Lumen Summer 2023

St. Thomas Lumen A Catholic Studies Publication SUMMER 2023


St. Thomas Lumen SUMMER 2023

T he Incarnation changes everything. That includes the classroom.

Published by the University of St. Thomas Center for Catholic Studies 55-S

2115 Summit Ave. St. Paul, MN 55105 (651) 962-5700

The classroom is where our students immediately engage Catholic Studies. Here, the ideas become reality. It is where we think about the impact of the Incarnation on human thought and culture. Here, students are invited to think concretely about the things that matter most. Such is the purpose of every single course in Catholic Studies; such is the purpose of the program as a whole. The heart of the Catholic Studies classroom is not a curriculum. Its heart is the encounter of the professor and students. Our faculty care deeply about the intellectual project of Catholic Studies and bring to it all their intellectual and imaginative powers. Our faculty, over the course of the past 30 years, have brought their own particular personality, style and genius to the classroom. As a result, our students experience a variety of ways one can encounter reality. Students certainly work; intellectual engagement is most serious because it gets at the deepest

things. They also laugh. Our faculty bring joy to the classroom, and it frequently erupts into laughter. This engagement spills over into conversations in faculty offices. Students know our faculty are available to talk about things that matter. Students will sometimes tell us they don’t want to graduate yet; there are more classes to take. But leave they must, and they take Catholic Studies, the vision of Catholic Studies and its engagement with everything, into the world and live it. As we think about the future of Catholic Studies, we see its effect and influence well beyond Sitzmann Hall and the campus of the University of St. Thomas. Catholic Studies is, as our founder Don Briel was fond of saying, a work of grace. That grace is nowhere more evident than in the fruits of our classrooms. Our faculty are deeply grateful to be a part of something so beautiful, joyful and enduring. 

6 Catholic Studies Communications Karen Laird Associate Director, Center for Catholic Studies Editor Brant Skogrand ’04 MBC, APR, CPPM Art Director John Mau Photographers University and Student Photographers University Archives

News/Did You Know? ..................4 The Heart of Catholic Studies ......6 The Center for Catholic Studies: A Settled Home...........................12 Catholic Studies Rome Program.......................................14 The Integration of Law and the Catholic Intellectual Tradition....16 A Bridge Between Faith and Business.......................................17 The Journal of the Catholic Studies Movement......................18 Leadership Interns......................19 Latino Scholars ...........................20 Stained-glass Windows of the Albertus Magnus Chapel............22 Catholic Studies 30th Anniverary...................................26


Contributors John F. Boyle Michael J. Naughton Melina Sotro-Arguello ‘18 Nancy Sannerud Michelle Rash '16, '24 CSMA Monsignor Martin Schlag Kathryn Wehr

Student Assistant Madison Liebl ‘23 On the cover Unknown artist: "Nativity, Adoration of the Shepherds"


The University of St. Thomas is an equal opportunity educator and employer. St. Thomas does not unlawfully discriminate, in any of its programs or activities, on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, family status, disability, age, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, membership or activity in a local commission, genetic information or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.



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Did you know? Catholic Studies News Dr. John Boyle’s most recent book, Aquinas on Scripture: A Primer (Emmaus Academic Press, 2023), is the result of 30 years of devoted study to the Angelic Doctor. Boyle introduces St. Thomas Aquinas’ approach to the Sacred Scripture and its inextricable relationship with the Church’s tradition. The book has received high praise among Boyle’s peers and fellow Aquinas scholars, including Reinhard Hütter of the Catholic University of America who shares, “John Boyle’s Aquinas on Scripture is the clearest, most succinct, and most satisfying introduction to Thomas Aquinas’ comprehensive vision of Scripture that I have had the privilege of reading.” J ohn F. B oyle A quinAs A Primer s cripture on “John Boyle’s Aquinas on Scripture is the clearest, most succinct, and most sat- isfying introduction to Thomas Aquinas’s comprehensive vision of Scripture that I have had the privilege of reading. . . . I warmly recommend this book to every lover of the Holy Scriptures and to every student of Thomas Aquinas’s thought, especially of his exegetical commentaries.” Reinhard Hütter The Catholic University of America “John Boyle unpacks Thomas Aquinas’s thinking about biblical interpretation with clarity and conciseness. . . . In an age dominated by the conflict of inter- pretation theories, Boyle’s commentary on Aquinas’s commentaries is a model of its kind, an essay to aid in understanding both Thomas and the Scriptures.” Kevin J. Vanhoozer Trinity Evangelical Divinity School “It is a joy to commend this volume. You will sense yourself in the hands of a master, and so you are.” Christopher Seitz Wycliffe College, University of Toronto “A wonderful entryway to Thomas as exegete and master of the sacred page.” Michael Allen Reformed Theological Seminary W ith precision and profundity born of 30 years of devoted study, John Boyle offers an essential introduction to St. Thomas Aquinas on Scripture, shed- ding helpful light on the goals, methods, and commitments that animate the Angelic Doctor’s engagement with the sacred page. Because the genius of St.Thomas’s approach to the Bible lies not so much in its novelty but rather in the fidelity and clarity with which he recapitulates the riches of the preceding interpretive Tradition, this initi- ation into St. Thomas’s vision of Scripture is itself an orientation to the Church’s vision of Scripture, from the Fathers through and beyond the Middle Ages. Drawing on writings from across St. Thomas’s corpus, but especially his work On the Commendation and Division of Sacred Scripture and the prologues to his biblical commentaries, Boyle masterfully elucidates both the hermeneutical principles and deep wisdom of the Angelic Doctor’s approach to Scripture, imparting invaluable guidance not only for reading and understanding St. Thomas and other great masters of the Tradition, but also—and ultimately—for understanding Scripture in light of this Tradition and reading it with greater ben- efit and joy. (continued from front flap)

