent Capadanno, a man, who in the midst of war served in a most heroic way. On the day of his death, he had been shot through the right hand and a mortar had lacerated his right shoulder, yet, after each injury, he refused to leave and continued to work, bringing the sacraments and consolation to those wounded in combat. At the end of the lengthy day, when a soldier was shot with a burst of automatic weapon fire, he rushed out to assist him, speaking words of comfort and encouragement, only to be riddled with machine gun fire, having laid down his life for his brother. What splendid examples God has given us in these real heroes. He never abandons us. He continues to speak to us through his Vicar. I still hear Blessed John Paul’s words ringing in my ears in St. Peter’s Square. “Non abbiate paura.” “Be not afraid.” Open wide the doors to Christ. And that is my charge to you this day. Do not be afraid to joyfully proclaim the Gospel with clarity and boldness and have the courage to swim against the tide. Your education and



Timothy T. O’Donnell, STD, KGCHS

formation have given you a clarity of mind, a strength of will and an expanded heart to love God and your neighbor, a task so necessary today in our modern world. Confusion is the prelude to timidity, fear, and hesitation. Clarity is a necessary condition for courage. As St. Paul wrote to his beloved disciple Timothy, “The Spirit God has given us is no cowardly Spirit but rather one that makes us strong, loving, and wise. Therefore never be ashamed of your testimony to the Lord.” I exhort you to bring that loving, joyful courage which springs from your faith to your family, friends, coworkers, your marriage, and your workplace. To you men, as husbands and fathers, give that courage to your wife and children and fulfill the courage of your marriage vows. You women, as wives and mothers, give the strength of your convictions to your husband and children. To those whom God calls to His holy priesthood or religious life, give the courage born of faith to your spiritual children. Heart speaking to heart. You may not be called to martyrdom like Blessed Jose or to sacrifice your life on the field of battle like Fr. Capadanno, but you will be called to lay down your life daily in imitation of Our Lord and King. If you do that and live life with courage and fidelity to our faith, you will see that there truly is nothing to fear. Here at Christendom College you have only started the journey of consecrating your intellect and will to Christ. Our Lord still beckons to you, “Son give me thy heart.” He asks you to give him everything, all that you are, that there might be a true exchange of hearts, for he wants nothing less. I conclude with the words of Pope Francis, spoken just two weeks ago. “Remain steadfast in the journey of faith with firm hope in the Lord. This is the secret of our journey. He gives us the courage to swim against the tide. Pay attention, my young friends, to go against the current. This is good for the heart. There are no difficulties, trials, or misunderstandings provided we remain united to God. We Christians are not chosen by the Lord for little things. Push onward towards the highest principles. Stake your lives on noble ideals, my dear young people.” Your studies and formation at home and here have prepared you for the journey. As you go forth from here, be men and women of courageous faith and nobility of heart and know that our hopes and our hearts and prayers go with you each step of the way in our common effort on the journey to help restore all things in Christ. Praised be Jesus Christ now and forever.

Table TableofofContents Contents 2 Commencement 2013 Christendom College celebrated its commencement weekend on May 10-12 by awarding degrees to 96 graduates as well as honoring Archbishop Charles Brown and Mrs. Anne Carroll.

12 Student Philanthropy


Determined to do something great for their school, eight students from the Class of 2013 raised over $20,000. 7 Graduating Athletes Shine Both On and Off the Field 8 Gala Raises Funds for Student Financial Aid 10 History Professor Unlocks Byzantine Mysteries 14 Great Minds on Campus: Dynamic Speakers Program


15 Dr. Robert Rice Retires after 32 Years 16 Liberal Arts in Action: Field of Law 17 Keeping Latin Alive at Lunch 18 Reflecting on Rome: A Semester in the Eternal City 20 Graduate School Alumni Continue Education



Instaurare Published quarterly by the Christendom College Marketing Office.

22 Students and Professor at ISI Conference 23 Advancement Office Notes 24 Photo Gallery: This Spring at Christendom IBC Omnia in Christo: Signs of Contradiction

Executive Editor: Tom McFadden Managing Editor & Layout: Niall O’Donnell Christendom College 134 Christendom Drive, Front Royal, VA 22630 800.877.5456 ~ Copyright © 2013. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided the following credit line is used: “Reprinted by permission from INSTAURARE, the quarterly magazine of Christendom College (” SUBSCRIPTION FREE UPON REQUEST.

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Instaurare magazine (pronounced “in-sta-rar-ay”) receives its name from the Latin in the college’s motto, “Instaurare Omnia In Christo” or “To Restore All Things in Christ.” Christendom College does not discriminate against any applicant or student on the basis of race, sex, color, or national origin.

Summer 2013


COMMENCEMENT 2013 C Christendom College celebrated its commencement weekend on May 10-12 by awarding degrees to 96 graduates, as well as honoring Archbishop Charles Brown, Papal Nuncio to Ireland, and Mrs. Anne Carroll, founder of Seton School in Manassas, Va., and Seton Home Study School. Archbishop Brown celebrated the Baccalaureate Mass on Friday, May 10, and received an honorary doctorate before delivering the commencement address on Saturday, May 11. Mrs. Carroll, the wife of Christendom’s founder Dr. Warren Carroll, was awarded the College’s St. Catherine of Siena Award for Distinguished Service to the Church & Christendom College.

After the Baccalaureate Mass on Friday, students, faculty, and parents traveled to the beautiful Shenandoah Country Club for an elegant reception and dinner. Students and parents chatted with the professors who have been mentors to the students, guiding them through Christendom’s powerful intellectual formation. After several toasts and a viewing of the senior slide show, everyone returned to campus for the Graduation Dance, which featured a live band, Yesterday Swing Orchestra. Saturday’s ceremonies began with a bagpipe-led procession from Christ the King Chapel to St. Louis the Crusader Gymnasium. Attendees were welcomed by Salutatorian Nicole Koopman of Topeka, Kan., after which Director of Admissions and Alumni Relations Tom McFadden presented the Student Achievement Award to Nicholas Blank of Woodbridge, Va., for his dedication to the community. Following the presentation of awards to Mrs. Carroll and Archbishop Brown, Valedictorian Sarah Halbur of Joliet, Ill., delivered her address. Closing the ceremony, College President Dr. Timothy O’Donnell delivered his charge to the graduates. (Please see the inside front cover for an excerpt of the president’s charge.) 2


Head RAs Lisa Hill and Dan Mitchell.

