News from the Catholic Center: Nov. 2021

Mass and Dinner with Bishop Douglas Lucia, Diocese of Syracuse

Bishop Douglas Lucia, sitting Bishop of the Diocese of Syracuse, came to campus on Nov. 11 to celebrate Mass and join our community for dinner. Attendees enjoyed the Bishop’s favorite Italian meal, featuring chicken and eggplant parmesan, baked ziti, salad, and carrot cake for dessert. Fr. Gerry Waterman, Catholic Chaplain, and the Diocese arranged a “listening session” with the Bishop for the upcoming Synod in Rome. The theme of the 16th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops is “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, and Mission.” 25 students returned to the small chapel following dinner to have a question-and-answer session with Bishop Lucia. The Catholic Center extends their gratitude to Bishop Lucia, Sr. Katie Eiffe, Director of Synodal Planning, and the students for their participation in the listening session.


Sandwich Ministry

Each month following  Thursday Mass and dinner, the SU Catholic community “pays it forward” by making sandwiches and donating them to the local Assumption Food Pantry. Nov. 18 marked the final sandwich-making event for the Fall semester. Students made a combination of baloney and cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for a total count of 450 sandwiches! The Catholic Center extends their gratitude to the volunteers and to members of the Sigma Phi Epsilon  fraternity and Francis Core for their help preparing over 1,400 sandwiches this semester. The sandwich ministry will resume in January for the Spring 2022 semester.


Celebration of the Sacrament’s of Confirmation and First Communion with Jediel Ponnudurai

The SU Catholic community celebrated with Jediel Henrik Ponnudurai as a new, fully initiated member of the Catholic Church on Dec. 2 during Mass. Chaplain Fr. Gerry Waterman, OFM Conv, administered the Sacraments of Confirmation and First Communion in the presence of the gathered community. Jediel, enrolled in the School of Architecture at Syracuse University, is from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and will be studying abroad during the next two semesters.


Service to our local community

A group of 15 students from the SU Catholic community spent their Saturday on Nov. 13 working with volunteers at Joseph’s House on the Northside of Syracuse, raking leaves and trimming plants around the property. Then, on Dec. 2, students participated in a card-writing event where they created Christmas cards for people living in long-term facilitated living and homeless shelters, with the assistance of Tehnaya Brewer ’24. A special thanks to SU Catholic’s Co-Service Chairs, Camila Tirado ’23, and Nate Erickson ’24, for organizing these service projects!

Dinner with Chancellor and more at Catholic Center

Mass and Dinner at Chancellor Syverud’s Home

On Thursday, Oct. 21, the SU Catholic Center celebrated their annual Mass and dinner at the residence of Chancellor Kent Syverud and Dr. Ruth Chen. Ninety-five students enjoyed the evening with a sumptuous dinner. Fr. Gerry’s Minister Provincial, the Reverend James McCurry, OFM Conv, joined in the evenings’ festivities and shared a brief message of gratitude to the Chancellor and the students. SU Catholic extends their appreciation to Chancellor Syverud and Dr. Chen for their hospitality and generosity.


Sandwich ministry in October

Each month following  Thursday Mass and dinner, the SU Catholic community “pays it forward” by making sandwiches and donating them to the local Assumption Food Pantry. On Oct. 28, students made 430 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches! SU Catholic would like to extend their gratitude to their students and to Sam Saunders and members of the Sigma Phi Epsilon  fraternity for their help! They are looking forward to the final sandwich-making event of the semester on Nov. 18.


Family Weekend 2021

The SU Catholic Center welcomed families and loved ones for the return of Family Weekend 2021. More than 260 students and family members attended Sunday Mass on Oct. 10 at the Catholic Center and Hendricks Chapel with Chaplain, Fr. Gerry Waterman, OFM Conv. It was a true blessing to have the space filled with students and their loved ones. SU Catholic offered a light reception at the conclusion of the 10:30 a.m. Mass, courtesy of board member and alumna Margaret Van Patten.

Sound bathing at Buddhist retreat

Students had a well deserved half-day retreat hosted by the Buddhist Meditation Association on Saturday, Oct. 23 at the Inn Complete on South Campus.  It was a great time to get together with other meditation practitioners for fellowship and shared experience.

Matt Murray, SUNY-ESF ’22, says, “It was a refreshing day with interesting people!  Really great to have everyone together.” Sixteen participants enjoyed some social time over breakfast, followed by silent meditation.  A talk by Ekhart Tolle about quieting the mind then gave way to a lively discussion about our own meditation experiences.

