Mercy Week

On Sept. 24, 1827, in Dublin, Ireland, Catherine McAuley founded a home to shelter and educate young girls. This house would be the foundation for the Sisters of Mercy — and for 17 U.S. colleges and universities, including ours.
Each September, we celebrate this heritage during Mercy Week to coincide with the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy.

We should be shining lamps,
giving light to all around us.

— Catherine McAuley

A Weeklong Celebration

Mercy Week features a variety of educational and service-related programming that brings our campus community together, from inspirational films and engaging lectures to shared meals and lively discussions. We talk about current crises in our country and world, and think of ways the Mercy community can impact change. We also honor exceptional individuals at GMercyU for their commitment to service. Specific programming changes from year to year, but the Mercy message is always loud and clear.

Mercy Week 2023: September 25-30

VISIONARY WOMEN: Mercy Makes the Difference

Monday, September 25

Service Project with The Mercy Center 
Time: 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Location: University Hall Rotunda
Come prepare meal bags for Manna on Main Street.
Sponsored by The Mercy Center

Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice Applications (virtual)
Applications will be available today for the Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice.

Information Tables
Location: McAuley Center Breezeway, University Hall Rotunda, Maguire Hall entryway, and Waldron Center steps
Come visit our tables set up with information on Mercy Week and Catherine’s Cupboard.

Tuesday, September 26

Mustard Seed Presentation
Time: 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Location: UH W105
Come hear reflections from GMercyU students who traveled to Jamaica to serve the Mustard Seed Community.

Academic Keynote Presentation
Mercy as Wonder: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition as an Encounter with What Matters

Time: 4:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Location: University Hall, W105
Speaker: Maureen O’Connell, PhD
After exploring "The Catholic Intellectual Tradition," Dr. O'Connell will suggest that members of Catholic colleges and universities have a critical role to play in this particular moment in the history of the Catholic Church: in the midst of a global listening campaign to discern what matters most when it comes to fully living its mission in the world. Now is a timeto embrace the Catholic Intellectual Tradition as a living dialogue that can widen our perspectives, soften our heats, and foster kinship around shared laments and dreams. We'll consider how the Mercy charism, when orientated by the disciplines of the liberal arts, equips the University community to wonder about what matters most to you and where those wonderings may be leading you in the year ahead. 

Maureen O'Connell, PhD
About Maureen H. O'Connell, PhD

Dr. O'Connell is a Professor of Christian Ethics in the Department of Religion and Theology at La Salle University. She authored Compassion: Loving Our Neighbor in an Age of Globalization (Orbis Books, 2009) and If These Walls Could Talk: Community Muralism and the Beauty of Justice (The Liturgical Press, 2012), which won the CTS Book of the Year Award and Catholic Press Association Award for Best Book in Theology in that same year. Her newest book, Undoing the Knots: Five Generations of American Catholic Anti-Blackness (Beacon Press, 2021) explores the interplay of her Catholic and racial identities across her family's history in the City of Philadelphia. She serves on the Board of the Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies. Through the duration of the Global Synod on Synodality she is serving as Director of Synod and Higher Education for Discerning Deacons, an international intitiative to renew the deaconate and restore Catholic women to it.

Wednesday, September 27

75th Anniversary Mercy Day Mass
Time: 2:00 p.m.
Location: Tent in the Valie Genuardi Hall Parking Lot

Groundbreaking of the Frances M. Maguire Healthcare Innovation Center
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Location: Tent in the Valie Genuardi Hall Parking Lot

Thursday, September 28

Alternative Break Presentations 
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Location: UH W201
Hosted by Betsy Stone-Plummer, Director of Service and Catherine's Cupboard

UNV-101 Service Panel (Virtual)
Time: 4:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Zoom link: 

Friday, September 29

Catherine McAuley Statue Blessing & Dedication
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Location: Walkway between Maguire Hall and the Griffin Complex

Mercy Tea and Authors Celebration, Themed "Happy Birthday, Catherine McAuley"
Time: 2:15 p.m.
Location: Keiss Library
Come celebrate both Catherine McAuley’s Birthday and our distinguished authors! 

Saturday, September 30

Red & Gold Day
Time: 3:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Location: GMercyU Complex Lawn
This family-friendly event is open to all — students, guests, alumni, and community members. Enjoy rides, games, & food trucks!
See details here


All Week

Service Projects: Laurel House - working to end domestic violence - please provide necessary supplies for women and children: gift cards, diapers, household items and groceries. Boxes will be set up in University Hall, Maguire Hall, Waldron Center, St. Bernard Hall and Connelly Faculty Center.

Trivia Game: Please watch the portal for the Ultimate Trivia Game, "How well do you know visionary women?" Open to the entire campus community, winners will be based on time and number of correct responses: one staff member, one faculty member, and one student.