Grads: Mike Bobrowski, Chris Roberts, and David Townsend.

Brendan Krebs and his family.

Graduates toss their caps in the air following the ceremonies.

Engaged graduates: Jacob Akers and Maureen Bellow.

Emiko Funai and her family. Summer 2013


Director of Admissions and Alumni Relations Tom McFadden presents the Student Achievement Award to Nicholas Blank.


Robert C. Rice Award for Excellence in English Language & Literature recipient, Caitlin Thomas, with Dr. Rice and Dr. Thomas Stanford.

Joseph Strickland and his family.

Students, parents, and professors enjoyed an elegant dinner on Friday.

Graduates Charlie Van Hecke and Monica Davis.

Anna Harris and her family.

Max Hess with his mom.

Graduates listen to Dr. O’Donnell’s charge.


After Graduation Below are some of the plans of the Class of 2013.

John McFadden with his family.

Sara Federico, Sales Manager for Vector Marketing / Eric Maschue, FOCUS Missionary / Charlie Rollino, MBA Program at the University of Notre Dame / Sean Connolly, Teacher at Covington Latin School / John McFadden, Clear Creek Benedictine Monastery / Nicole Koopman, Development Specialist at Population Research Institute / Kelly Lawyer, MRC TV Intern at Media Research Center / Peter Hill, MBA Program at Loyola University Maryland / Rachel Milani, Teacher at Seton School / Sarah Halbur, Executive Assistant at the Thomas More Society / Nicholas Blank, Seminary for Diocese of Arlington / Lisa Hill, Teacher at St. John Academy / Neil Baldwin, Agent at Arias & Associates / Steven Wood, Seminary for Diocese of Sacramento

Patrick O’Reilly waves during procession to the ceremonies.

Ninety-four bachelor of arts degrees were awarded to Jacob Akers, Kathryn Anderson, Neil Baldwin, Sarah Barren, Tim Beer, Maureen Bellow, Nicholas Blank, Michael Bobrowski, Mary Bratt, Sadie Bratt, Philip Briggs, Matt Camp, Susannah Cavanaugh, Nate Collins, Sean Connolly, Monica Davis, Kathleen Deighan, Dean Dewey, Anthony Dhanagom, Shawn Dust, Sara Federico, Thomas Ferrara, Stacey Fontaine, Zach Francis, Patrick Freeman, Emi Funai, Andrew Grimes, Sarah Halbur, Rob Hambleton, Colleen Harmon, Anna Harris, Mark Hepler, Mary Herlihy, Max Hess, Lisa Hill, Peter Hill, Hillary Horner, Theresa Jalsevac, Kristin Jaroma, Alexander Kecskes, Christina Kelly, Nicholas Kelly, Gloria Klosterman, Nicole Koopman, Brendan Krebs, Rachel Kujawa, Matthew La Fave, Bridget Lademan, Katie Lademan, Theresa Lamirande, Katie Gutschke Lancaster, Heather Lawrence, Kelly Lawyer, Bailey Lowe, Natalie Lucas, Eric Maschue, John McFadden, Laura McGrath, Tim McPhee, John McWhirter, Rachel Milani, Dan Mitchell, James Munson, Matt Naham, Joshua Nelson, Elise Nodar, Patrick O’Reilly, Sr. Maria Pallares, Christopher Roberts, Charlie Rollino, Patrick Rose, Lucy Salazar, Tommy Salmon, John Schofield, Nicholas Scrivener, Katrina Shanley, Kirk Slocum, Loretto Spiering, Peter Spiering, Alicia Stanton, Joseph Strickland, Caitlin Thomas, Alexis Thornton, Luke Tillotson, David Townsend, Johanna Troendle, Charlie Van Hecke, Lisa Vicente, Nathalie Watson, Nicholas Weber, Anna Whittaker, Steven Wood, and Katie Wunderlich. Two Associate of Arts were conferred on Grace Gniewek and Daniel Traina.

Summer 2013


Commencement Speakers Spotlight “Truth exists. The Incarnation happened. These words were the purpose of the founding of Christendom. They’ve sustained this enterprise... But far more importantly [Christendom alumni] are placing Jesus Christ at the center of their lives, because He is the Truth and He is God Incarnate. And whenever, wherever our alumni are, whatever they do, they are helping to bring about the new springtime in the Church—to build the civilization of love.” Mrs. Anne Carroll

Archbishop Charles Brown

“The greatness and lasting value of your education at Christendom has been premised precisely on this fact—that there is such a thing as truth. And that truth and the search for truth is worth everything...Your years at Christendom have given you an unparalleled preparation for living your faith in our contemporary world. By loving the truth and living the truth, you will have an effect on everyone you come in contact with—an effect that is accomplished simply by living and not necessarily always by preaching.”

“While Christendom does indeed prepare its students for pursuing intellectual studies, it certainly has supplied us with the tools to flourish in whatever occupation we choose to pursue after college. Just as a warrior undergoes vigorous training before battle, so too does Christendom provide valuable training before entering the fray.”

Salutatorian Nicole Koopman

Valedictorian Sarah Halbur



“We have learned to love each other, while growing friendships through thick and thin. We have learned to love our professors, as they have stretched us through thick and thin. Caring for the ill, orphaned, and impoverished during spring break mission trips has expanded our capacity to love those whom the world considers worthless. And in the process of it all, we have learned to love God with a greater maturity, with a greater fidelity, and greater trust.”

