Student Profile

Maryann Doughty

Age: 20
Year: Junior
From: Front Royal, Virginia
Major: Political Science
Hobbies? Music, going to concerts, sports, spur of the moment road trips, and drinking tons of coffee.
Who's your favorite professor? My favorite class right now would probably have to be History with Dr. Adam Schwartz. I love the way he teaches and he really knows how to keep the class engaged in whatever he talks about. However, my favorite professor and favorite class ever would have to be Ethics with Prof. Michael Brown.
What extra-curricular activities do you participate in? Intramurals, working in St. Kilian's Café, and on Student Activities Council events, which I am planning on applying to be on next year.
What is your favorite thing about Christendom? I love the community and the formation that you get. You definitely have so many opportunities to grow in your faith and as a person here.
Why did you choose Christendom? When I saw how grounded, both as a person and in the faith, my brother Ryan was after attending Christendom, I decided that I wanted the same.
What has surprised you the most about Christendom? Probably the diversity of people here. It was definitely different than what I expected. It is easy to get along with everyone here and have common values, even though there is such a wide variety of backgrounds.
Plans after graduation? I would love to do something with my major, but it has always been my dream to go into Special Education.
Any parting words of advice for a prospective student? Do not be presumptuous about the school, especially based off what people might say. That is what almost stopped me from coming. Come visit and see for yourself!

Student Life

Contra Dancing

A popular student-run group on campus is the Contra Club. Students gathered together on Wednesday night two weeks-ago to learn fun new dances under the direction of club present, junior Rocina Daez. Two of everyone's favorite dances are the Virginia Reel and Ladies Chain. Many love having the opportunity to take a break from their studies in the middle of the week and expand on their skills of contra dancing. The happiness that they had throughout the evening was clearly shown as everyone was all smiles as the lively music was played.

The practice of all different variations of dances has been a long standing tradition at Christendom. There is also a swing dance club, which hosts Swing 'n' Sundaes throughout the semester. And there is the contra formal every spring.

Rocina Daez demonstrates to everyone some contra dancing.

Two freshmen learn how to waltz.

Everyone enjoys dancing the Virginia Reel.

Freshmen David Massa and Katie Titus dance the waltz together.


"The Three Musketeers"

The Christendom College Players performed "The Three Musketeers" on November 22-24. An adaption by Ken Ludwig of Alexander Dumas' beloved novel, the play featured a talented cast, gorgeous costumes, and swashbuckling excitement that entertained audiences at each performance.

Directed by professional actress, Katie Long, and Christendom literature professor, Dr. Patrick Keats, the play followed the story of D'Artagnan, a young man from the countryside of France. D'Artagnan travels to Paris, where he meets the story's namesake the three musketeers and assists them in saving France from the evil Cardinal Richelieu.

"Though I have acted before, this was my first Christendom play," said senior Andrew Hepler, who played Athos, one of the three musketeers. "The experience was very enjoyable, and I cannot think of a better way to reenter the world of acting than with my friends from the college."

Sophomore Kinsey Benz, who performed in the play and assisted with the costumes, also enjoyed forming friendships over the many hours of rehearsing and producing the play.

"My favorite thing is the awesome friendships you form as you make mistakes and work to perform together," she said. "The play really helped me not only in flexing my creative skills, but also in building my teamwork skills."

Every year the Christendom Players produce two plays: one in the fall and one in the spring. And because Christendom does not have a drama department, students from across all disciplines are welcome to audition for the performances, making Christendom's liberal arts experience rich in the fine arts as well.

Highlights from the play included impressive sword fights that were brought to life with the help of a professional fight choreographer, Kevin Inouye.

Ornate costumes also brought the stage to life. Made by a team of local designers, the costumes captured the era and the colorful excitement of the story. "Much thanks goes to Maria McFadden," Keats said. Maria, 16 years old and the daughter of college admissions director Tom McFadden, worked tirelessly with her team on the creation and assembly of the costumes, which added to the plays success.

The Cardinal, Milady, and Rochefort plot against the king and the Musketeers.

The death of Constance.

Each performance was met with a hearty applause, which was well earned by the student actors, set designers, and stage crew.

Library staff member Mickey Krebs, to whom the show was dedicated, made a cameo in the final scene.

more pics on picasa


Celebrating Christ the King

On November 24, Christendom College celebrated the Feast of Christ the King with Mass, Benediction and Eucharistic procession. On this patronal feast, which marked the end of the Year of Faith, the entire college community also consecrated itself to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary, something it has been doing every year since 1992. The college was founded under the patronage of Christ the King and under the mantle of Our Lady of Fatima, and as such, has a deep devotion to both.