BMA President Rosalie Turner, SUNY-ESF ’23,  says, “I thoroughly enjoyed our conversation centered around Silencing the Voice inside. I felt like it was extremely relatable.”

The last hour was spent in a deep dive of “sound bathing”—a meditation practice where one is immersed in the vibration of sounds produced from singing bowls and gongs.  Kara Hayslip and her Nepali husband, Sujendra Dhoj Karki, facilitated.  After that deep experience, students had time to try out the wide collection of gongs.  The most frequent response to the experience?  Simply, “Wow!”

Halloween concert, People’s Place and more during Orange Central

Join us for Orange Central 2021! Make plans to come home to Syracuse University October 28-31 to celebrate what makes you proud to be Orange. Walk-in’s are welcome, so join us for any event you’d like!

The weekend is packed with fun, family-friendly activities, including these great events at Hendricks Chapel and Syracuse Hillel:

At Hendricks Chapel

History and Creativity at Hendricks Chapel – Session 1

Friday, Oct. 29
2-2:45 p.m.
Hendricks Chapel, Main Chapel

To celebrate the storied history of Hendricks Chapel and illustrate the new and innovative methods of engaging religion and spirituality today, the Dean and Chaplains will host an interactive session for new and returning visitors of all ages. Those in attendance will explore some of the unfamiliar chapel locations, experience portions of in-person and online programs, and participate in unique opportunities to sing, listen, discuss and enjoy. CART captioning services provided for program. 

History and Creativity at Hendricks Chapel – Session 2

Friday, Oct. 29
3:15-4 p.m.
Hendricks Chapel, Main Chapel

To celebrate the storied history of Hendricks Chapel and illustrate the new and innovative methods of engaging religion and spirituality today, the Dean and Chaplains will host an interactive session for new and returning visitors of all ages. Those in attendance will explore some of the unfamiliar chapel locations, experience portions of in-person and online programs, and participate in unique opportunities to sing, listen, discuss and enjoy. CART captioning services provided for program. 

50 Years of Community and Coffee at People’s Place Café

Saturday, Oct. 30
9-10:30 a.m.
Hendricks Chapel, Lower Level, People’s Place Café

Since its founding in 1971, People’s Place Café has served the Syracuse University campus community as a student-run, nonprofit, socially engaged gathering space that offers “caffeine for a common good.” To celebrate, the Café will be open (with a 1970’s theme!) for visitors to meet current student employees, take tours, and taste classic and novel menu items. Receive a special People’s Place button!

Halloween At Hendricks Featuring Organ And Choir

Saturday, Oct. 30
9-10 p.m.
Hendricks Chapel, Main Chapel

This interactive concert will feature students and faculty, as well as costumes and candy! The Hendricks Chapel Choir and University Organist will perform songs from Phantom of the Opera and other classics—come dressed as your favorite characters from theater, horror and beyond!

With historical roots in various religious and spiritual traditions, Halloween – or “All Hallows’ Eve” is dedicated to remembering those who passed away, including the saints (hallows) and all the faithfully departed. CART captioning services provided for program.

Music and Message

Sunday, Oct. 31
4-5 p.m.
Hendricks Chapel, Main Chapel

“Music and Message” is the popular weekly series from Hendricks Chapel that features musical performances and spoken reflection from diverse religious and spiritual perspectives. These gatherings seek to nurture the soul and ignite the spirit! Join us for this fun Halloween-themed program!

At Syracuse Hillel

Pre-Shabbat Mixer

Friday, Oct. 29
4:30-6 p.m.
Atrium, Winnick Hillel Center, 102 Walnut Place

Join Syracuse Hillel for a Pre-Shabbat gathering! Mix and mingle with current students, Hillel staff and fellow alumni at the Winnick Hillel Center while enjoying wine and cheese. Afterwards, stay for Shabbat services, led by current Syracuse University students, and join us for a delicious, Kosher Shabbat meal.

Combating Antisemitism and Building Jewish Identity

Saturday, Oct. 30
9-10:30 a.m.
Atrium, Winnick Hillel Center, 102 Walnut Place

Join Syracuse Hillel as we hear from current students about their experiences: combatting antisemitism on campus, building their Jewish identity and finding joy in their Judaism. Afterwards, reconnect over coffee and light refreshments.

