From: Auburn, California
Hobbies: Reading, conversing with friends, singing, camping, hiking
What is your favorite class or professor? All of the classes at Christendom are awesome--it is staggering to see how much I've learned from the great teachers here. That said, the two that stand out most are Dr. O'Donnell's classes. I took his History of the Ancient & Biblical World my freshman year, and his confidence and dynamic teaching inspired me and my friends to be great students. Last spring, his Ascetical & Mystical Theology made holiness exciting and attainable. Every student knows Dr. O'Donnell as college president, and it is even more enriching to have him as teacher!
What extra-curricular activities do you participate in? I am a member of the Legion of Mary, a group that focuses on evangelization and the spiritual works of mercy. I am also a tenor in the school's choir, and a member of Students for Life. As a tutor in the college's writing center, I get to talk with students about their ideas and give writing advice.
Why did you choose Christendom? In high school, I had the opportunity to visit Christendom; even though I was here for less than 24 hours, I knew that Christendom was the school for me. The college community is incredible, and you meet people who are really striving to be saints--genuine, funny, down-to-earth, and the best friends you will ever have.
What surprises you the most about Christendom? I was most surprised at how much there is to do! Bring a seatbelt when you come, and be prepared for an incredible four years!
What are your plans after graduation? I would like to teach. After learning so much at Christendom, it would be a shame not to pass it on.
Any parting words of advice for a prospective student? No matter what school you choose (and I hope that it's Christendom), put your whole self into life at college. You will make more friends, learn more, grow closer to God, and have more fun than you thought possible!
"It was a very humbling experience," sidewalk-counselor and freshman Gabriella Federico said. "I realized how wonderful it is to be an instrument of God's grace."
Shield of Roses will hold its Mega Shield event this semester on March 16..
Sidewalk-counselor and freshman Gabriella Federico chats with one of the abortuary's escorts - Phil.
Due to construction taking place nearby, there was a question of safety, so students prayed across the street.
At the event, students saw a great variety of career possibilities, and got a sense of what they may be interested in. It was also a chance to give résumés and get one’s name out into the field of employers.
“The participating organizations had high praise for the students who visited their booths,” said Mr. Mochel. “The students were praised by the organizations as being ‘well-prepared and engaged,’ and that they were ‘very impressed with the students and their questions.’”
The event was a success, and Christendom looks forward to offering this valuable resource to its students each year.
Students learn more about CUA's school of business.
Students learn about the work of the Virginia Employment Commission.
Students learn about the opportunities offered by Royal Broadcasting.
Students learn about Generation Life.
Chatting with the Marines.
Senior Dan Mitchell chats with a representative of Wells Fargo Bank.
Students learn about life as a FOCUS missionary.
College Alumnus Frank Nicely ('86) explains the joys of working at St. William of York School, where he serves as principal.
Dr. Acosta's lecture was based off of a book that she had written by the same name. Using her sparkling wit and a wealth of anecdotes from her own personal and clinical experience as a psychologist, Dr. Acosta gave the audience a detailed and fascinating explanation of how to discern whether one is suffering from demonic possession or simply a disorder such as schizophrenia. The talk was extremely thought-provoking and everyone came away with a clearer understanding of the issue.
You can listen to this fascinating lecture at Christendom on iTunes U.
Students chat with visiting priests.
Maggie Ostrowski learns about religious life from a mother superior.
Rebecca Ortega, Amy Marter, Annie Adams, and Clare Rose pose for a shot with a sister.
Bernadette Sartor and Katie Brizek sing a humorous parody to “I Want You Back” about when your crush wants to be a priest.
Sr. Colleen Claire of the Salesian Sisters of Don Bosco gives a talk on “Discerning the Women’s Religious Vocation.”
A sister from the Servants of the Lord and the Virgin Matara inspires the Christendom girls with her vocation story.
Sr. Mary Loretta of the Sisters of Life gives advice about discerning a religious vocation.
A freshman spends some time with a sister from the Daughters of Charity.
“There were so many talented teams,” said Junior Lauren Enk. “I loved watching all the different performances—lots of variety, and lots of fun.”
Although all the teams gave amazing performances, the Ins ‘N Outs took first place followed by Team Ellect. Third place was awarded to the Three to One Lions.
The audience eagerly awaits the start of the competition.
Sophomores Maggie Kesckes, Veronica Stanton, Alexis Whitiak and senior Gloria Klosterman lead their team in the song “Titanium.”
