TORONTO - Kaylee Moynihan is a true servant of the Church. At the young age of 19, she has already spent years working in parish communities. She said that volunteering and working in youth ministry has allowed her to grow in confidence and in her faith.

Published in Youth Speak News

TORONTO - James Ginther wants the truth. He finds it by getting help from people all around the world.

Published in Education

With Catholics anticipating Pope Francis’ upcoming encyclical on the environment, many are looking to discuss how they can be stewards of creation within their own communities.

Published in Canada: Toronto-GTA

TORONTO - The diplomat’s take on what it means to be educated includes getting out of your country and out of your comfort zone. For incoming University of St. Michael’s College president David Mulroney, his diplomat’s understanding of education also happens to be Catholic.

Published in Canada

PHOTO GALLERY: YSN reporter Augustine Ng captures students preparing sandwiches before delivering them to people experiencing homelessness on the streets.

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The Newman Catholic Students’ Club at University of Toronto gathered in the Newman chapel for its monthly street patrol discussion, but this time they were joined by some new faces.
Published in Youth Speak News

TORONTO - A Catholic chaplaincy has begun at the University of Toronto’s Scarborough campus, the last of the university’s three campuses to receive its own permanent Catholic chaplaincy.

Published in Youth Speak News

Fr. Chris Cauchi is raising funds to raise an 88-year-old church roof, and thanks to a major donation the heavy lifting has become easier. 

Published in Estate Planning

TORONTO - A new lecture series hopes to channel Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman and advance his efforts to combine faith and reason on campus. 

Published in Canada

TORONTO - The adage that seeing is believing is being questioned by recent science that suggests the opposite may also be true: believing is seeing.

Published in Canada

TORONTO - Dr. Stephen Hwang has been appointed the first endowed Chair of Homelessness, Housing and Health at St. Michael’s Hospital and the University of Toronto.

Published in Canada

(CORRECTION 24/10/12 to Michael Taylor's job title)

TORONTO - Citizenship and Immigration Canada has granted half-a-million dollars over three years to the University of Toronto for its Religious Diversity Youth Leadership project.

Launched in late September, the program investigates and acts upon the problems and possibilities of living in a religiously diverse society.

“The most important thing the CIC funding was looking for was the kind of projects that would bring together communities that wouldn’t normally be talking to each other,” said Pamela Klassen, professor in the Department for the Study of Religion and director of the Religion in the Public Sphere Initiative.

The project promises to bring together and build networks of communication between students, faculty, community leaders and youth in the Greater Toronto Area. It is run by the U of T’s Multi-Faith Centre for Spiritual Study and Practice, the Religion in the Public Sphere Initiative and the Centre for Community Partnerships. The project aims to raise awareness on how religious diversity and civic responsibility are connected and to work against exclusion and marginalization.

“We put in a proposal, the RPS, together with the Centre for Community Partnerships and the Multi-Faith Centre that was focussed on a university-based project that would take students out into the community and bring various community organizations in contact with students and with the wider university,” Klassen said.

The project has three main activities. The religious diversity youth training activity will have U of T students enrolled in a service-learning certificate program, which is meant to prepare them for serving in diverse communities, including religious communities.

In the next category of activity, academic and service-learning community partnerships, young adults will work in community organizations or university departments to see first-hand how civic responsibility and religious diversity play out in real-world situations.

“Just as our society becomes more diverse, our responses to spiritual and religious care should evolve with it,” said panelist Michael A. Taylor, Regional Manager with the Ontario Multifaith Council and a mental health professional. “A nation that accepts diversity should accept the entire diversity of a person.”

The third category of activity is the public forums and community research workshops. This connects policy makers, scholars, community leaders, practitioners and students.

The first forum was held on Sept. 27, the day the project launched. Titled “Care of Souls and the Soul of Care,” the forum lasted two days and was held to discuss the successes and failures of religion in publicly funded health care and the challenges religious diversity poses for biomedical health care.

On day two of the forum, the community research workshop brought together palliative care doctors, neonatologists, nurses, executives, hospital chaplains, scholars and students.

“What happens when a young baby dies in an ICU in the hospital and it’s a Muslim baby and the parents don’t want to wash the body, but the nurse thinks the body must absolutely be washed,” said Klassen, recalling the events of the workshop. “How do they negotiate those very emotionally fraught kinds of questions and understand what kinds of compromises the health care system can and cannot make to accommodate religious concerns?”

Future forums will address gender and sexuality in religious communities, youth violence and religious identity, as well as religion and the arts.

Published in Youth Speak News

Early in his philosophy career, Professor Tom Langan was fired for being too left wing. Years later he helped found the Canadian Catholic Civil Rights League, an organization often called reactionary.

Langan died May 25 at Bridgepoint Hospital. For the last five months of his life at Bridgepoint, Langan was surrounded by family, friends and former students.

He was fired in the 1950s by his Jesuit-founded alma mater, St. Louis University. But Langan wasn’t unemployed long. Indiana University took him on and he eventually rose to chair of the philosophy department.

Published in Canada

TORONTO - It can be difficult for students to maintain a healthy balance between studies and personal spiritual growth. Kintore College, a women’s university residence to be run by Opus Dei in downtown Toronto, hopes it will help students find that balance.

“While Kintore will certainly provide a serious study atmosphere for its residents, we do believe that a healthy lifestyle includes all aspects of the human person: the social, cultural, spiritual, physical and emotional,” said Crystal Mason, the college’s director.

Officially opening Sept. 1, 2012, the college is located on the St. George campus at the University of Toronto. However, the residence is open to students from different universities and colleges such as Ryerson, explained Mason. Combined with a 13-storey high-rise condominium, the four-floor residence promises future residents not only a beautiful place to live but a warm atmosphere as well.

“The building was designed to maximize the use of sunlight and makes for a beautiful and warm home away from home,” said Miriam Hyginus, a second-year student at the University of Toronto. Although Hyginus will not be living at the college due to a prior commitment, she is very excited for the college’s opening.

“Personally, I find it inspiring to see students who are committed to advancing both academically and spiritually,” she said. “These are women who are serious about getting into both grad school and heaven.”

The property was purchased by Pro-Edu-Val (PEV) in 1997, a charity organization whose mission is “to foster the education of women of all ages and backgrounds in order to promote their unique influence in the shaping of society through their family life, professional work and community,” explained Virginia Nanouris, Kintore’s project manager and an employee of PEV.

The leadership of Kintore is given to members of Opus Dei, a Catholic organization helping people seek holiness in their everyday lives.

The college is open to people of all faiths and religions, but promises a vibrant spiritual life for students who choose to take part in it. For example, Hyginus noted that Holy Mass will be celebrated every day and there will be opportunities for confession, talks on different topics and classes about the faith.

“Far from taking emphasis away from having a relationship with God, Kintore promotes this with the variety of activities it offers. It’s a great place to challenge your mind, nourish your body and strengthen your soul.”

To give students more time to study and to participate in the various social and spiritual activities, Kintore will offer a healthy meal plan and full cleaning and laundry services, said Mason.

Mason also hopes that the residents and members of the management team will feel like a family.

For Hyginus, this welcoming atmosphere might help prevent anti-social behaviour that arises from too much studying and stress.

“University years are one of the most precious times in one’s life and a moment for forging friendships that will last a lifetime,” said Mason. “We want these years to be truly formative and energizing for students.”

Kintore College is currently accepting applications. “We are receiving and reviewing applications as we speak. We have not yet made any offers of admission but we plan to do so very soon.”

(Thien-An Nguyen, 19, is a second-year history and political science student at the University of Ottawa.)

Published in Youth Speak News
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