Dorm Wars & Assisi


Name: Emily Norton
Greenville, SC
Reading, Creative writing, and pretty much anything outdoors.
What is your favorite class or professor?
I would have to say History 101 with Dr. McGuire. He has an enthusiasm for teaching that I have not encountered anywhere else.
What extra-curricular activities do you participate in?
I am a student ambassador and I love helping out with intramurals. I also attend Swing n’ Sundaes.
What is your favorite thing about Christendom?
I appreciate the school’s dedication to academic rigor. Not only does Christendom emphasize education for education’s sake, but also as a means of preparing students to flourish in their future endeavors. The spiritual life on campus is similarly a witness to this mission. I have never felt more in tune with my faith. I love the accessibility of daily mass and the sacraments. It is a huge blessing to have that on campus.
What are your plans after graduation?
I would love to become a writer. I am hoping to finish my novel and find an agent after college (if not sooner smile). Teaching is also another interest of mine for the future.
Any parting words of advice for a prospective student?
Come to the summer program. If you have any questions about how life is on campus or how the curriculum works the Christendom Experience Program can really help you get a feel for the school.


St. Valentine's Dinner

Happy St. Valentine’s Day! Dinner, on Thursday, February 14, was a delicious and classy affair at the Christendom. In celebration of this special day, the tables in St. Lawrence Commons were decked out in pink tablecloths and garnished with chocolates and sprigs of flowers.

Students were treated to a pasta and steak meal, topped off with a variety of Valentine’s themed desserts. The chocolate fondue and strawberries proved to be an especially big hit.

During the meal, music from classics such as Frank Sinatra added to the elegant ambiance. Everyone lingered over the great food, enjoying pleasant conversation and the fun atmosphere created by the decorations and music. It was certainly a Valentine’s evening to remember.

Sophomores Susie Adams and Kim Day chat over their Valentine’s dinner.

Students enjoy each other’s company and the delicious food.

Sophomores Sarah Jamieson, Margaux Killackey and Julie Wells enjoy dinner with chaplain Fr. Mark Byrne.

Students enjoy pasta, steak, and good conversation.

At the Cross Her Station Keeping

This past Friday evening, the Christendom Chaplaincy began its weekly Lenten Stations of the Cross. Led by College Chaplain Father Planty, students, faculty, and staff gathered to pray the stations in Christ the King Chapel. Over a hundred people showed up to commemorate the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ, as preparations are made for His Resurrection on Easter Sunday. This event is another example of what the College has to offer to the community with regard to the spiritual life and formation of its members, and is a great way for everyone to truly enter into the Lenten spirit of penance and prayer.

Stations of the Cross in Christ the King Chapel

Fr. Planty pauses to pray at the Third Station.

Dorm Wars: Battle of the Brains

Last Thursday and Friday nights, the Student Life Office hosted the second annual Dorm Wars Genius Bowl. Teams gathered on Thursday in Kilian’s Café and the Student Center for the first round of the competition. The teams were divided up into three brackets, and the two teams with the highest points from each bracket advanced to the next round, held on Friday night in St. Lawrence Commons. The numerous sets of questions were put together by Student Life’s James Hannon, and covered numerous categories ranging from history, religion, literature, to math, biology, chemistry, and sports. Covering all these areas and more, the Genius Bowl tested the students’ general knowledge, as it brought together the brightest minds on campus. It came down to the wire in the championship round, with “The Elllect” winning by a mere one question over “The Ins ‘n’ Outs.” This event was yet another great way for the campus to come together, and bond as a community, as students joined to put the limits of their knowledge to the test.

John Federline from “The Elllect” answers a question from the Dorm Wars Genius Bowl.

“The Jacks and Jills” battle the “Ins 'n' Outs” in a round of the Genius Bowl.

“Super Margarets and the Frantastic Floor” vs. “The Lower-Level Legion.”

“The Elllect” were this year's Dorm Wars Genius Bowl Champions. (L-R) John Federline, Thomas Ferrara, Dan McDowell, Dean Dewey, Peter Deucher, and Sean Shanahan.

Dorm Wars: Video Competition

Last week students were challenged to make a swash-buckling College promo video that "highlighted the daily life and lofty goals of an undergraduate pirate at Christendom." Part of this year's pirate-themed Dorm Wars competition, the "Elllect" won the competition, with "The Children of Hannon" coming in second and "Super Margarets and the Frantastic Four" coming in third.