Freshmen Maribel Lopez leads the Ins N’ Outs in a first-place performance.
Freshmen Kayla Newcomb, Katie Ellis, Suzie Curran, Cecilia Flagg, Elisabeth Roberts, and Junior Mike Arnold give an impressive rendition of Taylor Swift’s “Trouble.”
An amazing medley performed by second-place finisher, Team Elllect: Katie Lademan, Jess and Ali Schimtz, Maggie Ostrowski, Daniel McDowell, Douglas Watson, Nick Blank, Bobby Crnkovich, Stephen Hyland, Erin Moore, Peter Deucher, and John Jackson.
Team Three to One Lions: Sadie Bratt, Connor Knox, Alicia Stanton, Anna Rogers, Eric Maschue, Mary Bratt, Colleen Harmon, Melissa Lucas, and Michaela Sanborn.
Seniors Mark Hepler and Peter Spiering team up with Sophomores Philip Gilbert, P Chuck, and Peter Foeckler to sing “The Misty Mountains.”
Swing instructors Nicholas Blank and Catherine McFadden enjoy a dance.
The Scriveners explain the reasons why they give to the college.
Seniors Dean Dewey and Colleen Harmon give a presentation about what the seniors and soon to be alumni can do with regard to alumni giving.
Alumnus and Board Member Steve O'Keefe gives his testimony.
Works of Mercy
Those wanting to get involved in the pro-life movement can pray outside an abortion clinic every Saturday morning with the group Shield of Roses, join the Students for Life club on campus, or volunteer at the Front Royal crisis pregnancy center.
There is usually no obligation to commit to a particular service work for the whole school year, but many students eventually find one that they enjoy and stick with it. This was the case for Joe Walsh, a sophomore and now the Director of Works of Mercy at Christendom.
“I got involved because of the outreach of Christina Kelly, the Director of the Nursing Home, in my second semester of Freshman year,” he says. “The Nursing Home is my favorite group.”
“Our plan this semester is to simply raise student awareness about the 8 groups that exist right now," Walsh explains. "But we also want to re-start the 'Hangout with the Homeless' group this semester where students will go into DC to talk with and provide food and other supplies to the homeless. We plan on having our first event for that group in mid-March.”
Through all these charitable works, Christendom students are able to use their talents to serve others and find another way to truly "restore all things in Christ."
Siena & Goodbye to Our Papa
After leaving Assisi on Wednesday, we took a bus to Siena which is the hometown of St. Catherine of Siena. The following day, we attended Mass at the Sanctuary of Saint Catherine, (St. Catherine’s house) where we were able to pray in front of the crucifix from which St. Catherine received the stigmata. After a truly authentic Italian lunch which consisted of pizza, we were given an amazing tour of the town which included the Basilica of San Domenico (where one can find the incorrupt head and finger of Saint Catherine); Il Duomo, otherwise known as Siena’s Cathedral, which is dedicated to the Assumption; and Il Campo, the town square where the famous Palio, (the horse race amongst the different districts of Siena) takes place. Apparently, before Siena sends their horse to race, they bring the horse into the Basilica of San Domenico to receive a blessing. Interestingly enough, the horse from Siena always comes back as the winner!
Discovering Siena was neat! We stumbled across the hill where Saint Catherine saw the vision of Christ when she was a little girl, which was pretty cool. We found an amazing gelato place, which we definitely took advantage of and discovered the wonders of kebabs.
) We marveled at the architecture of the Duomo and climbed to the top, seeing the beautiful skyline of Siena. Another neat experience was touring a stained glass shop, where we learned of the different steps involved in making stained glass windows. There is so much work and detail which goes into the work—it truly is an art!
So, how has it been settling into Rome? For some of us, it has been a bit harder than others, especially when we try putting fabric softener as a laundry detergent and buying cabbage instead of lettuce.
) Besides that, it honestly has been amazing! There is so much to see and experience in this beautiful city—it is amazing!!!
Viva il papa!
Il Duomo of Siena.
At the top of the Duomo.
Sunday Angelus in St. Peter's Square.
All smiles after seeing the pope.
Sun breaks through the clouds on what was predicted to be a rainy day.
Waiting for the pope.
Pope Benedict XVI drives by and waves to the students.
Christendom in Rome!
Check out our Rome students on CBS (0:40):
Sweet Victory for the Crusaders
It was the Crusaders first game of the year and, playing in front of an energized home crowd, they crushed American University for the second year in a row.
