In front of family, friends and members of the college community, eight students were commissioned as part of the third annual induction class of the 1650 Society.
The society is named for the year 1650, when the first Sisters of Saint Joseph (SSJs) ministered to the poor and marginalized in Le Puy, France. Students are invited to make a commitment to deepen their connection to the Mission of Chestnut Hill College and the SSJs.
“Now is our moment to respond in our day, to circle our city, our community, and our college, living fully this call to active inclusive love,” said Joannie Cassidy, SSJ, director of Campus Ministry in her introduction. “Today we are invited to deepen our call to find God in all things and to respond to God’s love.”
Following the opening prayer and reading of an adaptation of the Constitutions of the Sisters of Saint Joseph Philadelphia, Sister Julie Fertsch, director of the Saint Joseph Worker Program and CHC graduate, ran a group initiative. Everyone was asked to write down and share two words to describe themselves at a time they were most proud of themselves.
“This is who you are, this is who you were sent to be on this campus and in this world,” she said. “The world is in desperate need of the love you have to share.”
Sister Carol Jean Vale, Ph.D., college president, presented each inductee with a pin as they pledged to, “Seek to better know myself, to grow in union with the dear neighbor, to value relationships, and to work for justice, following in the footsteps of those who came before me and making a path for others to follow in the gentleness, zeal and joy.”
—Marilee Gallagher ’14