Religious and Spiritual Services

Religious and spiritual services will be offered by chaplains at Hendricks Chapel throughout the weekend. For a complete list, visit Faith Communities and Weekly Services or call 443.2901.

Serving the community this fall with Christian Outreach

Christian Outreach strives to love God, serve others, and share Christ. Making community service a priority helps them accomplish that mission on campus, in the Syracuse community and beyond.

The student organization, part of Baptist Campus Ministry, has organized and served in a variety of settings this semester. They began during Syracuse Welcome with an afternoon weeding at Pete’s Giving Garden on South Campus, which provides fresh produce for the Hendricks Chapel Food Pantries. Their students also volunteered with Goon Squad, helping new students move into their residence halls.

Other on-campus service projects have included handing out morning breakfast bars to students and an energetic evening packing backpacks, provided by partner SEND Relief, full of school supplies. The Noble Room became a swirl of activity as pencil cases, folders, and other classroom essentials made their way into the backpacks. Students prepared 100 backpacks full of school supplies for Delaware Elementary in Syracuse, which were delivered to the school’s social work office the next day. One first-year student reflected on the experience: “This was my first civic engagement activity on campus, and it was awesome being around so many other students taking time out of their days to give back! I look forward to my next chance to participate in civic engagement, and will definitely be keeping in touch with this organization for upcoming events.”

Christian Outreach also headed off campus for several projects. They stayed close to home by volunteering in the Westcott neighborhood at Petit Branch Library. Students helped librarians set up and clean up for their annual book sale during the Westcott Street Cultural Fair, the proceeds of which support the great work the library does in the neighborhood!

Then, in mid September, a group of students traveled with Chaplain Devon Bartholomew to northern New Jersey to assist with flood recovery from Hurricane Ida. Participants aided in tasks such as removing damaged property from homes and tearing out waterlogged drywall. Their work contributed toward homes being livable again for several families!

Christian Outreach is also preparing to offer alternative break service trips again this year. “We’re excited to be able to meet needs through service trips and continuing to support our partners at SEND Puerto Rico,” says campus minister Kate Bartholomew. Christian Outreach and Baptist Campus Ministry brought students to Puerto Rico multiple times after Hurricane Maria in 2017 to aid recovery efforts. Learn more about one of the first trips in SU News.

Keep up with Christian Outreach on Instagram @christianoutreachsyr or online at

Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu to Speak for Hendricks Chapel Conversation Series

Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu, world-renowned advocate for truth and reconciliation, is the next guest for “Matters that Matter: A Conversation Series from Hendricks Chapel.”

She will join Hendricks Chapel Dean Brian Konkol for a live virtual conversation on Thursday, Oct. 21, at 7 p.m. ET. They will discuss healing as individuals and as a society, exploring South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission as a contemporary guide for hope and healing.

The virtual event can be accessed through Zoom webinar. Pre-registration is not required, and the conversation is free and available to all.

About Rev. Nontombi Naomi Tutu

Tutu is the daughter of South African anti-apartheid activist and 1984 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu. She was educated in Swaziland, the United States and England, and has served in various capacities throughout her adult life between South Africa and the United States.

Her professional experience ranges from economic development consultancies in West Africa, coordination of programs on race and gender, as well as gender-based violence prevention education at the African Gender Institute at the University of Cape Town. In addition, Tutu has taught at the University of Hartford, University of Connecticut and Brevard College in North Carolina. She served as program coordinator for the historic Race Relations Institute at Fisk University and was a part of the Institute’s delegation to the World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa.

As well as preaching and teaching, Tutu has established Nozizwe Consulting, which brings different groups together to learn from and celebrate their differences and acknowledge their shared humanity. As part of this work, she has led Truth and Reconciliation Workshops for groups dealing with different types of conflict.

Rev. Tutu is the recipient of four honorary doctorates from universities and colleges in the United States and Nigeria. She is an ordained clergyperson in the Episcopal Church. She is the associate rector of All Saints Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills, California.

About “Matters that Matter”

This will be the 18th installment of “Matters that Matter: A Conversation Series from Hendricks Chapel,” a virtual series hosted by Hendricks Chapel that brings local, national, and global thought leaders together in conversation to discuss critical matters facing society. Learn more at

For more information, email Hendricks Chapel at

High Holidays at Chabad House

The High Holiday season at Chabad House at Syracuse University was a whirlwind!

