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Christendom College Honors Papal Nuncio Archbishop Charles Brown at Commencement

Christendom College celebrated its commencement weekend on May 10-12 by awarding degrees to the 96 graduates, as well as honoring Archbishop Charles Brown, Papal Nuncio to Ireland, and Mrs. Anne Carroll, founder of Seton School in Manassas, Va., and Seton Home Study School. Archbishop Brown celebrated the Baccalaureate Mass on Friday, May 10, and received an honorary doctorate before delivering the commencement address on Saturday, May 11. Mrs. Carroll, the wife Christendom’s founder Dr. Warren Carroll, was awarded the college's St. Catherine of Siena Award for Distinguished Service to the Church & Christendom College.

"One of the truly beautiful and remarkable strengths of Christendom College is how the plurality of vocations has historically been so well represented by your graduating classes,” the archbishop said during his homily on Friday. “Christendom graduates have followed the Lord and lived lives of holiness as priests, religious, sisters, monks, and brothers, and as holy married people. The extraordinary richness of this variety of vocations from Christendom is an eloquent proof of the deeply Catholic and truly Catholic character of this college. And of that, all of you—especially the class of 2013—can be justifiably very proud."

In his commencement address, Archbishop Brown warned students that they are entering “a world which more than ever is drifting aimlessly on a sea of relativism, while at the same time being convulsed with spasms of anger directed at traditional moral values.”  He suggested that proclaiming that truth does exist is the solution to many of the problems in this world. 

“Indeed it even seems redundant for us to even mention this to you to today,” he said. “Because the greatness and lasting value of your education at Christendom has been premised precisely on this fact—that there is such a thing as truth. And that truth and the search for truth is worth everything.”

Concluding the archbishop urged graduates to always seek the truth and witness to it in their lives.

“Your years at Christendom have given you an unparalleled preparation for living your faith in our contemporary world,” he said. “By loving the truth and living the truth, you will have an effect on everyone you come in contact with—an effect that is accomplished simply by living and not necessarily always by preaching.”

Following the reception of the St. Catherine of Siena Award, Mrs. Carroll gave brief remarks in which she recalled the watchwords of Christendom College coined by her late husband, “Truth exists. The Incarnation happened.”

"These words were the purpose of the founding of Christendom,” she said.  “They've sustained this enterprise through all the trials of the building of Christendom and now they are proclaimed in the glory of Christendom over which Dr. O'Donnell is presiding.”

Mrs. Carroll said that the belief in these words are the legacy of Dr. Warren Carroll and that all the Christendom College alumni who base their lives on those words are paying tribute to Dr. Carroll.

“But far more importantly [Christendom alumni] are placing Jesus Christ at the center of their lives,” she said. “Because He is the Truth and He is God Incarnate. And whenever, wherever our alumni are, whatever they do, they are helping to bring about the new springtime in the Church—to build the civilization of love.”

Ninety-four Bachelor of Arts degrees, and two Associate of Arts degrees, were awarded.

All addresses and remarks from Commencement Weekend can be downloaded for free at Christendom on iTunes U, christendom.edu/itunes, or watched on YouTube.

Catholic Education Daily is an online publication of The Cardinal Newman Society. Click here for email updates and free online membership with The Cardinal Newman Society.

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