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St. John Lateran and Salvation History

st john lateran11“So much of the Old Testament is found in the New, so much of the New Testament stems from the Old, and together they compose the beautiful story of God’s salvation history. The first book of the New Testament, the Gospel according to Matthew, proves this point in words, while St. John Lateran uses images to convey the same message.” Hannah King

St John Lateran3Recently our New Testament in the Eternal City class made a visit to the basilica of St. John Lateran.  We were studying Matthew’s gospel which includes a theology of the Church that is founded on Peter and the Apostles.  Matthew also stresses the Church’s connection to the Old Testament and Judaism in general.  This view of salvation history sees the Church as the “new Israel” and Jesus as the Jewish Messiah, fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies and theology.

st john lateran12We were able to study some of Matthew’s theological themes contained in the  structure, mosaics, statuary, and paintings of the Basilica of the Lateran.  Reading the “text” of the basilica the students discovered a salvation history similar to the one in Matthew’s gospel.  St John Lateran2Along the central nave leading to the main altar are statues of the 12 apostles, over which are base reliefs of alternating scenes from the Old Testament and the New Testament. Above these are oval portraits of the 12 Old Testament prophets.  This artistic schema is not only beautiful and impressive, but tells the story of Jesus the Messiah, much as Matthew does, with his stress on Old Testament fulfillment.

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Here are some excerpts from the students’ weekly essays:

“Both Matthew’s gospel in the New Testament and the St. John Lateran Basilica in Rome frequently reference the Old Testament, showing God working in human history to bring about our salvation.” Rose Muldoon

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“In order to understand both St. John Lateran and the Gospel of Matthew one must be well versed in the Jewish scriptures. Therefore when one looks at the reliefs in St. John Lateran one can very much relate to the Jewish converts to Christianity who used their previous understanding of God in the Old Testament to foster a new relationship with Him and the Church.. by viewing the Basilica through the lens of Mathew’s Gospel one can further understand his or her own faith as well as understand Mathew’s Jewish-Christian audience.” Nick Totagrande

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“The Basilica of St. John Lateran contains theological evidence and references that connect directly to the Old and New Testament, linking to the message Matthew preaches in order to fulfill the needs of the Jewish-Christians, proving that Jesus Christ is the Jewish Messiah leading all the way back to Israel.” Jenna Winn

 Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P.C. and Pope Francis

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“I thought this was one of the greatest experiences I’ve had in Rome thus far. Seeing the pope and hearing him speak was very exciting and truly made me proud to be a Catholic. I thought it was interesting how they had speakers from all different languages and especially liked when they announced Providence College!” Lauren Politi

“This morning was truly a morning I will never forget…” Caroline Lockyer

“The papal audience was one of my greatest experiences of studying abroad so far. To have all of these people here to pray together is just truly amazing. Papa Francesco rocks!” Matt Matuozzi

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Last week the P.C. in Rome program went to the weekly Wednesday papal audience with Pope Francis.  I contacted Bishop Tobin’s office in Providence at the beginning of the semester for help in obtaining tickets for the students and myself.

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The crowd numbered over 50,000 according to the Vatican news later that day.  We were thrilled to hear “Providence College” formally welcomed during the introduction when various pilgrim groups and visiting dignitaries were introduced at the beginning of the Audience. (Thanks Bishop Tobin!)  Go Friars!
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We gave the Pope a Providence College baseball cap as he passed by us on the “Pope mobile”.  It’s a thrill to know that it will now be part of the papal archive of gifts.
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Pope Francis has recently been using his talks at the weekly audience to offer some catechesis on the Church.  The talk he gave to us was about ecumenism and relationships with other Christians. He urged that Catholics realize that all Christians are on a journey together, towards full unity, in spite of our historic and theological differences. He asked us to pray for Christian unity, while adhering to the truth, on the way to reconciliation and communion.
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 I asked the students to share their photos and their impressions of the experience.
 “I loved the papal audience. Although I’m not very religious, I liked how pope Francis spoke about dialogue between people regardless of their backgrounds, religions, and differences. He is definitely an amazing and inspiring man for both religious and non-religious followers.” Danielle Cady
“The Pope Mobile being a Mercedes made it even cooler.” Kevin Gleason
“Being a part of an experience of people gathered from all over the world and sitting to watch and listen to the Pope was something I won’t forget.” Emily DiRenzo
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 “First of all, the ceremony was beautiful, and it was amazing to see how excited everyone got when the pope came out. His kindness is visible in his mannerisms and the comfort that he brought among that gigantic crowd… I really enjoyed the announcements and the fact that they said Providence College, hopefully the blessing spreads back to campus!” Jenna Winn
“I found the Papal Audience to be a great experience, and I am really glad that I participated in it. I am shocked at how close Pope Francis actually came to us.” Katherine Morley