Graduating Athletes Shine On and Off the Field of Play

Nicholas Blank, ’13


This May, 47 of the 94 students who earned their BA’s graduated with academic honors, earning a 3.25 GPA or higher. And among those 47 were 24 student athletes who had played on intercollegiate varsity teams. Unlike many other college athletic programs, the Christendom coaches and Athletic Director work very hard to ensure that all of their athletes remain focused on their academic lives while playing competitively on the various varsity teams. “These young men and women exemplify what we are trying to do with our athletic program,” says Athletic Director Chris Vander Woude. “We strive for the balanced individual development of students to help them stay focused on the pursuit of excellence in all they do.”

Anna Harris, ’13

Rob Hambleton, ’13

Frequently the college athlete is not expected to excel in academics, but at Christendom this is not the case. The average GPA for the students who played a varsity sport their senior year was an impressive 3.33. Nicholas Blank and Anna Harris received the Crusader Scholar Athlete Award for the highest GPA among the graduating student-athletes, both graduating summa cum laude. Additionally, in their four years at Christendom, the recent graduates helped their teams amass 17 out of 28 seasons with at least a .500 winning percentage. Included in these was this past rugby season in which the team finished with an undefeated 4-0 season and claimed the Crusader Achievement Award, which is given to the varsity team with the highest winning percentage each year.

Senior Athletes

Neil Baldwin, Tim Beer, Nicholas Blank, Mike Bobrowski, Phil Briggs, Dean Dewey, Rob Hambleton, Anna Harris, Mark Hepler, Lisa Hill, Theresa Jalsevac, Brendan Krebs, Bridget Lademan, Theresa Lamirande, Tim McPhee, John McWhirter, Dan Mitchell, Matt Naham, Patrick O’Reilly, Charlie Rollino, Patrick Rose, Tommy Salmon, Peter Spiering, and Katie Wunderlich.

Summer 2013


Gala Raises Funds for Student Financial Aid


On April 6, the College held its 35th Anniversary Gala Dinner Dance to raise funds for student financial aid. Over 300 participants enjoyed an evening of fine dining and dancing, with special guests Senator and Mrs. Rick Santorum, Arlington Bishop Paul S. Loverde, and former Mouseketeer, Sherry Alberoni.

Event sponsors included Owen and Bernadette Smith and the Church Music Association of America. McCarthy & Akers PLC, Valley Health, and Rappahannock Cellars were also principle sponsors. The event raised more than $185,000. “The event was a great success,” said John Ciskanik, the College’s vice president for advancement. “Not only was it an elegant and enjoyable evening, but we were able to shore up resources for our robust 100% donor-driven student financial aid program. Thanks to the attendees and sponsors, we have surpassed our fundraising goals for this year.”

funding, and its high-caliber alumni. During the dinner, College president Timothy O’Donnell gave reflections on the College’s 35th Anniversary. “For 35 years we have been sending forth deeply educated, joyful witnesses to our Crucified Risen Lord, to take leadership roles in the New Evangelization,” he said. “Our work is not done. Together we are accomplishing great things for Christ—it is just the beginning.” The gala concluded with a dance, which featured live swing music performed by Yesterday Swing Orchestra.

Ciskanik said that donors and sponsors are attracted to the college because of its commitment to an authentic Catholic liberal arts education, its refusal to accept federal

Dr. O’Donnell and his wife, Cathy, with Sen. Rick Santorum and his wife, Karen. Board member Robert Scrivener (’81)with his family at the dinner.

Thirty-five years after the founding: (L-R) Raymund and Sheila O’Herron, Dr. Onalee McGraw, Mrs. Anne O’Reilly, Mike and Kristin Burns.



Craig and Diana Pascoe look at plans for the expansion of Christ the King Chapel during a special reception for President’s Council members.

The following message was sent to the College and read by Chaplain Fr. Donald Planty at the Gala.

6, 2013 APRIL ndom of Christe

lishment the estab f o ry s cordial a rs nnive ncis send ra F e p o On the a ss P ity with is Holine commun H ic d , e m g e e d ll a ac Co a renewe ill foster the entire w to n s mic o g e ti n d a ra ti c gree nd a memo n faith a this com a t ti s a ri th h C rs . of on praye e ideals foundati ent to th college's e th g as a d in s e commitm s lic ble h inspir to ic s h o w p a , e c s his excellen us Christ. ly impart Lord Jes ss willing r e u n O li o in H His nd peace f grace a pledge o

Dr. O’Donnell presented Bishop Loverde with a bust of Blessed Pope John Paul II in honor of the bishop’s 25th Episcopal Anniversary.

An Alumni Testimony

College board member John Cecconi enjoys a dance with his wife, Nancy.

Christendom senior Peter Hill enjoys a dance with senior Emi Funai.

Alumnus Mark Rohlena (’00), CEO of Catholic Charities of Central Colorado, addressed donors at a reception prior to the dinner, where he explained that his Christendom liberal arts degree enabled him to excel both as a lawyer and then as the leader of a non-profit organization. “While I would put the academics of Christendom College against any other school for helping its graduates learn to think, Christendom’s approach is much more than this,” Rohlena said during his remarks. “The school’s mission is to create and train a vanguard of Catholic men and women who are equipped intellectually and spiritually to go out and meet the growing threat. Graduates are called to actively propose a counter-culture to the withering and stagnant culture that we see gaining strength all around us.”

Summer 2013



was once

CONSTANTINOPLE Photos by Dr. Brendan McGuire

The glorious interior of the Chora Church, now a museum.

History Professor Unlocks Byzantine Mysteries


In March, history professor Dr. Brendan McGuire conducted a week-long archaeological field study, focusing on the extant Byzantine-era churches of Istanbul, Turkey. Istanbul is, of course, historic Constantinople, which served as the capital of the East Roman—or Byzantine—Empire for over a millennium before the Turkish conquest in 1453. In the Middle Ages, Constantinople was the jewel of the Christian world, exceeding the combined size, wealth, and artistic splendor of any ten Western European cities.

The overwhelming majority of surviving Byzantine-era churches have functioned as mosques for over 500 years. This has meant that their previous histories, identities, and roles in the vibrant liturgical and monastic life of the city are often shrouded in mystery.

