Campus Ministry Newsletter

Vol. 2 - Ed. 5

Hello all!

The High Holidays – also known as the “Days of Awe” begin this weekend with Rosh Hashanah – the celebration of the beginning of the new Jewish Year. Wishing our Jewish friends in the Villanova community l’Shana Tovah – a sweet New Year!

We are in and out of the office at various times. If you need a Campus Minister, the best thing right now is to send a message to them directly, or if you are not sure who to reach, send a message to and we can direct you to the right person!

In this week’s edition, you’ll find:

Remembering Jake Nawrocki

Caritas Commitment Reminder!

Upcoming Events:

Prayer and Spirituality Resources:


Online Programs and Opportunities:

Service Opportunities:

Campus Resources:

Remembering Jake Nawrocki

SGA and Campus Ministry invite all students, staff, or faculty to visit the Grotto (outside of St. Rita Hall) over the next two weeks for a quiet space to remember first-year student Jake Nawrocki. Anyone is welcome to stop by, leave a note, poem, or other creation and spend time in reflection or prayer with our community. Let us build community together. If you have any questions or are looking for support, contact Campus Ministry.

Upcoming Events

Online Retreat – September 19, 10-3

DEADLINE TONIGHT for Online Retreat this Saturday, September 19, 10-3: Join Br. Mickey McGrath, OSFS for All Creation Groans: Praying Your Way Through Grief with the Help of Your Creative Spirit. In these uniquely troubling times, we are continually being challenged to LET GO in any number of ways: through the death of a loved one; or through the loss of jobs or education; or through the fading away of old beliefs that no longer feel relevant. Former ways of living out our faith may now seem questionable in this rapidly changing world. We need to renew our sense of vision in order to see, as if for the first time, the ordinary, healing beauty that both surrounds us and fills us from within. In this retreat, Brother Mickey will share ways in which beauty can gently lead us from concentrating on death and endings to envisioning the new life waiting to be born in our hearts. Campus Ministry has 10 spaces available for students to attend free of charge for this retreat offered through the Cranaleith Spiritual Center. To reserve your space, email by MIDNIGHT tonight, Wednesday the 16th.

St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service

The 15th anniversary of the St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service will be different from past years, but our goal of serving others, in honor of St. Thomas of Villanova, remains the same! With everything that has been going on, this year’s Day of Service might be the most important one yet!

What will the 2020 Day of Service look like?

  • Our service will be done in small groups of no more than 10.
  • No students will be sent off-campus to any service sites, but we have come up with new, creative ways to serve!
  • There is still plenty of service and work than can and will be done from our campus:
    • Writing letters
    • Sending art supplies to schools in need
    • Opening a dialogue with service sites about their mission
    • And more!
  • This year, we are focusing on opportunities for our students, but welcome our faculty and staff to participate on their own by utilizing local resources or the Day of Service website.

To Get Involved, Register Today!
    • Registering to participate in the Day of Service is easy.
    • Group leaders can sign up here, and once your group is listed, individuals may register to volunteer here.
    • Opportunities are more limited this year, but we hope we’ll be able to offer every group a service site that they can connect with in some way.
    • Registration will be open until Wednesday, Sept. 16.

2020 St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service

St Thomas of Villanova Community Liturgy

Saturday, September 19, 2020: Community Bilingual Liturgy

Time: 5:30pm, Location: Campus Green. All faiths are welcomed.

All are welcome to join Fr Peter for a communal celebration of Mass on the Campus Green to bring a prayerful and celebratory end to this year’s Day of Service. In a salute to St Thomas of Villanova’s Spanish roots and together with our regular Spanish Mass community, this will be a bilingual liturgy.

To give us a sense of who is coming, everyone is encouraged to pre-register for “Day of Service Bilingual Mass on the Campus Green” under “Mass – Weekend of September 18th” through Villanova Tix (although if you decide to come last minute, you are still welcome, of course!). Some chairs will be available for those in need, but don’t forget to bring your portable chair if you are able!

Peace Day Philly

International Peace Day is September 21st (9/21)

Events happening from 9/15-9/21 through Peace Day Philly.

Peace Day Philly promotes and collaborates on programming related to personal, local and/or global peace, on and around the United Nations International Day of Peace. For 2020, Peace Day Philly has developed a range of free, online programs taking place from Sept. 15-Sept. 21. Learn more and register for Peace Day Philly

Sign Up for Mini Peace Pole Kits!