“The Papal audience was so much more than I had expected! My absolute favorite part was when he was kissing and blessing the babies it was very touching.”  Camille Dottore

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“As the Pope drove past us in his “Pope mobile” I was extremely excited but also shocked because I didn’t realize that he would be that close to us. I was very impressed at the number of people at the audience. Overall, it was amazing to be at the Papal Audience and to see first hand how many people truly praise Pope Francis. This is a day I will never forget.” Devin Flood

“Seeing the pope today was something I’ll never forget, his charisma and compassion were evident just by him driving by in his pope mobile and his interaction with the crowd.  From the kids to the old Italian ladies sitting behind us, there was a lot of love for Pope Francis in St. Peters Square.” Greg Nicolai

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“I am so glad that I had the opportunity to witness the papal audience this morning, it was truly an experience I will never forget. Not only was there a great deal of excitement built up to seeing Pope Francis, but being able to witness the ceremony afterwards was great as well.” Hannah Struever

“The Papal Audience was amazing! It was so powerful and spiritual but felt like a concert at the same time, everyone saw Papa Francesco as a celebrity!” Caroline Carew

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 Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Underground Christianity

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“After studying Mark’s gospel and visiting the Catacombs of Priscilla, the main connection and overbearing Christian theme between the two becomes the resurrection and human salvation.” – Gregory Nicolai

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During our recent study of St. Mark’s gospel, we visited the Catacombs of St. Priscilla.  Because of the great number of martyrs buried there and the fact that it is mentioned in the most ancient documents of Christian topography and liturgy, it is called the “regina catacumbarum” or the Queen of the Catacombs”.

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There are over 50 catacomb complexes underneath Rome stretching for nearly three hundred miles. Many of them have ancient Christian inscriptions and decorations. Although there are several Christian catacombs that are open to the public, I chose Santa Priscilla because of the richness of the artwork and inscriptions.  It has the oldest image of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the so-called “Greek Chapel” is an absolute treasure trove of frescoes depicting biblical images from the Old and New Testaments.

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Contrary to popular Christian imagination, the early Christians never lived in the catacombs.  In fact, it would have been dangerous even to pray publicly there as a group since it could have led to discovery and arrest during the days of the Roman persecution of the Church.  The catacombs were a place of burial and remembrance.  The fresoes and inscriptions are testimony to the faith of the early Christians and their hope of resurrection.  The tombs of the martyrs take pride of place and are usually richly decorated.

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During our tour, the students were able to connect many of the motifs of the frescoes and inscriptions with theological and spiritual themes from our New Testament course.

Priscilla4“Since this Gospel was written at the time of Christian persecution by the Romans, there needed to be an emphasis on the new life that came from death and that Jesus secured that new life for us…This assurance of rebirth in Mark’s Gospel clearly had an effect on the early Christians because on their inscriptions in the catacombs they would write the death date of the deceased.  The date symbolizes the birth date of their new life with Christ.” – Kevin Gleason

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“The art in the Catacombs reflects the paradox and Christian belief in an afterlife. It also replicates Mark’s story that you must die and understand suffering before you can truly live. These paintings show that life and eternal happiness is beyond the grave, which ties in with the paradox of the Catacombs that you can find such life and beauty in an area of death.” – Rainy Paul

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“In Mark’s Gospel, the cross is a central symbol that is present throughout and in order to be a Christian one must take up their own cross, which connects to the sufferings of the Christians in Rome during a time of persecution…In the catacombs, the centrality of the cross is represented by the symbol of suffering and death, which is everywhere because many of the the Christians who were buried there were martyrs who fought for their faith.” Hayley White

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“Christians view the cross as a sign of Jesus Christ, who gave his life for the gift of salvation and correspondingly at the catacombs the cross symbolized salvation. The Christian belief of afterlife is the idea of life after death; in the catacombs of Priscilla, a place of burial and death, the artwork represents life, which could be symbolism for afterlife.” – Hannah Struever

Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P.C. Admissions Comes To Rome

This week we were pleased to welcome Mr. Matt Maurano to our Rome center.  Matt is the Assistant Dean of Admissions at Providence College and was in town on a recruiting trip. Matt is an alum of the College himself – Class of 2006.  This is his first trip to Rome and he took the time to visit us and give a brief presentation on the work of P.C. Admissions abroad.

