Instaurare The C hristendom College M agazine
R IN FA I T H
B O L D LY
FORW G N A
Wi n ter 2 0 1 7
Letters to Christendom | Reflections by Founding Faculty Member Raymund Oâ€™Herron Fr. Seamus Oâ€™Kielty: A Life of Service | Students from the UK Find Home at Christendom
VOLUME 25 | NUMBER 3 | WINTER 2017 Published three times yearly by the Christendom College Marketing Office. Executive Editor: Tom McFadden Managing Editor & Design/Layout: Niall O’Donnell Photos: Zachary Smith, Niall O’Donnell, Sarah Ziegler, Benjamin Marsh, Christiana Fedoryka Contributors: Zachary Smith, Raymund P. O’Herron, Niall O’Donnell, Mary Storey Christendom College 134 Christendom Drive, Front Royal, VA 22630 800.877.5456 | christendom.edu Copyright © 2018. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided the following credit line is used: “Reprinted by permission from INSTAURARE, the official magazine of Christendom College (christendom.edu).” SUBSCRIPTION FREE UPON REQUEST. 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 sex, race, color, age, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, marital status, pregnancy or veteran status, or any other status protected by applicable law.
CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
ADVISORS TO THE BOARD
Donna Fitzpatrick Bethell, Chair Douglas Dewey, Vice Chair John Cecconi, Treasurer Robert Scrivener ’81, Secretary Martin Boles Eugene D’Agostino Richard Esposito Richard R. Hough III Timothy O’Donnell, ex ofﬁcio Stephen O’Keefe ’93 Vincenzo La Ruffa Mark Swartzberg Thomas West Luanne Zurlo
Mary Ellen Bork Bernadette Casey-Smith Robert Crnkovich Philip Crotty John DeMatteo Robert P. George Daniel Gorman Joan Janaro Katherine McAvoy Rev. C. John McCloskey III John McNeice Joseph Melancon Rev. Robert Morey Robert Mylod Hon. James Nicholson Mary Beth Riordan Rev. George W. Rutler Mark Ryland Rev. William Saunders Hon. Rick Santorum Owen Smith Marjorie Teetor David Vicinanzo George Weigel Thomas Young Eugene Zurlo
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On August 20, the college community processed to the new St. Clare women’s residence hall, where Bishop Michael Burbidge of the Diocese of Arlington blessed the new building. The residence hall, which ofﬁcially opened for occupancy for the fall 2017 semester, is the ﬁrst new residence hall built on campus since 2000.
Inside This Issue 20
Reﬂections by a Founder Founding faculty member Raymund O’Herron shares reflections 40 years after the founding of Christendom College.
Life of Service The amazing story of college chaplain Fr. Seamus O’Kielty and how he is inspiring alumni.
Letters to Christendom Letters from our bishop, students, faculty, and alumni take a deep look into what Christendom College has meant to the people that it impacts.
From the President
A Call to Greatness: Campaign Update
New Rose Window: Illuminated with the Liberal Arts
Chapel Building Blocks
Inspired by St. Anne
A Christendom Timeline
Land O’ Lakes After 50 Years
Students from the UK Find Home at Christendom
Crusaders Winning Season
News in Brief
Classmates: Alumni News
Pagan Temples and Divine Vengeance
A Time of Deep Renewal FROM THE DESK OF PRESIDENT DR. TIMOTHY O’DONNELL As we celebrate our 40th anniversary this year, we seize this moment as a time of deep renewal, a time of recommitment to our common mission and vision of our Christendom educational apostolate. The only rightful purpose of education is to learn the truth, and to live by it. Central to all authentic Catholic education is to learn and live by the truth revealed by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Who is “the way, the truth, and the life.” Here at Christendom that means: 1. We have an institutional commitment of faculty and administration together to the Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church in our spiritual, moral, and intellectual life. 2. A deep and abiding commitment to a liberal arts education devoted to the discovery and appropriation of the true, the good, and the beautiful. 3. A strong core curriculum in which Catholic theology and Thomistic philosophy hold a central place and exercise a sapiential role for the whole curriculum so that all the disciplines are formed and illuminated by Catholic truth. 4. The development and maintenance of a Catholic spiritual life including daily sacramental practice and a sound moral climate, with abundant opportunities for liturgical and personal prayer. 5. Development and maintenance of a Catholic social and cultural life with courtesy and good morals. This includes a high liturgical life with musica sacra and collegiate activities involving the fine arts: music, art, and theater.
“The only rightful purpose of education is to learn the truth, and to live by it.”
6. Commitment to an education on a humane scale in our academic community in which faculty mentors and students may be personally known to each other. We all have a great opportunity to immerse ourselves in our common mission and to consecrate our intellects and wills to Christ, in the midst of our difficulties, trials, wounds, disappointments, and broken relationships. Remember, there is always a red candle ﬂickering in the stillness in the Sanctuary. That candle reminds us all that He is there to assist us, to strengthen us and to invite us with gentleness and meekness with the words: “Son, give me thy heart.” He beckons us to his side as He reveals to us His wounds received for you and me in His hands and feet and open pierced heart. As a noble warrior on the field of battle, He beckons you and all of us to stand with Him on the field of battle—and dare to be great! We can do that “through Him, with Him and in Him.” Sincerely in the Heart of the Infant King,
A Call to Greatness |
A Call to Greatness THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
U P D A T E
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
The college is boldly moving forward in faith with a $40 million comprehensive campaign.
$13.5 Million CHRIST THE KING PROJECT
$13.5 Million ENDOWMENT FUND
$13 Million ANNUAL FUND
Campaign Progress $ 3 5 ,1 7 4 ,8 8 7 o f $ 4 0 M I L L I O N rais e d 88%
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
by the liberal ar ts
A Call to Greatness |
Rose Window to Pay Tribute to College’s Authentic Catholic Liberal Arts Education Upon entering the new Christ the King
Chapel, one of the most striking details will be directly behind you, illuminating the Chapel in a beautiful array of colors: the rose window. The window will honor Our Lady Seat of Wisdom, nested in the center and surrounded by angelic personifications of the seven traditional liberal arts. The beautiful imagery’s placement will be intentional, showing the marriage between the Catholic Faith and Christendom’s education. The college’s dedication to the liberal arts is at the core of its apostolate as it seeks to set men truly free. As the college’s vision statement declares: From its beginning, Christendom College has been committed to Catholic liberal education, but few in our time understand what liberal education is. An explanation must begin with freedom: a liberal education is the education of a free man. It prepares man for true freedom and fosters that freedom within him. The most obvious characteristic of the free man is that he is not a slave, that he is able to choose for himself, but the modern mind stops here. It understands freedom only as a lack of repression. But true freedom is not just a lack, it is something positive, an ability to direct one’s actions rationally. No one can direct himself rationally without a goal, without understanding the true purpose of human existence, the achievement of the good. The truly free man, then, lives a good life; he pursues what is truly good, both for himself and for society. Blessed John Henry Newman saw this need centuries ago, and fought to change the direction of the university system through his own writings. In his book, the Idea of a University,
Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Detail from the Rose Window
Newman observed that a student, through a liberal arts education, attains an intellectual prowess by which he can take up any career and thrive with competence, grace, versatility, and success. Unlike the non-liberally trained, the liberal arts student becomes equipped for a life of leadership and excellence. By marrying a liberal arts education with the Catholic Faith, a student is even more equipped, as he is illuminated by the Light of Reason and the teachings of Christ and His Church — not too dissimilar from how light from the rose window will illuminate the new chapel. Christendom stands as one of the last schools of higher education to embrace this “idea of a university.” In the classroom, students wrestle with the most important questions known to man, from “who is God?” to the hows and whys of creation itself. They read the greatest works of Western Civilization, and study the events and figures that shaped and molded the world into its present form. Most of all, they learn and discuss all these things with a committed faculty, who is ready and
A Note from the Designer Joseph Beyer of Beyer Studio, Philadelphia
willing to engage students along their path to success, just as Newman envisioned. Where do these students end up as a result? In every career field imaginable. Law, journalism, medicine, education, politics — all of these fields are occupied by graduates of Christendom. Christendom’s founder, Dr. Warren H. Carroll, founded the school for this very purpose: to form lay people who would go out into the world and impact every field for the better. With their education in hand, alumni are accomplishing that very ideal daily. The Catholic liberal arts is the ideal form of education, both according to Newman and to Pope Saint John Paul II as well, laid out in his landmark encyclical Ex Corde Ecclesiae. Christendom follows in the tradition of both, and the rose window aims to show this in a physical manner, which will awe and inspire for years to come.
