Celebrate SXU’s inspiration, people on Founders’ Day, Dec. 3

Mon., Dec. 3 is Founders’ Day, Saint Xavier University’s annual celebration of its founding inspiration and the foundational people that established the University and have helped it endure and prosper for 166 years!

All students, staff, faculty, and administrators are encouraged to participate in the University community’s special Founders’ Day events:

  • Noon, McDonough Chapel – Special Eucharistic Liturgy for the Feast of St. Francis Xavier, patron of Mother Frances Xavier Warde, SXU’s Sister of Mercy founder and namesake; and
  • 3:30 p.m., McDonough Chapel – Founders’ Day Celebration honoring SXU’s many “founders’ through the years and highlighting the University’s curricular foundation in the liberal arts and sciences.

Rev. Robert Miller, pastor of St. Dorothy parish, will be the main celebrant and homilist at the St. Francis Xavier liturgy.  Father Miller taught a Church history course here at SXU this semester for the Archdiocese of Chicago’s Lay Ministry Program.

The 3:30 p.m. celebration will feature two speakers – Sister Nancy Houlihan, R.S.M., ’79, member and secretary of the Saint Xavier University Board of Trustees; and Prof. Michael Bathgate, chair of Religious Studies and president of the Faculty Senate. Sister Nancy will address “The Common Good and Its Role in the 21st Century.” Prof. Bathgate’s presentation, focusing on key visual symbols of SXU’s mission and heritage, is titled “Wisdom Has Hewn Her Seven Pillars: Reflections on Teaching and/as Hospitality.”

The afternoon ceremony will also include two familiar and traditional elements – “The Heritage Litany,” which each year incorporates some different names of foundational persons in Saint Xavier’s history, and a reading of “This Bell,” a poem which celebrates the call to educational service begun by the Sisters of Mercy and still heard and answered at SXU today.

Among the afternoon’s “performers” will be students Vincent Dore, Bethany Halbrader, Rebecca Weisenritter, and Mary Kavanaugh; faculty members Shannon Ambrose, Ph.D. and Monica Kropidlowski, M.M.; and alumnae Michelle Gliottoni-Rodriguez, ‘02 and Julie Gieffers Kane, ’92.  Members of the Staff Council will open both Founders’ Day ceremonies with a tolling of the Academy Bell.

A reception in the Butler Room will follow the afternoon program.

Sponsored by the Office for University Ministry, Founders’ Day gives the Saint Xavier community an annual opportunity to recall and celebrate its Sister of Mercy founders, as well as others whose contributions to Saint Xavier were foundational.  It also celebrates and renews the University’s longstanding commitment to the liberal arts and sciences.