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During an informal “pizza and soda pop” reception, he told us about his responsibilities in international recruiting and where he will travel on behalf of the College.  Italy, Switzerland, and England are on his itinerary over the next two weeks.

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Fresh from hosting “A Day in Friartown” on the home campus, Matt told us about the activities of the Student Admission Ambassadors who work in his office.  In fact, three of our P.C.- in- Rome alumni are Ambassadors and he encouraged the current students to apply next Spring.  He said that their study abroad experience would be a great asset to the work of recruiting “future Friars”.

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Matt asked the students about their decisions to study abroad and why they chose Rome as their destination.  They told him about the wonderful experience they are having and the places they have already seen in just five weeks.

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At the end the students were asking him about life on campus back home.  They were curious about any changes that might have been made during the summer construction projects and any future plans that have been made to enhance the campus environment.   While a few students later admitted that his remarks made them “a little homesick”, all agreed that being in Rome was exactly where they wanted to be this semester.

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Matt Maurano’s visit made us all feel closer to the home campus and connected to the wider community of Providence College.  He also gave us some perspective of how fortunate we all are to be in Rome and to be able to bring the “Friar school spirit” wherever we go.

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  Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friends! Romans! Countrymen!

 

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One of the advantages of studying the New Testament in Rome is being able to have an “up close and personal” experience of the ancient Roman Empire through the architectural and artistic remains of it that can be found throughout the city.  Walking into the Pantheon, climbing the stairs inside the Colosseum, or trekking through the Roman Forum are all ways to experience the Roman context of early Christianity.

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Recently we visited the famous Roman Forum.  The format of our course, The New Testament in the Eternal Cityincludes not only classroom lectures but also site visits each week.  More than simply “fun field trips”, these site visits are an integral part of the academic component of our study abroad program.  Each week the site is to be integrated with the content of the classroom lecture.  And while we’re on site, there is even more academic input from me and the occasional guide who leads us.  So, pens, notebooks and course texts are not left behind!  Instead, the site itself becomes both our classroom and the focus of our study – our “text”.

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Our lecture was on the Roman context of early Christianity and our trip to the Roman Forum gave us a feel for what it was like to live, work, shop, participate in politics, and pray in ancient Rome.  The basilicas, government buildings, temples, and areas of commerce included in the Forum helped us to understand how it functioned as the political, religious, and social center of ancient Rome.

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“Just as the Bible, specifically the 4 gospels, gives us the most insight into Jesus’ life, the Roman Forum also gives us the most insight into the life of the Ancient Romans,  revealing not only their political and social life, but also their religious values and ideals.” – Danielle Cady

“It is interesting to see the archaeological remains of the Roman Forum, an example of the Roman Empire’s strength and organization. This society had no room for Christianity; a belief system that directly contradicted their pagan worship.” -Carly Lockyer

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“… one of the most interesting arches in the Forum is the “Arch of Constantine”. Although this arch represents victory for Constantine, it is also a tangible object that marks one of the most important moments in Christianity, as Constantine declared Christianity as the religion throughout all of Rome at this time and fought his battle with “divine inspiration” – Devin Flood

forum6“Comparable to the literary sources used to write the Gospels, the Arch of Constantine was built using “sources” from other pieces of Roman history while still incorporating new and innovative procedures to make this one of the most well preserved ruins in the Forum”. – Caroline Carew

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“…the Arch of Titus… was constructed in honor of the victories of Titus and Vespasian in the Judean War, which ended in the sack of Jerusalem in 70 AD. Interestingly enough, Jesus predicts this destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in the synoptic Gospel of Mark.” – Lauren Politi

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“The Arch of Titus located at the entrance of the forum depicts the attack of Jerusalem. The imagery on this arch shows a triumphal procession bringing the war booty from Jerusalem, which includes the altar of Solomon’s Temple decorated with trumpets, and the seven-branched golden candlestick or menorah.” – Taylor Morley

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Friends, Romans, Countrymen – Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Theology and Archaeology

How can the study of archaeology help us to understand the New Testament?  This is the question we asked during our recent site visit to the Basilica of San Clemente. Our course on the New Testament in the Eternal City includes not only classroom lectures, but also on site visits to particular places in Rome that are significant for Christian history, theology, and spirituality.