For 40 years, the Christendom liberal arts
education has formed and changed lives for the better. With the help of generous benefactors, like Joseph and Katherine Triolo of Illinois, that vision will continue on into the future. For the Triolos, their hope is that the new Christ the King Chapel will help inspire more students to attend and more benefactors to generously give. The rose window, which symbolizes the marriage between the Faith and the liberal arts, is their gift towards making the college’s future possible. The Triolos first discovered Christendom through an advertisement, which declared the college’s freedom from federal aid. Inspired by the ad and the college’s vibrant Catholicism, the Triolos decided to contribute to the construction of the new Christ the King Chapel. Why the Rose Window in particular? Because they see a Christendom education as essential to the future of today’s youth. “I believe a liberal arts education provides students with a wellrounded education, one that allows the students more choices, not only in the classroom but in life as well,” says Joseph. Joseph is a World War II Navy veteran with an eighteen-year career that spanned service on 14 ships. He joined the Navy in 1937 at age 17, and was present at the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, and he remembers seeing the Japanese pilots in the cockpits of their low-flying planes. When the U.S. entered World War II, his ship, the Tangier, was ordered to set up bases for patrol planes in Fiji, Noumea, and New Hebrides; while he was there, the Battle of the Coral Sea took place and the Tangier aided in rescuing survivors of the battle. Joseph was also stationed in the Solomon Islands and Okinawa, Japan, where he experienced Kamikaze attacks and the aftermath of the bombing of Nagasaki. Joseph continued to serve in the Navy until after the Korean War. After leaving the Navy, he finished his education and became a teacher for thirty years at North Chicago High School, and later a counselor. Joseph and Katherine’s gift to Christendom carries forward this proud tradition of changing young lives.
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
The Virgin is seated on a marble throne, with the Christ Child (as a toddler) on her lap. The scene is a garden, in fact, the Garden, and arching over the ﬁgures is the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The foliage here is rich olives and golds. Apples are distributed throughout, providing a color contrast of red for the greens. An owl, the ancient symbol of wisdom, sits on the arm of the throne. In the owl's grasp is the serpent. To the Virgin's right is a lamp, also a symbol of enlightenment. This lamp is sculpted in the form of the Wise Virgins from the New Testament parable. A scroll is spread across the Virgin’s knees as she instructs her Son. On the scroll will be the text, "Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands" (Psalm 119).
A Call to Greatness |
TRADITION OF CHANGING YOUNG LIVES
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
A Call to Greatness |
GIFT: STATION OF THE CROSS
GIFT: STATUE OF OUR LADY IN OUR LADY’S CHAPEL
“Having experienced grades one through 12 in Catholic schools, I understand the importance of religious education. Given the situation in both our country and the world, I feel that proper education in the Faith is even now more important. I believe that Christendom provides this most needed education. I spent the ﬁrst 20 years of my life in a Church that was so beautiful, no matter which direction you looked. It had painted pictures on the walls and ceiling, all windows were beautiful stained glass, statues everywhere...they created an aura of feeling close to God. You knew you were in Church, and you knew why you were there. I feel that the Christ the King Chapel will provide that wonderful aura for the students and anyone attending.”
“As the ﬁrst Catholic Church in the Commonwealth of Virginia, Saint Mary’s in Old Town Alexandria is proud to support Christendom College. This unique institution is a bright light of the new evangelization and seeks to educate the whole person in an atmosphere imbued with the true faith in its fullness. I ﬁnd Christendom at the intersection of faith and reason, of culture and lived witness to Christ, and the magisterium of the Church. The Eucharistic Presence is the heart of the campus, and the chapel should rightfully proclaim the beauty and majesty of the Lord.”
Deacon John and Barbara Sadowski Chase City, Virginia
Fr. Edward Hathaway Alexandria, Virginia
GIFT: CLERESTORY WINDOW
“It has been an honor and a privilege to be part of the Christendom College family since John joined the board in 2009 . . . this window will be a lasting gift to the beautiful new chapel, and will inspire many to devotion to St. Anne, to her daughter, Mary, and most of all to her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
“We see in Christendom a remarkable and awesome vision of the future of the Church—and we want to be a part of that as much as we can. The Chapel will be a beautiful expression of the faith and worship we have experienced at Christendom.” −
John and Nancy Cecconi San Francisco, California
Dave and Nancy Kennedy Falls Church, Virginia
Every gift—no matter the size—brings the new Christ the King Chapel closer to c o m p l e t i o n . Fr o m restoring windows to sponsoring new statues, the beauty and grandeur of the project and each benefactor’s love for the Church are inspiring the community to build up this House of God.
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
CHAPEL BUILDING BLOCKS
A Call to Greatness |
GIFT: STAINED-GLASS NAVE WINDOW
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
FROM BOLIVIA TO CHRISTENDOM Chaplain’s Life of Service Inspires Alumni
A Call to Greatness |
The jungles of Bolivia. The green hills
of Scotland. The marketplaces of Morocco. The rolling waves of the Atlantic. These sound like locations for the next Indiana Jones movie, not places visited during a real person’s lifetime. But it’s true: each of these places has been touched by the presence of Fr. Seamus O’Kielty. Today, Christendom’s long-serving Irish priest can be found still offering Mass, still distributing Communion, and still hearing confessions at the college’s Christ the King Chapel, even at the age of 87. His wry wit still emanates from the pulpit during his homilies, as does his intense love for the Holy Eucharist during the Consecration, just as it has for the past 15 years that he has served at the college. For many, this is all they know of Fr. O’Kielty. Stories are passed around now and again, of him serving as chaplain to the Bolivian army when “Che” Guevara was causing havoc, or of him being awarded the Meritorious Service Medal by the Navy. These are not just stories, however — they’re all true, and make his life, which he has now devoted completely to the students, faculty, and staff of Christendom, that much more extraordinary. Born in County Mayo, Ireland (near to where Christendom now hosts its annual St. Columcille Institute summer program), Fr. O’Kielty was the 8th of ten children. At a young age, he knew he wanted to become a priest, and so he went about studying in seminaries all across Europe, from England to Belgium to Germany and finally to Scotland. He was ordained a priest (a White Father Missionary) in 1954, a moment that marked the real start of his great journey. For the next 11 years, Fr. O’Kielty served not in his native Ireland but instead in Tanganyika as a missionary, before it became the United Republic of Tanzania in 1964. Fr. O’Kielty was a powerful force in the region, thanks to his passion and his
charisma — facets of his personality that still impact souls to this day. Following Tanganyika’s unification in 1964, Fr. O’Kielty made his first stop in the United States, where he taught high school in the Diocese of Paterson, New Jersey. Within a year, he was back in a foreign country as a missionary, this time in war-torn Bolivia. He served in the missions there, before becoming temporary chaplain to the Bolivian army when “Che” Guevara was attempting to establish an insurgency. While in this role, Fr. O’Kielty also created a catechetical program — despite being forbidden to by the government — to evangelize the Aymara Indians. In the end, he trained more than 100 catechists before leaving the country, even at the risk of his own life. When he had been in America prior to Bolivia, Fr. O’Kielty fell in love with teaching, and chose to continue pursuing it upon returning to the States. He attended Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, New Jersey, where he earned a master’s in education and became certified by the state as an accredited teacher of German, French, and Spanish. He earned a master’s in linguistics at New York University as well, and became a doctoral candidate while there. In 1974, he returned to Tanganyika, now Burundi, to become a parish pastor, taking on a role left abandoned after the massacre of Hutu priests in the region. The bravery of Fr. O’Kielty cannot be overstated here — while other priests were being killed, he willingly entered the region for the sake of souls, bringing them the Body and Blood of Christ in dangerous times. Five years later, Fr. O’Kielty found himself as a Navy chaplain, serving sailors in Libya, Lebanon, Turkey, Morocco, and near Cuba. He qualified as an expert marksman with a pistol and M16, and engaged in Jungle Fighting Training. For all of his service, Fr. O’Kielty was awarded Sea Service Deployment
A Call to Greatness | THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
H o n or ing Fr. O’K ie lt y Motivated by the tremendous impact Fr. O’Kielty has had on their lives, a group of alumni has come together to start a fund to dedicate the sacristy in the new Christ the King Chapel in honor of Father O’Kielty. The alumni are looking to raise another $100,000 for the effort by next April. To make a gift to this special fund, please contact David Costanzo at email@example.com or 703.869.1169.
