Italian Archbishop among speakers for college commencements

Catholic colleges in the archdiocese have secured an archbishop, a magazine editor, and a seminary president as commencement speakers for this year’s graduation ceremonies in May.

Archbishop Pietro Sambi, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States appointed by Pope Benedict XVI, will give the commencement address at Mount St. Mary’s University’s 199th commencement exercises May 20 for approximately 580 graduates. Archbishop Sambi is a native of Italy and speaks four languages. He has served The Holy See in Italy, Africa, Cuba, Nicaragua, Belgium, India, Cyprus, Indonesia, and Israel.

“As we look ahead to the university’s bicentennial in 2008,” said Mount president Thomas H. Powell, “speakers such as Archbishop Sambi offer us the chance to reflect on our mission and our promise of service to God and our nation.”

Father Robert F. Leavitt, S.S., president-rector of St. Mary’s Seminary and University, Baltimore, will be the speaker on campus for College of Notre Dame of Maryland’s 109th commencement May 25 for approximately 750 students, the largest number of graduates in the school’s history. The Connecticut native is the 14th president and first president-rector of St. Mary’s Seminary and University, where he studied for the priesthood. His 27-year tenure holds the record of any president or rector in the institution’s 216-year existence. Father Leavitt will step down from this position this spring; he has served as a member of College of Notre Dame’s board of trustees from 1998-2003 and continues as a presidential advisor.

The editor of Newsweek magazine, Jon Meacham, a leading commentator on faith in America, will deliver the commencement address and receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree during Loyola College in Maryland’s 155th commencement exercises May 19. More than 1,600 students will receive degrees at Baltimore’s Mariner Arena. Mr. Meacham is the author of several bestsellers and has been in his current position since September 2006, supervising Newsweek’s coverage of politics, international affairs and breaking news.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.