WELCOME, PRESIDENT VISCHER! Catholic Studies warmly welcomes Robert K. Vischer as the 16th president of the University of St. Thomas. Vischer, a longtime friend of Catholic Studies, served on the Catholic Studies Advisory Board from 2015 until his appointment as interim president in March 2022. Vischer assumed the permanent role on Jan. 1.

St. Thomas’s embeddedness within the Church’s Tradition and his own histori- cal context is integral to his approach to Scripture, yet it sets him at some distance from modern readers, for whom his inter- pretive vision may seem perplexing or even impenetrable. In this Primer , Boyle first provides an acclimation to this medieval context through a survey and explanation of pertinent technical terminology used by St. Thomas and characteristic of the scholastic theology of the time. With an eye to the medieval practice of considering Scripture according to the fourfold division of causes, Boyle builds on this initial foundation by exploring in turn St. Thomas’s accounts of the end or use of Scripture (final cause), its divine and human authorship (efficient cause), its order and division (material cause), and its literary styles or genres (formal cause).

Vischer served as dean of the university’s law school from 2013-22. During his highly regarded tenure, he collaborated with Dr. Michael Naughton as they oversaw the Terrence Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law and Public Policy, a partnership between the Center for Catholic Studies and the School of Law. In sharing his vision of a Catholic university, Vischer says, “Bringing our Catholic lens to the most pressing challenges of our time is not just a key component of our mission, it will be a key component in the future flourishing of St. Thomas as a university. It is central to the formation of our students. And it is a tremendous gift to be able to lead from this perspective.” “St. Thomas is blessed to have a man of such vision and ability as its new president,” Dr. John Boyle says. “Dr. Naughton and I have appreciated Rob’s friendship and collaboration over many years and look forward to working with him in his new role. St. Thomas is in good hands.”

“This book is absolutely unique in its kind because its composition requires the level of knowledge, skills and love for Sacred Scripture and St. Thomas’s reading of it which John Boyle has continuously displayed over the years. . . . It should be required reading for anyone engaging St. Thomas on Scripture and deserves to be placed on one’s bookshelf next to introductions to St. Thomas by Boyle’s illustrious colleagues like Chenu, Weisheipl, and Torrell.” Jörgen Vijgen Pontifical Academy of Saint Thomas

John F. Boyle is Professor of Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota. A graduate of the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies and the University of Toronto, he has received a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, the Aquinas Medal from the University of Dallas, and has delivered the Aquinas Lecture at the National University of Ireland.

(continued on back flap)

Monsignor Martin Schlag edited the recently published special issue of the Business and Professional Ethics Journal (Vol. 41, No. 3, Fall 2022). It offers 12 academic peer-reviewed reflections on diverse aspects of work in the future, including Schlag’s essay, “The Future of Work.” Among the authors is Kristin Gottron ‘14 CSMA who writes on how to design big data systems with the worker in mind.

Dr. Robert Kennedy was recently appointed to the team of Catholic theologians participating in the Reformed-Catholic Dialogue sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Reformed Churches in America. Kennedy joins four other Catholic theologians. Kennedy was also a named

contributor to “Mensuram Bonam,” a document on ethical investing recently published by the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.

ALUMNI NOTES Michael Blissenbach '09, '15 J.D. is an attorney editor at Thomson Reuters in Eagan, Minnesota. In October, he was admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of the United States. Susan Mulheron '04 recently earned a doctorate in canon law at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome. She is currently the chancellor for canonical affairs for the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Elizabeth Kelly Stanchina '08 CSMA was the keynote speaker for the National Council of Catholic Women’s convention in November in Minneapolis. In December, Stanchina published a book for Lent called A Place Called Golgotha: Meditations on the Last Words of Christ (Word Among Us Press).