Check out the first place winner's video:

A Gospel Choir & Soul Food

On this past Sunday, College Chaplain Fr. Planty led one of his “Faith-filled Fun Field Trips.” This time, Fr. Planty led a group of students to a Gospel Choir Mass at Holy Comforter St. Cyprian Catholic Church in Washington D.C. Students were treated to a Mass accompanied by well-performed Gospel hymns, which was followed by a small reception exclusively for the visitors. The reception was a chance for the students to meet the priests and deacon who were stationed at the church, and to learn a little more background about the cultural aspects and background of Gospel Choir Masses. The pastor of the parish, Monsignor Charles Pope, met with the students after the Mass to socialize, and answer any questions that the students may have had.

After the small reception, Fr. Planty led the students to a late lunch at the famous Ben’s Chili Bowl in downtown D.C. before the students made the drive back to Campus.

“This event was great for the students,” said Fr. Planty. “It gave them the chance to get off of campus, and experience the diverse culture of the universal Catholic faith. That is the point of these field trips – to let the students see different aspects of the faith. I think that those who attended this Mass really learned a lot about different aspects of the Liturgy, making this trip highly successful.”

Sophomores Joe Walsh and Maggie Ostrowski talk to Msgr. Pope, the pastor at Holy Comforter St. Cyprian Church.

Students and College Chaplain Fr. Planty talk to the assistant to Msgr. Pope.

Attendees of the field trip gather outside of Holy Comforter Church.

Everyone enjoyed the famous 'Half-smoked” specials.

Some Students gathered with Chaplain Father Planty outside Ben's Chili Bowl, off of U Street.

A Lively Debate

With gavel in hand, Chairman Brendan Vieira began the Chester Belloc Debate Sunday night with a prayer and an explanation of the society’s rules. The resolution up for debate: “Jews and Christians worship the same God.” The topic turned out to be a very intriguing debate, with a large crowd turning up to both participate and observe. An even amount of speakers for both pro and con, allowed the debate to hold strong and continue into the late hours of the night. Often the serious atmosphere was lightened with jokes and innocent taunting, keeping the debate upbeat. In the end, the pro side prevailed, 33 to12, but the conversation sparked by such a controversial resolution was the greatest benefit of the night.

Senior John Schofield attempts to persuade the crowd.

Professor Jenislawski lightens up the atmosphere with some laughs.

The debate brought together a large group of intrigued professors, students, and alumni.

Sophomore Margaux Killackey makes very valuable points toward the resolution.

Residence Hall Floor Activities

When looking at all the benefits that Christendom College has to offer, it is easy to recognize the prestigious academics and the rich spiritual opportunities. But a subject that can easily be over looked is how great Christendom’s dorm life and camaraderie is for students. Unlike other colleges, the set up of Christendom dorms allow for activities to constantly be taking place—on and off campus — from floor to floor — bringing students together socially.

While some activities are directed toward girl’s or guy’s dorms only, others are meant to get anyone interested to attend the event and just have a good time. Activities have included attending an Orioles night game, apple picking at a nearby orchard, and even ice-skating in Manassas. The RA’s for both girl’s and guy’s side have done a great job organizing the events and making them super affordable for students. The floor activities are a way for students to take a break from their work and release stress by enjoying themselves with friends.

“It's great to not only be an RA to such a great floor, but be able to plan activities that entire dorms can participate in," says Junior Hannah Ethridge. "Everyone gets to know one another a bit better."

The girls of basement Campion recently had a “Fondue Night”, where they created delicious treats while making Valentine’s Day cards for the elderly.

“Last Sunday we were all able to take the cards we had made and deliver them to a nearby Nursing Home," says Freshman Micah Miller. "It was a great experience for all of us to share in.”

Luckily, these offered “floor activities” go on all year round, giving Christendom students plenty of opportunities to have fun experiencing new things and continuing to get to know each other. No wonder there is such a sense of “Dorm Pride” on Christendom College’s Campus!

Students enjoy a night at Camden Yards in Baltimore.

Making Valentines for the elderly.

Apple picking in the fall.

Ice skating in the winter.


Getting to Know Rome & Exploring Assisi

Ciao! Greetings from Siena!

Last Friday started our adventure in Rome when we all met at Residence Candia, the place that we will be calling home for the next two months. After settling in, we all set out to explore the great city of Rome. Most of us immediately went to see Saint Peter’s—just being there for the first time was beyond amazing. Standing in Saint Peter’s square where so much history has taken place throughout the centuries—from the crucifixion of Saint Peter, to the persecution of the early Christians, to the vacancy of the papacy in Avignon, to Pope Pius XII and World War II, to the present—was absolutely mind blowing. Everything about St. Peter’s just left us in awe—seeing the Pieta, the side altars, praying to Saint Peter and touching the foot of his statue (worn down by the countless pilgrims over the centuries). At five we attended Mass in the Vatican at the Chair of St. Peter.