Although he was able to spend time appreciating the well-known artistic treasures of Hagia Sophia and the Chora Church, much of his work was conducted well off the beaten path, in the teeming, urban heart of Istanbul’s “old city.”

Having been trained by renowned scholar Stephen Murray of Columbia University in the archaeological analysis of medieval buildings, McGuire was confident that a week in Istanbul would allow him to shed light on the role that these churches played during the thirteenthcentury Latin occupation of Constantinople (12041261), also known as the frankokratia.

“Every second that I had spent studying the Turkish language proved to be of immense value, as I used the unfamiliar tongue to navigate the vast metropolis, ask directions, argue with taxi drivers, and order coffee,” he says.

“This was a fascinating period, after the Fourth Crusade, in which Latin and Greek Christians coexisted in a ruined and depopulated capital, often sharing ecclesial space with one another,” McGuire says. “I discovered, however, far more than I bargained for—evidence that will, quite possibly, allow scholars to answer age-old questions surrounding the identity of monastic and ecclesiastical monuments on the shores of the Golden Horn.”



There are Byzantine archaeological treasures scattered throughout the city, unsought by tourists and unrecognized by locals, and these were his targets. He aimed to map the ecclesiastical geography of the medieval city. In so doing, he stumbled upon something that he believes to be of immense significance: Byzantine ruins, half-buried in the middle of a city block in an unfrequented, impoverished neighborhood. “These ruins may play a key role in answering ageold questions surrounding the identity of Byzantine monuments in that part of the city—questions that have

Faculty Mentoring Initiative It is well known that the members of Christendom College’s faculty dedicate their lives, first and foremost, to college teaching, giving Christendom a well-earned reputation as an institution that places undergraduate learning at the center of its mission. Nevertheless, many of the professors at Christendom are also active scholars who contribute to their respective fields on a regular basis through research and writing. To support these important endeavors, Christendom College established the Faculty Mentoring Initiative (FMI), with the generous support of board members Bob Crnkovich and Steve O’Keefe (’93), as well as alumnus Sean Garvey (’93). The FMI will assist Christendom’s professors in contributing to their scholarly fields, while also making it easier for the College to recruit and retain talented scholars on its faculty.

Dr. Brendan McGuire

The Imaret Camii (mosque), once a Byzantine church. Istanbul

Mysterious subterranean ruins: once a Byzantine church or monastic complex; now inhabited by homeless people.

vexed scholars since the nineteenth century,” McGuire says.

The exterior of the Chora Church.

The trip certainly had its adventurous moments. Some of the mosques welcomed him with smiles, while others— with furious Islamic clerics—kicked him out. McGuire rescued an elderly German couple from a third-world slum, was hit by a motorcycle in a densely-packed neighborhood, and rode shotgun with a lost monoglot youth who wanted his map spread out on his steering wheel while he drove. “Nevertheless, while field work can be exhilarating, it cannot bear fruit without real scholarly work in libraries and archives—work that will bring my project to fruition in the form of 2-3 scholarly publications over the next year or so,” he says. Summer 2013


A New Philanth More Than 87% of Senior Class Raises $20K


Determined to do something great for their school, eight students from the Class of 2013 dedicated their time and effort to create an innovative educational program to teach their classmates about the importance of alumni giving. They formed the Student Philanthropy Board with the goal of sending out Christendom’s 35th Anniversary class with more than 87% committed to financially supporting the school in the future. The Board’s broader goal was to create a program that would ensure that every graduate who leaves the College understands both the value of their education and the community that came together to make it possible.

“I have received something here that I can probably never repay. I want to do my part to help Christendom continue giving that to others.” -Emi Funai, ’13

“We were extremely excited to start this studentdriven initiative to teach upcoming alumni about the importance of giving back,” said David Townsend, Philanthropy Board Founding President. David and his fellow Board members believe that alumni who donate send a powerful message to the world about the value of their education and its impact on their lives – their gifts are a continuation of the community that built them up. The Board created a program with the theme, “Educate. Invigorate. Donate.” The program included a series of three events, a marketing program highlighting the impact of donors on the day-to-day lives of Christendom students, and a final Senior Giving pledge drive. Driven by the enthusiastic response of their classmates, the Board surpassed their 87% goal just a few hours before the final event: an appreciation night for the Senior Class donors, hosted by President and Mrs. Timothy O’Donnell at their home. The class was

A dining hall table-top announcement from the board’s marketing program.



The 2013 Student Philanthropy Board members (L-R): Dean Dewey, Colleen Harmon, David Townsend, Emi Funai, Jacob Akers, Sadie Bratt, Rob Hambleton, and Theresa Jalsevac.

hropic Standard encouraged by the fact that if they met their goal, an anonymous donor would donate $5,000 to their cause, which proved to be the powerful motivating force that drove the class to succeed at the final hour. The Board is confident that their program made a difference because so many of their classmates gave multi-year pledges or made ongoing recurring gifts to the College.

I was truly amazed to learn how many people have given of their livelihoods for us. The students needed this program to know that we received this lifechanging education because of those donors­—they have changed our lives. -Theresa Jalsevac, ’13

“These weren’t just token gifts,” said senior Dean Dewey. “They gave sacrificially to show that they loved the College and to make sure that our class left an enduring mark on Christendom.” The Class of 2013’s gifts to the Senior Class Endowment will provide scholarships for the children of alumni who attend Christendom and help to ensure the future stability of the school.

Dean Dewey speaks to his classmates on the importance of Christendom’s donors, and the need for more alumni giving.

Student Philanthropy Board Mission: The Board’s purpose is to promote a spirit of gratitude and generosity among graduates of Christendom, thus ensuring the future of our alma mater. It is the goal of the Board to educate the students of Christendom about college operational costs, donor subsidies, and finally, the impact of their own generosity, which is immeasurable.

Christendom board member Rob Scrivener (’81), and his wife, Anne Marie, share the value of their Christendom education at a “Philanthropy on Tap” event for seniors at Rappahannock Cellars.