Interior-chapel San Clemente church 12th centBy tradition, St. Clement (92-101 AD) was a bishop in Rome who gave his life as a martyr for Christ. Fourth-century accounts speak of his forced labour in the mines during exile to the Crimea in the reign of the emperor Trajan (98-117 AD) and his missionary work there which prompted the Romans to bind him to an anchor and throw him into the Black Sea.  His relics were recovered and are under the main altar of the church.

StClementMass San Clemente churchThe church of San Clemente is like a “layered cake” of archaeological wonder.  The present basilica is from the 12th century, but underneath is a 5th century basilica and below that is a first century house, warehouse, and Mithraic temple.  These sites were excavated beginning in the 19th century under the guidance of an Irish Dominican priest, Fr. Mullooly, who was prior of San Clemente.  Indeed, the Irish Dominicans have been the custodians of San Clemente since the 17th century.  In this way, Providence College has a kind of “connection” with San Clemente since they are both Dominican institutions.

left-aisle San Clemente 4th cent churchWhat we are learning is that archaeology is imperative for the study of the New Testament. There is no chance of understanding Jesus, Peter, Paul, Mary, or the early Christians without understanding their world.  And there is no way to reconstruct their world without archaeology.  In fact, archaeology is so important in Rome, that the Vatican has an office devoted solely to its study.  The Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology coordinates both the Roman Pontifical Academy of Archaeology and the Pontifical  Institute of Christian Archaeology.

the-mithraic-schoolroom San Clemente church 1st centArchaeological artifacts can profoundly affect our understanding of the New Testament’s message.  And visiting some of the most important archaeological sites in Rome this semester will teach us much about the lives and beliefs of the early Christians.

tufa-block-building San Clemente church 1st centHere are a few quotes from the papers the students wrote after our site visit:

“From the art displayed within the twelfth century Basilica, to the underground archeological sites of an old Christian Church and Mithraic temple, the overall structure is a three-dimensional history lesson about theology and the expansion of Christianity throughout ten centuries.”  – Caroline Lockyer.

“By following the evidence in and underneath the church, one can obtain an understanding of the people and life of early Rome—mainly in this circumstance, what their beliefs were.  The basilica is a self-contained history book following Roman society’s beliefs tracing from 1st century till the 12th century C.E.”  – Beau Frank

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“The Basilica of San Clemente consists of three layers: the upper church, which was restored in the 18th century, the lower church from the 4th century, and the first-century buildings where a Mithraic temple exists.  Ascending from the 1st century buildings through the 4th century lower church, and finally to the upper church Jesus slowly reveals himself to us.” Camille Dottore

“What they found in the deepest layer of the basilica was a pagan temple, also known as mithraeum.The discovery of this temple shows the triumph of Christianity following Constantine.  Churches from then on would then be built upon these pagan temples and other holy sites.” Emileigh Gaeta

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“Revelation… presents itself through the recovered artifacts discovered by archeologists and strengthens the faith of individuals by linking the truths of the New Testament.”  – Brynne Murphy

“Through the excavation of San Clemente, one can conclude that the discoveries and excavations of archaeologists have revolutionized and confirmed our understanding of God’s revelation in the New Testament.” Sarah Davis

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Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Beginnings

New BeginningsPosted: 02 Sep 2014 07:52 AM PDTProvidence College in Rome has gone live!  Our Program has begun its fourth year of transforming lives with the study abroad experience at the heart of the Church.

 

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Last week, 19 students from Providence College and I arrived in the Eternal City for a semester abroad.  The CEA Rome Team welcomed us with open arms and big smiles upon our arrival and then gave us an intense three day Orientation Program that helped our entry into the Italian way of life and our academic study program.

 

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This week we started classes and Tuesday morning we began our New Testament in the Eternal City course, which is central to our PC in Rome experience.  The course consists of classroom lectures and site visits around the city so that Rome becomes a “classroom” for us.

