A Letter from the Rev. Bill Christy, Director of Spiritan Campus ministry and University Chaplain

Dear Members of the Duquesne Community,

This past week has been one of unexpected and dramatic changes. For many, especially our seniors, the rush to leave may have resulted in incomplete goodbyes and sorrow that found us torn from the very community we long to be a part of when we are feeling scared or anxious.

As you know, the governor of Pennsylvania stated that all non-life-sustaining organizations were required to close face-to-face operations for the good of the many. This is quite a paradox as Duquesne University of the Holy Spirit, for so many of us, is the most life-giving and life-supporting community we know. For all of us, we begin to adjust to a new, current reality; and just as the word Google changed from a noun to a verb, so too shall we all learn to Zoom.

Our current reality here on campus is an on-line one. It calls for each of us to focus with the need for self-motivation and self-discipline. It also calls for a new way to form community, and to meet in new and creative ways. It calls for us to reach out to others—not with our hands, but with our heart and with our words, whether they be spoken or typed, or texted.

Spiritan Campus Ministry will assist in any way we can to help you remain connected. We have some new and creative ideas, and we also look to you to provide insight and suggestions. The campus ministers are all committed to assisting you with that connection, whether it is a one-on-one virtual meeting or a weekly check-in by text or email or phone or Zooming. Be with us on our webpage, our Facebook, our Instagram, our Twitter and we will all face this temporary new version of “normal” together. We are committed to continue to minister to you in any way we can, an online Spiritan Campus Ministry for an online Duquesne University.

You might not think you need this right now, but just save this message and the link to our Spiritan Campus Ministry website anyway. There may come a time when it might be just what you need or just what someone else you know needs. We will still be here and ready, for as long as this takes and as long as you need us.

Perhaps you saw the Facebook post of the words I wrote in chalk during the first large move out event. They are words that we are keeping close to our heart, and we hope that you do as well: Be patient. Be kind. Be brave. Have faith. Behind all of these is the greatest of all—love. The wonderful love of a place, a community, and a God who loves us all and will see us through. There is indeed “the light that shines in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome it!” John 1:5.

Click here to go to our Spiritan Campus Ministry webpage to join an existing online community, suggest a community that you would like to share or follow our reflections and liturgies.


Fr. Bill