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Spiritan Campus Ministry

Cross Cultural Mission Experiences: Spiritan Campus Ministry offers students several opportunities each year to live the call to service in solidarity with the poor. These include the "Pittsburgh Plunge," in which students are immersed amid the challenges of urban poverty, spending their spring break working in schools, food banks, homeless shelters and other social service agencies. Cross-cultural trips are also offered in locations across the country and abroad:

• New Orleans, where students assist in the ongoing recovery efforts after Hurricane Katrina

• Immokalee, Florida, where students work alongside migrant farm workers

• Baileysville, West Virginia, where students work with impoverished residents of the southern Appalachian coal fields

• San Juan de La Maguana, Dominican Republic, where students operate a camp for children and assist at a Spiritan mission church in an urban barrio.

Funding is sought to continue these experiences and add new ones, such as a civil rights tour of the American South, travel to missions in Tanzania, and pilgrimages to France and Rome to trace the footsteps of our Spiritan founders. Generous benefactors can make new opportunities possible, while relieving students of the burden of fundraising to support these trips.

Additional funding is needed to provide materials for students to use in upgrading the mission facilities in the Dominican Republic, such as the replacement of a tin roof, addition of solar panels and construction of a playground.

Liturgical Enhancements: Liturgical celebrations unite students, faculty, staff and administration in frequent celebrations of faith. From daily Mass to special services for the holy seasons of Advent and Lent, all are called to participate, to be uplifted and transformed. Thanks to a recent gift, a new sound system has been installed in the University Chapel, which is now also equipped for live Webcasting. Alumni and friends all over the world now can view and share in liturgical celebrations at Duquesne.

Additional equipment and supplies, such as those listed below, will enhance the atmosphere for worship and prayer, while creating new opportunities for increased student involvement:

  • Instrumentation for music ministers, particularly percussion equipment such as timpani, a snare drum, suspended cymbal and hand shaker items
  • Chairs to complement a new musicians’ riser
  • Vestments: A complete set of liturgical color vestments and Spiritan vestments with matching stoles
  • Liturgical color altar cloths and banners
  • Worship aids, such as music octavos for regularly used selections and annual renewal of Breaking Bread hymnal subscriptions

Facilities Improvements: Campus ministers hope to establish a Technology Fund to spread the word of events and activities across campus through such additions as digital message boards.

Fair Trade Conference: The term “fair trade” describes goods that have been produced by people who have been paid a living wage. Fair Trade companies support and guarantee humane labor conditions, direct trade, community development and environmental sustainability. This expansion of current “Fair Trade Awareness Week” events would bring internationally known speakers to campus to enlighten students about progress and concerns in the movement.

Consistent Ethic of Life: Catholic teaching encourages and supports life in all of its stages–from conception to natural death–and requires that we encourage life in our interactions with others. A periodic speakers series would bring renowned speakers such as Serrin Foster, Helen Prejean and John Dear to campus to discuss different aspects and applications of consistent life ethics.

JPIC (Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation) Student Development Fund: Over time, the Spiritans have developed a distinctive approach to issues of justice, peace and the integrity of creation. This spirituality not only calls for the liberation of the disadvantaged, but also demands pilgrimage, presence and lived solidarity with the poor. This fund would support student travel to conferences, workshops and experiences related to this key aspect of our mission and identity.

Library Fund: The Spiritan Campus Ministry Center houses a few Catholic books, periodicals and audio-visual resources that support organized group activities and aid individual members of the community in pursuing their personal journeys of faith. Funding is sought to significantly increase these library holdings.

Additional funding is needed to provide materials for students to use in upgrading the mission facilities in the Dominican Republic, such as the replacement of a tin roof, addition of solar panels and construction of a playground.

Donor-Directed Opportunities: The Spiritan approach to ministry is based on mutual respect and a thoughtful exchange of ideas—“around the table” rather than “from the top down.” Thus, Spiritan Campus Ministry welcomes ideas donors may suggest for enhancing programs or outreach through charitable gifts. Together, we can serve students and all humankind by touching and changing minds, hearts and spirits.