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For the Class of 2018, Gifts Call to Mind St. Thomas … and Dr. McArthur

Posted: May 9, 2018

When members of the Class of 2018 arrive at the President’s Dinner this evening, awaiting them at each place setting will be a gift from the College — and one from an anonymous friend.

At the annual dinner the College customarily presents each senior with a sterling silver medal of its patron, St. Thomas Aquinas. Chosen in 1975 by the College’s founders, and given to every graduate since, the medal is meant to serve as a reminder of the graduate’s time at Thomas Aquinas College. “The College gives these medals in the hope that they will help our graduates grow in discipleship and devotion to St. Thomas,” says College President Michael F. McLean, “and that he, whom the Church has proclaimed the Common Doctor, will help them continue on the path to wisdom and the attainment of the vision of God Himself in the eternal glory of heaven.”

Additionally the seniors will receive a gift in honor of the College’s late founding president, Dr. Ronald P. McArthur. The gift is a knotted Rosary, on which knots in the cord, rather than beads, denote each prayer. Several years ago Dr. McArthur received one such Rosary from a former student who went on to become a lifelong friend. Dr. McArthur treasured the gift and prayed the knotted Rosary during his last year of life. At his request, he was buried with it after his death on October 17, 2013. Knowing that the Rosary meant so much to Dr. McArthur, this friend decided to present each member of the Class of 2014 with one just like it at that year’s President’s Dinner — a generous tradition he has continued in each subsequent year.

The Rosary comes in a pouch, along with a note that concludes:

Please pray for the repose of the soul of Dr. McArthur, and for his beloved wife, Marilyn.

Thanks in no small part to their faith, courage, prayers, and sacrifices over many years, you are now graduates of Thomas Aquinas College.

Please pray for this anonymous donor and friend, and for your alma mater, as we will pray for you.

College Chaplain Rev. Cornelius M. Buckley, S.J., recently blessed both the medals and the Rosaries in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel.

May God bless you on your way, Class of 2018!

St. Thomas Aquinas medal

Sterling silver medal of St. Thomas presented to each senior at the President’s Dinner

“Thomas Aquinas College is lending a helpful hand to the Church to fulfill her mission. There is no doubt that this Christian environment that is nurtured here is the main cause why there have been so many responses to the call of God to the priesthood and to the consecrated life in the female and male students of your College.”

– Zenon Cardinal Grocholewski

Prefect Emeritus

Congregation for Catholic Education