Summer 2013


Great Minds

on Campus

“ “

As part of Christendom’s Major Speaker Program, Sean Patrick Lovett,, Vatican Radio’s director of English language programming, delivered a deeply insightful talk on April 15 about some of his many intriguing life experiences working so closely with Pope Francis and his four predecessors over the past 35 years.

a lifetime. It’s a journey that overy—one that takes not a year, but disc of ney jour a is h Fait that te You need to know know what’s down there, can you invi one day at a time. And only when you requires courage and commitment— ing. you talk about evangeliz share your discoveries. Only then can someone else to join you in order to

Dr. Harry Veryser, author and professor of economics at the University of Detroit Mercy, delivered a lecture on campus entitled, “Thomism and Austrian Economics,” on March 18. Sponsored by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute and part of the College’s Faith and Reason Lecture Series, Veryser discussed how the foundational principles of the Austrian school of economics capture St. Thomas Aquinas’ understanding of the nature of man.

When you get two people coming from different view points that come to the same conclu sion, you have to pay att ention to their conclusions... Austrian s start with individual human action. They think the primary actor is the individual person , not the gross nationa product. They agree wit l h St. Thomas on priva te property and on sub sidiarity.

Dr. Ken Grasso, a professor of political science at Texas State University, delivered a lecture entitled, “The Freedom of the Church and the Taming of the State,” to Christendom’s students and faculty on April 29. Speaking as part of the College’s Faith & Reason Lecture Series, Grasso examined the role of Christianity in the development and the future of modern democracy.

“ 14


rly important role Religious institutions have a particula meaning of human as the bearers and mediators of the to challenge the existence. They are uniquely equipped e its claims, tiviz rela moral authority of government, to dard not of its to insist on an accountability to a stan absorb all human own making, to resist its efforts to man’s horizons life in the polis, and to remind it that . transcend the world of space and time

English Professor Dr. Robert Rice Retires


At the end of this spring semester, English Language and Literature Professor Dr. Robert C. Rice entered retirement after 32 years of untiring work as a dedicated teacher and mentor to hundreds of students at Christendom College. “Robert had an unrelenting strive for excellence,” College President Dr. Timothy O’Donnell said. “He expected it on a personal level for his students, but also on an institutional level for Christendom as a whole.” Rice is responsible for the formulation of Christendom’s undergraduate English Language and Literature program. His vision for a comprehensive understanding of the patrimony of western literature is still being carried out today.

In 2007, the English Language and Literature department instituted the Robert C. Rice Award for Excellence, which is awarded to a senior each year who has demonstrated a superior degree of excellence in the major. “We named the award after Robert because no one has influenced what is studied by students in both the core

and major literature curricula more than he,” department chairman Dr. Thomas Stanford said. “It is a tribute not only to each student who receives it, but also to Robert’s educational vision, scholarly excellence, and collegiality.” Besides impacting the lives of his students, Rice served as Vice President of Academic Affairs from 1983 to 2002. Under his leadership the College achieved its first accreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 1987. He also had a hand in drafting the College’s mission and vision statement. (Read the mission statement at “He has been integral to the heart and soul of Christendom College,” English Professor Sharon Hickson said. “Though he may be retiring from active

duty, he will remain very much a part of the life of the College, now and for years to come.” A booklet featuring tributes to Rice from students and faculty on the occasion of his retirement can be viewed at

Summer 2013


ArtsinAction L i b e ra l

Matthew Akers ’03 Major: Philosophy Attorney/Managing Partner McCarthy & Akers, PLC

Christendom alumni are involved in just about every field possible and making an impact on the culture. In the field of law, our alumni are using their liberal arts education to excel as lawyers and paralegal aids. As local leaders in their industry, they are joining in the fight for the culture of life.

My Christendom education has given me so much—specifically, my analytic and editing skills, which I learned from researching and writing papers, and from working in the Political Science Department. Working in a law firm, especially a communications law firm, there are mountains of very technical and detailed documents and procedures that have to be done accurately and quickly, for which both my studies and on-campus employment prepared me well. I am also tremendously grateful for the work ethic I gained at Christendom. For four years, I had to work hard in all my classes—there was no coasting. This drive to work hard has continued after Christendom and has helped me succeed in my career.



The liberal arts cultivate the intellect, our finest tool, for excellence. As students of the liberal arts, we learn to think critically and to articulate our thoughts clearly and cogently through the fine and arduous guidance of our professors. In my first years after graduation, employers and mentors of mine would comment to me about the difference they saw in the way liberal arts students thought and expressed themselves that distinguished us amongst our peers. Now, as an employer, I can see for myself the critical difference in the interns and attorneys who have come through our office having studied the liberal arts—a number of them being Christendom students and graduates. There is a breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding in the liberal arts that is missing in undergraduate specialized learning.

Noreen Daly ’11 Major: Political Science & Economics Paralegal LegalWorks Apostolate, PLLC

Professors & Students Keep Latin Alive at Lunchtime


At mealtimes, St. Lawrence Commons is always humming with conversation. One may overhear lively debate, friendly discussion, and, of course, plenty of joking. But on Tuesdays this past school year, in addition to the usual talk and chatter, it was possible to discern a unique form of conviviality: the Prandium Latinum. The Prandium Latinum, or “Latin Lunch,” is hosted by Professor Marcello Lippiello of the Classical and Early Christian Studies Department. Participants in the Prandium sit at a table together during lunch and speak with one another only in Latin. The students, faculty, and staff at the Prandium get to practice their Latin and learn more of the language, often working together to find the best way to express an idea in good Latin. “The idea was to provide an informal setting for students to speak and to hear Latin outside of the classroom, away from anxieties over grades,” Lippiello explains. “It is, to my mind, very beneficial for students to see Latin being used as a language, and for them to encourage and to help one another in their common goal to master it—a goal that transcends our system of courses and requirements.” Professors from other departments often join the lunch. History Professor Brendan McGuire calls the lunch “a rollicking good time.” “It allows students and faculty to escape together from the dusty world of books and to experience Latin as

a living language, with its own rhythm, beauty, and opportunities for wit and hilarity,” McGuire says. For students at Christendom, Latin is not at all a “dead” language, meant to be heard and studied only in the classroom, but a vibrant language that connects them to the past, enriches their experience of the present, and can help prepare them for eternity.

