Seal of the Jesuits
Jesuit USA Newsletter

February 26, 2009





New Provincials Named

Fr. Douglas Marcoullier, SJ, has been appointed provincial of the Missouri Province of the Society of Jesus. Marcoullier, a former Boston College professor, teaches economics at Saint Louis University and is visiting professor of economics at Universidad Centroamericana in El Salvador. He will succeed Fr. Timothy McMahon, SJ, on July 31.

Fr. Myles Sheehan, SJ, will become the new provincial for the New England Province, succeeding Fr. Thomas Regan, SJ. Sheehan entered the Society of Jesus with a doctorate in medicine from Dartmouth College and has served as Professor of Medicine and Senior Associate Dean at Loyola University’s Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago.


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Oregon Province Declares Bankruptcy

The Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on February 17. The bankruptcy petition cites a number of pending lawsuits over claims of sexual abuse by Oregon Province priests in Alaska.

“Our decision to file Chapter 11 was not an easy one, but with approximately 200 additional claims pending or threatened, it is the only way we believe that all claimants can be offered a fair financial settlement within the limited resources of the province,” said provincial Fr. Patrick Lee SJ in a statement.

The full statement and more information is available on the Oregon Province Website.[Catholic News Service]


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JRS Closes Adjumani Project in Uganda

In December, JRS Eastern Africa closed the Adjumani project in northern Uganda after sixteen years of assisting Sudanese refugees. The site was one of two JRS sites featured in Gary Smith’s book They Come Back Singing, excerpted in Company’s Winter 2008-09 issue.

Among other services, JRS educated around 30,000 students per year and provided peace education programs, catechetical training, and an affirmative action program for female education. After the Comprehensive Peace Agreement was signed in January 2005, refugees gradually returned home and the government took over responsibility for education.

“We are left strong as JRS leaves,” said Longa Kassim, a refugee community leader. “JRS has empowered us economically, intellectually, and spiritually.”

Company’s excerpt from They Come Back Singing is available online at www.companymagazine.org/v262/toc262.htm.[JRS]


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Cristo Rey Expands Community Involvement

In addition to managing a heavy load of schoolwork and sharing full-time jobs, students at Cristo Rey Jesuit High in Baltimore have contributed more than 800 hours of service to the greater Baltimore community so far this school year.

Students have worked at Beans & Bread, Moveable Feast, and the St. Frances Academy Community Center, cooked and served meals to the homeless, prepared food for and visited people suffering from HIV/AIDS and cancer, entertained the elderly, and helped put on a Halloween party for 1,000 children.

Cristo Rey students are aiming to complete more than 2,000 service hours by the end of the school year. [EMPN]


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Fr. James Martin SJ Appears on The Colbert Report

Stephen Colbert, star of Comedy Central’s satirical news show The Colbert Report, called Fr. James Martin SJ the show’s chaplain during Martin’s February 23 appearance. During the interview, Martin spoke of his hope that the economic crisis might encourage people to let God into their lives.

Click the video below to view the full interview.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c


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Xaviers in the News

St. Xavier High in Cincinnati Names New President

Fr. Timothy A. Howe SJ will become the 40th president of St. Xavier High in Cincinnati in August 2009. He will succeed Fr. Walter Deye SJ, president since 2001.

Howe, who will leave his position as pastor of St. Procopius in Chicago, began his teaching career at St. Xavier. He taught Spanish and moderated St. Xavier’s mock trial team from 1991 to 1994. He earned a master’s degree in education from Harvard in 1999.

“I am thrilled to be coming back home to St. Xavier,” Fr. Howe said. “I look forward to carrying out the important mission of forming the next generation of leaders and young men for and with others.” [kypost.com]


St. Xavier's School in Nepal Closes Indefinitely

On February 10 St. Xavier’s in Nepal closed indefinitely after the newly-formed Nepal Institutional School Teachers’ Union staged a sit-in at the school. This is the first time the school was affected by the trade unionism that has become common in Nepal in the last year.

The 58-year-old school’s closing affects about 1,700 students and 90 teachers, in addition to the Jesuits who teach at St. Xavier’s. [IANS]


Xavier High in New York and Mount Manresa Retreat House Team Up for Student Athletes

A swampy plot of land at Mount Manresa Jesuit Retreat House in Fort Wadsworth, New York, may soon be a manicured practice field for student athletes at nearby Xavier High School. Right now, Xavier students practice on New York City-run fields when they can get a permit.

The practice field is just one way the two Jesuit institutions are building a partnership. Mount Manresa is working to extend outreach to alumni of Jesuit schools and is working with Xavier and other Jesuit schools in the New York area to learn what resources it can best provide. In addition, Mount Manresa hopes to offer more retreats for young adults in their 20s and 30s. [Staten Island Advance]


Around the Campuses

Wisconsin Universities to Support K-12 Catholic Education

Marquette University has partnered with four other Milwaukee colleges and universities to found the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium. Aided by a three-year, $600,000 gift from the Stollenwerk Family Foundation, the consortium schools will pool resources to provide academic resources and professional expertise for the 132 Catholic K-12 schools in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

The consortium will focus on professional development for teachers and leaders, Catholic mission and identity, and organizational effectiveness in finance, governance, human resources, marketing, planning, research, and technology. [Marquette University]


National Award for Saint Louis University's Students for Life Group

Saint Louis University’s Students for Life group was named Group of the Year by the national Students for Life Organization. The group, founded in 1992, was recognized for its large and dedicated student base and for implementing many pro-life initiatives.

Among other programs, the Saint Louis University group sponsors an annual Respect Life Week on campus. Last fall, it established the Pregnant and Parenting Student Assistance Fund, which provides financial assistance to any SLU student facing unexpected pregnancy or parenthood to encourage them to continue working toward a degree. [Saint Louis University]


Boston College Crucifixes Cause Controversy

Boston College’s decision to place crucifixes in about forty classrooms on campus during winter break has generated much debate among faculty and students. The decision to display crucifixes, including several hand-carved works collected by students on international volunteer trips, was made by Boston College’s Committee on Christian Art.

To read more about the debate, visit www.catholicnewsagency.com. [Catholic News Agency]


Grammy and Oscar Wins for Jesuit Faculty and Alumna

Terence Blanchard, director of Loyola University New Orleans’s Monk Institute of Jazz Performance, won the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo on February 8.

The award was given for Blanchard’s trumpet solo on the song “Be-Bop,” from the album Live at the 2007 Monterey Jazz Festival: Monterey Jazz Festival 50th Anniversary All-Stars. Blanchard performed at the Grammy award ceremony with other New Orleans artists. The Grammy is his second award; he won in 2007 for his recording “A Tale of God’s Will (A Requiem for Katrina).”

On February 22, Georgetown University alumna Megan Mylan won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Subject. Her film, “Smile Pinki,” focuses on two children born with cleft palates who live in poor, rural India. [Georgetown University]


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Remembrance of Things Past