Abigail C. Reimel
From: Wilmington, NC
Major: English Language and Literature
Hobbies: Reading, writing, and anything that involves being at the beach! :)
What is your favorite class or professor? Right now, my favorite class would have to be History 101 with Dr. Timothy O'Donnell. He has an incredible way of blending together facts, insights, quotes, and humorous comments as he lectures, thus creating a very enlightening and enjoyable class experience.
What extra-curricular activities do you participate in? I plan to participate in Students for Life, the Chester-Belloc Debate Society, Swing 'n Sundaes, and the school plays—along with being a photographer for the Chronicler! :)
What is your favorite thing about Christendom? Always being within walking distance of the chapel, and being able to go inside at almost any time.
Why did you choose Christendom? I chose Christendom because it was the only Catholic college that offered both incredible academics and a vibrant, faith-filled student body to help me grow and excel as a person. And because of the swing dancing... :)
What surprises you the most about Christendom? The variety of people. I had expected everyone to be basically the same, but there are actually many different types of people and personalities on campus.
What are your plans after graduation? To write professionally, eventually publishing books that challenge people spiritually without being preachy, and hopefully start a family of my own- in God's good time.
Any parting words of advice for a prospective student? Go to the summer program, never hesitate to e-mail the Admissions Office with questions, and leave the decision in God's hands.
Welcoming the New Students
The new academic year at Christendom College started out with a bang on Friday, welcoming 139 freshmen to the campus. They were greeted by the smiling and enthusiastic welcoming committee, who helped them move in and get settled in. That evening, sophomore Clare Dempsey and junior Gabi Muskett threw a Friday Night Social for the freshmen behind Regina Coeli Hall, where there was music, volleyball, a fire pit, corn hole, and much more. It gave them all the opportunity to mingle and meet one another, as well as get to know the Resident Assistants (RAs) and Student Activities Council (SAC) members, who all played a huge role in making the evening so memorable.
While the freshmen were enjoying themselves, parents had the opportunity to meet their children's future professors as well as members of the college staff at a reception in the St. John the Evangelist Library.
Students enjoyed games of corn hole as they mixed and mingled.
A fireside chat.
Mrs. Turner chats with theology professor Eric Jenislawski and the Director of Residence Life Amanda Graf.
Philosophy professor Doug Flippen enjoys a conversation with parents, Mr. and Mrs. Hoff.
Alumni Parents chatting with the Director of Admissions, Tom McFadden.
Mr. and Mrs. John O'Brien meet the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Steve Snyder.
Classics Professor Marcello Lipiello eplains the wonders of the Latin language.
College president Dr. Timothy O'Donnell addressed the parents and thanked them for the sacrifices they make in sending their children to Christendom where they will receive the intellectual and spiritual formation necessary to become tomorrow's leaders.
Excitement was in the gym air at the Saturday game night. Senior Zach Smith and sophomore Nate Harrington provided a fun selection of songs for all to listen to during several games of volleyball and basketball. Board games and food were upstairs for all to take advantage of and enjoy as well. The highlight of the evening was the annual RA vs SAC Dodgeball Game. The SAC team was victorious ending a 2-year losing streak.
"I am very proud of my SAC members," Student Activities Director Caitlin Bowers said. "Overall, it was a very good game, and the evening was a huge success."
Students enjoy games in the gym loft.
Sophomore Peter Foeckler sends the ball across the net in a game of volleyball.
SAC president Jake Morgan looks to hit an RA in dodgeball.
Victorious team: SAC.
Mass with Bishop Loverde
The College officially launched its 37th academic year on August 25 with a convocation and Mass celebrated by Arlington Bishop Paul S. Loverde. During his homily, Bishop Loverde echoed Pope Francis by encouraging students to take part in the new evangelization with three words: Jesus, prayer, and witness.
“Here at Christendom, you practice witnessing to Christ and for Christ in your interactions with one another,” he said. “Here too, you are being equipped to continue this witness, when you leave the Jerusalem of this place to go to the ends of the earth. Yes, Catholic education is inseparably linked to the new evangelization.”
He encouraged students during their time at Christendom to be “re-evangelized and formed totally as a person created in God’s image and recreated by the death and resurrection of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.”
“Encounter this Lord Jesus in prayer and witness to him though love—love rooted in the truth,” he said.
Following the homily, College president Dr. Timothy O'Donnell led the entire faculty in a profession of faith and an oath of fidelity to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Christendom remains one of a handful of Catholic colleges in the nation where the entire faculty makes this oath, ensuring that the faith will be taught in its entirety across the various disciplines.
Following Mass, the bishop joined the faculty, staff, and students for brunch in the newly refinished St. Lawrence Commons. Afterwards, O'Donnell addressed the entire College community, informing them of recent campus enhancements and the past year's success in fundraising and admissions.
Fun in the Country Sun
Sunday's beautiful warm and sunny weather allowed the freshmen to go canoeing and tubing in the Shenandoah River. A few even jumped in to go swimming for a bit. In the evening, students enjoyed the annual barn dance hosted by philosophy professor Dr. John Cuddeback. Decked out in western boots and hats, students enjoyed games of tug-a-war, rides on a hay wagon, corn hole, and a photo-booth.