Students and professors enjoy lunch in Latin.

Kelly Lawyer (’13), who will begin graduate study in Classics at the University of Kentucky this fall, says that Latin does more than just build up a student’s understanding of other languages. “A large amount of the corpus of theological, philosophical, and historical works is preserved in the Latin language,” she says. “And, therefore, it holds the key to unlocking some of the best and most influential works of all time.”

Notewor thy Alumna Sister Miriam Esther (Lorraine Podlinsek, ’05) and members of her order, the Benedictine Sisters of Mary, have released another album, which has soared to the top of Billboards classical music chart.

Justin Stover (’05), was awarded a post-doctoral research fellowship at All Souls College of Oxford University. Stover had previously held a teaching fellowship at Harvard College’s Department of the Classics. Oxford, England

Summer 2013


By Maria Cintorino (’14)

Reflecting on Rome

Looking Back on a Semester in the Eternal City


As all of us Juniors prepare to return home from what most of us agree to be the best semester we have ever had, I would like to share some of the many wonderful memories and blessings from our semester in bella Roma. The papal conclave was certainly a highlight for us all. Being here in the heart of the Church for Pope Benedict’s last days, experiencing the sede vacante, the conclave, and the announcement of Pope Francis’ election was a great blessing and a truly beautiful experience—one we will treasure the rest of our lives. Here in Rome, we intimately experienced the universality of the Church—especially when we anxiously waited to hear the name of our new Pope with thousands of people in St. Peter’s Square. The sights, sounds, and emotions during that time will always be a part of us and they will not be forgotten. We students have been able to get to know Papa Francesco in Rome—gaining great insight into who he is and his method of doing things. We were able to see him for the last time at a Wednesday audience, where he gave a beautiful reflection on Saint Joseph and Mary. Another highlight of this semester was our pilgrimage



week—particularly the three days we spent in Assisi. Assisi is definitely one of my favorite places outside of Rome. It was so charming to see the love the Italians have for St. Francis in the Umbrian town and how that love extends throughout the country. (There seems to be something pertaining to St. Francis in almost every church in Italy.) If you ever find yourself in Assisi, I highly recommend going to St. Francis’ hermitage on Monte Subasio just outside the town—the peace and beauty found there are of another world. Over these past three months, we have learned Rome inside and out. If you find yourself there, here are some random insights: In crowds, the concept of non spingere, which means “do not push,” does not exist, although you can hear people shouting that phrase all the time. After visiting multiple churches, it is safe to say that you can find a saint’s body—or bones—in almost every

church, and that you can find the image of the Holy Spirit in almost every single dome in Rome—at least 99% of the time. If you chase a bus, there is a good chance that you will catch it—all you need to do is run fast enough. Be sure to look both ways before running headlong into traffic though, especially if it is a four-lane street. Maps are particularly helpful in Rome. Don’t rely on the bus to give you an accurate perspective of where things are. Places are closer than they appear, and maps are just plain awesome. The word “strike” is an interesting term here. I am still debating if a planned, monthly, or half-day strike actually constitutes a strike. Either way it does end up being inconvenient when you end up walking to the train station to leave for a free weekend—but it is a great way to see the city!

Although you can meet characters of all sorts here, I have met some of the nicest people ever. Angels do come in all shapes and sizes. Of course, we did learn a lot about each other these past few months. For instance, we learned that some of us have different methods for making a pot of coffee, have a knack for understanding and speaking Italian, have culinary skills, have a great ability to get lost in Rome, and have late-night cravings for donuts or kebabs. Even though we joke around about the differences in culture, there is something to be said about the Italian culture. It taught us a lot about ourselves and others and widened our perspective on life.

The most wonderful part of our time here, though, was just living and experiencing the Catholic Faith, rich and alive, in the heart of the Church—linking antiquity to the present. Rome truly is the heart of the Church, the city of Faith, where every ancient, pagan monument is a symbol of the triumph of the martyrs and of the Church. Saint Peter’s Basilica itself is such a powerful witness of what the Church is and her role in salvation history. Rome is one of those things that you simply need to experience. Though her significance is universal to Catholics, it is something

different for each one of us. It is a personal journey. This article originally appeared in the “Rome Report” of The Chronicler, a weekly online publication of the Admissions Office. Subscribe to it at In their Junior year, students are given the opportunity to spend a semester in Rome. They live and study just outside the Vatican. For more information visit

Summer 2013


Welcomed into Prestigious Programs Graduate School Alumni Continue Their Education


Several graduates of Christendom’s Graduate School have recently been accepted into prestigious programs for doctoral and other advanced studies. This fall, Christendom will have alumni studying at Providence College, University of London, University of St. Mary of the Lake, and Ave Maria University, where Christendom alumni make up over 10% of the doctoral program. Andrew Olson earned his BA in linguistics at Yale University before attending the Christendom Graduate School. A Virginia resident, he attended the grad school year-round, primarily at the Alexandria campus, and wrote an MA thesis on “The Church as the Mystical Body of Christ.” He graduated from Christendom in 2012 and has just completed his first year in the doctoral program at Ave Maria University, where he is continuing to pursue his interest in ecclesiology.

Ryan Brady came to the Graduate School after several years of monastic life in a contemplative Maronite monastery, where he acquired an impressive background in philosophy and theology under the tutelage of Christendom alumnus Fr. Robert Nortz, MMA (’85). At the Christendom Graduate School, Brady combined online courses with attendance at the residential Summer Program at the Front Royal campus. He is scheduled to graduate this summer and will begin his doctoral studies at Ave Maria University in the fall, where he plans to focus on systematic theology and Thomistic studies. 20


Some of Christendom’s MA graduates are earning second master’s degrees in different fields or in more specialized areas of theology. A 2012 graduate, Daniel Clough, is starting an MA degree in Biblical Studies at Providence College this summer. Clough attended several Summer Programs and also took online courses, after earning his undergraduate degree in linguistics. He is currently writing a book entitled, Genesis According to the Saints, in which the writings of many of the saints are compiled into a commentary on the first three chapters of Genesis.