"The consistent pressure of the offense was the key to the win," seasoned veteran and flanker Dean Dewey said after the game. "We almost never gave them possession. The speed, ball control, and better team cohesion was the critical advantage that we had."
The superior speed and ball control was on full display Saturday afternoon as seven different Crusaders scored, including Seniors Dean Dewey and Rob Hambleton, Junior Conor Knox, Sophomore Larry Urgo and Freshmen Pat Audino, Sean Salmon, and Rob McKay.
Urgo echoed the the remarks of Dewey when asked what the greatest strength of Christendom Rugby was:
"Our speed, our offense, and the unity of our forward pack and back line led to our victory. The key difference between this year and last year is, that we have an awesome coach who really pushes us in practice, as well as a great batch of freshmen like Audino and McKay," he said.
Christendom looks to build off its successful start this Friday night as they take to the field under the lights against Hamden Sydney College.
Sean Salmon (of Ireland) goes down field for the try.
Make way for Bobby Crnkovich!
Pat Audino flies past the opposition. Audino is one of this year's Thomas S. Vander Woude Athlete-Scholar Scholarship recipients. His high school team won the Eastern Pennsylvania Rugby Union state championship last year.
Dean Dewey charges down field.
Ben Scrivener reaches high to claim the ball for the Crusaders.
Q. Since you seem to know a lot about many things, do you know who the next Pope is going to be? Just kidding. I did want to know, though, a little more about what makes your various academic departments distinct from other colleges. Is there some way you can explain this to me?
A. My bet is on Angelo Cardinal Scola of Milan, Italy, but what do I know. If I were picking, I'd maybe try and pick one of the many Cardinals who have been here to visit our campus: Cardinal Edwin O'Brien, Cardinal George Pell, Cardinal Francis Arinze, Cardinal Raymond Burke, or Cardinal Francis Stafford. But, I'm still sticking with Cardinal Scola of Milan.
So the answer to your real question is that our academic departments are different from others for a variety of reasons. First, the caliber of our professors is just amazing. They come to Christendom because they want to be teachers first, not book writers or traveling speakers. Many colleges hire great names in the academic world, but these people quite often end up focusing on their own careers and doing what they can to gain notoriety through writing book after book after book. And sometimes, this means that they spend less time focusing on teaching, and their students. Christendom professors are hired to be teachers and to care about their students, both, in and out of the classroom. So this is one of the big differences.
Secondly, the requirements necessary in order to gain a degree in our various academic departments is quite unique. Many colleges require very little theology, or philosophy or history if you want to major in political science, and if you want to major in classics, normally, people do not have to take very much political science or history or math. At Christendom, everyone takes a solid core curriculum before splintering off into their academic major and focusing on one subject area. Our political science majors all have taken 6 philosophy classes, 6 theology classes, 4 history classes, 4 language, 4 English classes, one math, one science, and two core political science courses. In fact, all of our departments require these same subjects. So, as a result, our historians are well-versed in other subjects, as are our theologians and philosophers, etc.
Third, our departments teach all of their subject matter with a Catholic worldview, whenever possible. We do not keep theology or the Faith solely in theology class, but rather, we bring it into discussion in all of the subject areas, when appropriate. As a result of this style of teaching, it is very important that all the professors in all of the disciplines be practicing, committed, faithful Roman Catholics - which they are - otherwise, they would not be able to teach their subject matter from a Catholic perspective.
Fourth, all of our departments focus on writing. Why is this important to mention? Well, the ability to write well - clearly, succinctly, and convincingly - is the sign of a well-educated person. In all walks of life, writing is key: Synthesizing a bunch of ideas and putting into a one-page report; collecting ideas and inputs and then creating a proposal for a new way of doing something; or researching your competitive market and coming up with a new plan that you can "sell" to your employer to aid the company get ahead, etc. At Christendom, we do not simply write papers in English class, but in all of our classes. We write and we write a lot.
Fifth, each department emphasizes the teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas when possible (especially in theology, philosophy, and political science) and, quite often, history plays a vital role in many of our classes (history, theology, philosophy, political science, in particular).
On a final recommendation, why not take a look at some of our very short videos about each of the academic departments. The professors do a great job of explaining why you might want to study in their department.
English Language & Literature
Political Science & Economics Theology History Classical & Early Christian Studies
Director of Admissions
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.