God’s Quad: A Panel Discussion on Community Building and Campus Ministry

We need to make a preferential option for the young.

     – Synod report of the Antilles Episcopal Conference

Only one way to be a disciple—grow young again.

     – Jean Sulivan, Morning Light

Our sincere thanks to panelists Kevin Ahern, Paulina Halley, and Fr. Joe Healey, and to all of our attendees and participants, for a rich and generative discussion on March 21. We looked at the current state of campus ministry, including the role of synodality and small Christian communities, possibilities for inter-generational dialogue, and other ways of rebuilding the path of the “student church.” A recording is available for those who were unable to attend or who may wish to revisit the discussion. We’ve also assembled links to resources that came up during the event and other items of interest below.

God’s Quad: Small Faith Communities on Campus and Beyond (Orbis Books, 2018), edited by Kevin Ahern and Christopher Derige Malano and featuring a contribution from Fr. Joe Healey (Reminder to use the code CON30 at checkout for a 30 percent discount—thanks again to Orbis Books)

Small Christian Communities Today (Orbis Books, 2006/Paulines Publications Africa, 2017), edited by Fr. Joe Healey and Jeanne Hinton (eBook version available here)

How to Reach Catholic Young Adults Today,” remarks and quotations from Fr. Joe Healey

Young people lead the way in campus ministry,” article by Kevin Ahern for U.S. Catholic (August 17, 2021)

Christus Ministries

Young Adult Seekers (Catholic Church Reform International)

Kevin Glauber Ahern, PhD, is a theological ethicist and public theologian. His research focuses on the significance of Catholic institutional ministries and Christian social movements. He is an associate professor of Religious Studies at Manhattan College and the past director of the Peace and Justice Studies and Labor Studies programs. He is the author of Structures of Grace: Catholic Organizations Serving the Global Common Good. He has edited several books, including the award-winning Visions of Hope: Emerging Theologians and the Future of the Church, The Radical Bible, and the award-winning Public Theology and the Global Common Good. He is a past-president of the Interna­tional Movement of Catholic Students (IMCS-Pax Romana).

Paulina Halley is a recent graduate of Yale University and former participant in Leadership Roundtable’s ESTEEM (Engaging Students to Enliven the Ecclesial Mission) program.

Fr. Joe Healey, MM, is an American Maryknoll missionary priest who has 50 years of experience working with small Christian communities in Africa and elsewhere. He has taught “Small Christian Communities as a New Model of Church in Africa Today” at Tangaza University College in Nairobi and a similar course at Hekima University College in Nairobi. He is co-author of Small Christian Communities Today: Capturing the New Moment (Orbis Books and Paulines Publications Africa) and author of Building the Church as Family of God: Evaluation of Small Christian Communities in Eastern Africa, among other titles. He serves as moderator of the Small Christian Communities Global Collaborative Website.

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