Commencement Weekend at Cabrini University will be on May 18 and 19.
Four leaders of diverse experience and expertise met at Cabrini University on Monday, April 1st to discuss how Catholic clergy, lay people, and leaders are responding to the problems posed by abuse and oversight problems in the Church, and to help participants think creatively about renewed Catholic leadership in the Church. The problems revolve around power and culture.
Since we are all the Church, the Body of Christ, we need to build “people power”. The hierarchy needs to value and engage the assets of the lay people and create a synergy of those gifts. We need to increase “co-responsibility” for the future of the Church.
The Nerney Leadership Institute and School of Business, Arts and Media of Cabrini University present:
WOMEN in BUSINESS PANEL
Mansion Dining Room
Monday, March 25
3:30 – 5:30 pm
Come listen to women at the top of their industries share their stories.
On March 13th, Cabrini University, in collaboration with the Cabrini Action and Advocacy Coalition (CAAC), hosted a premier film debut which places an intensive focus on sex trafficking in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members “walked the red carpet” to attend this special screening.
From Liberty to Captivity, explores the tragic reality of sex trafficking through the stories of victim survivors and abolitionists fighting to end this crime against humanity. Woven into the film is a message of justice and hope for the future. Reflecting on the powerful effect of the abolitionists in the 19th century, this film documents one state’s fight for freedom from slavery.
With its proverbial lens, From Liberty To Captivity zooms-in on Pennsylvania’s booming and profitable sex trafficking industry, which is threatening to destroy the principle of “liberty and justice for all”. This feature-length film reveals the reality and complexities of sex trafficking crimes and this social justice issue and present the very real hope of conquering it.
Eleven Cabrini University students, one alumna, three faculty members and the Director of the Wolfington Center participated in an immersion trip to San Lucas Tolimán, Guatemala over [the recent] Spring Break. The trip was led for an 11th year by Communications Professor Dr. Jerry Zurek and Romance Languages and Literatures Professor Dr. Raquel Green, as part of their Engagements with the Common Good course entitled “Working for
Justice in Guatemala”.
All participants spent the week working in the mornings on construction projects in and around San Lucas Tolimán, and being educated on the numerous initiatives of the San Lucas Mission to promote health, education and the empowerment of women in the region.
San Lucas Tolimán is a community of roughly twenty thousand people located on the southeastern edge of Lake Atitlán, which was once famously described by naturalist and explorer Alexander von Humboldt as the “most beautiful lake on Earth.” It is located in an area of Guatemala that was ravaged during the thirty-five year Guatemalan Civil War, particularly during the early 1980s, when Blessed Father Stanley Rother of neighboring Santiago Atitlán was one of several Catholic priests murdered in the country. In San Lucas Tolimán, Father Gregory Schaffer also was threatened with death, and one of his closest workers in the Mission was disappeared in the same year.
Despite such ever-present violence and deeply entrenched material poverty, Father Greg was able to profoundly alter the conditions of the area by empowering lasting social change rooted in the needs as stated by the community. Today, nearly seven years after Father Greg’s death, the staff and long-term volunteers of the Mission work alongside numerous visiting groups to engage in projects that support basic material needs and also contribute to the communal and spiritual growth of the residents of the area.
“Working in the community really opened my eyes to the spiritual richness of the people of San Lucas Tolimán, which is what I will forever focus on instead of their material deprivation. I learned so much from each person about grace, dignity and respect,” said Dr. Todd Matthews, one of the faculty members on the trip.
In addition to San Lucas Tolimán, Dr. Ray Ward, Director of the Wolfington Center, Dr. Melissa González-Contreras and Dr. Matthews also had the opportunity to spend a day at the Dispensario Madre Cabrini in the town of Bárcena, close to Guatemala City and roughly three hours from San Lucas Tolimán. There they were able to meet with Sister Juanita of the Missionary Sisters, along with the Administrator of the Dispensario, Claudia Aceituno, and several members of the staff. They also saw the tremendous work being done by the Missionary Sisters and lay staff with the residents of Bárcena and surrounding villages. The Dispensario operates a medical clinic, provides psychological services, vocational training and a variety of other services such as a school and workshops that particularly aim to educate and empower women.
In the hillside village of El Tablón, a women’s center has been established, where roughly 1/3 of the women in the community regularly meet to learn about leadership and women’s rights along with providing social support to each other. Compared to San Lucas Tolimán, these efforts are in the nascent stage of development but are already having a significant impact on the lives of those in a community where most children are not able to go beyond a grade school education and many of them are married in their early teens.