Catholic Studies faculty members attended the Catholic Studies Consortium Annual Symposium hosted by Loyola University Chicago last fall. This three-day conference brings together Catholic Studies faculty from across the country to discuss participants’ essays on a variety of topics in Catholic Studies. Dr. Erika Kidd wrote on “How to Put the ‘catholic’ in Catholic Studies.” Dr. John Boyle wrote on “Catholic Studies and the Interdisciplinary Classroom” and “Catholic Studies in Rome.” Dr. Michael Naughton gave a presentation on Logos , the journal of the Catholic Studies movement.

Kathryn Wehr, managing editor of Logos, edited a new scholarly edition of Dorothy L. Sayers’ life of Christ radio drama series The Man Born to be King (IVP Academic, 2023). First

Shawna Wicker joined the Catholic Studies staff in October as graduate program manager. Wicker received her bachelor’s degree, TESL

certificate, and master’s degree in second language education from the University of Minnesota. She has extensive experience in higher education in various roles at the University of Minnesota and Concordia University, St. Paul. “Shawna’s energy and enthusiasm are a great boon for the CSMA program and for Catholic Studies as a whole,” says Dr. Billy Junker, graduate program director. “She has a wonderful rapport with our current students and doubtless will help us attract even more students in the future.”

aired during World War II, these plays have been longtime favorites of readers and classical educators.

Scan here to access Susanna Bolle Parent's '13 story about alumna Katie Erickson '14, who hosts mornings of reflection for classmates and friends.

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a major, and we did not expect large numbers to show interest. The results quickly outpaced our expectations. What started

Studies has amplified the Catholic intellectual and spiritual life of St. Thomas specifically and Catholic higher education more broadly.

rather than a specific formula. To rightly understand this initiative, it would not be too much to say this movement in Catholic higher education demands not only an understanding of its various forms and expressions, but also and more importantly, a grasp of the underlying principles that inform its work within university education. While there are different ways to describe these principles, I find the distinction made by St. John Henry Newman, the great 19th century educationalist, between the university and collegiate principles, the most comprehensive. AN EDUCATION IN SEEING THINGS WHOLE The university principle expresses the essence of education. It concerns the acquisition of knowledge in the classroom, the lab, and the library where the mind is cultivated and sharpened, disciplined and made more precise, active, and penetrating. At the heart of the university principle is the

“ Catholic Studies has gone forward

under a set of guiding principles rather than a specific formula.”

as a trickle of students grew to a steady stream to become one of the largest humanities majors on campus. Catholic Studies at St. Thomas is the first, the largest, and the most defining program of its kind in the world. More than 1,600 alumni bring the Gospel to their corners of the world: 160 are priests, 65 are religious, and hundreds more are spouses, parents, teachers, business leaders, engineers, lawyers, doctors, nurses, and entrepreneurs.

With more than 60 Catholic Studies programs across the country today, Catholic Studies at St. Thomas is viewed as the “gold standard” in innovation and vitality. Our humble beginnings nurtured undergraduate and graduate degrees, highly regarded institutes, an academic journal, outreach to the Latino community, a leadership intern program, educational internships and fellowships, and other activities

The Heart of Catholic Studies

When Catholic Studies began 30 years ago, it did not start with a blueprint, strategic plan, or well- developed curriculum. Rather, it was formed within a community of faculty whose commitment and desire to strengthen and renew Catholic higher education was guided by the virtue of faith in relation to key intellectual convictions in Catholic education. This faith is rooted in the extraordinary claim that the “Word became Flesh,” and that the

Incarnation impacted everything in education — humanities, arts, sciences, social sciences, the professions — and the overall life of the university. Inspired and led by Dr. Don Briel and supported by a small network of faculty from a variety of disciplines, the plans for Catholic Studies were modest. In fact, it was simply an interdisciplinary program with no formal home on campus. We assumed that most students would pursue a minor rather than

and programs that display a distinctly Catholic character.​


Catholic Studies has gone forward under a set of guiding principles

With a regional, national, and international impact, Catholic

1990  John Paul II issues Ex corde Ecclesiae (From the Heart of the Church), an apostolic constitution



 The Interdisciplinary Program in Catholic Studies is approved by the University of St. Thomas Senate. Professor of Theology and program visionary, Don Briel,

regarding Catholic colleges and universities. Its aim is to define and refine the Catholicism of Catholic institutions of higher education.

is named head of the program. By second semester, more than 60 students are enrolled in Catholic Studies courses.