The college then treated us to a delicious dinner of pizza, where it was great to catch up with everyone and hear of everyone’s traveling stories, and then we went for gelato which was absolutely delicious!

On Saturday most of the day was spent discovering the riches of the city. A group of us attended 7 am Mass at a side chapel in Saint Peter’s which was celebrated in German. The rest of the afternoon was spent exploring-Elizabeth Walsh and Gabe Schuberg gave us a very informative tour of our neighborhood, showing us all the staple places (such as the 24 hour bakery!). Most of us saw Castle S. Angelo and the Bridge of the Angels. Others went on a hike to the hill where we could see the skyline of Rome. The day ended with our first full course Italian dinner, which was simply wonderful!

Sunday started our“pilgrimage week” where we are spending three days in Assisi and then three more in Siena, following in the footsteps of Sts. Francis and Clare and St. Catherine of Siena. Assisi is an absolutely beautiful, medieval town, which is still pretty much identical to how it would have been in the days of St. Francis. One of the most beautiful parts of the town was that one could feel the spirit of Saint Francis alive in the streets and could experience the aura of peace which accompanies it.

Touring Assisi was amazing! Our tour guide was incredible, and he made the history of the town come alive. We saw the house of Pietro Bernadone, now converted into a church, and the cell where Saint Francis was imprisoned by his dad. We then toured the main cathedral in Francis’ day, the Cathedral of San Rufino, which rests on ruins which date back to Constantine. (The square outside of the cathedral is where Francis renounced his inheritance, and the cathedral is where Saint Clare received the olive branch on the Palm Sunday that she decided to follow Francis). Santa Chiara was next, which is the church where the body of Saint Clare can be venerated, and where the cross of San Damiano which spoke to Saint Francis can be venerated. We then walked to San Damiano and was given a tour by Brother Eunan. There we saw where Saint Clare died (San Damiano became the first monastery of the Poor Clares).

On Monday morning a group of us climbed up to a fortress which overlooks the city to watch the sunrise. We journeyed to the Basilica di San Francesco where we attended Mass at the Tomb of Saint Francis. One of the brothers gave us a phenomenal tour of the three levels of the Basilica. Apparently, there are three levels of the Basilica-the top was built for the glory of God, the main level in honor of Saint Francis, and the third, the crypt, was a later addition because of the great desire of the people to venerate the saint’s tomb.

Tuesday morning we walked to Santa Maria degli Angeli which houses the Porziuncula, the small chapel which Saint Clare made her vows. It is said that Christ appeared to Saint Francis there and offered him a gift, to which Francis replied that he wished for those who enter through the doors of the Porziuncula to receive the remission of their sins. In the afternoon we walked up to the hermitage of Saint Francis, which was absolutely incredible! We were able to walk down into the hermitage and explore the grounds surrounding it. Personally, that was one of my favorite parts of the trip! It was so serene and peaceful there!

Of course, we had plenty of time to explore the city! We climbed up several fortresses, walked down random streets, discovered that Assisi’s short cuts entail lots of steps, pet donkeys, and drank lots of espresso, cappuccinos, and hot chocolate.

So, what were the highlights of Assisi? The general consensus seems to be the hermitage of Saint Francis, attending adoration at a side chapel in Santa Chiara, experiencing the peace of the city, watching the sunrise at the fortress and seeing the locks of hair of Saint Clare which are kept at Santa Chiara.

It’s been a great week so far!

Until next time, Pax et Bonum! smile

Sitting on the Janiculum hill, Rome Residence Coordinator Gabe Schuberg gives students insights in life in Rome.

On tour in Assisi

Exploring medieval ruins in Assisi.

Enjoying the glories of Italian coffee.

New discoveries - on tour in Assisi.

Marybeth enjoys a view of La Rocca.

Santa Maria degli Angeli.

Taking in the view from a window of their hotel, La Rocca, named after the famous medieval fortress that stands at the top of Assisi.

Basilica di S. Francesco in the evening.

Exploring the medieval streets of Assisi.

Junior Semester in Rome Spring 2013


Sweet Victory for the Crusaders

With the seconds ticking down Senior Mark Helper stepped to the line with a chance to ice the game and secure his best game in a Christendom uniform. And with the bank open late Wednesday night, Helper did exactly that, sinking two clutch free throws before hitting a transition lay up with two secounds to go to cap the thrilling 65-56 win against Patrick Henry college.

The stage for last night's game could not have been bigger. Besides being the last game for the seniors, it was the third place game for the conference tournament and it was Christendom's chance to avenge a previous home loss to Patrick Henry. The game certainly lived up to the hype. The crowd was one of the largest and loudest in recent history and it was a back and forth battle in the first half before the Crusaders would build what appeared to be a insurmountable 19 point second half lead. Essential to building the lead was the dominant defense played on the individual and team level. Coach Vander Woude used a variety of defenses—ranging from the box-and-one to the triangle-and-two to a full court man-to-man. Defensive experts Mark Helper and Tim Beer also relentlessly pursued Patrick Henry's leading scorer James Nelson, #15, while Sophomore Micah Davis secured the paint and Jeremy Mincik played superb help defense.

