The culmination of Pope Francis’ apostolic visit to the Americas is the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, PA. As the Meeting is the purpose of the visit, Our Holy Father’s time in the City of Brotherly Love is arguably the most anticipated portion of the visit. In keeping with the excitement over the climactic weekend, Philadelphia’s colleges and universities are more than doing their part to welcome Pope Francis.
One of the universities that is hosting events in anticipation of the visit and the WMOF, Gwynedd Mercy University, is especially attentive to the Pontiff’s message for the Year of Mercy. To reflect this theme and to remain true to their heritage, the students, faculty and staff of Gwynedd Mercy have successfully scheduled a week full of preparatory activities, which include their annual Mercy Week and Pope-a-Palooza.
As an established annual celebration of the university’s history, Mercy Week is full of events honoring the Sisters of Mercy, the university’s founding congregation. The mission of the Year of Mercy resonates with the values of the Sisters of Mercy, who seek to fill their lives with service for others. The events include live viewings of all the papal addresses and Masses, as well as a special Mercy Day Mass to honor the Sisters and Associates of Mercy at the university. See the flyer on the GMU Campus Ministry website for more details.
Pope-a-Palooza takes place over the weekend of Pope Francis’ actual visit to Philadelphia from Saturday, September 26 to Sunday, September 27. In celebration of His Holiness being in such close proximity, Gwynedd Mercy will be hosting over sixty students from five other universities affiliated with the Sisters of Mercy. They will be joining GMU students, faculty, and staff in a weekend of opportunities to delve deeper into the Critical Concerns of the Sisters of Mercy, to share their faith, and to advocate for our brothers and sisters experiencing poverty and homelessness. They will also be making the trip to the city of Philadelphia to attend the Mass on the Parkway with Our Holy Father.
#HigherEdWithPope: Catholic colleges and universities are greatly anticipating the upcoming visit of Pope Francis to the United States, and several colleges will play a special role during the Papal Visit. This series highlights how certain Catholic colleges and universities are preparing for the Papal Visit, and how Catholic higher education lives out the vision of Pope Francis every day.