International Peace Day is on September 21! Signup at the link below to pick up your own mini peace pole kit next week. Pickup kits at Villanova’s peace pole outside the Center for Peace and Justice Education (outside Corr Hall). Each kit will include: mini peace pole, stickers with "May Peace Prevail on Earth" in different languages- choose 4 or make your own!, card with the history and meaning of peace poles, Prayer for Disarmament (English and Spanish available), Villanova's Pledge for Nonviolent Living, and information to sign up for the Artisans of Peace Retreat September 28- October 4.

“If you want peace, work for justice.” -Pope Paul VI

“True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.” -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Link to Sign up:

Cari-talks: Faith revealed through student stories and dialogue

Join the Peer Ministers on Monday, September 21st at 8:30pm in the Driscoll Tent to listen to students share stories of faith, identity, and meaning. This evening of storytelling will feature two student witness talks followed by small group conversations focused on reflection and community that will allow those who attend the event to share their own stories. Come with your mask, and if you're able, please bring a portable chair for breakout conversations.

Voting is an Act of Love: Hearing different things from different people about what it means to be a Catholic voter

Join us for a three student-led dialogues as we question:

  • What misinformation exists about what is expected of Catholics during an election year?
  • Is it better to not vote at all than to vote for a candidate whose policies I do not fully support? What does it mean to prayerfully consider my vote before casting my ballot?
  • What role should Catholic Social Teaching play in this discernment?
Sessions will be September 23rd, September 30th, and October 7th at 6:30 pm via Zoom. RSVP required:

"Artisans of Peace" Retreat

Monday, September 28- Sunday, October 4, 2020

This retreat will explore the ways that art is an entryway to foster both inner peace and outer peace: it is both an inward journey to our deepest selves and an outward expression of addressing injustice. Beginning artists, experienced artists, and people who may not see themselves as artists are welcome! No art experience necessary! Guest presenters will invite us to deepen our creative practices of artistic expression (including drawing, oil pastels, poetry, music, photography, dance/movement, ETC...) and share their own stories of how their art speaks to justice issues of the day.

Participants are invited to engage with the following art "supplies:" paper, oil pastels, pen, photography (camera or phone), music, movement, and language. It will be up to you to engage with different mediums as you like.

If you do not have a pad of paper, oil pastels, and pen, we have a limited number of kits with these supplies for $10 ($18 value!). We encourage you to use your own if you do have these supplies. Other than the kit, this retreat experience is free and scholarships for the kits are available.

Retreatants will receive a retreat booklet with readings and reflection prompts for personal prayer, reflection, and creative practices throughout the week. Retreatants will need a zoom account to participate, as we will be offering communal times for small groups. Participants can also opt-in to meeting one on one with a spiritual guide two or three times during the week. For questions, please reach out to .

Register by Monday, September 21 at


Save the date for a moving conversation! On Thursday, Sept. 24, 7-8 pm, the Interfaith Coalition and Muslim Student Association invite you to gather in the Grotto, then head off in pairs to discuss some questions – topics TBA. You’ll be paired with someone of a different faith background for a time of discovery and community building. All are welcome!

Prayer and Spirituality Resources

Catholic Worship on Campus

There are a lot of ways to participate in Mass on campus this semester! The website has all of the information you need to know.

For comprehensive information, please Watch Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of Catholic Worship: Community First. Here is a quick summary:

  • Livestream the 5pm or 7pm Masses on Sunday evening via under the “Participate Virtually” section of
  • Sign up for a pre-registered spot for our outdoor (Saturday) or indoor (Sunday) liturgies via the "Participate in Person" tab of Space will be limited to provide for safe social distancing.
  • Bring your portable chair on Saturday or take a study break wherever you are and attend via livestream on Sunday!

The most up-to-date Mass schedule is always available at:

Please also see the "Sacrament of Reconciliation" and "More Prayer Opportunities" sections of the website, some of which are included in the newsletter below!


where faith and life meet…

This fall, Campus Ministry’s nondenominational worship & sharing community has a new look! We’ll gather (virtually) each week with a different conversation partner, to explore life’s joys and challenges through the lens of Christian faith. All are welcome!

