From staff reports

The generous financial contribution by faithful of the Trenton Diocese toward The Catholic University of America, Washington, was gratefully acknowledged by the university president, John Garvey.

In a March 20 letter to Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., Garvey thanked the people of the Trenton Diocese for its $127,800, which will be used to help financially support the clergy, religious and lay undergraduate and graduate students who are pursuing a Catholic education in CUA which is the only university in the United States that receives beneficial support from the U.S. bishops with approval by the Vatican.

“Because of your generosity, over 6,000 students from dioceses around the country – including those from the Diocese of Trenton – will be able to obtain an education rooted in the Catholic intellectual tradition,” Garvey wrote, who then noted how “delighted” he is to currently have 186 students from the four counties of the Trenton Diocese “part of our learning community.”

Bishop O’Connell is also the beneficiary of a CUA education. He earned a licentiate in 1987 and then a doctor of canon law in 1990. He then went on to serve as CUA’s 14th president for 12 years from 19989 until 2010 when he was appointed Coadjutor Bishop of the Trenton Diocese by Pope Benedict XVI.

“Each diocesan contribution to the National Collection is a strong vote of confidence in our university’s place in the field of higher education, stated Garvey, who recalled how Archbishop Michael Curley, the first archbishop of Washington, once called CUA “the treasured possession of every bishop and diocese in America.”

“Your contribution of $127,800, which is an increase over last year’s gift, affirms this statement and ensures that we continue to fulfill the commitment that your brother bishops made 130 years ago,” said Garvey. Of the 186 CUA students from the Diocese, 84 percent or 157, receive financial aid. The total combined student support totals $3,121,651.

The CUA president spoke of the privilege it was for the nation’s capital to witness the “unprecedented record of three papal visits,” calling it a “powerful reminder of Catholic University’s unique relationship to the Holy See.

“We are honored and humbled to train hundreds of America’s priests and religious each year and we are proud to call over 12,000 from around the world – including you – our alumni,” Garvey said.

 “As you know, we endeavor to offer our students every opportunity to be inspired by the light of God in all of our disciplines – whether they are studying theology or literature, business or engineering,’” Garvey said. “We encourage them to live with faith, act with purpose and challenge with reason. Your support enables us to prepare the next generation of leadership for our Church and nation.”