Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

The Newman Catholic Center, located between north and south campus of West Chester University, celebrated its building’s 35th anniversary on November 19. Though it’s the building’s 35th birthday, there are minutes dating back to 1955 for the Newman Center. There are Newman Centers located across America and first developed at the University of Pennsylvania. From there, Newman Centers began to pop up all over the country with the slogan “Home away from home.”

The Newman Center at West Chester celebrated its anniversary with clergy members from around the area at the 5:30 p.m. mass followed by a reception for the attendees of the mass. The clergy members include: Rev. Sam Verruni, director of the Newman Center, Rev. Stephen DeLacy, Rev. Msgr. Hug Campbell, Rev. Brian Izzo and Rev. Christopher Rogers.

“The Newman Center is for the students,” Rev. Sam Verruni says. With a library and study lounge, computer with Internet access and printer, full access kitchen and fireplace, students have a place to get work done and relax at the Newman Center. Programming has increased within the Newman Center because Rev Verruni says as seniors graduate, new freshman students come to participate. With the Catholic Student Newman Association (CNSA) activities, students of all years come to participate.

If a student doesn’t have time to get to CNSA on Wednesday, they can still participate in the mass. Students along with Associate Director Rory Gaughan, do everything for mass. Along with helping at mass retreats, Bible study, choir, volunteer projects are offered. The community is thoroughly involved with the Newman Center; it’s a place for the students.

Rev. Verruni describes the relationship between the community and the Newman Center simply as “great” Between the financial support and attendance at mass, the Newman Center and the community grow spiritually together.

With its 35th anniversary past, the West Chester’s Newman Center shows little signs of slowing down. As long as the students are there, the Newman Center will be there for them.

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