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truths received through Revelation. These two modes of knowing reflect the dynamism between the active and contemplative life and work together in complementary fashion. Faith prevents reason from being reduced to its instrumental tendencies; it connects reason to metaphysical questions and to matters of value, purpose, meaning, and ultimacy. Reason enriches faith by protecting it from the excesses of fideism, sentimentality and superstition. A key for understanding the complementarity of faith and reason is the Greek concept of logos. We translate logos as “word,” but in Greek it also means “reason.” Logos for the Greeks was a power that enabled the human mind to perceive the order present in the universe. This logos, this latent potency of mind, is used in our description of many of our disciplines: bio logy, geo logy, socio logy, psycho logy, anthropo logy. These are human disciplines, forms of reason,

expressions of logos, that help us to see patterns of intelligibility in the world. But the Greek understanding of logos does not end the matter. The prologue of John’s Gospel identifies Jesus as the Logos, the divine and creative reason. This is a truth grasped by faith – not a feeling but an intellectual illumination – resulting in a habit of mind by which eternal life is seen to begin in us, as St. Thomas Aquinas tells us, and the mind learns to see the end in our beginnings, and to penetrate to the invisible essence in the visible object. Faith, as St. Anselm once stated, seeks understanding, looks for reason. Catholic Studies, through its courses on Catholicism and science, faith and business, literature, the mission of the engineer, faith and doubt, as well as in its publications, seminars and conferences on campus and throughout the world, promotes the dialogue between the divine Logos and the human

aim of developing a habit of mind that sees things in relation to each other, resulting in a comprehensive vision that allows wise and accurate judgments about the world. In Catholic Studies, we focus on the intellectual habit of seeing things whole, a quality of mind that is increasingly deficient in higher education. The strength of the modern university is technical specialization, but this strength also feeds into the university’s most

This malaise was articulated by St. John Paul II in his 1990 Apostolic Letter, Ex Corde

this conviction is the confidence that the world is not a chaos but rather a cosmos. Because the world is created by a God of order, it contains patterns of intelligibility that can be discovered. Albert Einstein captured this conviction when he said, “The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.” Einstein’s claim concerning the comprehensibility of the universe is what makes a university a place where the unity of knowledge can be discerned and discovered. As Dr. John Boyle tells his students: “Everything from God to dirt is ordered and related in significant and intelligible ways.” As Catholic universities grew in complexity, we saw a need to foster an interdisciplinary center and eventually a department whose unique task would be to articulate such connections among the disciplines, not just for the humanities but also for the sciences

and professions. Catholic Studies is not a bubble; nor is it a fortress or an enclave. It is an intellectual initiative that seeks to establish appropriate relationships with and among all disciplines.

Ecclesiae, where he wrote about the “rigid compartmentalization of knowledge within individual academic disciplines” (§16). Such compartmentalization not only fragments knowledge; it also fragments the mind of the student. As we sought to address these challenges, we were guided by two intellectual convictions that inform

“ Catholic Studies is not a bubble; nor is it a fortress or an enclave. It is an

intellectual initiative that seeks to establish appropriate relationships with and among all the disciplines.”

The second key conviction that guides our work is the complementarity of faith and reason. Grasping the entirety of truth demands two modes of knowledge that are distinct but related: truths achieved through reason and

significant weakness. With the growing specialization of subjects, students find it increasingly difficult to gain an integrated vision across the various disciplines.

the university principle and express the interdisciplinary character of Catholic Studies.

The first conviction is the unity of knowledge. At the core of



1997  The quarterly academic journal Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture is launched,


 The Catholic Studies Rome Semester is born. Students live in various locations for four months and

 With the Koch’s founding gift, the Center for Catholic Studies is established. Briel is the first holder of the Koch Chair and the first director of the Center.

 The first two Catholic Studies majors, Ryan Lewis and Kathleen Noon, and minor, Gino Lambo, graduate from the University of St. Thomas.  David and Barbara Koch , longtime supporters of Catholic education, provide funds to establish the Koch Chair of Catholic Studies along with a scholarship fund.

giving the Center national and international scope, and encouraging a wider movement of educational thought and practice. Dr. Michael Mikolajczak is the founding editor.

attend classes at the Angelicum, the Dominican Pontifical University in Rome.

 The Center establishes the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought, a collaborative effort between Catholic Studies and the university’s School of Business. Dr. Robert Kennedy is its first director.

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logos in the humanities, sciences, social sciences, and professions. This intersection of faith and reason is where we discover the deepest wisdom for living. For the incarnate Logos is the highest expression

reason to find expression in fruitful dialogue. Yet this crucial principle can easily get lost or muted in the modern university. Universities are critiqued for reducing their purpose either to utilitarian careerism or to ideological activism. THE FORMATION OF THE HEART AND SOULS Whereas the university principle is the essence of higher education, the collegiate principle provides for the university’s integrity . The life of a student is never confined simply to the classroom, lab and library. Students live, play sports, and worship and pray together; they participate in clubs and internships; and above all, they create friendships. They are called not only to gain an intellectual habit

of seeing things whole, but also fashion lives of integrity.

through which the spiritual and moral lives of students are integrated with their intellectual work. This principle is particularly expressed in our front room in Sitzmann Hall. There hangs the painting by the Renaissance artist Caravaggio, "The Calling of Saint Matthew." It depicts the moment when Christ is calling Matthew to follow him. In one form or another it is a call that comes to each of us. College years are of crucial importance for attentiveness to this call. Students are discerning their majors, assessing their gifts and talents, and looking toward the profession they hope to pursue. It is also a time for every serious Catholic student to look at the three main states of life: lay, religious and priestly. To facilitate such discernment, we collaborate with Campus Ministry where Masses, adoration, retreats, and spiritual direction are offered.

