Special from Gibbons Cooney. On Saturday, September 14, St. Patrick’s Seminary will host its annual gala fundraiser. St. Patrick’s serves the archdiocese of San Francisco, plus surrounding dioceses including Oakland, Santa Rosa, Sacramento, Fresno, Portland, Spokane, Honolulu, and the dioceses of Agana, Guam and Suwon, South Korea. There are 49 seminarians currently in formation, and in addition to the Dioceses served, they also have 2 from the Contemplatives of St. Joseph.

Each year at the gala, their major annual fundraiser, the seminary chooses to honor a person or organization that has shown a conspicuous fidelity to the Church. This year’s honorees will be Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J., and the publishing house he founded, Ignatius Press.

Since 1978, Ignatius Press has been instrumental in maintaining and promoting the full teaching of the Catholic Church to the English-speaking world.  In 2018, Fr. Fessio  told Cal Catholic “When we began there weren’t that many Catholic publishing houses because of the council publishers like Bruce Press and Newman Press began to decline; there was not so much interest after the council in traditional Catholic publishing. That’s why houses like Orbis and Paulist Press were on the rise. But the same circumstances gave us an open field.”

Stephen Terlizzi, director of marketing for St. Patrick’s: “Ignatius Press has brought many valuable theological works to print – some of which we use at the seminary. For instance, De Lubac, Balthasar, and Ratzinger were and are among the most distinguished Catholic theologians of the 20th century, but in the 1970s, few of their works were known in the United States.”

While Fr. Fessio and the Press may be traditionalists they have proven to be progressive if not revolutionary in the methods used. One example would be the FORMED initiative. Partnering with the Augustine Institute and others, FORMED utilizes contemporary technology as a delivery method for the New Evangelization.

Mr. Terlizzi also discussed some of the changes at the seminary over the past year, as well as the future: “While we continue to mourn the losses of Bishop Robert Christian OP and Dr. Karen Chan, the seminary is looking forward as the new academic year commences. We have added new staff and faculty, including: Fr. Anthony Stoeppel, (Vice-Rector), Dr. Anthony Lillies (Academic Dean), Mr. Bryan Fegley (Development Director), Dr. Kevin Clarke (Scripture), Dr. John Macias (Philosophy), and Fr. Goran Jovicic (Dogma).

” Fr. Dan Donohoo is bringing a pastoring perspective to the role as rector. Fr. Dan wrote to the seminarians, ‘This Lord Jesus Christ is who we are to evidence in our ministry, our pastoring of God’s people. This pastoring is how I view my role as your rector.  A Pastor who is present and takes a lively interest in all that concerns you.’”

The Gala will be held on Saturday, September 14. For tickets and more information visit stpsu.edu/gala