A 2012 graduate, Roland Millare, is studying for a Licentiate in Sacred Theology at the Liturgical Institute of the University of St. Mary of the Lake (Mundelein Seminary). Millare did his undergraduate work at Franciscan University and is the chairman of the theology department at Pope John XXIII High School in Katy, Texas. He is the editor of the Truth and Charity Forum (, an online publication of Human Life International, and he is on the board of advisors for the Pope John Paul II Forum ( Millare has recently published an article in Logos on the liturgical and theological aesthetics of Pope Benedict XVI, and has two other articles accepted for publication in scholarly journals. He was a summer student at Christendom, having attended the Summer Program for four years.

Adam Richard, set to graduate this summer, will be studying for an MA in medieval history at the King’s College, University of London, a top university in the UK, which is especially renowned for its medieval history department. King’s College told Richard that they consider him “extremely qualified” because of his theological studies at Christendom. His MA thesis at Christendom is on the “Bernard of Clairvaux’s Theology of Angels.”

Innovative Methods & Technology The Christendom Graduate School has initiated two new teaching formats for its courses: a teamtaught course and a live, real-time online course using web conferencing technology. The team-taught course is Apologetics, offered this summer at the Alexandria campus. Six faculty members are cooperating to deliver 30, 55-minute lectures on various themes. Since apologetics is a subject that covers many different aspects of theology, the course is enhanced by having several professors teach parts in which they specialize, that way, the student gets an expert professor for each topic. The Graduate School will offer its first live, real-time online course this fall, on the Acts of the Apostles. Dr. Sebastian Carnazzo will teach the course live from a studio in California, and students will log on at a set time each week from anywhere in the world for the interactive experience. Thus far, all the online offerings of the grad school have been asynchronous, using prerecorded videos, which the student may access at any time. While that is convenient for distance students who appreciate the flexibility, others want more immediate contact with the professor, the ability to ask and to answer questions during the class time, and a chance to interact with other students. Register for classes at

Summer 2013


Students and Professor Represent Christendom at Regional ISI Conference Christendom College Political Science & Economics Professor, P. Bracy Bersnak, delivers a talk to students on “The American Political Order According to Russell Kirk.”


On March 2, six Christendom College students attended a regional conference hosted by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) at the University of Virginia. Students from UVA, Regent University, Patrick Henry College, Christopher Newport University, and other Virginia colleges joined the Christendom students for the conference, which focused on Russell Kirk’s book, The American Cause. At the conference, Political Science & Economics Professor Bracy Bersnak delivered a talk, entitled “The American Political Order according to Russell Kirk.” Bersnak also led two seminar discussions on the book with students. Dr. R.J. Snell from Eastern University and Dr. Richard Brake from ISI also delivered lectures.



Christendom student Andrew Clark (’14) found the conference fascinating. “It was a truly great experience to come together with people who come from wildly different backgrounds and yet all have a common ground—conservative thought,” he said. “Our students represented the College very well,” Bersnak said. “Their insights during the seminar discussions really made them stand out in the crowd. It’s a testimony to our incredible undergraduate education.” ISI sponsors Christendom’s student club, the Cincinatus League, an organization that seeks to foster discussion of conservative political philosophy on campus. The League helps students apply the philosophical foundation they have received at Christendom to problems in contemporary education and politics. ISI ranks Christendom College as one of the top-ten colleges in the nation. For more rankings and endorsements visit

A dva n c e m e n t O f f i c e N o t e s C is ka n ik Fr o m th e D es k o f Jo h n

College hosted niversary Gala celebration, the An th 35 r ou to or pri n oo During the aftern principal donor of its President’s Council, the ers mb me the nk tha to ion an early recept d in a particular way for . Members were acknowledge om end rist Ch at iety soc n ts on the recognitio ized for the impact of their gif ogn rec and n ssio mi e’s lleg their support of the Co school and its students. pired and d graduates into the world ins sen to is ion cat edu om end The goal of a Christ a light in the to be the salt of the earth and ate nd ma s rd’ Lo r Ou low fol prepared to rmon and Mark Rohlena gram, graduates Colleen Ha pro l ma for the of t par As . lives and darkness ristendom education in their Ch ir the of t pac im the of each spoke eloquently work. offers us the tools cation saying, “Christendom edu her of ue val the bed cri Colleen (’13) des s to the world, with develop our own contribution to – m the use and e tak to – if we choose th of faith.” ctive, informed by the streng spe per ic list rea and ed cat an edu al Colorado, addressed Catholics Charities of Centr of O CE and ent sid Pre 0) om education. Mark (’0 y of the value of his Christend on tim tes al son per a ng eri Council members off actively and ndom] graduates are called to ste hri “[C i, mn alu ow fell He encouraged his ture that we see gaining the withering and stagnant cul to ure ult r-c nte cou a se po joyfully pro strength all around us.” rk, for your vibrant witness! Thank you, Colleen and Ma

Greetings from Naples, Florida !

Recently, Philanthropy Offi cer Tim Flagg visited Patri ck Adams at his winter ho Florida. A native New Yo me in Naples, rker and a self-professed “su ffering Mets fan,” Adams faithful member of the Ch has been a ristendom family since 20 09. “Education is so importa nt to a country and a civiliz ation,” Adams says. “I lik Christendom and still find e what I see in it hard to imagine that I did n’t hear about it before!” Adams grew up in a Catho lic family in Brooklyn, N. Y., where he learned to lov Mass. He wants to pass tha e the t on to future generations. “I want students to learn and try to comprehend the incredible beauty and powe Mass. That is my persona r of the l mission,” he says. He say s that he has found a home in Christendom College. for his zeal Adams is also interested in Christendom’s new Irelan d program, the St. Colum where students from the cille Institute, U.S. and Ireland can study Catholic theology, history, together. He is also impre and literature ssed that Christendom ha s produced 67 priests, 50 brothers, and three deaco sis ter s, two ns, and also has 22 men cu rrently in the seminary. Th community is truly blesse e College d by his generosity and en thusiasm for Christendom’ s mission.