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
medals, the Navy Achievement Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal, all before retiring from the Navy in 1995. An illustrious career, for an increasingly illustrious priest. With his duty done, Fr. O’Kielty returned to education, serving as an adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickenson University’s School of Education before returning to the Paterson Diocese as an assistant priest at various parishes. In 2002, Fr. O’Kielty made his final stop, becoming an assistant chaplain at Christendom. In 2004, he took on the role of head chaplain, holding that role for a number of years before becoming an assisting priest to the present day. His love of Christendom, particularly of its students, has changed thousands of lives during his fifteen years. Imagining Christendom without the impact of Fr. O’Kielty is like imagining Christendom without the impact of professor (and founding faculty member) Raymund O’Herron or registrar Walter Janaro — the institution would not be the same otherwise. For alumni, the man’s force in their lives inspired them to be better Catholics, both in and outside of the Chapel, an inspiration that carries on through the present day. “Fr. O’Kielty has been an immense blessing to Christendom for over 15 years,” says Ken Furlong ’07. “His wit, wisdom, perseverance, and dedication to the spiritual well-being of the
community are inspiring. His love of the students is matched only by their love of him. [My wife] Alaina and I are so happy that it was he who officiated our betrothal, witnessed our marriage, and baptized our children. We, like countless others, will always be grateful that Fr. O’Kielty is part of Christendom.” Sam Phillips ’08 who is currently Christendom’s director of admissions, refers to Fr. O’Kielty as one of the most treasured and beloved members of the Christendom community. “He has achieved a status that is practically legendary here on campus and among all alumni,” Phillips says. “I consider it one of my greatest privileges and fondest memories during my time as a student at Christendom to have assisted Fr. O’Kielty at the Mass as an altar server. Father’s sharp Irish wit was unstoppable and irrepressible. But what was and continues to be truly remarkable is his deep love of the Mass and of Our Lord in the Eucharist, which is so apparent whenever he celebrates Mass. Even when at times he has experienced temporary physical setbacks, his piety and reverence on the altar never ceased. Fr. O’Kielty’s deep love of Our Lord and the Faith continue to be a true inspiration to the entire Christendom community, and on a personal level he is a great example to my own children and family.” Ireland. Burundi. Bolivia. Christendom. Each place touched by Fr. O’Kielty. Each place, never the same again because of his love for people, for education, and for Christ.
A Call to Greatness |
His wit, wisdom, perseverance, and dedication to the spiritual well-being of the community are inspiring.
One Million Dollar Gift An anonymous benefactor recently made a $1 million gift to Christendom College, a generous gift that will help fund the construction of the college’s new Christ the King Chapel. That this gift was made anonymously shows the deep faithfulness and spirit of generosity that so often leaves the college humbled when working with its supporters. Thanks to their generosity and the hard work of the college’s advancement team and the entire college community, Christendom is much closer to achieving its goals for the Campaign. The benefactor made this donation specifically to help fund the chapel’s choir loft, which will serve as a focal point for the college’s sacred music program and will also house a brand new custom-built pipe organ.
A Call to Greatness |
THE CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE
A Couple’s Gift of Inspiration The new Christ the King Chapel will feature eight new saint-themed stained-glass windows, which will be crafted by the Beyer Studio in Philadelphia. Generous members of the community have sponsored most of these new windows, dedicating them to Pope St. John Paul II, St. Teresa of Calcutta, and other saints. Christendom Board member John Cecconi and his wife, Nancy, have recently stepped forward to dedicate a new window to St. Anne. The Cecconis were inspired by a longtime devotion to St. Anne. Many great saints and Church fathers, like St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas, were devoted to St. Anne because they saw in her a great example of faith and perseverance as she suffered with her daughter and was as an intercessor for many causes. “In our life, we prayed for a wonderful spouse for our Anne Marie and indeed, as a special gift, she was married to James Derek, on July 25, 2015, the feast of St. James—brother of John and one of the 'Sons of thunder'—and the eve of the feast of St. Anne,” says Nancy. The Cecconis chose a painting by 18th Century artist Francesco Mancini to be the source of inspiration for the window. “I love the image of St. Anne instructing Mary and think it is fitting for the college, which obviously esteems both the education of women and motherhood,” Nancy says. “I like this particular image of Mary as a child looking toward heaven, with the angels overhead, with the book in St. Anne's lap and St. Joachim present, looking over her shoulder, as a father does as he provides and protects for his family—especially his wife and daughters.” The artisans at the Beyer Studio of Philadelphia will use the image to inspire their initial sketching and framing of the
A Francesco Mancini painting will be the inspiration for a window dedicated to St. Anne in the new Christ the King Chapel.
window. The Cecconis are thrilled to be a part of the beautification of the college’s campus and hope the window will inspire the Christendom community. “It is so beautiful here. Every liturgy is inspiring, and the faculty and staff and students are so wonderful to us. We have enjoyed the summer conferences, the speakers and programs, and, of course, the anniversary celebrations,” says Nancy. “We want to continue to support the college in every way we can, and this window will hopefully be a lasting gift to the beautiful new chapel, and will inspire many to devotion to St. Anne, to her daughter, Mary, and most of all to her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Lett ers to Chris tendom In honor of the college’s 40th anniversary, the question was asked to students, faculty, alumni, and our bishop: “If you could write a ‘thank you’ letter to Christendom, what would you say?”
The letters afﬁrm what Pope St. John Paul II said 26 years ago: “Christendom College is doing a great work for the Church.” Each member of the community—through participation, prayer, and ﬁnancial support—is upholding the mission of the college, which is boldly moving forward in faith.
Dear Christendom, On the occasion of th e 40th anniversary of your founding, I join you and so many othe rs in thanking Almigh ty God for the many blessings He has besto wed upon you and yo ur students, faculty, staff, and alumni. I am also grateful to all who have helped disti nguish you as an institution of higher lea rning that faithfully tea ches and celebrates Catholic doctrine and tradition. For four de cades, you have prepared students to be authentic Catholic wi tnesses in the world and to spread the Gosp el message in their fam ilies, parishes and communities. With Go d’s grace may you cont in ue to carry out this mission with zeal and fidelity for many years to come. Please be assured of m y prayerful support. M ay Our Lord Jesus bless you and may Mar y, Mother of the Chur ch , intercede for and watch over you, now and always. Bishop Michael Burb idge Diocese of Arlington
d Dear Christen
sroom and uth in the clas tr e th ss fe ro p high faculty pay a e to be free to s, m n g o in ti u w it lo st al in r p their . At other Thank you fo pressure to kee accord with it ce in fa fe li ey y Th m s. er es ts, tn try to ord hostile studen political correc m o to fr p t u en g in sm d ce of haras price for stan the consequen er ff su r o t u sh mouths ions. d administrat than is colleagues, an tellectual life in n o m m co through e more of a fe in common gues. We hav li ea al ll u it co ir y sp m e r en share th Thank you fo itutions. We ev st in er th o at together. possible e sacraments th g n ti en u eq prayer and fr ristendom teachable. Ch e ar o h w ts Every en together stud w in wisdom. g o n gr gi d n ri an b n r ar fo the d want to le Thank you hat goes on in to the truth an w in en p e o ak e st ar at ts studen something s that there is ve ie el b institutions. t en d u st said of other e b t o n n ca at classroom. Th iends at ed here. My fr rm es. fo e av h I ugh hard tim ips that ro sh th d e n m ie fr en e se th r raise my person and Thank you fo t in which to e me a better en ad m m n e ro av vi h en m t ea udents. Christendo also been a gr eagues and st ll as h co y y b it r n u ve o m m being fussed The college co g campus and n ti si vi ve lo ectual kids. They er in my intell ch ri â€” se n se er in the best g my life rich in ak ip to Christ. m r fo u my relationsh Thank yo in er ch ri d friends, an life, richer in ersnak nomics Dr. P. Bracy B cience and Eco S l ca ti li o P f o Professor
Dear Christen dom