It began with a wonderful Rosh Hashana, for which Chabad hosted 70 students for services in their outside patio area followed by delicious Holiday meals. Rabbis Yaakov and Mendy Rapoport also walked throughout campus blowing shofar during for students all over Syracuse University. Although a solemn day for contemplating and prayer, Chabad also had a full house for Yom Kippur services.

After days of awe come days of joy! Chabad brought out the joy of the Sukkot holiday with the Sukkah Mobile, a mobile space of worship, driving around campus so students can shake the Lulav and Etrog, also known as the “4 species.” Sukkot is also known as the Jewish Harvest festival, and so for eight days the Jewish people eat in a special hut called a “Sukkah.” This fulfills the commandment which the Jewish people received from G-d after they left Egypt. The High Holidays were concluded with the Holiday of Simchat Torah, where Chabad took the joy to the streets of campus singing songs of Jewish pride.

Lake retreat and fall service activities with SU Catholic Center

Catch up with the Syracuse University Catholic Center’s as they head to the Adirondacks and into the community!

Lake Retreat 2021

The Syracuse University Catholic community hosted the 5th annual Lake Retreat weekend, Sept. 17-19, at the University’s Minnowbrook Conference Center on Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondack Mountains. This retreat was student-run and provided a wonderful opportunity for 41 participants, a mix between undergraduates and graduates, to make new friends and take a break from the academic demands of college life. The retreat featured Mass and morning prayers with Chaplain Fr. Gerry Waterman OFM Conv., student testimonies, small group discussions and concluded with a hike to Castle Rock on Sunday morning!

The return of sandwich ministry

Each month following SU Catholic’s weekly Thursday Mass and dinner, the community “pays it forward” by making sandwiches that are donated to the local Syracuse food pantries. Sept. 30 marked the return of this ministry, where 560 sandwiches were made, including both ham and cheese and peanut butter and jelly. SU Catholic would like to extend their gratitude to their students and the volunteers of the FrancisCorps community for all their help! All are welcome to join them for the next sandwich-making event on Oct. 28.

A Tiny Home for Good Service Saturday

The Catholic Center teamed up with A Tiny Home for Good, Inc. for a “Service Saturday” on Oct. 2. Students spent the morning staining a fence and mulching around a property on Bellevue Ave. Founding director of the organization, Andrew Lunetta, and staff dedicate their time and resources to those facing homelessness by providing affordable, safe and dignified homes. SU Catholic students were excited to help. Special thanks to SU Catholic’s service chair, Camila Tirado ’23, for organizing this service project!

‘Leaving Afghanistan: Moral Injury and the Forever War’ in conversation

The U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan has left many active duty servicemembers, veterans, and Afghan people with a sense of betrayal and deep concern. Many U.S. veterans question what they were fighting for in Afghanistan, all the while deeply mourning those that did not make it home and those whom they left behind who aided the war effort—Afghan interpreters, their families, and military allies. The term being used to describe what many veterans are feeling is not only betrayal, but moral injury. Moral injury is  the damage done to one’s conscience or moral compass when that person perpetrates, witnesses, or fails to prevent acts that transgress one’s own moral beliefs, values, or ethical codes of conduct. To address these challenges, the Moral Injury Project of Syracuse University’s Hendricks Chapel, in affiliation with Le Moyne College, has organized a community conversation entitled “Leaving Afghanistan:  Moral Injury and the Forever War.”


The event will take place on Wednesday, October 13, 2021 (5:30-7:30 p.m.) at Le Moyne College’s  Grewen  Auditorium on the third floor of Grewen Hall.  A virtual option for attendance will be announced before the event as well. Parking will be available in Lots A, AA, and C (see campus map).    

The opening speakers will include Rev. Dr. Donald J. Kirby, S.J., Le Moyne College and Rev. Dr. Brian Konkol, Dean of Hendricks Chapel at Syracuse University. Both Le Moyne College and Syracuse University have made significant commitments to supporting student veterans in higher education. Several U.S. veterans who served in Afghanistan will provide perspectives on the U.S. withdrawal and its impact on them and their comrades:  Carlos Cervantes, US Army Veteran; Carlos Prillwitz, US Army Veteran; and Zac Lois, a former Green Beret and local social studies teacher, who is coordinating efforts to evacuate military allies and their families from Afghanistan. Deemed the Pineapple Express, the group headed up by Lois is comprised of retired U.S. servicemembers and has assisted many of those seeking to leave Afghanistan..