"It was a really fun evening," senior Sarah Peterson said. "I had a great time!"
As the sun began to set, Dr. Cuddeback took out his microphone and led everyone in contra dancing.
Enjoying a canoe ride on the Shenandoah.
College chaplain Fr. Donald Planty gets to know the freshman class.
Students enjoy a game of volleyball.
An epic tug o' war.
Senior class hay ride.
Students enjoyed learning the contra dances.
The Virginia Reel is always a favorite.
All new and returning students gathered for the Orientation Party in the St. Lawrence Commons on Monday evening, August 26, to take part in the skits and interactive games put on by the Resident Assistants (RAs) and the Student Activities Council (SAC) members. Freshmen and transfer students were introduced to some of the Christendom policies and opportunities, such as quiet hours and club rush, in entertaining ways, and many new students were called on stage to give these demonstrations themselves.
“The Orientation Party made me super excited for my first year at Christendom,” says transfer student, Junior Brigid Coyne. “It was cool to learn more about the school from students and have fun at the same time.”
The party was a perfect “ice-breaking” event, and really helped the new students get to know their RAs and SAC leaders.
RAs explain the importance of quiet hours through a loud and crazy skit.
Laughter filled the Commons with each hilarious skit.
Freshmen girls—blindfolded makeup challenge.
RAs and SAC members perform musical performance about freshman year
Orientation: A Crash Course on Being a Christendom Student
Besides the events and socials that take place each year during Orientation Week, new students hear from various members of the College's faculty and staff who explain life at Christendom—from an explanation of the liturgical life, to how to get involved, to methods for student success. When Orientation Week is over students are prepared to jump into the year.
This year literature professors Dr. Patrick Keats and Dr. Thomas Stanford gave an introduction to the academic life at the College. The professors explained the power of a liberal arts education and the role each subject plays in the students' intellectual formation.
New students were also introduced to members of the Student Life staff who explained the many opportunities available to help them to become well-rounded leaders with rich spiritual lives. College chaplain Fr. Donald Planty introduced students to the spiritual and liturgical life at Christendom and the many outreach programs available. Each student also received a compact edition of the Liturgy of the Hours made available through the generosity of a donor.
As part of the College's new Career Development program, each student took the Meyers-Briggs Exam during Orientation. This tool helped each student gain insight into his or her personality type and cognitive style. The Director of Career Development, Mike Mochel, explained how the liberal arts education will provide students with the lifelong learning skills needed to succeed in any field that interests them.
Students also heard from College President Dr. Timothy O'Donnell, Director of Athletics Chris Vander Woude, and Philosophy Professor John Cuddeback.
Amidst the fun activities, the Orientation Week presentations remind new students of the seriousness of their vocation as scholars, while preparing them to fully experience one of the nation's premiere liberal arts colleges.
Let the new year begin!
The Class of 2017.
Crusader Sports Center
Camps and First Impressions
Story and photos by Joe Dalimata ('17)
"We hold our student athletes to a very high standard here at Christendom," Coach Vander Woude told the attendees of the sports mini-camps during his opening remarks.
On and off the field or court, the student athletes here are held to a higher standard than, not only the student athletes of other colleges, but higher even than the other students of Christendom. For they, more so than any other group of students, create our public image, show the world what it means to be a Crusader; a crusader for the Good, the True, and the Beautiful. To "Run so as to win."(1 Cor 9:25) on and off the field. To show, through discipline and sportsmanship, that the truly Catholic athlete is one of a different strain. "To bear the hardship together along with me (each other) like a good soldier of Jesus Christ." (2 Tim. 2:1-7). Is that not the call of all Christians? To be a witness to Christ? How truly great it is then that these young men and women can come together bear witness to Christ by being a student athlete of Christendom College. To come together and in just a few short weeks, become a cohesive, dedicated team that works, plays, and prays, together.
This mini-camp implants deeply these values into the new athletes and reinforces it into the returning ones. Our 6:30 a.m. practice started with a prayer, dedicating our work to God, and asking Him and His Holy Mother for protection and perseverance through the long day of work ahead. We attended Mass as a team. We prayed the rosary as a team. Meals were shared, as a team. And to relax, bowling and frozen yogurt together brought some much needed relief.
This is the goal of the Athletic Program of Christendom College - not just victory on the field, which of course is also to be striven for, but victory in our lives, in our spiritual, social, and educational lives.
And, yes, there are many ways to attain the aforementioned goal, the athletic program is just one of the many ways that Christendom strives, Instaurare omnia in Christo, to restore all things in Christ. To bring new life and new meaning into is what it means to be a child, a student, a team member, of Christ.
As an incoming freshman, I have not failed to see this. The support and camaraderie of the returning athletes quickly transferred to the new. Before the end of the first day we, the new athletes, knew that we were participating in something unique. Through heat and rain, blisters and sore muscles, each team member was supportive and helpful to his team mate. Both constructive criticism and praise from coach to players, and players to each other, were constantly used to build on our accomplishments, and correct our mistakes. I am very grateful that I have been able to experience, along with my fellow newcomers, this enthusiastic welcome to the home of the Crusaders.