There are not en ough words to describe all that Not only have you’ve given m you been my h e these last fou om e, but you’ve al ever set foot on r years. so become my your campus kn family. Anyone ows this about here is electric. that has you. The sense From late nigh of community ts catching up Masses and mea fo und with friends in ls, I’ve grown to the dorms to co know and love staff. The emp mmunity everyone here: hasis on the tru students, facult e, the good, an classroom, sets y, and d the beautiful, your campus ap both in and ou art from other sacraments, to t of the colleges and un the small sizes, iversities. From and the countl to offer, you hel the ess sports, club p to push each s, and activities and every one spiritually. you have of us to grow m entally, physical ly, and Thanks to you r small size, th ere are also so leaders on this many opportu campus, as wel nities for studen l as leaders in th sacrament of C ts to become e new evangeli onfirmation, w za ti on e . Th ar e ro given the graces but it’s here th ugh the at we are given to go out and the tools to do proclaim the fa just in my clas so. For me, thos ith, ses, but in my e tools were fo time serving on I first set foot on u n d n th ot e Student Activ campus as a tim ities Council. W id freshman, I through the en h en n ev couragement an er saw myself as d self-sacrificin a leader. It was Activities Cou g example of m ncil that I learn y p ee ed rs on the Studen to come out of later, am now t my comfort zo serving as the st n e u an d d, three years en t the campus from body president. From this vanta a unique persp ective, and my ge point, I can and everyone h appreciation fo see ere, has only m r yo ag u , n Christendom, ifi ed. You have sh beyond the call own me how to of duty, and to see Christ in al go above and l things and in all people. For forty years now, your missi on to restore al I can’t stay her l things in Chri e forever, and m st has never wav y time here is m scheme of thin ered. erely a fleeting gs, but the less moment in the ons I’ve learned my life. gr and here will remai n with me for the rest of Much love, Chloe Herrman n ’18
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fident, ger, overcon a e n a s a re d he iately was ago I arrive wed immed o ll fo Three years t a h W year was a freshman. ou, my first y to s k and earnest n a rs, udies, praye f my life. Th o st r s, a e rt y o st sp e b s, e the intanc homore f new acqua le sleep. Sop tt li ry e v d whirlwind o n s, a e with even ther activitie ll of the sam a countless o n o e il p across to anaged to w the skies e fl I r, year, you m io n m. ju road progra dance. As a b n a u y b d a u r st te r a u gre ng yo ers to a Europe duri de my broth si g n lo a and around d e h . Now, your colors rned, I marc g tu n re ri a I e n w e h ip W pionsh resent, and ugby Cham t the past, p a k o lo National R ly n o r and I can I am a senio de. ra g ir of titu a n a h it w future ere on y my stay h b d te c e ff a ically t that I am as been rad etter! It’s no b e th r Who I am h fo e rg me to be s, by and la lded over ti o m d n a d your campu ineere . I followed ou were eng ou truly are y t a th surprised; y t n e to this ul environm s in coming g n li b si r e the wonderf old that I of my three . It was here it d e tt the example re g re r nd, and I have neve t my girlfrie e m y, h p college and so hilo the joys of p discovered be led. to lead and learned how l ever one here wil o n t a th ly em and m, it is like u did for th o y g in th Christendo ry ve , for eir lives. So nderstand e u th ly to te in le p d e m co you guid e things and events e and for th m n e iv g the people e f you. u’v m because o do know yo a I I s o g h in w th m e th u. I a of: thank yo I’m unaware , nd keep you God bless a nk ’18 Richard Bla
Send your Letter Feeling inspired? Please email your “thank you” note to firstname.lastname@example.org for inclusion in a special 40th anniversary collection of letters.
M O V I N G
Dr. Warren H. Carroll founds Christendom College and opens its doors to 26 students
Christendom holds first Commencement Ceremonies, sending off two students
Dr. Damian Fedoryka is appointed the second president of Christendom
1985 Carroll completes volume one of his six-volume History of Christendom
F O R W A R D
The Rock gets the first of many coats of celebration paint
1990 College embraces Pope Saint John Paul II’s latest Apostolic Exhortation on Catholic Universities, Ex Corde Ecclesiae
First Mass in Christ the King Chapel
Dr. Timothy T. O’Donnell is appointed the college’s third president
College board of directors, faculty senate, president, and founding president ratify the college’s official Vision Statement
Christendom College achieves university status by merging with the Notre Dame Institute and forming its Graduate School of Theology
College celebrates 25 years and launches its premier Junior Semester in Rome program
St. John the Evangelist Library opens its doors.
Pope Benedict XVI blesses the cornerstone for the new Christ the King Chapel
College mourns the loss of its founder, Dr. Warren H. Carroll, who is buried on campus
College to celebrate its 39th Commencement Ceremonies honoring Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas
Construction begins for St. Clare Residence Hall, the seventh major residence hall
Campus expands to Donegal, Ireland, with launch of St. Columcille Institute summer program
College welcomes a record enrollment of 493 undergraduate students, 249 graduate students
Christendom hosts first home basketball game on campus with completion of St. Louis the Crusader Gymnasium
FA I T H
B O L D LY
“I shall preserve the deposit of Faith in its entirety, hand it on faithfully, and make it shine forth.” From the “Oath of Fidelity”
50 Land O’ Lakes
How Christendom Gave Hope
Every academic year at Christendom
begins the same: all members of the faculty hit their knees to take the Vatican’s Oath of Fidelity. To new students, the event may seem peculiar, but not too out of the ordinary for a vibrantly Catholic school like Christendom. But to an onlooker coming from a more secular school, one that might even be “Catholic” in name, the event is startling. Every member of the faculty, in unison, pledging to protect against scandal and fortify the college’s Catholic identity is a radical choice in today’s realm of higher education. To understand why, it is necessary to turn back 50 years to a conference in Land O’ Lakes, Michigan, that changed America and Catholic higher education forever.
What happened in those days that caused so much strife for the future? In the twilight of the 1960s, Fr. Theodore Hesburgh convened several Catholic university leaders, including those from Notre Dame and Boston College, together to develop a vision for a more “modern” model of Catholic higher education. For them, the Catholic university of the future seemed to be a “Catholic” Harvard, clothed in prestige and buoyed by the generous funds of the federal government. Missing from these new garments would be the “authority of whatever kind, lay or clerical, external to the academic community itself.” Finally, these schools would be able to stand shoulderto-shoulder with Yale, Princeton, and the other top colleges of the United States, no longer looked down upon for being religiously affiliated. These decisions tended to diminish the primary purpose of Catholic education: to lead young minds out of narrow perspectives into the world of known truth and under the guiding light of the Catholic Faith. More importantly, there was no longer a place for the sacred discipline of theology that had the task of ordering and illuminating all other disciplines. Most Catholic universities at that time abandoned or drastically cut back their core curricula. Frequently, theology was replaced by “religious studies,” often with the Catholic Faith treated less fully than other religions, or presented by dissidents who rejected essential doctrines. Often, no more than two courses in “religious studies” and philosophy were required of the undergraduate. Other subjects were taught almost exactly as in the secular universities, with little reference to the Catholic intellectual tradition. Fifty years later, these schools are now the “big” schools in America, spoken of breathlessly by high school students because of their huge football stadiums and by scholars because of their expensive research facilities. But, at what cost? The commitment to the Magisterium, once essential to educating the youth of tomorrow in the truths of the Faith, is all but gone. The effects of the decisions made at Land O’ Lakes were radical. No less radical than Dr. Warren H. Carroll’s proceeding idea and vision in the 1970s. The conference, in particular its secularizing effects on historically Catholic colleges, distressed Carroll. He saw the ripples from Land O’ Lakes and how they would impact the next generation of Catholics for the worse, in a culture that was already negatively impacting the youth and adults alike. His solution to these problems: “Christendom,” a place that would firmly embrace the Magisterium and would seek to create a truly Catholic culture on campus — similar
to the Catholic culture that permeated Europe in the times of Charlemagne, the very culture that had fired Carroll’s historical imagination for decades. In the twilight of the 1970s, such an idea was radical. Lay people didn’t start Catholic colleges, particularly without the backing of a specific religious order. Institutions were moving in the exact opposite direction ever since Land O’ Lakes. And yet, Carroll, known mainly at the time for his writing in the Catholic magaFr. Theodore Hesburgh, who convened the group that produced the 1967 zine, Triumph, did not let these things hold back Land O’ Lakes statement, poses for a photo at Notre Dame in 1987. his vision. He wanted to save the culture and restore Christendom. Accomplishing such a lofty goal would be impossible without a faculty that shared his vision and his commitment to the Magisterium. For this reason, the college has proudly supported its entire faculty, which voluntarily takes the Oath of Fidelity in front of the student body to begin each academic year. Such an act would not only ensure their commitment to the Catholic Faith, it would set an example for the entire college of what the true focus of Christendom would, and always will, be. Faculty takes the Oath of Fidelity at Christendom College in 2017. In the presence of the bishop of the Diocese of Arlington, the entire faculty of Christendom has made the Oath consistently for the past 40 years, with each The Oath made by Christendom’s faculty has caused ripples member promising “that I shall always preserve communion with in the murky waters of Catholic higher education, ripples that the Catholic Church in the words I speak or in the way I act….In continue to run