Summer 2013



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Spring Christendom




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1. Natives and an Irishman at the annual Mystery Dinner Theater / 2. Swingin’ at the Graduation Dance / 3. Professional Vocalist Heather Roberts performs for students / 4. Cherry Blossoms in DC / 5. Palm Sunday / 6. The Admissions Office performs at Coffee House / 7. One of the cardboard boats from Dorm Wars Regatta / 8. Freshman Nate Harrington slides safely to third / 9. Charging against George Mason Instaurare 24University to an undefeated season / 10. Crusader Rugby / 11. Crusader Baseball Team (with their Spring Formal Dates)



Omnia in Christo

Adam Schwartz, Ph.D.

Signs of Contradiction


In 1989, then-Christendom professor Gregory Wolfe uttered a cri de coeur bemoaning academic neglect of the modern “Catholic Intellectual Renaissance.” He lamented that the “current establishment” treated thinkers like G. K. Chesterton, Christopher Dawson, and Evelyn Waugh as representatives of “an order that has largely been left behind in our progress toward a more enlightened dispensation;” yet Wolfe detected signs of hope that these authors were being “discovered and then hoarded as treasures by a small segment of the younger generation.” In the ensuing two decades, that segment has grown larger, as a rising generation of critics and historians have made the Catholic literary revival a burgeoning scholarly field. Richard Griffiths’ synthetic study, The Pen and the Cross: Catholicism and English Literature, 1850-2000, is the latest contribution to it, but it comes from a member of that prior generation and displays many of their proclivities that Wolfe decried. Although The Pen and the Cross provides some insight into British Catholic imaginative writing and its historical context, then, its sympathies for modernist and progressive theology preclude it from appreciating what made the Catholic renascence distinctive. Griffiths focuses on how Roman Catholicism shaped the intellectual and imaginative vision of writers and texts, principally in narrative prose and poetry, with particular concentration on how this religion became the animating spirit of works by recognized notables such as Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene, and David Jones. He shows that, at its best, modern Catholic literature imparted profound religious insights without sacrificing aesthetic integrity or sensitivity to the complexity of human motivation, especially through a discerning reading of Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited. Griffiths further demonstrates a keen grasp of the modern British Catholic milieu and significant shifts within it. He delineates cogently the circumstances that had made British Catholics a “rejected minority” by the nineteenth century, as well as the growing recovery of their fortunes during that century and the subsequent one. By the early and mid twentieth century, then, the predominant theme of Catholic writing had thus become the conflict between Roman Catholicism and what R. H. Benson called “dogmatic secularism.”This cohesive paradigm helped inspire some of the revival’s landmarks, such as Waugh’s Sword of Honor, Greene’s Brighton Rock, and Jones’ poetry. In the postwar era, though, a more variegated fiction and verse emerged, especially after the Second Vatican Council, as social assimilation and ideological accommodation fostered the fracturing of a hitherto homogeneous Catholic subculture, and a corresponding greater willingness to challenge the Church’s authority and to adapt to prevalent post-Christian presuppositions. Griffiths’ interpretation of this literary history, however, is distorted by religious parti pris. His rendition of the early twentieth century modernist controversy, for instance, is quite tendentious, as proponents of modernism are cast as those with “a desire for open debate” while

Pius X presides over a “repressive regime” engaged in “persecution.” Griffiths compounds this bias by depicting the modernist dispute as the prelude to another aggiornamento that was likewise stifled by repressive reactionaries: “Only in the period after the Second World War did some English Catholic writers begin to exhibit that freedom in thought that was to infuse, for a short time, the Church itself.…How grievously they were to be disappointed!”This reliance on clichés is a poor substitute for rounded evaluation of weighty episodes in Church history. Above all, though, Griffiths’ analysis largely elides the pointed question posed by one of his heroes, novelist David Lodge: how far can you go? How far can you go in assimilating to and accommodating modernity before Catholics relinquish the qualities that give them a distinctive intellectual and imaginative identity? J. C. Whitehouse and others have suggested piquantly that it was exactly an ethos of otherness that enabled British Catholic literature to thrive in the century after 1850, and that the loss of a singular vision of Catholic difference has made postwar and postconciliar Catholic writing a less profound cultural presence, thereby helping to explain the lack of successors to the earlier era’s luminaries. Even Griffiths acknowledges this absence and muses that perhaps the Catholic literary revival “relied more heavily than one might suppose on a specific religious climate, and the new climate fits it less.” Although this possibility prompts Griffiths to repine, it can also encourage the recovery of orthodoxy initiated by John Paul II and Benedict XVI.This renewal has already spurred the ongoing ressourcement of modern Catholic authors, and it may yet spark further scholarly and artistic ventures that imitate their ability to read fresh signs of the time with the lenses of a faith that is at once ever-new and ever-ancient. Wolfe concluded wisely in his seminal essay that, despite their disparagement by the fashionable clerisy, “the thinkers who made up the Catholic Renaissance will prove to be the most authentically modern and original of all.” Writers like Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene, and David Jones have a lasting claim on the attention of serious minds because they found a credible and creative way of communicating countercultural convictions. Even as they embraced (and pioneered) prevailing literary forms, they imbued them with a unique vitality by articulating what they deemed permanent, if presently unpopular, truths.Their legacy perdures precisely because the signs of the cross they penned were signs of contradiction. Adam Schwartz is an associate professor of history and the department chairman, and is the author of The Third Spring: G. K. Chesterton, Graham Greene, Christopher Dawson, and David Jones (The Catholic University of America Press, 2005). A longer version of this essay appeared in The University Bookman Spring 2012 (17 June 2012). He holds a Ph.D. from Northwestern University. Summer 2013


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