As every parent who sends a child to college knows,

roommates, friendships, and the student community have serious implications for their child’s moral and spiritual health. In addition to developing intellectual virtues, students need to grow in moral and religious virtues as well. Without such virtue, the intellectual virtues are prone to weaken, leaving the student vulnerable and likely to capitulate to one of the most dangerous temptations of the academy: intellectual pride. This collegiate principle, as a formation of the soul and heart, has informed our work at Catholic Studies. We create conditions, opportunities, and programs

"The Calling of Saint Matthew" by Caravaggio.

These decisions of vocation, profession, and marriage need to be planted in the deepest soil of wisdom possible. This is why we see Catholic Studies as more than an academic project; it is also an ecclesial one. We aim to help our students embed their moral and spiritual lives in the life of the Church — her prayer, sacraments, and teachings. Apart from this ecclesial context, the intellectual work of the university will go awry, and the education that was meant

to bring a young mind and spirit into the order of the Logos instead will tend to corrupt and misshape it. This is why Newman maintained that “practically speaking, the university cannot fulfill its object duly without the Church’s assistance, i.e., the Church is necessary for its integrity . . . the Church steadies it in the performance of that office,” a truth as relevant today as it was in Newman’s time. 

of order and intelligibility, the privileged place where truth meets love. The university was originally an outgrowth of the Catholic mind founded to allow the complementarity of faith and

This intersection of faith and reason is where we discover the deepest wisdom for living.”


 The Master of Arts in Catholic Studies program is approved by the university. Dr. Mary Reichardt serves as its first director. 2000

 Through a gift from the Bernardi family, a residence is purchased and renovated in central

 The Latino Leadership Program is established, making a four-year degree at a Catholic university possible for local Latino students. The program is later renamed Latino Scholars Program.

 Catholic Studies makes the recently renovated residence in Rome its permanent home. The Bernardi Campus becomes a

Rome. The villa, which had once been a convent, has a chapel, dining area, student rooms, a faculty apartment, and a rooftop terrace.

beloved place in Rome for Catholic Studies students and faculty.

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A SETTLED HOME D uring its first three years of development, Catholic Studies was an entrepreneurial, interdisciplinary venture in the matter of faculty resources. But this revealed an endemic difficulty: The program had no settled home. It was pieced together among several departments without a focal point. This could be administratively cumbersome, but more importantly for the success of the project, it impeded the growth of a true community of mind. Unless the intellectual and cultural ideal being articulated by the Catholic Studies professors was incarnated in time and place, in settled relationships and a shared experience such that it could help shape the life of students and faculty, that high ideal would remain largely abstract and unrealized. From this concern came the idea of establishing a Center for Catholic Studies. If Catholic Studies was a response to fragmentation in higher education, it needed the context of a genuine ecclesial community, where the whole of the human was addressed and in which the harmony of life could be seen and experienced in order to thrive. THE CENTER FOR CATHOLIC STUDIES By  MICHAEL NAUGHTON

Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law and Public Policy. In 2004 and 2005, the Catholic women’s and men’s floors were established, as well as the Catholic women’s and men’s houses. Then in 2006 came the third institute, the Joseph and Edith Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership, which helps connect these residential activities with the work of the Department of Catholic Studies as well as develop an undergraduate leadership program and a Latino outreach project. With these developments, Catholic Studies has largely taken its current institutional form. The work of the Center, in collaboration with the department, has brought to St. Thomas a national and international reputation of high-quality academic work and ecclesial faithfulness. Its collaborations with universities, dioceses and the Vatican, bring to life the rich Catholic intellectual tradition in the various ways Catholic higher education can serve the Church and the wider culture. 

In 1995, David and Barbara Koch , longtime supporters of Catholic education, provided the funds to establish the Koch Chair of Catholic Studies along with a scholarship fund. With this founding gift, the Center for Catholic Studies was established in 1996. With its fundamental principles firmly in place, the Center began to grow in many directions. Catholic Studies now offered an integrated set of courses in philosophy, theology, history and literature. This was a good start, but the vision of the founding faculty went beyond the humanities. They were looking for ways to engage the wider university such that the Center could be an integrating instrument for the university as a whole. Several initiatives were established to facilitate that engagement.