countercultural to the turbulent waters of Land carrying out my charge, I shall preserve the deposit of Faith in its O’ Lakes. Since Carroll and the founding faculty made this entirety, hand it on faithfully, and make it shine forth. As a result, decision 40 years ago, other Catholic colleges have followed I shall shun whatsoever teachings are contrary….With Christian suit, making a Catholic education, in firm adherence to the obedience, I shall associate myself with what is expressed by the Magisterium, possible for more and more young students. holy shepherds as authentic doctors and teachers of the Faith, or Because of this landmark decision, countless alumni, formed established by them as the Church’s rulers.” in the Faith, are now joyfully impacting every level of society, Prescribed in the Code of Canon Law, the Oath of Fidelity whether as doctors, lawyers, CEOs, journalists, teachers, or as was further asserted under the reign of Pope Saint John Paul members of the religious life. Because of Carroll’s insistence on II in the 1980s, with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the the Oath, this world is better as a result. Faith calling upon all “who teach disciplines pertaining to faith Land O’ Lakes devastated Catholic higher education. and morals” at a Catholic college to make a profession of faith But Christendom continues to be on a mission to save it, and take the Oath of Fidelity when they begin their teaching bringing the Faith back into the classrooms and the campus. posts. Such a call was further elucidated in Ex Corde Ecclesiae, It all starts with an Oath. It all ends with all things restored which also, not coincidentally, contradict the thought of Land in Christ. O’ Lakes. WINTER 2017
Fort y Years Af ter the Foun din g of C hristen dom College
By Raymund P. O'Herron
On September 12, 2017, Christendom marked
the fortieth anniversary of the official opening of the college, at the opening Mass celebrated by the much beloved first Bishop of Arlington, Most Rev. Thomas Welsh. Two days later, on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, classes began for the 26 students who, together with their families, had risked much on this very uncertain enterprise. This anniversary year occasions some reflections on the college's beginning, and on its endurance. It seems well to begin with recalling some aspects of Dr. Warren Carroll's founding vision, as most here at Christendom today will not have encountered them before. At the very beginning of the initial Prospectus written and published by Dr. Carroll in the spring of 1976, a year and a half before the college opened, he stated the central concept underlying the task undertaken: The only rightful purpose of education is to learn the truth and to live by it. The purpose of Catholic education is therefore to learn and live by the truth revealed by Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, 'the Way, the Truth and the Life,' as preserved in our deposit of faith and authentically interpreted in the magisterium of the head of the Church Christ founded, our Holy Father, the Pope. That central body of divine truth illumines all other truth. A college dedicated to Catholic truth should never lose sight of the unity of that truth in every area of thought and life, since it all comes from the same source. Reflecting on the collapse of authentically Catholic higher education in the Unites States and throughout the formerly Christian world, Dr. Carroll stated, "It is time for the rebuilding to begin. Christendom College is undertaken as one beginning for this God-given task of rebuilding."
Then he posed to himself the question "Why name it Christendom?" His reply: Simply to call attention in the most striking way to the ultimate goal of this College: to contribute to the building of a Christian society, shaped by Christian principles and truth to the fullest extent that man's fallen nature permits, a society that publicly acknowledges Christ as King - which is the meaning of 'Christendom.' It was Dr. Carroll's conviction and intent that launching Christendom College was a response to the Second Vatican Council's call for a fostering of the role of the laity in the mission of the Church. He declared in the Prospectus: The primary goal of Christendom College will be to develop in its students a life-long commitment to the lay apostolate, together with providing at a high level of academic quality the knowledge and skill required to fulfill that apostolic commitment, whatever their individual profession or vocation may be. This is the vision and purpose that brought together the donors, faculty, parents, and students to begin the founding of the college. Near the end of the Prospectus, Dr. Carroll spoke for all of them: We who dare to launch Christendom College do not do so by relying only upon ourselves. Our help is in the Name of the Lord. This enterprise is for His glory and His alone. If he wishes it to prosper, it will gain the help that is needed. On reflection, it seems to me an astonishing thing that the college was founded by such a small and inexperienced group of teachers and supporters. None of us had any experience in college administration. It is a testament to Dr. Warren Carroll's faith in Christ and his determination to do this work if it pleased God, coupled with his really heroic work, that the college was begun at all. We had nowhere near enough money to launch the effort; far too little even to meet the faculty salaries promised and the rent of the school we were using for a campus. Knowing that we were doing this for Our Lord, and ultimately for the salvation of souls, Dr. Carroll placed his entire trust on divine assistance, and announced the opening for the fall of 1977. It is clearly this divine assistance that accounts for the success the college has had.
In the ensuing years, growth was slow, slower than we had projected, and we faced repeated financial difficulties. In spite of differences among us about administrative policies, and secondary matters, all remained faithful to the founding vision. This unanimity of purpose was, and has been, one of our greatest strengths. Fidelity to the truth of our Catholic Faith, sound moral guidance of student life, and a vigorous and devout spiritual formation of our students have marked the college from the beginning. These things, and the myriad prayers and sacrifices for the college of so many, have been essential to its success. We are grateful, and humbled, by the many blessings granted to us by God, without Whose constant care and favor nothing would have been accomplished.
“The college is now 20 times larger than that opening year. It has remained, by the grace of God, steadfastly true to the founding vision and purpose.” The college is now 20 times larger than it was that opening year. It has remained, by the grace of God, steadfastly true to the founding vision and purpose of Dr. Warren Carroll and the original faculty, of the Board of Trustees, and of the donors, parents, students, and friends who committed themselves to the success of this work for the Lord and His Church—a vision of a thoroughly Catholic college, committed to a liberal arts education, with the goal of sending forth lay apostles to transform the world, in accord with our founding motto, "To restore all things in Christ." This constancy is due in very large part to the able and faithful leadership of the three presidents the college has had, Dr. Carroll, Dr. Damian Fedoryka, and Dr. Timothy O'Donnell, all of whom have kept faith with the founding vision, and all of whom have preserved fidelity to the Catholic Faith and to the Church. Throughout the 40 years since our opening, we have, by the grace of God, maintained an unwavering fidelity to our founding. The college has never taken in enough revenue from tuition to meet its expenses from year to year. From the very beginning
all involved were resolute about never accepting federal money in any way, for fear of the influence of secular authorities that such acceptance risked. The piper might call a tune, which we could not follow. From the day of our opening until now, the college has continually depended on God's help in meeting its financial needs. For me, this is as it should be. "Seek first the Kingdom of God, and all these things will be given to you." So long as we remain faithful to the truth, and to the teaching of the Church, and so long as we strive to form our students into disciples of Christ and lay apostles for the Church, we may be confident that His help will never be wanting.
If I may be permitted a personal reflection. It has been a great blessing to have been part of the founding of Christendom College, and to have continued teaching here. Working most of my adult life in such an explicitly Catholic environment has been a singular gift. Both my wife, Sheila, and I have greatly benefited from the association with so many inspiring Catholics, especially among the parents of our students. In addition, I have been privileged to teach courses of fundamental importance in the formation of our students, especially the introductory courses in Catholic Doctrine, as well as the basic philosophy courses in Metaphysics and the Philosophy of Human Nature. In the process, I have learned more than I have taught. The docility of our students to the truth, and their exemplary conduct, in and out of the classroom, have made teaching here a joy, year after year. The excellence of our students has been another of the greatest favors the Lord has granted Christendom. It has been a blessing to serve them.
of the Church; we promise to uphold the highest Christian moral standards, for ourselves and for our students; we promise fidelity to God's eternal law rather than subservience to any 'changing times'; and we know and will never forget that when the Son of God comes for the Last Judgment, we will be judged in substantial part on how well we keep this pledge. Our Lady of Fatima, patroness of the college, pray for us. Raymund P. Oâ€™Herron is a founding faculty member of Christendom College, where he currently teaches classes in theology.
