Dear Members of the King’s College Community,
As president of King’s College, it is both my duty and joy to constantly hold before the King’s College community the words and sentiments that officially bind us together – The King’s College Mission Statement. That statement in part reads:
Inspired by the teaching and example of its namesake, Christ the King,
who taught by example and ruled by love, King's forms graduates who
will champion the inherent dignity of every person and will mobilize
their talents and professional skills to serve the common good.
In every time it is always important that these words inform our collective good work, but in some “times” these words are ever more important; such is the current time of national unrest.
Like many of you, I have witnessed a lot of good news and bad news in my lifetime. Now, however, I find myself uniquely impacted by what we have seen and heard in recent times. I weep for our country. I weep for the world. But I am heartened by the hope that our mission inspires. I am strengthened by the action that our mission demands.
We gather as a community united to form graduates who will champion, not simply tolerate, or accept, or recognize, but champion the inherent dignity of every person – for each person is a child of God. We gather to transform the hearts and minds of our students so that they might serve the common good – the good of all people. We are inspired by our namesake Christ the King, who taught by example and ruled by love. Love that is not merely a sentiment or liking, but a deep desire to work and sacrifice for the good of the other.
Colleagues, we aspire to this noble mission in the classrooms, residence and dining halls, athletics, extra-curricular activities, and the serendipity of interpersonal interactions. We teach not only by words but by our example. Our community so desperately now needs good examples inspired by our common mission. Let us support and encourage each other in our honorable mission and challenge all forms of injustice, violence, and incendiary words and actions.
As a Catholic institution of higher education animated and guided by the Congregation of Holy Cross, we unequivocally proclaim in solidarity with the bishops of the United States that “Racism is not merely one sin among many; it is a radical evil that divides the human family and denies the new creation of a redeemed world. To struggle against it demands an equally radical transformation, in our own minds and hearts as well as in the structure of our society.”
On a separate but related matter, I attach the most recent report from the King’s College Shoval Center for Community Engagement and Learning. Here is but another example of the various ways in which our community makes real our aspirations to form graduates who will champion the inherent dignity of every person and use their skills to serve the common good.
Thank you for all the wonderful ways in which you make our community an agent of promoting education, justice and the common good.
Fr. Jack Ryan, C.S.C., Ph.D.