Social change is slow and often frustrating, but the work done by the Missionary Sisters in Bárcena and all of the participants in the San Lucas Tolimán Mission is directly improving the lives of countless Guatemalans and is a powerful reminder of the beauty and impact of what Mother Cabrini started over a century ago. We may not change the world, but lives can be transformed, as we saw happening to ourselves and to the people in these two missions we were privileged to visit. ~ submitted by Dr. Todd Matthews
In 1985, Sr. Bernadette Casciano, MSC, was serving as the Campus Minister at Cabrini College. During her time there, she, in collaboration with Dr. Joseph Romano, began a program of Spring Break service trips for students. That practice continues to this day. The following is a Spring Break account from MSC Candidate Evalyn Ndunge who participated in a service trip to West Virginia last week.
Going to West Virginia with a group of nine (7 students and 2 faculty) [a trip] which was sponsored by the Univesity’s Campus Ministry, gave me a great opportunity to know, learn, experience and serve three different families. Working together as one team helped a lot, and it always brought such a joy to see our accomplishment of building one wheelchair ramp, two porches and fixing a ceiling.
All week was a life changing experience for me and for everyone who came along on the mission trip and those whom we served. It was one of the most formative spring breaks of my life. Our main purpose of being there was to improve the homes and lives of people in need.
The supervisor (Pastor Cab and his wife Bonita), Chalzzie and Piwi whom I believe belonged to the same Christian community were always helpful and worked their hardest to ensure that all of us performed our job well. Since some of the tools were heavy and difficult to work with, we give credit to them for teaching us how to handle, use and work with the tools.
Working on those three family homes and seeing the gratitude they gave us was so lovely and amazing. I not only learned a lot the whole process and structure of building ramps and porches, I gained a new form of gratitude as I have a new appreciation for all who made this mission trip successful.
I am especially grateful to God for the strength and chance of serving his people, to all the Sisters for the support and prayers, to the Campus Ministry for the opportunity.
Cabrini University has been awarded a $25,000 grant from the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund. The grant will help develop a cross-institutional program that brings students from Cabrini and Universidad del Salvador (USAL) in Buenos Aires to live and study together at their respective campuses and abroad.
Supported by Santander Bank, the grant competition named Cabrini one of only nine new partnerships named by the U.S. Department of State, Partners of the Americas, and NAFSA: Association of International Educators.
“Since coming to Cabrini four years ago, it has been a priority to further expand our international partnerships with diverse universities and fellow Catholic institutions abroad,” said Cabrini University President Donald B. Taylor, PhD. “This one-of-a-kind collaboration enhances the typical study abroad experience to offer a cohort of students from both Cabrini and Universidad del Salvador a transformational study experience.”
The program will create a bilateral exchange program that will engage students across disciplines as well as those underrepresented or with limited resources that are traditionally required to participate in study abroad programs. The program will focus on experiential learning and encourage students from Cabrini and USAL to reflect on themes of social justice education, social responsibility, and social change while incorporating language-learning and cultural competencies as they travel and take classes together for three weeks at each of the partnering universities in a six-week summer program.
During the first three weeks at Cabrini, students will be part of a Living and Learning Community which focuses on inspiring cross-cultural competence while prioritizing experiential learning. Students will then travel together as a learning community to Argentina to continue their collective efforts at USAL.
“This program creates the opportunity for students in the cohort to be both the newcomer and the mentor—providing a way to encourage unity of purpose and diversity of perspective,” said Director of the program Paul Wright, PhD, Assistant Provost for International Affairs. “We’re doing more than simply broadening students’ horizons—we’re confronting alienation and misunderstanding by bringing students into close contact with their peers and faculty in a way that highlights the enduring power of overcoming shared challenges in a collaborative community.”
After the six-week program, students will then participate in virtual exchanges throughout the semester following their travels to continue building their connections. ~ Cabrini University website
On Wednesday, May 23rd, Cabrini University trustees, administrators, faculty and staff gathered to break ground for a new 180-bed residence hall on campus.
Sr. Grace Waters, MSC offered the opening reflection and participated in the ceremonial groundbreaking. The residence hall will welcome students for the 2019 – 2020 academic year.
Construction will also commence immediately for a 130 car parking structure on campus enabling the paths of the campus center to be pedestrian friendly.
The Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus hold a Corporate Stance against Human Trafficking, which states, “the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus stand in solidarity with the victims of human trafficking. We condemn the use of violence, abduction, fraud, deception, coercion, or debt bondage to transport women and children from their homes for prostitutions, sexual exploitation, forced labor and/or real or virtual slavery.” In the words of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “It is a sin against the dignity of persons and their fundamental rights that would reduce them by violence to their productive value or to a source of profit.” [Read more…]