The first of the Center’s institutes, the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought, was established in 1996, as a collaborative effort between Catholic Studies and the School of Business. The next year the Center began to publish a quarterly journal, Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture, giving the Center national and international scope and encouraging a wider movement of educational thought and practice. A semester-long Rome program was begun in 1998, and in 2000, a master’s program was added. The next year, in a decisive development, the Department of Catholic Studies was approved by the university. In 2003, in cooperation with the new School of Law, the second of the Center’s institutes was established: the



 Approval of the joint Master of Arts/Juris Doctor degree is granted, paving the way for future lawyers

 Sitzmann Hall, 2055 Summit Ave., the new home of Catholic Studies, undergoes an extensive renovation.

 Perspectives, the Center for Catholic Studies biannual newsletter, publishes its first issue.

 The university formally recognizes the Interdisciplinary Program of Catholic Studies as the

Department of Catholic Studies, the first of its kind. Dr. Christopher Thompson is named chair.

who desire to integrate their law degree with a distinctly Catholic worldview.

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Catholic Studies Rome Program

We have American priests as our chaplains. They provide weekly formation oriented to the joys and challenges of living in Rome. But they are not there just to celebrate Mass and hear confessions. They go to the museums and sites with us, and they join us for meals. We want students to experience places in a fuller Catholic Studies way. Friendship in community. We tell students that Bernardi is a place of community. We assure them that if they are not friends when they arrive, they will be when they leave. We have community night once a week with Mass, dinner, and conversation with a guest. The cultural, intellectual and spiritual quite naturally come together in community life. Over the years, students often tell me that Rome transformed their lives. When I ask what they mean, they cannot find the words. I have, however, come to see why Rome is such a significant and enduring experience. Our students want to be intellectually serious about their faith, they want to deepen their interior lives, and they want to develop true friendships. In St. Paul, they are busy with many things. In Rome, we create a space for them to intensify, or even newly acquire, habits

of the intellectual and spiritual life. The experience is so foundational, they do not really see it, at least at first. With their return home, they are better able

to strive for the priorities they want. They have lived them, and they are that much better formed to be able to achieve what they desire. 

J-Term in Mexico City


T wenty-five years ago, Don needed a Rome program so that students could have the opportunity to experience the universal character of the Church in the city that is the heart of the Church. He was right. But it had to be a different kind of program from the usual Rome study Briel said that Catholic Studies abroad. He was right again. The result is a truly distinctive program in the heart of Rome woven of four intentionally interrelated elements: culture, intellectual life, spiritual life and friendship in community. Culture. That Rome has been inhabited without interruption for perhaps as long as five millennia means that the culture is deep and rich. Our students experience this

I n addition to a study abroad experience in Rome, Catholic Studies offers a J-Term program in Mexico City. Developed in 2019, this course is divided into three distinct, yet interrelated, parts: an on-campus academic exploration of the cultural, historical, theological and social dimensions of the encounter between the West and Indigenous as well as Christian and secular cultures; an immersive experience in Mexico City where students explore how Our Lady’s appearance influenced the development of the Latino people, examine precolonial history and the European encounter with this Indigenous culture, and engage with residents of a garbage dump and a poor parish where they encounter firsthand the challenges and secularization of Mexican culture; and a local engagement of the opportunities and challenges facing the growing Latino community in the Twin Cities metro area. Like Rome, the Mexico City program weaves together four intentionally interrelated elements – culture, intellectual life, spiritual life and friendship in community – and has a transformative effect on our students.

cultural reality in many ways. Perhaps the most important, to my mind, is that they walk a lot. I encourage them to feel the city in their muscles. Given that Rome really is built on hills, they do indeed feel it every day as they walk among the ruins, churches, piazzas, fountains, and obelisks. Intellectual life. Our students study at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas, otherwise known as the Angelicum, with students from all over the world. We always have an Art History course for our students. To study art in Rome is so arresting because the art is all

around you. Students start to see things in the churches they visit as a result of what they are studying. The cultural and the intellectual meet. Spiritual life. The sheer number and beauty of the churches make almost inevitably for an intensification of our students’ spiritual lives. Students will come to have a favorite church to which they will return over the course of their semester in Rome. It might be one of the major basilicas or an all-but-unnoticed gem on a side street. The spiritual and the cultural come together.

2003  After a remodel and much anticipation, the Center for Catholic Studies moves into its new home in


 A Catholic women’s floor is established in Dowling Hall; the year following, a Catholic men’s floor begins

 The Terrence J. Murphy Institute, the second of the Center’s institutes, is established. It is a joint venture between the University of St. Thomas School of Law and the Center for Catholic Studies and under the leadership of founding co-directors, Dr. Robert Kennedy and Tom Berg, J.D.

 Father Bill Baer, rector of Saint John Vianney College Seminary (SJV), and Dr. John Boyle

in Ireland Hall. In addition to the dormitory experiences,

Sitzmann Hall, made possible by a generous donation from Eugene V. and Faye J. Sitzmann.

team teach Introduction to Catholic Doctrine and the Sacraments to the SJV men, beginning a collaboration of intellectual formation between Catholic Studies and the college seminary.