Abdul Saboor Sakhizad, a former NATO Cultural advisor and translator, and recipient of a Special Immigrant Visa (SIV), will comment on his journey to the U.S. and his efforts to assist other Afghan interpreters and their families in leaving the country. Dr. Bill Cross, a local psychologist and Vietnam veteran, will comment on the parallels between the U.S. withdrawal from Vietnam and that of Afghanistan, addressing how to make sense of the aftermath of messy and morally ambiguous conflicts. In conclusion, Rev. Dr. Wesley Fleming, VA Chaplain, will address how he works with veterans to address the moral injuries left in the aftermath of war. Following the remarks of the scheduled speakers, the floor will be opened to all audience members for questions, commentary, reflection, and discussion.


Eileen Schell, Professor of Writing and Rhetoric and Coordinator of the Moral Injury Project at Syracuse University’s Hendricks Chapel stated that this event is meant to “create space for veterans and community members to engage in storytelling, reflection, deep listening, and discussion about what this conflict has meant to us collectively and individually and to understand the long-term impact of this war on us all.”

Jennifer Reddy, Associate Director of Continuing Education at Le Moyne College and Veterans Services Coordinator at Le Moyne College hopes that “the forum will provide an opportunity for discussion and listening while avoiding polarized partisan debates and finger pointing, given the fact that four presidential administrations presided over this twenty-year war.”

The event is co-sponsored by Veterans Services and the Student Veterans Association of Le Moyne College and the Moral InjuryProject at Syracuse University’s Hendricks Chapel.

Queries associated with the event can be made to:  Dr. Eileen E. Schell at   and the event host Jennifer Reddy, Associate Director, Continuing Education, Le Moyne College

In compliance with COVID protocols at Le Moyne College, attendees must wear masks at the event. A virtual option for attendance will be announced before the event.  For more information, see the Moral Injury Project website. 

Dan Loomis and ensemble showcase ‘Job’s Trials’ at Syracuse University

NYC recording artist, composer and educator Dan Loomis and his ensemble, featuring Noa Fort, Yoon Choi,  Nathan Ellman-Bell and Jeff Miles, as well as Richard Crawford as the narrator, are visiting Syracuse University for an exciting residency! Join us for one or all of the events below.

October 9

Dan Loomis and his ensemble clinic and jam with the Setnor School Jazz & Commercial Music program’s Orange Juice Jazz Combo on Saturday night! Come by for a night of excellent music-making and collaboration.

Food will be served at 7 p.m. in Shemin Galleria (outside Shemin Auditorium). The jam session will begin at 8 p.m. in Shemin Auditorium, located in Shaffer Art Building.

October 10

Join us for a Malmgren Concert at 4 p.m. in Hendricks Chapel featuring special guest performers, Dan Loomis and his jazz ensemble.

Loomis, a bassist and composer, will lead the ensemble in his latest work, “Job’s Trials: A Jazz Song Cycle.” It is an evocative musical dive into an ancient, universal story exploring why bad things happen to good people.

In this fresh and thought-provoking work, the biblical story of Job is told by the character Ha Satan, whose narration is accompanied by original jazz compositions.

In person and online

All are welcome to join us in Hendricks Chapel! Or experience this program online through Zoom, which will open at 4 p.m. ET.

Dinner to follow

This concert will be followed by a dinner and panel discussion on the performance and the story of Job. Panelists and guests will explore what it means when bad things happen to good people through the lenses of music, faith and philosophy.

Panelists: Pastor Daren Jaime, Imam Mohammed ElFiki, and Rabbi Sarah Noyovitz

All are welcome to join at 5:30 p.m. in the Shemin Galleria, located in the Shaffer Art Building. Space for the dinner is limited. To reserve a seat, please RSVP via email to


Parking available in Quad Lot and Irving Garage. Visit for more information.


Communication Access Real-time Translation (CART) and captioning will be provided. For more information or to request accommodations, contact Hendricks Chapel at 315.443.2901 or

The Malmgren Concerts are special installments of Music and Message.


About the Malmgren Concert Series

The Ester Drake and John Vincent Malmgren Concert Series was made possible by a generous gift from Syracuse University alumna Ester Malmgren to Hendricks Chapel in 1991.  The series offers the Syracuse community the highest quality of arts at no cost.  The series typically includes three-to-four concerts each year at Hendricks Chapel, many of which feature the organ, Ester Malmgren’s favorite instrument.