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Mercyhurst celebrates spiritual opening of school year

Friday, September 16, 2016

Richard G. Malloy, S.J.

A Jesuit priest whose award-winning books on the Catholic faith resonate with young adults will celebrate Mercyhurst University’s Mass of the Holy Spirit, the traditional spiritual opening of a new academic year, on Sept. 22.

Richard G. Malloy, S.J., vice president for university mission and ministry at the University of Scranton, is the author of Being on Fire: The Top Ten Essentials of Catholic Faith and A Faith That Frees: Catholic Matters for the 21st Century, both of which won awards from the Catholic Press Association and both of which are used as texts for Mercyhurst courses in religious studies and Catholic studies

As a priest, he has served in the inner city, on a Native American reservation, and among Catholics in New Jersey, South Dakota, Alaska, Kentucky, New Mexico and Chile. As a cultural anthropologist, he explores the interaction between Catholic higher education and contemporary culture. He is also a fisherman, who has served as a chaplain in Yellowstone National Park.

He earned a B.A. in philosophy summa cum laude from Saint Louis University; M.Div. and S.T.L. degrees from the Jesuit Weston School of Theology in Cambridge, Massachusetts; and a doctorate in cultural anthropology from Temple University.

Father Malloy will celebrate the Mass on Thursday, Sept. 22, at 11:15 a.m. in Christ the King Chapel.

It’s the centerpiece of Mercy Week on campus, which leads up to Mercy Day on Sept. 24. Sept. 24 is both the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy and the anniversary of the day Catherine McAuley opened the House of Mercy on Baggot Street in Dublin, Ireland, in 1827.

Sister Lisa Mary McCartney, RSM, vice president for mission integration, will welcome the university community. The Mercyhurst Concert Choir, instrumental musicians and the Liturgical Dance Ensemble will take part in the liturgy.

As has become tradition, faculty members and students from around the world will take turns reading verses of the Pentecost Sequence in their native tongues. Participants are expected to include Dr. Juan Argaez (Spanish), Dr. Doug Boudreau (French), Sr. Bernadette Kele (Kiswahili), Dr. Spyridon Kodellas (Greek), Michael Lamm (Korean), Dr. Bora Pajo (Albanian), Adiba Shahjahan (Bengali), Dr. Rob von Thaden (German) and Dr. Luyang Wang (Mandarin Chinese).

Morning classes will be shortened on Sept. 22 and midday classes canceled to enable the whole community to participate in the Mass and in a picnic to follow. Weather permitting, the picnic will be served outdoors on the lawn between Old Main and Zurn Hall, with entertainment by Mercyhurst’s marching band, Laker Pride.