Sunday, September 21, 2014

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Departing Chaplain: Thomas Aquinas College Gives ‘a Balance between Heaven and Earth’

Father Joseph Illo, a departing chaplain at Thomas Aquinas College (TAC) in Santa Paula, Calif., recently said farewell to the College and wrote a brief reflection praising the institution.

After celebrating Sunday Mass, Fr. Illo departed from TAC and moved to San Francisco where, as previously reported, he will start a new oratory for the Archdiocese of San Francisco to “provide secular priests with a community in which to life fraternal charity,” according to the College.

“I will always look at my two years at Thomas Aquinas College as a middle place, where faith and reason, where thoughtfulness and prayerfulness, permits one to live a balance between heaven and earth,” wrote Fr. Illo in his reflection.

Since his arrival at TAC at the beginning of the 2012-13 academic year, Fr. Illo has been heavily involved on campus from organizing and leading activities for students to offering daily Masses, hearing confessions, and providing spiritual direction.

“It was a dreamy two years,” continued Fr. Illo,  “And I am supremely grateful to the founders of the College, her current faculty, staff, and students, and all the good people who live near the Ferndale, a cool and green place where one can learn the eternal truths in order to give them to the world outside TAC.”

The College is “a hard place to leave,” he wrote in the post.  “I hope to return through that gate many times before I die.”

Thomas Aquinas College is recommended by The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.

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