Prof. Oâ€™Herron (left) with students circa 1978.
Reflecting on the "betrayal of trust" that had destroyed so much of Catholic higher education in the decade preceding our founding, Dr. Carroll concluded his Prospectus with a pledge: With Christ the King and Immaculate Heart of Mary our witnesses, and with the help of God's ever suďŹƒcient grace, we promise never to depart in letter or in spirit from Catholic truth as taught by the Holy Roman Catholic Church and its head the Pope; we promise total fidelity to his magisterium and his authority as head
P H OTO A L BU M
1. Canoeing down the glorious Shenandoah River. 2. Students enhance their oral debate skills during a Chester-Belloc Debate. 3. The student Barber Shop Quartet performs at the annual Senior Benefit Concert. 4. With the fall weather shining, history professor Dr. Brendan McGuire moves his class outside.
5. On November 11, over 140 students, faculty, and staff came out to prayerfully protest Planned Parenthood for the semesterly Mega Shield hosted by the student pro-life club Shield of Roses. 6. Christendom’s Chamber Orchestra performs. 7. Fun on the course: alumni and friends came together to raise funds for the college’s athletic scholarships at the annual Thomas S. Vander Woude Golf Tournament. 8. An intramural athletics highlight: Annual Upper vs. Under Flag Football Game. 9. Alumni share their stories of success in the medical field with students during this semester’s Life on Tap series. 10. Oktoberfest 2017.
11. Students and faculty enjoy dining together at the annual Senior-Faculty Dinner. 12. Student band Play the Changes performs at this year’s Halloween Party. 13. Students were able to view the 2017 solar eclipse with a special telescope. 14. Junior Semester in Rome: Note-taking in the Forum.
15. Junior Semester in Rome: Enjoying a hotel room view in Siena. 16. Junior Semester in Rome: Striking a pose in Assisi.
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@christendomcollege WINTER 2017
Isabella, Alexandra, and Olivia Di Falco 26
s Pond Christendom’s Appeal Goes International As a teenager growing up in Buckinghamshire,
England, Alexandra Di Falco faced a dilemma that many young adults struggle with today: finding a way to further her education without losing her faith in the process. Today’s landscape of higher education is filled with thousands of college and university programs, but few of them educate students through the prism of the Catholic faith, let alone a Christian one. For Di Falco, the landscape was even bleaker in her native England, due to the fact that there are no Catholic colleges or universities in the United Kingdom — a depressing prospect for any young Catholic in the land. And yet, Di Falco, the eldest of eight children, was approached with a solution, thanks to a group of her friends: a college that they were attending in the States, where they were furthering their education and also growing closer to Christ in the process. Soon enough, Di Falco packed her bags to join them an ocean away, and her next two siblings, Olivia and Isabella, quickly followed in her footsteps, all the way to a little college in the Shenandoah Valley: Christendom. When Warren Carroll founded Christendom in the late 1970s, he hoped to find just 25 willing students initially. In 1977, the school began with 26 — one more than Carroll had hoped for. Fast-forward 40 years, and enrollment has grown close to 500, with students traveling from across the United
States, and beyond, to attend Christendom. In the years since its founding, Christendom’s vision and mission have taken on an international appeal, resulting in students from England, Ireland, Africa, Mexico, Canada, Belgium, and elsewhere leaving home and country to attend the college. While they are far from home, the Di Falco sisters each agree that the Christendom community, and the presence of each other, has made attending college in the United States a great choice. “Coming to Christendom was definitely one of the best decisions of my life,” says Alexandra, this year’s senior class president. “I now have a better understanding of my faith, and I have learned to write a lot more persuasively. Although I love the classes and am proud of the skills that they have helped me to develop, it is the people here that make this college so wonderful. The students at Christendom are not to be found anywhere else—they know how to be joyfully Catholic.” Olivia, a sophomore, agrees with her sister’s assessment, and finds that having her sisters here at the same time is a huge advantage. “It’s utterly amazing having siblings here,” she says. “I absolutely love being able to find one of my sisters and just catch up with them — it makes Christendom feel even more like a home, whether that be having a sister’s shoulder to cry on or to help with study guides. Christendom is obviously very far from
“I had heard that the education at Christendom was excellent; every subject studied was done with a Catholic understanding, and the professors were truly in love with what they taught.”
England, but coming here has proven to be the right decision. I got used to being far away from home because of my siblings, and because you make a second home and family here.” The vibrant community, infused with the joyful Catholicism that has helped attract students to the college since day one, has helped them feel at home in Front Royal, Virginia. If the community is engaging them emotionally, the liberal arts education is engaging the Di Falcos just as much intellectually. Alexandra expected as much when Christendom was first described to her by her friends there, and the college has lived up to that reputation. “I had heard that the education at Christendom was excellent; every subject studied was done with a Catholic understanding, and the professors were truly in love with what they taught. The idea of achieving a liberal arts degree with other like-minded Catholics was extremely appealing,” says Alexandra. “This liberal arts degree greatly appeals to me because, like most youths in their late teens, I am unsure of what subjects or areas I am interested in and what I want to extend my knowledge in,” says freshman Isabella. “If I had gone to a university in the UK, I would have had to pick what subject I wanted my degree to be focused in right then and there. And so, to grasp this opportunity at Christendom, where I can deepen my knowledge in the core subjects for two further years and then pick my major, just seemed like the perfect option for me.” The community and education have made the Di Falcos happier with their college decision than any of them had anticipated.
In their time at Christendom, the Di Falcos have each latched onto the many extracurricular offerings the college provides for students, truly taking advantage of the college’s resources while here. Alexandra has been involved with the Student Activities Council for much of her time at college, and was voted by her peers to be senior class president. Olivia has participated in Christendom theatrical productions, including last fall’s production of The Crucible. And Isabella is taking advantage of all of the activities the college puts on each weekend. The Di Falcos traveled a long way from home to obtain an education that would not rob them of their Catholic Faith. With it in hand, they plan on returning to their native England after obtaining their degrees to impact their homeland for the better in a multitude of fields (Alexandra hopes to go into television production, Olivia plans on starting her own business in London, and Isabella is still discerning her vocation). When Carroll founded Christendom, he hoped that students would go out and impact every level of society for the better. Little did he know that such a vision would eventually take on a global appeal, drawing the Di Falcos and others from thousands of miles away to his college. With five other siblings behind the Di Falcos who might attend Christendom, the college has much to look forward to from the Di Falco family in the coming years. The United Kingdom has even more to look forward to, as these young, well-educated Catholics return to their country, prepared to defend the Faith and her teachings.
CRUSADERS IN THE FALL
a winning season
The Christendom Crusader sports teams claimed winning seasons this fall, with volleyball, rugby, and both soccer teams gaining monumental victories against colleges in nationally recognized conferences.
The rugby team had a successful fall season, triumphing over Duke University and Christopher Newport University to win the 2017 NSCRO Champions Cup.
The men’s soccer team also finished with a winning season, earning victories over Marymount University and Gallaudet University, two D-III teams.
The volleyball team finished with an overall winning record, and it defeated Penn State Beaver and Penn State Mont Alto, both strong USCAA teams.
The women’s soccer team also came away with major victories, including defeating Potomac State (NJCAA) and Warren Wilson College (USCAA).
The men’s and women’s cross-country teams boasted each member setting personal records this season.
BRIE F Four Levels of Happiness Author and television personality Fr. Robert Spitzer delivered a lecture at Christendom College on September 18 on the “Four Levels of Happiness.” The engaging talk delved into Fr. Spitzer’s summary of how to reach the greatest level of happiness in this life and the next, as he encouraged students to go out in the culture and spread the good news about true happiness to others.
Celebrating 40 Years
Nationally recognized speaker, author, and apologist Gary Michuta delivered a lecture based on his latest book, Hostile Witnesses, to Christendom College’s Graduate School of Theology on October 26. The lecture delved into Christianity’s most notorious foes and how surprising gospel truths can be drawn from their antagonistic words and deeds.
Christendom College celebrated its 40th anniversary with an academic convocation on September 9, where it honored renowned philosopher and theologian Fr. James Schall, SJ, religious leader Mother Mary Assumpta Long, OP, and pro-life heroes Chris and Joan Bell. Fr. Schall, who was too ill to attend, received an honorary doctorate during the event, Mother Assumpta received the college’s St. Catherine of Siena Award, and the Bells were awarded the college’s Pro Deo et Patria Medal.
