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In Year of Consecrated Life, Vicar General of Women’s Religious Order to Speak at Thomas Aquinas College Commencement

May 1, 2015
10,000 Ojai Road
Santa Paula CA 93060
Contact: Anne Forsyth, Director of College Relations
(805) 525-4417      


In Year of Consecrated Life,  Vicar General of Women’s Religious Order to Speak at
Thomas Aquinas College Commencement


SANTA PAULA, CA—May 1—On Saturday, May 16, Sr. Regina Marie Gorman, O.C.D., will serve as commencement speaker at Thomas Aquinas College’s annual graduation exercises. The Vicar General of the Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles, Sr. Regina Marie will also receive the school’s highest award, the Saint Thomas Aquinas Medallion, in recognition of her life-long fidelity and service to the Catholic Church. 

“We are honored and delighted that Sr. Regina Marie will be with us for Commencement in this Year of Consecrated Life, established by Pope Francis,” says Dr. Michael F. McLean, president of the college. “She has been a faithful and joyful witness to Christ both in her leadership locally of the Carmelite Sisters and nationally as the former Chair of the Board of Directors of the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious. We very much look forward to her remarks.”

Sr. Regina Marie will address a graduating class of 80 students who hail from across the United States and abroad. Upon completion of the college’s rigorous, 4-year curriculum that includes mathematics, natural science, Latin, literature, philosophy, and theology, each graduate will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in liberal arts. These new alumni will go on to a wide variety of pursuits including law, medicine, business, military service, education, as well as the priesthood and religious life.

Presiding at the Baccalaureate Mass prior to the commencement exercises will be one of the college’s former chaplains, Rev. Joseph Illo, now pastor of the Oratory-in-Formation at Star of the Sea Parish in San Francisco. Says Dean Brian Kelly, “Our graduating seniors very much look forward to welcoming back to campus this much-beloved priest, counselor, and friend.”


About Sr. Regina Marie Gorman, O.C.D.

Born in Detroit and raised in Los Angeles, Sister Regina Marie attended Catholic elementary and high school in the heart of the San Gabriel Valley of Southern California. Her professional training includes a Master’s Degree in Theology and Christian Ministry from the Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio.

For over 40 years, Sister Regina Marie has lived her calling as a Carmelite Sister of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles as junior-high teacher, as Directress of Novices and Postulants, as Vocation Directress, as Superior General of the Carmelite Sisters for 12 years and currently as Vicar General of the Carmelite Sisters. The order operates Santa Teresita, a convalescent home in Duarte and a retreat house in Alhambra, and its sisters teach in Los Angeles schools.

Sister Regina Marie has also served as Chair of the Board of Directors of the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious (CMSWR) in the United States, stepping down in the fall of 2014. The CMSWR was established in 1992 to promote collaboration and inter-communication among its members; participation, dialogue, and education about the teachings of the Catholic Church on the religious life; cooperation with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops; and unity with the Pope and fidelity to the Magisterium.

About Thomas Aquinas College

Now in its 45th year, Thomas Aquinas College has developed a solid reputation for academic excellence in the United States and abroad. At Thomas Aquinas College, there are no majors, no minors, or electives because all students acquire a broad and fully integrated liberal education. The College offers one 4-year, classical curriculum that spans the major arts and sciences. Instead of reading textbooks, students read the original works of the greatest thinkers in Western civilization — the Great Books — in all the major disciplines: mathematics, natural science, literature, philosophy, and theology. Rather than listening to lectures, they engage in rigorous Socratic discussions about these works in classes of 15-18 students. The academic life of the college is conducted under the light of the Catholic faith and flourishes within a close-knit community, supported by a vibrant spiritual life. Genuinely committed to upholding civic virtue and leading lives dedicated to the good of others, Thomas Aquinas College graduates enter a wide array of fields where they are a powerful force for good in the Church and in the culture. Well-versed in rational discourse, they become leaders in education, law, medicine, journalism, public policy, military service, and business. In addition, a steady 10% of alumni go on to the priesthood or religious life.