 

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During this first week of introductions, orientations, and fresh beginnings, I’ve asked the students what they were hoping for from their study abroad experience in Rome.  We talked about why they chose Rome as a destination and what they expected from our Program.  Here’s what some of them said:

“This semester I am hoping to immerse myself in the history and art of Rome, putting visuals to what I have learned thus far at PC…”  Caroline Carew, Marketing Major, Sociology Minor

“After taking four years of Latin throughout high school I have learned so much about Rome and am excited to finally see it for myself!” Chad Britnell, Finance Major

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“This semester abroad I hope to become even more independent and to submerge myself into the Italian culture…The opportunity for us to learn on site in this incredible city is going to be a once in a lifetime experience.” Emily DiRenzo, Marketing Major, Film Minor

“I hope to learn more about different societies in Europe because I would love to get a career in foreign policy!” Brynne Murphy, Political Science Major

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“For my study abroad experience, I am hoping to better understand myself and the the heritage of my family; which is predominantly from Italy and very much who I think I am.”  Daniel McAvoy,  Finance Major, Economics Minor

 

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“I am hoping that this semester abroad allows me to have a more open mind towards the way other people live.  Camille Dottore, Marketing and Sociology Majors

 

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 Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Weeks and Counting!

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The Fall 2014 P.C./CEA Rome Study Abroad adventure is about to begin!

Dr. Hagstrom and 18 students from P.C. are packing suitcases, applying for Italian VISAS, organizing passports and brushing up on Italian vocabulary for their one semester adventure.

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While the rest of campus is focused on finishing up construction projects or readying the dorms for the onslaught of freshmen in just a few weeks, the Rome Study Abroad students are looking forward to piazzas, museums, ancient churches, and Roman Ruins as their “new campus”. And instead of opening the school year with Academic Convocation in the P.C. gym, the Rome students will perhaps begin their school year with a papal audience in St. Peter’s Square with Pope Francis. And while the food in Raymond Cafeteria is no doubt tasty and nutritious, the acclaimed Italian cuisine (including gelato!) is what awaits Dr. Hagstrom and 18 P.C. friars.

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Preparing for a semester abroad can be exciting, but also daunting, and sometimes scary. Like Abraham who was called to leave behind his land, his security, and his way of life for a new journey with the Lord (Genesis 12:1-3), so too our Rome students and faculty will leave behind the familiar and embark on a life-changing sojourn. Through study and lectures, site visits and even the simple daily experiences of street life in Rome, students will discover more about themselves, the world, and their place in it.

Let the adventure begin! Go Friars!

 

Vatican Ambassador Ken Hackett Visits P.C. In Rome

This week the Providence College Center for Theology and Religious Studies held its Spring Academic Colloquium.

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We were pleased to welcome His Excellency Mr. Kenneth Hackett , who graciously accepted our invitation to visit and address our student body. Mr. Hackett is the current United States Ambassador to the Holy See. He was nominated to the post by President Barack Obama in June 2013, confirmed by the Senate in August 2013, and he presented his Credentials to Pope Francis on 21 October 2013.

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Ambassador Hackett, originally of West Roxbury, Massachusetts, earned his undergraduate degree from Boston College. He then joined the Peace Corps, and served in Ghana. Afterwards, he joined Catholic Relief Services, an international humanitarian agency supported by the U.S. Catholic community, serving in Africa and Asia. He became president of Catholic Relief Services in 1993.  And as President, Ambassador Hackett led 5,000 CRS employees in over 100 countries.

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It was under his leadership that CRS responded to recovery efforts such as those following the Rwanda genocide, the Bosnian and Kosovo emergencies, the Asian tsunami, and the Haiti earthquake. Equally notable during his tenure as President was CRS’s work on behalf of people living with HIV/AIDS.  Mr. Hackett retired from that post in 2012.

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His Excellency and Mrs. Hackett have two children and most recently have been residents of Maryland and Florida.  But now, of course, they are residents of the Eternal City.  The Hackett’s more than 40 year history of working in the field of international human development brings a unique dimension to the service of diplomacy to the Vatican.

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I asked the Ambassador to speak to us about his former work in developing countries and his new service in diplomacy here in Rome.  The title for his presentation was: “From Charity Work to Diplomatic Service: A Personal View”.

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He spoke to us of his personal journey beginning from his days at Boston college as an undergraduate trying to decide on a career.  Joining the Peace Corps was a somewhat spontaneous decision, but one which proved to set a course for the rest of his life.  He spoke passionately about how “service to others” is the most rewarding life.  He challenged our students not to decide on a job “just because it pays a lot of money”.  But, rather to do “‘something which makes you happy” and “stretches you and your imagination”.