N E W B O OK S
Filling Seminaries Virginia’s Diocese of Arlington has given graciously to Christendom since its founding 40 years ago, and Christendom has given graciously back in return. The college already has fourteen alumni serving as priests in the Diocese, with that number set to increase, thanks to 20% of the diocese’s current class of seminarians proudly calling Christendom their alma mater.
IN THE PRESS T N C R recently wrote a feature story celebrating Christendom’s 40th anniversary, discussing the college’s history and what staff and students attribute to its longevity. The piece, which featured interviews with college founders, alumni, and current students, went deep into the history of Christendom, explaining why it was founded and what is on the horizon for the college. “Just look at Christendom’s graduates if you want evidence of the college’s success,” said Patrick Reilly, president of the Cardinal Newman Society, in the feature story. “They represent the educated Catholic laity that Blessed John Henry Newman famously yearned for: not rash or arrogant, knowledgeable of their faith and prepared to defend it, and able to solve the most difficult problems because they have been taught to think and communicate well.”
Ignatius Press has released the second edition of College President Dr. Timothy O’Donnell’s Heart of the Redeemer. A revised, updated edition of this classic work on the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Dr. O’Donnell examines the doctrinal roots of the devotion to the Sacred Heart in Scripture and in the Apostolic and Patristic ages; charts its growth and development through the Middle Ages; explains the enormous contribution of Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque; and unfolds the teachings of the Papal Magisterium on the Sacred Heart, including Vatican II, St. John Paul II, and Benedict XVI, including the Year of Mercy proclaimed by Pope Francis. The forewords for this edition are written by Gerhard Cardinal Müller, former prefect for the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as well as theologian to the papal household Rev. Wojciech Giertych. Christendom Press is publishing a biography on college Founder Dr. Warren H. Carroll: One Man Perched on a Rock. Written by alumna Laura (Smith) Gossin ’87, the book examines the historian’s life, which was one of deep commitment to Catholic education. From Carroll’s roots in South Berwick, Maine, where he was formed by the goodness of those around him, to his doctoral study at Columbia University, where he encountered the evil of relativism and denials of truth; from learning to wave signal flags at Camp Kokura, Japan, to analyzing communist propaganda at the CIA; from writing press releases for presidential candidate John Schmitz, to teaching history at El Escorial in Spain—Dr. Carroll’s life took many twists and turns, before he set himself to the great work of founding and leading Christendom College. The book chronicles his life as it unfolded, proving the truth of one of his own favorite sayings, “One man can make a difference.” WINTER 2017
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Fr. Carroll Oubre ’87 got together with Scott ’85 and Michelle (Oubre) Peters ’89, and their children: Dominique (attended one year at Christendom), Sean, Joe (currently a junior at Christendom), Matt, and Noelle with grandparents Carroll and Margaret Oubre at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Annandale where Fr. Carroll is Parochial Vicar.
Mark ’90 and Pauline (Ellis) Gallagher ’92 celebrated the wedding of their second eldest daughter, Faustina, to Scott Blackwood in Southern California on June 30, 2017. They are pictured here with their six children and new son-in-law. From left to right: Cecilia, Gianna, Philomena, Scott, Faustina, Pauline, Mark, Benedict, and Joseph. Their eldest, Cecilia, is a senior at Christendom and is engaged to be married to Robert Johnson ’16 in January of 2019.
Megan Fraser ’05 married Paul Prezzia on July 1, 2017. Megan is the Operations Manager at Live Action and Paul is a faculty member at Gregory the Great Academy in Scranton, Penn.
1990s Brian and Carolyn (Wilber) Dunlap ’98 proudly announce the birth of their ninth child, Samuel Elijah, born in August (left). They also became grandparents to their first grandchild, Jasper Alexander, who was born in May.
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Tim ’02 and Leah (Stephens) Coffey ’03 welcomed Molly Jane into their family on April 24th. She is doing her best to make it through her first year of life without being smothered by her 2-year-old brother.
Jennifer (Gordon) Widhalm ’98 and her husband Anthony just welcomed their fifth child, Bernadette Jeanne, on August 4, 2017. She joins siblings Anthony Jr. (6), Gabriel (5), Evelyn (4), and Brigid (2).
Four Christendom graduates spent this past summer doing Spanish immersion and mission work in Mexico. Fr. Daniel Heenan ’05, FSSP, organized and directed the St. Junipero Serra Spanish language program for priests and seminarians at his parish in Guadalajara, Jalisco. The aim of the program is to equip priests and future priests for the vast opportunities of ministry among Spanish-speaking people both here in the US and south of the border. Among this year’s participants were John Killackey ’11, David McWhirter ’12 and Joseph Dalimata ’17, all currently seminarians with the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. For more information on the program or to sign up visit SJSInstitute.com.
Elizabeth (Stephens) Traugott ’05 and Julia (Peterson) Ventura ’05 met up in Wisconsin this summer at Elizabeth’s parents’ house. Elizabeth amazingly drove from Alaska to Wisconsin with her six kids and Julia drove from Michigan to Wisconsin with her five kids. It was so nice to be able to see each other again, and the kids had a blast. Joseph and Elizabeth (Kelly) McMahon ’06 welcomed baby Sarah Margaret on October 27, 2017. Her big brothers and sisters Daniel, Gabriel, Mary Lee and Elsie Rose are delighted with her. Delvis and Michelle (Petersen) Ramirez ’07 welcomed their third child, Gianna Rose, in July 2017. She joins big brothers Francis (6) and Joseph (4). Michelle continues to enjoy her work at the Diocese of Arlington and Delvis at their parish/school. They live in Woodbridge, Va. Last January, Katherine (Melton) Hayes ’08 and Evie (age 7) took a trip to Norway and in June, Andrew ’04 and Katherine took all three kids to visit family in Greece. Andrew was awarded tenure and promotion to Associate Professor and is now chair of the Theology Department at the University of St. Thomas, Houston. He was also awarded a fellowship at the Institute of Christian Orient Research at CUA to pursue a book project on the problem of universal salvation in theological poetry of St. Ephrem the Syrian, to be presented at the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture’s annual fall conference.
A record-breaking crowd of more than 400 alumni returned home for a historic celebration on October 6-8. Classmates were reunited over sports games, receptions, dinner, dancing, and a wonderful ﬁreworks show over the chapel. SEE MORE PICS AT CHRISTENDOM.EDU/PICTURES.
Captain Joseph “Ambrose” and Jennifer L. (Poston) Mazzara ’08 have recently brought into this world their fifth child and second girl, Gianna Marcellina Celeste. In addition to homeschooling the older kids, Jennifer was accepted into a Ph.D. program in History at King’s College, London, and she currently teaches history at the Marine Corps University in Quantico, Virginia. Joseph graduated cum laude from the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University and was presented the Henry G. Manne Award for Academic Excellence in Law and Economics. Capt. Mazzara did a brief stint at Naval Justice School this fall, and then he reported to the base legal office on Marine Corps Base Quantico in October. Joseph Molitor ’08 received his doctoral degree in psychology from Miami University of Ohio this past August. He is now practicing clinical psychology at Ruah Woods (rwpsych.org) in Cincinnati, Ohio. Marion Miner ’09 obtained a J.D. from the University of Nebraska College of Law in May, passed the Nebraska Bar Exam in July, and has begun work at the Nebraska Catholic Conference in Lincoln, Neb., as the Associate Director for Pro-Life & Family. His job entails oversight of education efforts around the state with regard to issues related to life, marriage, and family.
On July 21, 2017, Emily Baldwin ’12 was married to Joshua Baier at St. Mary’s in Montrose, Colorado. Many Christendom alumni were in attendance at the wedding in the couple’s hometown, where Emily is a middle school teacher and coach, and Josh runs his own business. Brent and Rachel (Fogarty) Bennett ’09 were married May 20, 2017, in Fort Wayne, Indiana, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.
Marilyn and Neil Baldwin ’13 welcomed their first child on July 8, 2016. Neil is currently working as an estimator at Reliable Contracting, but recently has been selected to go to Officer Training for Air Battle Management with the Air Force and is awaiting his ship date.