"This Year of Faith has brought many graces to our community," said college president Dr. Timothy O'Donnell. "And I couldn't think of a more fitting way to end the year than with a public procession of our Eucharistic King."

The celebration began with a solemn Mass, where Fr. Solanus Bonfatti of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal gave the homily and spoke on how the kingship of Christ is a kingship that demands our hearts completely.

"He is no ordinary king," he said. "What part of our hearts is still mission territory? What part of our hearts is not yet ruled by Christ? We must surrender that part to Him."

The Mass was followed by a Eucharistic procession, benediction, and a renewal of the consecration of the college to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Despite what Dr. O'Donnell called "the coldest Christ the King celebration in history" with wind-chill temperatures in the 20's, students still came out in large numbers.

"It was really inspiring to see all my fellow students come out—especially in the cold," senior Hannah Ethridge said. "The reverence everyone showed as Christ passed by was also very beautiful."

Students, faculty and staff then gathered in the St. Lawrence Commons for a festive brunch. Later that evening the day came to a close with solemn vespers, adoration, and benediction in the Chapel of Christ the King.

For more information about Christendom College's rich spiritual life, visit

more pics on picasa


The Price is Right!

On Monday evening, November 25, Christendom’s Student Philanthropy Board held a special trivia event in Kilian’s Café called “The Price is Right” to raise awareness about the Board and to get students involved. The Student Philanthropy Board is a panel of students in the senior class who are in charge of getting the rest of their class involved in pledging to donate to Christendom College. Christendom would not exist without the generous donations of alumni and donors [see the "Special Report" below].

Members of the Student Philanthropy Board had placed large price tags on many objects and buildings around the campus the previous week in preparation for “The Price is Right,” and students were tested on their memory of how much items cost, such as lampposts, couches, and coffee machines. Students’ names were drawn out of a bowl at random and they had the opportunity to win prizes, including the grand prize of a $50 Visa gift card, by guessing and answering questions about how much it costs to run Christendom College.

"The trivia event proved to be a fun way to introduce the student body to the Philanthropy Board, and its work in making students aware of the work and money that goes into running our school, " says senior Rebecca Deucher, president of the Student Philanthropy Board. "I am proud to be a part of the Philanthropy Board, and excited to see it grow."

Student Philanthropy Board president, senior Rebecca Deucher, gives a presentation.

Students discuss the Board with its staff coordinator, Mr. Paul Jalsevac, Director of Development at Christendom College.

Students ponder their answers to the tough trivia questions.

Seniors Kelsey Ingold and Maribeth Kelly, and junior Peter Foeckler, were the hosts of "The Price is Right" event.


Rome Report

with Maria Bonvisutto

Arrivederci, Bella Roma!


And so it begins. We Fall Romers are now in our final week in the Eternal City.

Classes are over, finals are finished, we’ve had our last Sunday Mass here and now it’s time to start packing our bags and saying goodbye to our favorite spots. We’ve had lots of new adventures just in the past week, and it seems like with each passing day we discover even more places that we want to explore in Rome.

This city is truly a never-ending wonder. Just in the past week or so, some of us have visited the small but mighty Borghese Gallery, gone on a seven-church pilgrimage around Rome, explored the Piazza Navona Christmas market, toured the Vatican Museums with our wonderful art and architecture professor Liz Lev, and enjoyed a Thanksgiving feast together (except with a whole roast pig instead of turkey)! And now, these next few days will be full of lasts—our last Papal Audience, our last walks across St. Peter’s Square, our last trips to the 24-hour bakery, our last walks past the Tiber River and the Castle Sant’Angelo, and so many more.

It’s very hard to sum up this entire semester and all the incredible experiences we’ve shared as a class. The Rome Program has given us a chance to see the world, a chance that we may never have again in our lifetimes. We’ve all had moments that have touched us, whether it’s been walking the streets of Assisi, seeing Papa Francesco up close, praying before the tomb of a favorite saint, marveling at the view from Il Duomo in Florence, gazing at the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel or simply spending time with friends over delicious food and wine at our weekly Wednesday night dinners. We’ve been able to learn about art and architecture, theology, Italian and the history of Rome right next door to the spot where St. Peter himself was martyred. Living in the very place where so much of the art, history and religion of the West has its foundations has been very surreal. We have literally walked in the footsteps of saints this semester.

We’ve also ventured off to other corners of the world and discovered countless treasures. We’ve been given the chance this semester to explore places we’ve always dreamed of seeing, like Pompeii, Paris, Krakow, Athens, and even the Holy Land.

