News
Sant' Andrea Society Hosts Successful 73rd Gala

By Sherri Weil

The Sant’ Andrea Society of Scranton, PA, hosted “Tavern on the Green,” the society’s 73rd Gala, on Friday, April 15, 2016 at Glen Oak Country Club in Clarks Summit.  The theme perfectly matched the crisp spring weather and beautiful setting, a short ride north of University of Scranton.  This annual fundraiser benefited the Formation Fund of the Maryland Province Jesuits.

The cause is near to Society President Shanna Walker Williamson’s heart because of her Jesuit education and the impact it had on her life.  Williamson, a graduate of St. Joseph’s University, spearheaded the event, along with a group of dedicated volunteers, many of whom are alumni of Jesuit schools or parents of students in Jesuit schools.

“The feeling of community that the Jesuit priests have instilled in me is not just about learning,” she said. “Learning is a huge part, but it’s also about doing good for others. I would hate to have any man that has the calling to become a Jesuit priest not be able to do that.”

Close to 200 guests attended this year’s event, among them Jesuit fathers Bernard McIlhenny, SJ, a longstanding supporter of the SA Society; Daniel Sweeney, SJ; Leonard Martin, SJ; Richard Malloy, SJ; James Reddington, SJ; and Gene Nolan, SJ.

Mrs. J. Robert Gavin and her daughter, Maura Gavin, were honored with this year’s Mark McGrath Award. These women are both former presidents of the Sant’ Andrea Society.

Mrs. Williamson noted similarities in the women’s perspective on the society’s mission about doing good for the community and having fun while doing it.

Fr. McIlhenny, S.J., who has done so much for the Sant’ Andrea Society, arrived in Scranton in 1958 to serve as the fourth headmaster of Scranton Preparatory School, which at the time was owned by the University. Known to many as “Father Mac,” his tenure as dean of admissions spanned 31 years during which time he is credited with admitting more than two-thirds of the University’s living alumni.

In 1966, the University was all male and mainly comprised of commuting students with a small number of residential students. The campus was just beginning to develop. A special summer program that he attended at Harvard University in 1967 introduced Father Mac to the changing dynamic and future competition of higher education admissions to a “buyer’s market.” In his approach to promoting the University, beyond the academic programs, to prospective students, Father Mac highlighted the close community, family atmosphere where students could get personal attention and make friends for life, a fact that he witnesses presently during class reunions. He retired from admissions in 1997 and continued to serve the University as minister of the Scranton Jesuit Community.

A native of Philadelphia, Father Mac is a graduate of St. Joseph’s Preparatory School and St. Joseph’s University. He entered the Society of Jesus at the age of 18 and celebrated his 70th anniversary as a Jesuit in 2014. He remains an avid golfer and maintains close friendships with those alumni whom he knew during their student days. 





Recent News

Nov. 8, 2019 - Pope Francis recently addressed 210 participants in the congress of the 50th anniversary of the Social Justice and Ecology Secretariat, accompanied by the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Father Arturo Sosa SJ.

Nov. 6, 2019 - Last month, hundreds of Jesuit-educated alumni and friends of the Society gathered at 23 parishes and schools for the fifth annual Jesuit Friends and Alumni Sunday Masses.

Fr. Joseph O’Keefe, S.J., is appointed the first provincial for the Jesuits USA East Province. He will assume office on July 31, 2020.

Father General Arturo Sosa, SJ, has officially decreed the uniting of the Maryland and USA Northeast Provinces into one USA East Province, effective July 31, 2020.

The Jesuits of Washington, D.C. joined together at Georgetown’s Dahlgren Chapel to celebrate those with jubilee years in the Society of Jesus.

October 10, 2019 — Jesuits urge Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan to promote moral and ethical treatment of migrants.

Youth preparing for Confirmation at St. Peter Church in Charlotte, NC, helped plant 300 trees as part of the Season of Creation - Feast of St. Francis.

view all news

Search news

Publications

JESUITS Magazine: Spring/Summer 2019

JESUITS Magazine: Fall/Winter 2018

JESUITS Magazine: Summer 2018



Jesuit Center for Spiritual Growth
The Jesuit Center in Wernersville, Penn., is a place of natural beauty, welcoming quiet and spiritual sustenance for those who seek peace within.