St. John Fisher College to Host Celebration Honoring Patron Saint of Mexico and the Americas

October 30, 2017

St. John Fisher College’s Office of Campus Ministry and the Latino Student Union will host a celebration of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Sunday, Dec. 10.

A painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The celebration takes place two days before the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Patron Saint of Mexico and all the Americas, and includes Mass, a lecture, and dedication of a portrait in her honor. She is also the patroness of the Basilian Fathers’ Missions.

The Mass, which begins at 10 a.m., will be presided over by The Most Reverend Ricardo Ramirez, C.S.B., Bishop Emeritus of Las Cruces. At 1:30 p.m., the community is invited to see the dedication of a painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe by iconographer Minhhang K. Huynh. Huynh emigrated to America from Vietnam in 1985, and later graduated from SUNY Geneseo. After an extended stay in Italy, she discovered her talents as a painter of sacred art. Today, she works through the Abbey of the Genesee in Piffard, New York, under the guidance of Abbot John Eudes.

The painting was initiated by Fisher’s Latino Student Union, and will be dedicated in honor of longtime English professor, Fr. Leo Hetzler, C.S.B., who served the College from 1959 until his retirement in 1994. He passed away earlier this year at age 91.

Following the dedication, Bishop Ramirez and Dr. Timothy Matovina will deliver the lecture, “Power, Piety and Periphery: Guadalupe and Juan Diego in the New World.”

Bishop Ramirez holds a Master of Divinity from St. Basil’s Seminary in Toronto, Canada, and completed further studies at the East Asian Pastoral Institute in Manila, Philippines. Bishop Ramirez professed as a member of the Congregation of St. Basil in 1960 and was ordained a priest in 1966. He was ordained a bishop in 1981, and a year later became the founding bishop of the Diocese of Las Cruces, New Mexico. After 31 years as its shepherd, he retired in 2013. Dr. Matovina holds a Master of Divinity from the Toronto School of Theology and a doctoral degree from the Catholic University of America. He is currently the co-director of the Institute for Latino Studies and professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame, where he also serves as chair of the History of Christianity in the Department of Theology.

All events will be held in the Hermance Family Chapel of St. Basil the Great and are free and open to the public. The lecture is sponsored by the William and Helen Cavanaugh Chair of Catholic Studies.