Cardinal Joseph Bernardin Award Citation
June 20th, 2014
Rev. Donald Senior, C.P., S.T.D.
In a homily given on October 7, 1996, just weeks before his death, Cardinal Joseph Bernardin led a prayer service for priests in which he posed the question, “What does Jesus expect of us?”
His answer included the following:
- That we acquire authentic spiritual growth;
- That we understand the demands and implications of love and justice;
- That we focus on essentials, not accidentals or peripherals, including working for unity, giving personal witness, and striving for clarity in our teaching;
- That we speak the truth with love, and with humility and gentleness;
- That we nourish our relationship with the Lord.
These qualities and characteristics are boldly embodied in the teaching and ministry of this evening’s honoree, Rev. Donald Senior, CP.
Donald Senior is a Passionist priest; an internationally renowned biblical scholar, specializing in the Gospel of Matthew; a former member of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, appointed by Pope John Paul II; a frequent lecturer on a variety of topics; and a widely read author of numerous books. He is a member of several professional associations and has served as the President of the Association of Theological Schools of the US and Canada.
Fr. Senior holds an STL from the University of Louvain, Belgium and an STD from Louvain as well. A prolific writer, he has served as editor of “The Bible Today” and co-editor of the international commentary series “New Testament Message.” He also serves as the General Editor of the Catholic Study Bible.
He served with great distinction as the President of Catholic Theological Union from 1987-1994, and again from 1997-2013. During his tenure, Catholic Theological Union expanded and flourished. It was Fr. Don Senior’s vision that made the establishment of the Bernardin Center here at Catholic Theological Union a reality. It was Fr. Don Senior’s leadership that brought to life the many programs and initiatives of the Center, including the Bernardin Scholarship Program, the Peacebuilders Initiative, Catholics on Call, and comprehensive interreligious dialogue. And it was Fr. Don Senior’s generosity, openness and love of the church that made it possible for the Catholic Common Ground Initiative to find a supportive home here in the Bernardin Center.
With appreciation for his extraordinary contribution to sustaining the Initiative and building Common Ground among colleagues, faculty, students, and church ministers, the Catholic Common Ground is proud to present the 2014 Cardinal Joseph Bernardin Award to Rev. Donald P. Senior, CP. June 20, 2014