Catholic men’s and Catholic women’s houses are opened.

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Murphy Institute

Ryan Institute

The Integration of Law and the Catholic Intellectual Tradition

A Bridge Between Faith and Business



In 2009, I was at a reception in the Vatican. One of the people present, a former director of a large European oil company and a practicing Catholic eager to serve the Church, approached me and said, “Monsignor, please never again a social encyclical!” I was surprised and asked why he did not want the popes to write on economic and social matters. He answered that the social encyclicals were utopian and incomprehensible for people working in business. I realized that a bridge was needed between the social teaching of the Church and the world of business that goes both ways: Christian values for business but knowledge on economics and business for the Church too. This is what the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought does. It builds a bridge between faith and business in society, helping entrepreneurs and managers work for the common good. The Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas is the logical and willing partner in this endeavor. Drs. Robert Kennedy and Michael Naughton established the Center for Christian Social Thought and Management at St. Thomas in 1992. With nearly 50% of St. Thomas students matriculating in business at that time, it was important to examine the larger

question of faith and work. In 1996, the Center was renamed the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought and became a part of the Center for Catholic Studies. Monsignor John A. Ryan was one of the great pioneers in Catholic social thought in the early 20th century and a St. Thomas and seminary graduate. Since its founding, the Ryan Institute has built a network of institutions and individual scholars who wish to integrate Catholic social thought in their research and curricula. We contribute to this growing international academic community through our research, faculty and curriculum development, seminars, conferences and publications. One of our publications, The Vocation of the Business Leader: A Reflection (2018), came out in cooperation with the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. Now in its fifth edition in English and translated into more than 12 languages, this document has inspired business schools and scholars worldwide. Together with the same Vatican Dicastery, the Ryan Institute maintains one of the largest international databases of institutes working in and implementing Catholic social teaching. 

The Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law, and Public Policy was founded as a collaboration between the Center for Catholic Studies and School of Law in 2003. From its beginning, the Murphy Institute has sought to carry forward the project of reappropriating the

received financial aid through the Murphy Scholars program while working closely with the institute to support its activity and utilize its resources to conduct their own extracurricular projects. 

Monsignor Terrence J. Murphy

elements of the Catholic intellectual tradition that are relevant to law and public policy, and to apply the results of this project to legal education and issues in the Church and society. The namesake of the institute is Monsignor Terrence J. Murphy , 13th president of the University of St. Thomas. The integration of law and the Catholic intellectual tradition was the vision of Murphy, who was especially convinced of the importance of a Catholic law school in the Twin Cities. Over the past 10 years, the Murphy Institute has sponsored nearly 100 public lectures, seminars, and conferences as well as multiple publications. Additionally, over 30 graduate student fellows have

HOT TOPICS: COOL TALK In 2011, the Murphy Institute began the popular debate-style conversations known as Hot Topics: Cool Talk, a unique series that explores Catholic positions and other perspectives on provocative issues of law and politics. Over the past 12 years, experts from opposing sides have come together to present their arguments for or against a specific question. On contemporary and contentious topics – including abortion, Confederate monuments, physician-assisted suicide, qualified immunity, and legalizing recreational marijuana – Hot Topics models civil discourse with opposing viewpoints.



 The Center’s third institute, the Joseph and Edith Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership, is established to help students

 The Leadership Interns Program begins. This two-year commitment offers juniors and seniors

 The annual student-led Talent Show provides a wide variety of entertainment for the entire campus community

exceptional leadership

develop the fortitude and character required to live as faithful professionals, ethical leaders, and joyful Catholics in a complex world.

opportunities and a Christ-centered formation.

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St. Thomas Lumen Summer 2023 Page 17

LOGOS Journal

Habiger Institute

The Journal of the Catholic Studies Movement By KATHRYN WEHR

Leadership Interns: Christ-Centered Leaders T hirteen years into the Catholic Studies project, 12 students began informal meetings once a month to explore the roots of Christ-centered By NANCY SANNERUD

T he importance of a sustained encounter with the claims of Catholic thought and culture has never been more important. Springing from Catholic Studies' commitment to contribute to national and international developments in Catholic higher education, we began publishing Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture in 1997. Since then, Logos has served as an interdisciplinary meeting point for scholars to publish their finest work and for readers to remain engaged in the beauty, truth, and vitality of Christianity as it is rooted in and shaped by Catholicism. While Logos has fewer than 400 individual print edition subscribers, we set a new Logos record in 2022 with more than 18,000 full-text hits on Project Muse – that is, people accessing

on to exercise influence throughout the country in a variety of vocations, professions and mission- driven nonprofits. “ Leadership Interns created space for me to ponder what it means to radically live for Christ while working and living in the world.” – Katy Shimp ’22 Through years of articulating and refining a vision of Christ-centered leadership in this unique program, the book True Leadership was published in 2015. It is a concise treatise outlining the five principles of true Christian leadership properly ordered: faith, character, vocation, gifts and skills. This starting point allows students to respond to God’s call by placing their gifts and skills at the service of the Gospel, preparing them to exert an influence in the world that moves it toward the goodness which belongs to his kingdom. 