However Patrick Henry would come storming back, going on a 10-0 run mid-way through the second half to close the lead to nine with under ten minutes to play. Coach Vander Woude used several timeouts in an attempt to stem the bleeding as the Crusaders desperately tried to wait out the clock. Yet, when Patrick Henry closed to within four, it was a trio of seniors: Tim Beer, Tim McPhee and Mark Helper who delivered the clutch plays necessary to gain the victory. Tim Beer and Tim McPhee both hit critical late three's from the top of the key, McPhee also taking advantage of the bank, while Helper finished with the final four points. McPhee led all scorers with 15 points, also adding 5 rebounds and 2 charges, as Mark Helper finished with a career high 10 points, on 4-4 shooting, while Micah Davis and Freshman Jake Wagner and Jeremy Mincik would chip in key baskets down the stretch.

The game was a grande finale for Christendom Men's Basketball. For the second year in the row the Crusaders would capture third place in the conference tournament.

Christendom basketball team would like to send out a special thanks to all the fans who have faithfully came out this year and especially to the impressive display of enthusiasm last night. Come out again next year!

Here comes Jeremy Minick.

Tim McPhee looks for the open man.

Tim Beer takes it to the hole.

Q. I just found out about Christendom, and am excited about applying and possibly joining the incoming class of 2017. I am, though, a bit worried about how I am going to pay for all of it. It seems like I am going to need a lot of financial aid in order to make it happen. Can you tell me how I might be able to afford a Christendom education, please?

A. This is one of the most commonly asked questions. I certainly understand why it is so frequently asked and I think it is an important one to talk about. Christendom’s tuition, fees, and room/board costs have been set for the 2013-14 year as follows: Tuition = $22,050, Room and Board = $8280, and Fees = $670, Total = $31,000. Now before you begin to freak out, let’s compare some numbers.

The University of Notre Dame costs @$60,000, Villanova @$53,000, Fordham @$58,00, The University of Dallas @$45,00, and Benedictine College @$32,100. Christendom’s total cost of $31,000 is one of the lowest of any private, Catholic institutions of higher learning in the US today.

Additionally, Christendom (although we do not accept Federal loans, grants, subsidies, or aid of any kind) does offer its own well-funded financial aid fund from which students are given loans, grants, and academic scholarships. We have our own Financial Aid Form which mirrors the FAFSA form, and from the information provided, we give out loans and grants to students to help cover costs of tuition. The average financial aid package is around $15,000 a year.

Our academic scholarships are based on SAT or ACT scores, and if someone gets a 1920 (SAT) or 29 (ACT), they automatically receive 4-year scholarships of at least $24,000. People can re-take these tests as many times as they wish, and whatever the final score is the day the student arrives as a freshman, we go with for the scholarship amount.

Students are given the opportunity to work on campus, as well. If a student gets an on-campus job, they can expect to make close to $1000 a semester. They work in the library, kitchen, administrative offices, maintenance, chapel, and elsewhere.

Also, something we offer which I believe is unique is our sibling discount. If two siblings attend at the same time, the second sibling receives 25% off tuition. If there are three siblings attending at the same time, the 3rd one receives 50% off tuition.

And lastly, if someone who has received loans from Christendom chooses to join a religious order which takes a vow of poverty, Christendom erases the total amount of the loan.

So, hopefully you can see that although the initial “sticker price” of a Christendom education may seem a bit steep, we have many ways to lessen the costs. The Class of 2012 had an average indebtedness of "only" $25,875 after four years. Again, although this may seem like a lot of money, compared to national figures, it is a bit below the average for a private institution. According to The College Board's "
Trends in Student Aid 2012" report, the average student debt for 2009 graduates of four-year, private colleges was $29,900. And the Christendom students would have been given that loan of $25,875 interest and payment free for the entire four years they attended, as well as given one full grace year of not having to pay anything on the loan and the loan would not accrue interest during that grace year.

If you have further questions about affording a Christendom education, I refer you to our
financial aid page or recommend that you contact Ms. Alisa Polk in our Financial Aid Office ([email protected]).
Director of Admissions
[email protected]
800.877.5456 ext. 1290

If anyone has questions about applying, visiting, scholarships, financial aid, campus life, rules and regulations, majors, core curriculum, transfer credits, or even about the food here at Christendom, please do not hesitate to contact me at any time.