There’s nothing like studying and living together in a foreign city thousands of miles from home to draw people together. I think that’s just what being in Rome for two and a half months has done for my classmates and I. This time has been a bonding experience like no other, and it’s been a beautiful thing to see how friendships have grown and developed over the course of the months.  And it’s also been wonderful getting to know our fantastic Rome staff who take such good care of us: Ms. Ott, Elizabeth Walsh and Gabe Schuberg. They truly made us feel at home here and helped make this semester so much more enjoyable.

And now it’s time to say goodbye. So arrivederci, bella Roma. And to all you readers who’ve been reading or looking at pictures of this chronicle of our overseas adventure, thank you. Although words and photographs can’t quite completely capture the experience we’ve had here, I hope they’ve at least given you a glimpse into our Rome semester.


Learning Rome's art and architecture.

Best seats in the house for a papal audience require an early rise.

Junior Peter Deucher reaches out to swap zucchettos with Pope Francis, who made the change.

Peter now has Pope Francis's hat.


Junior Romers of Fall 2013


Crusader Sports Center

Basketball is Back on Campus!

The women’s basketball team, under the guidance of Coach Mike Brown, got back to .500 for the season, after they won their last three games of the semester.

The women’s team, which started the season with a record of 0-3, got their first win against Notre Dame of Maryland. On Saturday November 23, the team travelled to Baltimore and pulled out an impressive 55-43 victory over the NCAA III Gators of Notre Dame of Maryland. After just a 7-point lead at half-time against the Gators the Lady Crusaders built on the lead throughout the second half. Senior Morgan Kavanagh led all scorers with 19 points while junior Mary Barbale posted a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds, as the women claimed their first victory by a 12-point margin.

The women followed up with their second victory of the season, defeating another NCAA III opponent Wilson College.

“This year’s team is very balanced and, when we play well, we have the chance to win every game,”  Coach Mike Brown said.

At Wilson, the Lady Crusaders were held to a 1-point lead at half-time, but then blew the Phoenix away in the second half, outscoring them by 22 points on their way to a 23-point victory.

The Lady Crusaders hosted the Knights of Central Penn College on Monday and jumped out to an early lead and never looked back. Led by a stingy defense, the women put the clamps on the Knights. On the offensive end everyone got involved and with numerous beautiful passes that resulted in easy baskets for the team. The Lady Crusaders won, 65-30.

Christendom Crazies cheer on the Lady Crusaders.

Junior Elizabeth Slaten adds two for the Crusaders.

Morgan Kavanagh scored 23 points in the game against Central Penn College.


Special Report

Rejecting Federal Funds

Did you know that Christendom College is one of only two fully accredited Catholic colleges in the U.S. that does not accept federal funding in any form, including federal tuition loans and grants?

From its very beginning, the College made a prudential decision never to accept federal funding.  This means that Christendom will remain free to teach the Catholic Faith without government interference. 

The College’s decision has proven prophetic given the federal government’s current assault on religious freedom and its expanding use of funding conditions to promote policy preferences. (See this article/video from The Washington Times.) But, the College’s courageous stance means that it must rely on its generous donors to provide the financial support that students at other institutions receive from the federal government.

And all of this DOES NOT mean that Christendom does not offer financial assistance. No, in fact, the College mirrors, generally, the amount of loans and grants given in aid by the government, except in the College's case, the money comes from the generous donors and not Uncle Obama. No Federal Aid does not mean No Financial Aid.

Read more about this here.


Tom McFaddenAsk the Director

Q. Do you have any tips on how to write an application essay for college? Obviously, there are lots of different essay prompts, but do you know any general tips I should observe?

A. College application essays are very important to admissions committee members, or at least to the members of Christendom's admissions committee. They want to see that you can write clearly, and they use the essays to get a glimpse into your personality and academic abilities. Since most people don't ever meet with the admissions committee for an interview, the essay is a key way for you as the applicant to let them know much of an asset you would be to the college community.

I created a little PDF document entitled, "Top Ten Things Not To Do When Writing a College Application Essay." It's not the greatest thing ever written, but it might help you out a bit, no matter what college you apply for.

Speaking of applying for college, our Early Action Deadline of December 1 just passed us by and we received a near record number of applications for the Fall 2014. Thanks to all who expressed an interest in the great educational experience we offer here.

We received 162 applications (up 7% over last year), with 7% more men applying than last year at this time. Additionally, 120 of those applications are currently complete and will be getting an answer from the Admissions Committee sometime before December 15. That's a 45% increase over last year in application completion rate which shows the level of commitment of our dedicated applicants.

If you missed the December 1 deadline, you have plenty of time to apply before the March 1 deadline, although, at this rate, it is tough to guarantee that we won't be starting a waiting list around that time. So, if you are interested in applying, why not do it over your Christmas break. If you do it then, I am sure we will have space for you in the fall.