a full article digitally through their institution’s library. Project Muse is a database run by the Johns Hopkins University Press, and academic and public libraries subscribe to get access to thousands of journals, including ours.

leadership. Since then, more than 285 students have participated in what has become the Leadership Interns Program, a two-year commitment for juniors and seniors within the Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership. In the beginning, interns planned and coordinated guest speakers and activities that contributed to the greater good of the Catholic Studies and St. Thomas communities, keeping the most committed students involved in the life of Sitzmann Hall. As the program evolved, interns met more frequently and interest in the program grew. Each year a select group was chosen to exercise leadership skills among their peers, eventually establishing other campus programs such as Catholic Edge (now Tommie Catholic) and St. Thomas Street Ministry. The program now includes a fall retreat, a spring institute, and regular interaction with business and Church leaders, as well as inspiring St. Thomas alumni. Graduates from the program have gone


Academic researchers, students writing undergraduate essays and graduate dissertations, and general readers around the world. It is interesting to note that only 37% of our Project Muse readers are in the U.S., with roughly another third in the rest of the English-speaking world and a final third where English is not the first language. 



 Catholic Studies celebrates 20 years. Cardinal Timothy Dolan serves as the keynote speaker at the celebration.

 The Murphy Scholars Program is established, contributing to the Murphy Institute’s programming and providing opportunities for personal, professional and spiritual development.

 The first major addition to Sitzmann Hall commences, adding a chapel, classroom and additional offices for faculty and staff.

 The first Monte Casino Night is held for faculty, staff and students. As a play on both the famous

gambling house in Europe and the Italian Benedictine monastery, this favorite event features card games and karaoke.

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St. Thomas Lumen Summer 2023 Page 19

Habiger Institute

but more importantly, to ensure that the recipients were immersed in a transformative educational experience. Inspired by St. John Henry Newman’s vision of university life, this experience includes an integrated approach to education. For this reason, Latino Scholars are required to complement their professional choice of study with a Catholic Studies major or minor. Latino Scholars officially launched in 2000 with one full-tuition scholarship and one student. Today, there are 35 Latino Scholars. Throughout its tremendous growth, the purpose of the scholarship and formation program has remained the same: to ensure that each recipient engages in a transformative educational experience, one that develops in them the ability to recognize and pursue what is true, good, and beautiful. As a community formed, four pillars of the program evolved: academics, community, faith, and servant leadership. To support the academic pillar, Latino Scholars receive personal accompaniment throughout their four years of university life. As a result, the retention rate for Latino Scholars has remained at 92% over the past five years. The pillars of community and faith go hand in hand. Latino Scholars meet monthly to celebrate a bilingual Mass, share a meal, and receive a brief “enseñanza,”

or small teaching, that they can apply in their daily lives as students. And finally, servant leadership. All Latino Scholars serve the local Latino community by helping with youth ministry in Latino parishes, leading a college immersion program for Latino high schoolers, or participating in Ignatian Bible studies on campus. In the beginning, the scholarship was the pathway through which these students were able to study at the University of St. Thomas. While the program has more than doubled in size, generous Catholic Studies donors and the university have increased financial support for Latino students. Today, recipients can receive approximately $14,000 from the Latino Scholars Program throughout their four years at St. Thomas. What began as a scholarship that paved the way to St. Thomas for a couple of students has become an integral part of the Catholic Studies movement. A vibrant community of faithful Latinos receives a transformative educational experience while they prepare for professional and vocational responsibilities. 



M ore than 20 years ago, Dr. Michael Naughton and Dr. Bill Cavanaugh were establishing a Catholic Worker House at a local Latino parish. As the project unfolded, parishioners expressed that the most pressing need for the community was scholarships to make higher education possible for their children. Naughton

and Cavanaugh channeled their efforts to create a scholarship fund for Latino students at the University of St. Thomas. This was the birth of the Catholic Studies Latino Leaders Program, now known as the Latino Scholars Program. From its inception, the intent of the scholarship was not only to make a university education possible,

2015  Dr. Don Briel retires. Dr. Michael Naughton is appointed director for the Center for Catholic Studies.



 The online MA program is launched using a flexible, distance-learning option. Online students study under

 More than 600 people gather to celebrate Catholic Studies' 25th anniversary. Bishop Robert Barron is the keynote speaker.

 Perspectives is changed to Lumen.

the guidance of our faculty in a convenient learning environment.

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