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Athenaeum installs new president/rector, holds graduation

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October 21,2011

ST. FRANCIS DE SALES DEANERY — The Athenaeum of Ohio/Mount St. Mary’s Seminary graduated 21 students during ceremonies Oct. 16 in the Chapel of St. Gregory the Great on the Athenaeum campus. The degrees were conferred by Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr, chancellor and chairman of the board of the Athenaeum.

Kevin Prendergast, director of the master of arts program in pastoral counseling ,assists Franciscan Sister Patricia Zureick OSF. (CT/E.L. HUBBARD)

The graduation address was given by Father Benedict O’Cinnsealaigh, who was installed during the ceremony as the 35th president/rector of the Athenaeum of Ohio/Mount St. Mary’s Seminary. He told his audience, “It is our intention to muster the resources necessary to enable this institution to be, not only a player but also a leader in the voyage of mind and heart into that which is our true identity and our true mission. Our program will strive to make sure that those who leave this institution will certainly be able to understand the deeper issues of our times and interpret them for others within our society in a way consistent with the mind of the church and the wisdom of our lived experience of faith. Our vision, our hope, is to engage society, not abandon the stage. Christianity is fundamentally a message, a proclamation, concerning the most essential and greatest things of life, and our generation now takes up the commission to go into the whole world and proclaim the good news….”


Father O’Cinnsealaigh, whose appointment has been effective since July 1, is a native of Dublin, Ireland. He is the oldest of five children and his parents, siblings and nieces and nephews all live in Dublin. He has served as director of spiritual formation, director of permanent diaconate formation and as assistant professor of theology since 2000. He holds the recently created Archbishop Daniel E. Pilarczyk Chair in Systematic Theology.


The new president/rector holds a diploma in humanities (philosophy) from All Hallows College, Dublin; a bachelor’s degree in sacred theology from the University of St. Thomas Aquinas, Rome; a licentiate in sacred theology and a doctorate in sacred theology from International Marian Research Institute, Dayton.


Prior to being assigned to the Athenaeum, Father O’Cinnsealaigh was associate pastor of Holy Angels Parish, Sidney, Ohio, while also serving as head of the religion department and campus minister at Lehman Catholic High School, Sidney. He earlier served as associate pastor at St. Albert the Great Parish, Kettering.


The graduates are:    

Master of Divinity:
Father Daniel Hess, Father Adam Puntel, Father Michael Roemmele, Father Scott Wright, Father Stephen Zeigler


Master of Arts in Theology:
Father Godfred Boachie-Yiadom, Deacon Thomas Dushney, Kathleen Kramer, Father Daniel Hess


Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling:
John Turpening, Franciscan Sister Patricia Zureick


Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry
Deborah Flynn Hodge, Keith Pfaller, Georgia Ann Spaeth, Scott Steinke


Certificate in Lay Ministry
Franciscan Brother Daniel Barrett, Mary Heider, Louise Karas, Phillip Kenzora, Holly Moran, Matthew Ruttle, Paul Timmerman  


Father Benedict O’Cinnsealaigh is installed at president/rector of the Athenaeum of Ohio by Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr.
Terrance D. Callan, dean of special studies, hoods Father Charles Scott Wright, who graduated with a master of divinity degree.


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