Catholic Colleges Today


Fr. Thomas Leclerc, M.S.,

PhD,  Associate Professor

of Religious Studies and

Department Chair

Emmanuel President Sister Janet Eisner, SND, invited members of the college community to reflect upon the history and current state of Catholic higher education in America during the 19th annual Founders' Day celebration on Feb. 3rd. The event also included a panel discussion on the college's programs in Theology & Religious Studies and Philosophy.

Each year on Founders' Day, the Emmanuel community reflects upon the founding of the Sisters of Notre Dame by St. Julie Billiart and the founding of the college in 1919. Sponsored by the Center for Mission and Spirituality, Founders' Day is part of a weeklong celebration that includes prayer services, discussions and local community service opportunities for students, faculty and staff.

In her address titled “The Vibrant Mission of Catholic Colleges Today,” Sister Janet credited the philosophical basis for founding a Catholic college to 19th century Roman Catholic cardinal and author, John Henry Newman, beatified by Pope Benedict XVI in September 2010. Newman viewed the study of theology as essential to a liberal arts education and defined a Catholic college as “a place in which the intellect may safely range and speculate; sure to find its equal in some antagonist activity, and its judge in the tribunal of truth.”

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Orlando Welcome Center


Fr. Caulfield, pastor who built original

Church, stands near Bp. Noonan as he

blesses the Welcome Center.

ORLANDO — The old became new again — and better. The transformation of the old Blessed Trinity Catholic Church into a welcome center and parish offices was complete, and on Jan. 16, with holy water and prayer, Bishop John Noonan offered special blessings. More than 1,000 people gathered for this special celebration that began with Mass.

“The new welcome center is a blessing to me and to my ministry as faith formation administrator,” said Carlos Bernard. “It means more productivity space to make our church community much more accessible to our parishioners. Plus, it means that everyone has a one-stop location when it comes to other needs."

A welcoming place is just what Missionaries of Our Lady or La Salette Father Roland Nadeau, pastor, envisioned. In talking about the new welcome center and parish offices, Father Nadeau said, “It is indicative of
the ministry we want to do here — open arms to all parishioners and non-parishioners alike.”

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La Salette: Argentina and Bolivia

Untitled-7.jpgProfession Ceremony on February 2, 2010 at La Salette
Parish, Cordoba, Argentina


I am thankful for the opportunity to visit Bolivia and Argentina and be a part of the Region’s Annual Assembly. Indeed this visit offered me an opportunity to get to know the members of the Region and their various ministries. I wish that I was proficient enough to communicate in Spanish. Thanks to Fr. John Higgins for his excellent translations.

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Awarding Fr. Ted

Fr. Ted Brown, M.S. with a young Mexican girl
who will benefit from their hard work

In January 2011, Esperanza of Mexico honored Fr. Ted Brown, M.S., and Long Island University. The award was given in celebration of the 10 years of service to the families of Tijuana. They said that in these days when people are abandoning them because of the economy and reports of violence, Fr. Ted and Long Island University have remain faithful to them and their needs. Esperanza gave him a nice plaque.

Fr. Ted said: “What was most touching for me was the family which received the first home we built in 2001 attended the ceremony. Apparently their lives have been turned around because of this home. One of the children, who was about to be born 10 years ago handed me his wooden rosary beads, and his Untitled-2.jpgmom gave me a small glass statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe.”

He shared the history of this ministry: “Ten years ago I chose Esperanza because of its emphasis on creating neighborhoods and 'reconciling' people so they could work together to solve their own problems. It seemed to me to be a very good La Salette ministry.”

Fr. Ted continued: “The family receiving this year's home made a hand written award on which they wrote: How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’”

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La Salette Memories: Schools and Shrines

Shouts of joy ring out in the Yale Payne Whitney locker room, as the
Varsity and coach Fr. Lowery clutch the ball used in the winning game.

William Faulkner once wrote: “The past is never dead, it is not even past.” That’s how I felt when we recently welcomed a small group of La Salette Alumni (some classmates) from the class of 1960’s from our High School Seminaries in Hartford and Cheshire, CT. Some brought their wives but all brought their cherished memories of days of yore.

Their appearances may have changed over the years yet their memories are as alive as if some events had happened last week. Memories do that – they can make us young again, still excited, for example, over that tremendous basketball game in the Yale Payne Whitney Gymnasium in 1974 where our small Seminary High School in Cheshire, CT., won the Connecticut State Class C Championship!

I was not surprised at all about their excitement for that game. I share it fully because I went to that great game as well and, in a sense, our lives will never be the same. That’s what memories can do – despite the passage of many years, they came make us excited, help us to laugh and bond us ever more closely to each other.

Read more: La Salette Memories: Schools and Shrines

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