Members of the College community celebrated St. Joseph’s Day Friday, March 19, with a brief college-wide event, followed by a Mass at SJC Long Island on Monday, March 22.
Hosted by SJC Long Island’s Office of Campus Ministry, both events had limited in-person seating and were streamed live via YouTube.
“St. Joseph is a man of humility, courage and honor for his community and his family,” Cristian Murphy, SJC Long Island’s Director of Campus Ministry, said on Friday. “Let’s keep that in our minds and offer that, especially today but also throughout the whole year too, as this is the ‘Year of St. Joseph.’“
A College-Wide Celebration
Friday’s St. Joseph’s Day Celebration welcomed students, faculty and staff from both campuses, while people took turns speaking and singing, as well as reading passages from the Association of Colleges of Sisters of St. Joseph’s book, “That All May Be One,” which is a collection of prayers and information about the Sisters of St. Joseph.
“Today, I think it’s important to remember that Pope Francis declared this the ‘Year of St. Joseph’ because he felt that the pandemic was such a critical point in our history, and that we need the figure of St. Joseph to help us through this difficult time,” SJC President Donald R. Boomgaarden, Ph.D., said.
“St. Joseph was of course a protector, someone who took care of the holy family, someone who stood up and was a very brave person who showed a lot of courage during a very difficult time,” Dr. Boomgaarden continued. “And so he’s a wonderful model for us.”
“A priest friend of mine once said … ‘Everything that is written about St. Joseph can fit on the back of a postage stamp,'” S. Marie said. “While it is true that very little is written about St. Joseph, we do get a picture of him and name him a just man, refugee, dreamer and worker, among other titles.”
“We welcome you to our annual celebration of the Sisters of St. Joseph, who have blessed this campus for decades,” Fr. Frank said. “We give thanks for the Sisters of St. Joseph — those in our midst and those that have gone before us. We pray thanks to their power of example, that we will be men and women committed to social justice, to human rights, to working for the dignity and respect of all of God’s people in all that we do.”
The Sisters of St. Joseph around the world on Friday renewed their vows and their promise to God to serve the “dear neighbor” without distinction — a mission that lives on through the actions of the students of St. Joseph’s College.
“May our lenten journey free us from the blinders that cause us not to see and the noise that prevents us from hearing, as together we work harder at making the world a better place,” Fr. Frank said.
As part of tradition, the Office of Student Life presented the College’s Sisters with flowers on Monday as a thanks for all that they have done and continue to do.