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At the heart of his presentation was his explanation of his commitment to Catholic social teaching and how his work at Catholic Relief Services was shaped by it every step of the way.  He explained how as President of C.R.S., his goal was always to implement Catholic social teaching from “top to bottom” in the organization of over 5,000 people – many of whom were not Catholic.

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Speaking of his diplomatic service as U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, he talked about the “new approach” of Pope Francis to the papacy and his hope that the United States and the Holy See can work together on many “issues that affect human dignity, the poor, and people who are marginalized”. “There are many things that we can come together on – particularly peace.”

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After his lecture, we gave him a Providence College tie as a token of our appreciation.  Of course, I joked that he should wear this “Dominican tie” when he goes to his Jesuit alma mater, Boston College.

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The Colloquium ended with a light reception during which His Excellency was able to mingle with the students as well as the CEA Rome Team, who worked so hard on the logistics of the event. Mr. Hackett ask the students about our program and their time in Rome, and even stayed to pose for a few photos.

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Perhaps the best reaction I heard afterward was from a student who said: “I was expecting a much more formal lecture.  But his talk was very personal and down to earth and I felt like he was speaking right to me.  He spoke from the heart”.

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  Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Study Theology in Rome?

“There is no better city to study Theology than in Rome.  The ability to see many of the world’s most famous churches during class time made the decision easy for me.” Riley Dowd

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Why Study Theology in Rome?

This week it has finally begun to sink in that we have less than a month left of our Roman adventure.  I asked the students to reflect on their time here in Rome and their experience of studying Theology. I asked them what they would say to a student back home who is considering studying abroad next year.  What advice might they give to someone who was considering spending a semester in the Eternal City?  Is there any reason why Rome should be the preferred place for studying Theology?

Here’s what some of them said:

“Studying theology in Rome offers an experience unlike any other.  Rome is the center of our Christian theology and the sites and history provide a whole new experience.  I think being able to visit the 4 major basilicas and a few other Catholic sites has had an impact on me and has gotten me to think about theology in a whole new way.  I think in order to fully understand and appreciate the Church this is a must.”  Daniel DeFilippo

“Studying theology in Rome brings the New Testament to life. Being able to go to all of the locations that you read about makes your faith stronger.” Erin Mullane

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“Everyone should study theology in Rome because of the vast amount of history in this city. Rome has so much to offer and I have enjoyed every second of exploring it.” Nicole Patrina

“One may first approach studying theology while being abroad in a negative manner, but I believe it is one of the greatest choices I have made. Studying theology in Rome allows us as students to gain first hand knowledge and gives us a better understanding by living and seeing what we learn about in places other than a text-book.” Veronika Abkarian

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“As somebody who is not religious, I knew taking my theology requirements in Rome would help situate religious stories in a historical and social context that I could connect with more. These classes have brought me to places in Rome that I never would have visited or critically understood on my own, which is something I really appreciate.” Leanne Falzon

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“Rome is truly one of the greatest places to study theology. You can only read so much in books, and in Rome there are so many prominent basilicas and Christian sites to help one to truly understand the history of the Christian religion. It brings the class to a whole new level and you get to experience many places in Rome you may never have visited otherwise during your semester here.” Sophia Bolt 

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“Studying theology in Rome is the way to go because of all the magnificent basilicas and sites that the city has to offer. Since the Vatican is placed in Rome’s center, the city alone holds extreme theological meaning.” Paige Lee

“Studying Theology in Rome has been a truly incredible experience. Looking back on my time here, I can say that I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to study here and experience places like the Vatican and the Roman Forum.” Tim Evans

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“Studying theology in Rome has allowed me to experience theological events in a completely different way. You have a better appreciation and understanding for theology when you are present in the city where every important event occurred. It is enlightening and truly amazing to be exposed to this history in such an extraordinary way.” Gianna Fournier

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“Studying theology in Rome creates opportunities to see a vast number of churches, some of which you would not have known to visit without taking a course in theology.” Kerrie Lynch

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“By studying Theology in Rome, your identity as a Roman Catholic really becomes transformed. Instead of viewing Catholicism as just going to mass every Sunday and occasionally praying, you are able to experience firsthand the significant sites of Roman Church history in your Theology class every week, which is a constant reminder of this incredible faith relationship that God desires to have with us and it definitely brings you closer to Him.” Catherine McLean

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Go Friars!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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