Sunday, 9/20, 6 PM

Zoom Link:

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Interested in the Catholic Faith? RCIA at Villanova

If you or someone you know is interested in the Catholic faith or in receiving the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, First Eucharist) at Villanova, please contact Fr Aldo Potencio, OSA in Campus Ministry. Information sessions will be taking place in the coming weeks.

Mindfulness Monday

Mindfulness Mondays at 12:30-1PM; Join Zoom Meeting: Mindfulness (Mondays at 12:30):

Centering Prayer Remote Meditation Meetings

Centering Prayer on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1-1:30PM

Join Zoom Meeting

Please Contact Linda Jaczynski for more information.

Submit Prayer Requests

Click here to submit prayer requests that will be prayed for during weekly Rosary.


Join the Pastoral Musicians!

The Villanova Pastoral Musicians are a group of about 70 singers and instrumentalists who provide sacred music for the Villanova community. We welcome all who would like to join! In addition to serving as music ministers for campus masses, we also participate in a variety of other events around/off campus, offering formal and informal concerts throughout the year.

Some of our favorite annual events include performing at Orientation and Baccalaureate masses, as well as participating in many other settings where meaningful music is requested.

We have a lot of fun too, especially on our optional retreats and Spring Break trips (national and international)! Our repertoire includes anything from traditional hymns to modern choral arrangements to major works for choir and orchestra, such as Handel’s Messiah or Mozart’s Requiem.

Of course, this semester is different, but we are still doing great things. We are currently offering music at weekend Masses in small groups and maintaining our social and non-musical fun!

Small Group opportunities

Small Group opportunities: click here or use the QR code on the photo to learn more about Campus Ministry’s small group offerings this semester. We are offering a range of group experiences that include: Get Real: Faith Sharing Communities, Faith and Justice Virtual Encounters, Resiliency and Loss, and Sports and Spirituality. Be sure to register to get up-to-date information and receive Zoom links from facilitators. Email with any questions.

Faith and Justice Virtual Encounters!

This year the Service and Justice Experiences program is responding to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic with a new initiative!

Although we cannot be physically present with our community partners, we can still practice social solidarity with them.

Please join us for a Social(ly distanced) Justice Experience through one of our Faith and Justice Virtual Encounter groups!

FJVEs take place through a month-long series of “encounter sessions” with a community partner working for justice. Each small group provides a space to reflect on the relationship between faith and justice by answering the questions:

  • Who am I?
  • Who is this other community?
  • Who are we together?

All sessions will occur via Zoom, although in some cases groups may be able to meet in-person while remaining socially distant.

There is NO COST to participate!

To learn more about the program, group themes, the calendar of events, and to register:

Please check out the following link:

Join Villanova Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Global Ambassadors

Working in close relationship with CRS, the third largest U.S. international private relief and development agency, the CRS Ambassadors gather Villanovans of various belief systems to learn how to connect one’s own humanness and spirituality to fighting for justice. Motivated by faith in love and humanity, we seek justice through education, political activism and advocacy work, as well as active, collaborative community engagement. Working together, we believe we can create a future of global solidarity and sustainable change as a result of our concrete actions.

Our areas of focus for this year are on migrant justice and climate justice, two issues that are extremely relevant to this moment and require us all to work together to address. Interested in joining and/or learning more? Fill out our interest form!

Email with any questions you might have!

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Online Programs & Opportunities

Recording of Justice for Black Lives: A Vigil

Justice for Black Lives: A Vigil, occurred on Friday, August 28, 2020 (St. Augustine’s Feast Day)

A recording of the event is available at

Organized by Campus Ministry, students, and campus partners in response to the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor (among others), "Justice for Black Lives: A Vigil" is an opportunity to stand against racism and inequity. As Villanovans, let us stand in solidarity for justice for Black lives, lament over those killed unjustly, amplify Black voices, and activate a path toward real transformation and justice on our campus and in our communities.

Weekly Prayer Sessions on Instagram Live

Weekly Prayer Sessions on Instagram Live!

Join us on Instagram (@villanovacampusministry) every Wednesday at 12:30pm EST for 15-20 minutes of prayer and reflection.

