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June 12, 2017   •   VOL. 55, NO. 11   •   Oakland, CA
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More than 500 guests sing the concluding hymn at the prayer service bidding farewell to the Sulpicians at St. Patrick's Seminary & University chapel on May 13.

Sulpicians host farewell to St. Patrick's Seminary

In a final tribute to their 118 years of service at St. Patrick's Seminary & University in Menlo Park, the Society of St. Sulpice, Province of the United States, the Sulpicians, hosted a farewell celebration May 13, with a prayer service and luncheon to officially end their history of staffing the school.

More than 500 alumni, friends and supporters of the seminary attended the event. The celebrant for the prayer service was Sulpician Father Gladstone Stevens, outgoing president-rector of the seminary. Homilist was Sulpician U.S. Provincial Superior Very Rev. John C. Kemper.

Father Kemper noted the major impact the Sulpicians played in the life of the Catholic Church in Northern California and the Pacific Rim over the more than 100 years of staffing the seminary.

"At St. Patrick's we have educated church leaders, both priests and bishops in the Sulpician tradition," Father Kemper said in an announcement. "We are proud of these leaders and of our contribution in the region. But now, due to circumstances beyond our control, the Society of St. Sulpice must bid St. Patrick's Seminary… Adieu! We wish God's blessing upon the new faculty and administration as they begin to build on the 118-year foundation built by generations of dedicated Sulpicians."

As a parting gift to St. Patrick's Seminary, the Sulpicians have established an endowed Sulpician Scholarship for a needy seminarian from a mission diocese attending St. Patrick's.

The Sulpicians informed Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone of San Francisco on Oct. 21, 2016, they would cease to be part of St. Patrick's as of June 30, 2017. Jesuit Father George Schultze, spiritual director and adjunct faculty member at the seminary since 2005, will become president rector of the seminary July 1.

In a statement on Oct. 22, the archdiocese said, "We sincerely thank the Sulpicians for their very long service to the archdiocese and to those other dioceses served by the seminary.

The archdiocese also announced these faculty appointments at St. Patrick's:

Rev. Michael Carey, OP, associate professor of moral theology, chair of Moral Theology Department; Rev. Michael Castori, SJ, adjunct instructor of Sacred Scripture; Rev. Daniel B. Donohoo, vice rector; Rev. Pius Pietrzyk, OP, assistant professor of pastoral studies, chair of Pastoral Studies Department. These priests are continuing at St. Patrick's: Rev. Gregory Heidenblut, OSA, director of pastoral year, instructor of dogmatics; and Rev. Loreto B. Rojas, director of field education, instructor of pastoral studies.

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