Fr. Donald J. Planty, Jr.

Head Chaplain and Instructor

Where were you educated? I did my undergraduate studies in Government and in French at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia (1988); I studied Philosophy and Theology (M.Div. & M.A. in Theology) at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1992); finally, I studied Papal diplomacy at the Vatican's diplomatic school, the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy in Rome, while I also earned a Doctorate in Canon Law from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome (2000).

What classes do you teach? I teach Theology 101-102, Fundamentals of Catholic Doctrine, to Freshmen. Perhaps I'll teach an elective in the future.

What is your favorite class to teach? I very much enjoy explaining the foundations of our faith to our new students, and I hope it offers them a good grounding in Christian belief and practice.

Do you have any hobbies? I am an avid history and fiction reader: I am currently tackling Shelby Foote's monumental 3-volume narrative history of the Civil War; I also enjoy traveling, hiking, cooking, and an eclectic variety of music (opera, flamenco, jazz, American roots...).

What are your areas of expertise and/or research? My doctoral dissertation is titled: "The Law of the Church and the Building of Churches: Canon 1216 and Sacred Architecture." It explores–and I continue to explore–the principles and norms of Church law, of the sacred liturgy and of sacred art concerning sacred architecture. It is important that we rediscover how true, beautiful sacred art is a sacramental, mediating–that is, fostering an encounter with–God, who is Beauty itself.

Contact Information:
Fr. Donald J. Planty, Jr.
134 Christendom Dr.
Front Royal, VA 22630
W: 540.622.6128
F: 540.636.1655