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A Regional Conference on Faith and Collegiate Sports  

On June 7th and 8th of 2017, Vatican officials along with leaders in the world of higher education and college athletics joined together at Villanova University for the first follow-up conference on the Vatican’s “Sport at the Service of Humanity” initiative. The conference was the first to be sanctioned by the Vatican following its inaugural conference on faith and sports in Rome in October 2016.

Sport at the Service of Humanity: A Regional Conference on Faith and Collegiate Sports — hosted by Villanova University’s Office of Mission and Ministry in conjunction with the BIG EAST Conference— was an invitation-only event with participants consisting of athletic leadership, coaches, team chaplains, campus ministers and mission and ministry officers from colleges and universities, including many faith-related institutions. Representatives from 28 colleges and universities took part in the conference.  

At the conclusion of the event, conference leadership committed to establishing a working group to build upon the “Sport at the Service of Humanity” initiative at the collegiate level. The working group will focus on efforts that can be made at colleges and universities to fulfil the six Principles­—joy, compassion, respect, love, enlightenment and balance—established by the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Culture.  

Full text of Villanova's Post Conference Press Release.

For more information about the event and the working group, contact Dr. Christopher M. Janosik, Director of Planning and Research at christopher.janosik@villanova.edu.


group photo

Pictured above (left to right) are Bishop Paul Tighe (Adjunct Secretary, Pontifical Council for Culture); Msgr. Melchor Sánchez de Toca y Alameda (Undersecretary, Pontifical Council for Culture); Barbara Wall (Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Villanova University); Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA, President, Villanova University); Mark Jackson (Director of Athletics, Villanova University); Val Ackerman (Commissioner, BIG EAST Conference); and Rev. Patrick Kelly, SJ (Theologian, Seattle University) Photo Credit: John Welsh (Villanova University).