Three annual events provide all members of the Saint Xavier University with opportunities to remember, reflect on and renew their engagement with the mission and heritage of the institution. Sponsored by the Office for University Ministry through the Office for University Mission and Heritage, these special observances integrate prayerful, academic and festive aspects of University life into programs that involve all SXU constituents -- students, staff and faculty; trustees, administrators and alumni; Sisters of Mercy, donors and special guests. All three events enrich the University community by attending to the essentials of SXU’s educational mission, Catholic identity and Mercy heritage.
Spirit of Mercy Day
Celebrated each September, Spirit of Mercy Day blends two traditions common to Catholic and Mercy educational institutions. One is the Mass of the Holy Spirit, traditionally celebrated at the start of each school year to invoke the blessing of the Spirit of Wisdom upon the academic community. The other is Mercy Day, the patronal feast of the Sisters of Mercy whose educational work began in September 1827 in Dublin, Ireland, and continues today at SXU and other institutions around the world. Spirit of Mercy Day events regularly include the special Eucharistic liturgy for the entire SXU community, the commissioning of campus leaders -- sponsors, trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, students and alumni -- for the service of leadership, and opportunities for conversation with a variety of Sisters of Mercy guests.
Founders’ Day is dedicated to Saint Xavier’s founding personalities and educational commitment. Attention focuses on the founding Sisters of Mercy, most specifically Mother Frances Xavier Warde, and on Saint Xavier’s enduring commitment to the liberal arts and sciences as the foundation of its academic program. Celebrated on the feast of St. Francis Xavier each year, Founders’ Day also honors the University’s two namesakes -- St. Francis Xavier and Mother Frances Xavier Warde. Observances generally include a special Eucharistic liturgy as well as a program centered on the liberal arts and sciences and featuring members of the Saint Xavier University community and occasional guest speakers.
Saint Xavier University educates students so that they might “serve wisely and compassionately in support of human dignity and the common good.” Mission Day, celebrated on a selected March date each year, highlights this aspect of the University’s mission statement. Central to the day are three service awards -- the Mother Paulita Morris, R.S.M., Student Service Award; the Sister Isidore Perrigo, R.S.M., Staff Service Award; and the Saint Xavier University Faculty Service Award -- each presented to persons selected by their peers for their exemplary adherence to the University’s core values. It is a day when those values -- especially service, excellence and hospitality -- are much in evidence.