News and Notes

Jesuit Father Peter Faber canonized by Pope Francis

December 17, 2013

On Dec. 17, Pope Francis canonized Jesuit Father Peter Faber as a saint. Pope Francis has long admired Faber, one of the first Jesuits and a close companion of St. Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus. Faber lived from 1506 to 1547 and has been called by many the "Second Jesuit." Read more on

John Staudenmaier, S.J., featured in WDET interview on Pope Francis as Time's "Person of the Year"

December 16, 2013

 He tells WDET’s Pat Batcheller that it’s too early to know if Francis is drawing new people to the Church, or bringing back those who left. Click on the audio link above to hear the conversation.

Father Gilbert Sunghera, S.J., featured in national Jesuit news

December 2, 2013

Father Gilbert Sunghera, S.J. Father Gilbert Sunghera, S.J., assistant professor of Architecture at UDM, was recently featured in an article entitled "Answering God's Call: Vocations Month in the Society of Jesus" at

"During November's Jesuit Vocations Month, profiled a different U.S. Jesuit with a new feature story each week. These men have heard and answered the call to serve God -- whether as a physician, educator, architect or expert on ancient religions. Jesuit Father Gilbert Sunghera, in the photo above, pursues his passions for both architecture and social justice in his vocation. Fr. Sunghera says that what keeps him in the Jesuits is "the ability to be flexible and not be afraid about how God works with people." He adds, "Whatever way you define yourself, you are always a work in progress with God." Read More >>

Sr. Brigid Johnson, RSM, retires after 36 years

Sr. Brigit Johnson

November 27, 2013

After 36 years with the University, Sr. Mary Brigid Johnson, RSM ’56, ’66, part-time staff member in University Academic Services and adjunct in the Department of Mathematics, has retired. Sr. Brigid joined the staff of Mercy College of Detroit in 1977 as a Campus Minister.At the same time, she taught as an adjunct in Religious Studies and Math. Read More >>

Fernando Cardenal, S.J., Nicaraguan Jesuit and activist visits UDM

Fernando Cardenal, S.J., Nicaraguan Jesuit and Activist Visits UDM
Click on image for larger view

October 30 & 31, 2013

The Jesuit Community at UDM hosted a presentation by Fernando Cardenal, S.J., on Oct. 30. Fr. Cardenal, who was instrumental in increasing the literacy rate in Nicaragua, spoke about his current education project, Fe y Alegria, the system of Jesuit schools across Central and Latin America. Pictured at the event are (left to right) Fernando Cardenal, S.J. and guest Sergio E. Pages, vice president/CIO of Structure Tec. Corporation in Farmington Hills. Fr. Cardinal also gave a second talk to students and others on Thursday, Oct. 31 at 5 p.m. in Briggs 317.

Society of JesusHistoric Visit with Jesuit Superior General Invigorates US Jesuit Presidents and Board Chairs

October 11, 2013
On Friday, October 11th, Rev. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, met for the first time with all presidents and board of trustee chairs of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States. Read More >>

Sculpture blessing highlights Mercy Day 2013Sculpture blessing highlights Mercy Day 2013

September 24, 2013

In celebration of Mercy Day, Sept. 24, which is the anniversary of Catherine McAuley's opening of the first House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland in 1827, the College of Health Professions hosted the blessing of the sculpture, "Spirit of Mercy," created by Sr. Marie Henderson, RSM '71, an adjunct faculty member in the School of Architecture. Read More >>

Sr. Renee

Sister Renée Kettering Professes First Vows

August 4, 2013

On Sunday, August 4, 2013, Sister Renée Kettering formally professed religious vows of poverty, chastity and obedience and to serve those in need as a vowed member of the Institute of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. Sister Renée currently works for the University of Detroit Mercy in the IT department. Please read the entire story on the Sisters of Mercy website.

New Leadership Team for Sisters of Mercy–West Midwest Region

July 30, 2013

Sisters of Mercy

Six newly elected members of the West Midwest Community Leadership Team of the Institute of Sisters of Mercy of the Americas began their term on July 1, 2013.

The Leadership Team members are: Sister Laura Reicks, RSM, Dubuque, Iowa, president; Sister Judith Frikker, RSM, Omaha, Neb.; Sister Margaret Mary Hinz, RSM, Tinley Park, Ill.; Sister Maria Klosowski, RSM, Farmington Hills, Mich.; Sister Anne Marie Miller, RSM, Sacramento, Calif.; and Sister Susan Sanders, RSM, Darien, Ill., who also serves on the Board of Trustees at University of Detroit Mercy. Read More >>

Society of Jesus Names New President of Jesuit ConferenceSociety of Jesus Names New President of Jesuit Conference

Washington D.C., May 10, 2013 -The Society of Jesus in the United States announces that Father Timothy P. Kesicki, S.J., has been named the next president of the Jesuit Conference. Fr. Kesicki, who was appointed by Fr. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, will assume his new position August 1, 2014. Read More (.pdf) >>

Mercy Day 2012

Sisters of Mercy - UDM MErcy Day 2012
Click on image for larger view
Internationally, Mercy Day was celebrated September 24, 2012, in honor of the opening of the first House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland in 1827, which led to Catherine MacAuley establishing the Sisters of Mercy in 1831. TitanTV 61 broadcasted a variety of Mercy-related videos to all day.

At UDM, the Sisters of Mercy Sisters (Marie Henderson RSM shown to the right) handed out cookies and bookmarks about Catherine McAuley on Monday, noon - 2pm in the Student Center.

Sister Mary Justine Sabourin, RSM: Educator & author dies at 101

Sister Mary Justine Sabourin, RSM, died on June 13, 2012 at McAuley Center, Farmington Hills. She was 101 years of age and had been a Sister of Mercy for 85 years. Read More >>

Mercy higher education promoted in TV commercial

In December 2011, the Sisters of Mercy commissioned the production of a TV commercial to promote the values of a Mercy higher education. See the commercial.