(all posts are available to watch afterwards on our IG page)

An Introduction to the Confessions of St. Augustine - In Spanish

Join Fr. Arthur Purcaro, O.S.A. each week through a video meditation on each of the 13 books of St Augustine’s master work: The Confessions.

Te invitamos a acompañar a Agustín en su viaje de retorno "a casa" por medio de una reflexión personal y comunitaria sobre tu propio viaje, acercándote a Dios, a ti mismo, a los demás y a la magnífica manifestación de nuestro Dios amoroso en la naturaleza.

Presentada por Fray Art Purcaro, O.S.A.

Watch Here | Ver Aquí

An Introduction to the Confessions of Saint Augustine Video Series

You are invited to accompany Augustine on his journey “home” by means of a personal and communal reflection on your own journey, drawing you closer to God, to yourself, to others and to the magnificent manifestation of our loving God in nature.

The journey begins with this introductory video and will be followed, weekly, by a video meditation on each of the 13 books of St Augustine’s master work: The Confessions. Join the legion of saints and searchers throughout sixteen centuries who have found, in Augustine, a spiritual companion on the path toward a more personal relationship with Christ. God is the source and origin, Jesus himself is the path, the Way, and the Spirit is our common guide.

Service Opportunities

Volunteer with Community Outreach of Villanova!

Are you interested in serving incredible communities, learning about social justice, and making friends along the way this semester? If so, please consider joining Community Outreach of Villanova (COV)! During these unprecedented times, there are so many in need. We are currently navigating ways that we can safely serve our community partners in the midst of the pandemic. In order to help us gauge your general interest, please fill out this brief COV Interest Form! We look forward to having you join us, either virtually or in socially distant ways!

Are You A First Year Student Interested in Service and Meeting Friends?!

RUIBAL is a popular first year-only service program that offers Villanova students the opportunity to serve K-8 students in Philadelphia schools and community centers while creating meaningful friendships with fellow first-year students. Although the way we serve may look different this fall, RUIBAL volunteers can expect to engage in service activities, spend time bonding with their fellow group members in safe ways on campus, explore opportunities to learn about social justice issues that affect our Philadelphia community, take part in meaningful discussions with one another, and more! If you are interested in joining us or learning more, please visit our website, check out our Volunteer Testimonials, and fill out our interest form! We would love to have you!

Interested in Post Grad Service?

Thanksgiving Outreach!

In the past, Villanova has organized a "Turkey Drive" and donated hundreds of turkeys and meal boxes to partner organizations to distribute directly to families in need. Since 2020 is a unique year, we anticipate this program will be unique as well.

If you are interested in helping out and/or kept informed of the outreach, please fill out this quick form. Please email Kate Giancatarino in Campus Ministry with any questions: Thank you!!

Virtual Service Opportunities

Hospital Donations Needed

COVID-19 Donation Needs and Drop-off:

The Fitzpatrick College of Nursing's Center for Global and Public Health has assembled a list of local hospitals and organizations in need of supplies. For details and ways you can help, click here.

Help for Immigrant Families

The pandemic has hit immigrant families hard—job loss, increased fears re/ detention, and even of seeking health care when needed. Various ways to help them:

  1. A local coalition of immigration orgs started a fund to give grants to undocumented workers who don’t qualify for govt relief because they pay taxes using ITIN instead of SS numbers.
  2. The Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia set up a fund for food for needy families through Catholic Social Services.
  3. The “Welcome the Newcomer” page on the Archdiocese website:

'Nova Nook: Location change

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The Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) is launching a new campaign called Living Race—Transforming Community.

"Our campaign is an organized and sustained effort to engage the Villanova community in facilitating opportunities for Black and minoritized students, staff and faculty to succeed and thrive within the University. Creating a just and equitable community can never be the sole province of a single office or individual, so we will do this work in collaboration with other offices, student groups and individuals."

Learn more and Stay Engaged.

University Counseling Center

The University Counseling Center has updated information on their website: including a document with resources for Coping with anxiety at this time.

Emergency Assistance for Students

There is a Student Emergency Fund available for those who are in need. The fund is administered by the Office of Enrollment Management, led by Dean Leon Washington and his staff, with support from CASA. Students, and the faculty and staff who support them, can contact Enrollment Management – best to contact -- or CASA directly.

If you would like to donate to the fund, information is here.

University Event's Calendar

Click to see other events happening across camps. Remember to stay safe!