Founder’s Week kicks off with mass

More than 200 students were recognized during the Founder’s Week mass for their service in and outside of the community. Reverend Donald J. Harrington, C.M. presided over the mass on January 25 in St. Thomas More Church, to commence the 14th annual Founder’s Week.

After the mass, Rev. Harrington congratulated all the student award recipients for their achievement in service.

“We are a different university… a university which is blessed in a very special way to have his [St. Vincent’s] spirit thriving among us.”

Maggie Snyder, who serves in campus ministry and the church choir, said it felt great to be recognized. She said that service is giving to others without expecting anything in return.

“It’s cool to be in this type of community, where everyone in the community has one common goal to serve others.”

Sophomore Hadia Sheerazi said it was a big honor “given that it is in the spirit of service.”

She hopes to “emulate the spirit” and be a role model for others through her participation with VITAL, being a mentor, an orientation leader and going on retreats.

All of the recipients received the “Charity Embraces Justice Award” for their services with various organizations and service outside the community.

Reverend John Kettleberger, C.M., who gave the homily, began the mass, speaking about the conversion of St. Vincent de Paul.
On a day in 1617, St. Vincent saw a poor man and heard his confession. That experience led him to join his priesthood and he began to “preach about God’s love and confession.”

This day became known as the Feast of the Conversion of St. Vincent, a day that became a celebration of his life. Eight years later, he founded the Vincentian Mission.

After telling the story of St. Vincent de Paul, Rev. Kettleberger said that Founder’s Week is “an opportunity to continue on our road, [and] like St. Vincent de Paul, to open up our hearts that God’s love might touch us… calling us to look anew at those around us.”