Sisters of Mercy elect new Institute Leadership Team

Conference for Mercy Higher Education July 2011
The Instituteis led by a team of five sisters who are elected by members every six years. The current leadership team, elected in July 2011, is:

  • Patricia McDermott, RSM, President
  • Eileen Campbell, RSM, Vice President
  • Anne Curtis, RSM, Councilor
  • Mary Pat Garvin , RSM, Councilor
  • Deborah Troillett, RSM, Councilor

In Memory: Sr. Norita Cooney, RSM, President, West Midwest Community of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas

March 2011
"Vision, leadership, compassion, inspiration, commitment, charisma, mentor, friend" These words emerged from the many messages of comfort that poured in following the death Monday, March 7, of Sister Norita Cooney. The messages came from sisters, staff, associates, volunteers, colleagues and leaders from Omaha and around the country speaking to the impact Sister Norita had during her 71 years of life and ministry. Sister Norita died at Mercy Villa in Omaha. She had been a Sister of Mercy for 53 years.

"An Educational Safari to Kenya"
Judith Mouch, RSM

June 2010
On May 15, I was sitting in Calihan Hall applauding our 2010 graduates. On May 18, I was flying to Nairobi, Kenya to begin my “safari” of the ministries of the Sisters of Mercy from Ireland, hoping to find suitable service and clinical sites for our faculty and students.

Sisters of Mercy of the Americas applauds the 2010 passage of Health Care Reform Legislation

March 21, 2010
The leadership team of the Institute of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas commends the U.S. House of Representatives for passing this much needed health care reform legislation which provides 32 million Americans with access to affordable healthcare coverage.

Mercy Day 2008 Marked by Growth and Change

September 18, 2008
Sisters of Mercy candidate Taryn Stark is beginning a new life this fall, one she didn’t think was possible until a few years ago. “When I turned 30, I decided I wanted to devote my life to working for the poor, but I thought I was too old to become a sister,” said Taryn.

Sisters of Mercy welcome new Associates

June 25, 2008
(Farmington Hills, MI) – Colleen Connolly and Dorothy Gereke became Associates of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Regional Community of Detroit, in a ceremony on June 20, 2008 at Mercy Center in Farmington Hills.

Sisters of Mercy elect leaders for new West Midwest Community

April 3, 2008
Sister Judith Frikker, RSM, a member of the leadership team of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Regional Community of Detroit, is one of six sisters elected to lead the new West Midwest Community of Sisters of Mercy.

The West Midwest Community, set to launch on July 1, 2008, will bring together several regional communities into one of six geographic communities in the Institute of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas.

Sponsors' Presentations

Jan. - March 2008
From January to March 2008, UDM Mission and Identity offered several mini-seminars focusing on the history and spirituality of the Sisters of Mercy and the Jesuits. One of these seminars, "Catherine McAuley's Spirit in the 21st Century" by Sr. Judith A. Mouch, RSM, given Feb. 7, 2008, is available online as a PowerPoint presentation.

New Jesuit Superior General elected

January 22, 2008
Spanish theologian Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., 71, president of the Jesuit Conference of East Asia and Oceania and the former provincial of Japan, was elected Jan. 19 as the 30th Superior General of the Society of Jesus, succeeding Fr. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, 79, who resigned after 24 years as Superior General. Read more at

UDM celebrates Mercy Day 2007

Sept. 24, 2007
University of Detroit Mercy celebrated Mercy Day with the dedication of a Learning Center classroom in memory of Sister Elise Michelin, RSM, who was devoted to teaching and tutoring math and science for more than 40 years at Mercy College of Detroit. Funding for the new classroom was generously provided by the Sisters of Mercy Regional Community of Detroit. The additional classroom will help accommodate the increased usage of the Learning Center by students during the day and evening. View the photo gallery.

Sisters of Mercy celebrate 175th anniversary

Dec. 8, 2006
The Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Regional Community of Detroit, will join Sisters of Mercy across the world in celebrating Foundation Day on December 12, 2006. This day marks the 175th anniversary of the founding of the Sisters of Mercy by Catherine McAuley. Since their foundation in Dublin, Ireland, the Sisters of Mercy have spread worldwide, honoring Catherine McAuley’s dedication to serve people who suffer from poverty, sickness and lack of education, with a special concern for women and children.

Father General Kolvenbach visits UDM Oct. 6, 7

The Very Reverend Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, visited UDM in celebration of the Jesuit Jubilee Year 2006. Father General Kolvenbach is the highest ranking Jesuit priest in the world.

Traveling from the Jesuit Curia Generalizia in Rome, Father General Kolvenbach gave an address, &quota;Christ in the City,&quota; Friday, Oct. 6, at 7:30 p.m. in Gesu Church.

And Saturday, Oct. 7, Father General Kolvenbach offered a Mass celebrating the Jesuit works of the Detroit Province, at noon in the Sts. Peter & Paul Jesuit Church.

Sisters of Mercy elect new regional leadership

August 10, 2006
The Assembly of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Regional Community of Detroit has elected the following Regional Leadership Team to serve from July 1, 2006 through June 30, 2008: GilmaryBauer, RSM,'69, President; Judith Marie Frikker, RSM,'73; Margaret Mary Platte, RSM, '65, '73; LuAnn Mary Hannasch, RSM.

Sisters of Mercy install green roof

March 28, 2006
As Earth Day (April 22) approaches, the Sisters of Mercy are taking action to protect and cherish God's creation, our Earth. The sisters in the Regional Community of Detroit recently installed a "green" roof system over part of McAuley Center, home to retired Sisters of Mercy.