Ross and Lisa (Hudson) Birkenfeld ’10 welcomed twins Benedict David and Zelie Ann in August. Luke (3), Joe (2), and Ida (1) are very happy to have them in the family.
Lisa (Hill) Pertuso ’13 and her husband, Mark, were married on July 7, 2017, at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church in Providence, Rhode Island. They now reside in Houston, Texas, where Lisa is completing her Master of Education degree from Texas A&M University, and Mark is teaching at Frassati Catholic High School. Tricia Lademan ’12 joined the Ann Arbor Dominican sisters in August of 2015, and she received her habit and new name (Sr. Simeon Marie) in July of 2016.
Jason and Melanie Sparks ’14 were married in 2014 and have two children. After graduating from Peru State College in 2015 with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Business Administration, Jason works at Seton Home Study School as an Assistant Director of Conferences and Melanie is a stay-at-home mother. John Connor and Madeleine (Murphy) Coyne ’14 welcomed their daughter, Lucy Patricia Coyne, into the world on August 16th. She was baptized on September 24, 2017, at St. James in Lakewood, Ohio, along with Isla Kate McCrum, daughter of Brian & Lucy (Briggs) McCrum ’14. Melody Wood ’15 recently started a Ph.D. program in Political Science at the University of Notre Dame. Her concentrations are in Constitutional Studies and Political Theory. She also has a fellowship through the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture. Brian and Lindsay Rankin ’15 celebrated the first birthday of their son, James, this summer. Jacob Hiserman ’16 and Stacie Wimmer ’17 got engaged on September 30, 2017, and are planning for a summer 2018 wedding. Cecily Lowe ’16 traveled to Rome, where she attended the canonization Mass for Andre de Soveral and companions. She also wrote an essay about her time at Christendom. That essay may be viewed at catholicstand.com/ four-years-grace, and her other writing may be found at catholicstand.com/author/cecily-lowe.
Max Van Hecke and Sarah Padgett ’17 got engaged on October 8. They will be married on June 16, 2018. Max has relocated to Norfolk, Va., where he is the music director at Holy Trinity Parish. Bren and Sydnee Blackburn ’17 were married on May 17, 2017, at Christendom and now live in Wernersville, Penn. Bren works in retail with S&E Sales, a local sales and retail company, and Sydnee teaches at John Paul II Center for Special Learning in the primary classroom. Matthew Kane ’17 has started his first year at Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary in Denton, Neb. The initial “year of spirituality” introduces the candidate to the Fraternity of St. Peter, its community life, and if he is truly being called to become a priest for this community. He is not allowed to have internet and email access at this time, but would love to hear from fellow classmates (Address: Matthew Kane, Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary, PO Box 147 Denton, NE 68339). Meghan Uebel ’17 works at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School in Bethesda, Maryland, as the Religion and Enrichment teacher.
John “J.J.” Adams ’17 was received by Abbot Cletus Meagher as a postulant at St. Bernard Abbey, a Benedictine monastery in Cullman, Ala., on September 17, 2017. The postulancy period of 6 months is a time for a man to seriously consider the call to the monastic life and to enter into that way of life before beginning his year as a novice monk. Entering the postulancy with J.J. was Jonathan Gagnon.
Mike and Anna (Forst) McMahon ’17 were married July 15, 2017, at the Christendom College Chapel. William Skuba ’18 and Michaela Sanborn ’16 got engaged on June 20th. The wedding will be at Christendom on February 10, 2018.
IN OUR PRAYERS: Mass is offered for the alumni on Sundays and all First Fridays. Remember that you can have Masses said for special intentions or for friends and family! Contact Vince Criste for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taken from the college’s motto “Instaurare Omnia in Christo,” this section features an essay or excerpt from a recent paper or talk by one of Christendom’s distinguished faculty.
Omnia in Christo What’s God Got to Do with It? Pagan Temples and Divine Vengeance By Michael Kelly, Ph.D.
e n r y V I I I’s D issolut ion of the Monasteries in the 1530s despoiled the English Church and ultimately enriched and strengthened the aristocracy, not the Crown. After the cruel suppression of the Pilgrimage of Grace in the North in 1537, the eagerness with which monastic lands were bought up by the rich and getting richer English nobility and gentry remains a stark witness to greed and the fear of Henry, and explains, of course, why it is that the fictional Earl of Grantham resides in a country house known as Downton Abbey. Yet memory of the Dissolution burdened some English Protestants with an uneasy conscience for decades.
Those who saw strange misfortunes befall families that had profited from the Dissolution noticed parallels in Antiquity. One writer observed that the Tudor line had died out with Elizabeth in 1603 precisely sixty-eight years after the Dissolution, just as the Assyrian dynasty had died with Belshazzar (Daniel 5:1-4) sixtyeight years after his ancestor Nebuchadnezzar had plundered the Jewish temple. But strange things had followed upon the profanation of pagan temples in Antiquity as well. Roger Gostwyke in 1616 compared secularized ecclesiastical property to the proverbial Tolosan gold, looted in the early third century BC from Apollo’s temple at Delphi and hidden in a lake near modern-day Toulouse. The gold gained notoriety for wreaking destruction upon all who attempted to reclaim it.1 Church lands, Gostwyke warned, might prove too hot to handle as had the Tolosan gold “which so many as touched came to disaster destinies.” Even the famously skeptical John Selden granted that
those laymen who owned former monastic lands had “in no small number” discovered them to be much like the Tolosan gold. According to these Protestants, in Antiquity the true God had cursed the profaners of false gods, had acted to protect idolatry. Yet, idolatry was the premier sin on the Protestant list. English congregations were constantly instructed that “idolatry and superstition” were the offenses of all others most detested by God. It seems paradoxical, then, that Protestants could believe that God was overly concerned
Whitby Abbey, England
about the profanation of idolatrous temples. Yet preachers often championed the pagans as “more holy” than some English Christians because the ancients knew the difference “betweene things sacred and prophane.” Some noted that when Rome was spoiled in 410, Alaric the Visigoth spared the temple built over the tomb of Peter. English soldiers sitting before Leith in 1560 cited ancient examples of heathen restraint as they discussed the morality of firing on the church steeples from which the French were strafing them. Sacrilege violated the law of Nature written in the heart of every man. Contempt of the divine, therefore, even in heathendom, had always “found the true God a sharp revenger.” There were numerous historical cases besides the Tolosan gold: Cambyses II of Persia, who killed the Bull of Apis and was punished with madness and suicide, Himilco of Carthage, who had spoiled heathen shrines
in Sicily and then lost his troops to a plague. There was even the rich Egyptian who choked to death on a chicken bone after plotting to kill one of Jupiter’s peacocks. English divines accounted for the true God’s anger over defiled pagan temples in various ways. For some, God punished the perpetrators simply to provide an example for later Christians. For others, God punished pagan contempt of what “they faithfullie beleeued to bee God.”2 They cited St. Augustine to the effect that those who scorned the visible signs employed in true or false religions were “sacrilegious.”3 God apparently did not like idolaters to scorn idols. The thrust of these arguments had contemporary relevance—if material things or space bestowed on idols could be “sacred,” immune from selfish confiscation or profanation, then even the property given to the pre-Reformation Church in Britain was sacred. That meant that the secularization of such property by Henry and others had constituted sacrilege. As a preacher explained at Paul’s Cross in 1604, the intentions of their Catholic ancestors were stained with imperfections, but how did that render their donations void? “God forbid. What act of man is without imperfection?” How many marriages, he inquired, would be annulled if everyone’s motives needed to be entirely pure. God’s property had been diverted to lay profit. These preachers and writers wanted it back—not for monks or Catholics of course—but for the Protestant Church of England. And they willingly argued that as God had punished those who robbed heathen temples, He would deal similarly with Christians who had stolen from the Pope’s Church. A graduate of St. Louis University and the University of Notre Dame, Michael Kelly is assistant professor of history at Christendom College. An earlier version of this paper was delivered at the Sixteenth Century Society Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2015.
1. Close to two millennia later, the ominous saying, “Aurum habet Tolosanum,” earned a place in Erasmus’s Adagia. 2. Motive was crucial of course—these writers praised Constantine, for example, for destroying pagan temples in order to replace them with Christian churches. 3. Augustine, Contra Faustus, 19:11.
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CHRISTENDOM COLLEGE CELEBRATES 40 YEARS
SAVE theDATE APRIL 14, 2018 T H E M AY F L OW E R H O T E L , WA S H I N G T O N , D . C .
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