Priestly Formation at Santa Croce

Fruitful Participation in the Mass


Msgr. Guido Marini, Master of Pontifical Liturgical Celebrations, with Fr. Juan José Silvestre, Professor of Liturgy and Pastoral Ministry at Santa Croce.

A series of nine weekly lectures, from October 17 through December 12, was sponsored by Santa Croce’s Center for Priestly Formation. The course is geared toward priests and designed to deepen aspects of fruitful participation in the Eucharistic cele­bration. The lectures seek to link three realities: the liturgy and its cel­ebration, beauty, and life. As Pope Francis has written, “The Church evangelizes with the beauty of the lit­urgy…” (eg Evangel Gaudium, 24)

Speakers included Cardinal Robert Sarah, Prefect of the Congre­gation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and Msgr. Guido Marini, Master of Pon­tifical Liturgical Celebrations. Three Santa Croce professors from the School of Theology also gave lectures: Fr. Juan José Silvestre, José Luis Gutiérrez Martín, and Fr. Juan Rego.

One of the course objectives is to remain faithful to the liturgical re­newal desired by the Second Vatican Council while being in continuity with ecclesial tradition. Attention is also given to all forms of “language” in the liturgy: word and song, body movements, gestures and silences. 

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Why a School of Church Communications?


Santa Croce was launched in 1984, but did not attain the status of being a Pontifical University until it added the School of Church Communications in 1996. One of the requirements of being a Pontifical university is to offer four degree programs. The first three schools were Philosophy, Theology, and Canon Law. Why was Church Communications chosen as the fourth school?

One reason can be traced to the influence of the Opus Dei founder, St. Josemaría Escrivá. Nearly 60 years ago, as the first Chancellor of the University of Navarra in Spain, he asked for a journalism program to be created.

priest_with_video_camera.jpgThe university website states that the program reflected the saint’s founding charism: “a tradition in the humanities combined with technological innovation; teaching based on both research and on contact with reality; raising the profile of media related professions through theoretical and practical research; ongoing relations with the professional and academic world alike, and close contact between students and alumni.” 

A second reason was the influence of St. John Paul II, who emerged as the first “media” pope in a time when communications technology (television and computers) were rapidly expanding. Also, according to Fr. José María La Porte, Dean of the School of Church Communications, the Pope’s long-time Director of the Holy See Press Office (1984-1996), Joaquín Navarro-Valls, “encouraged the Church Communications School from the beginning.”

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A Rational Search for Truth

The School of Philosophy's Unified Approach










Speakers at first session of the philosophical conference “The Metaphysical Dimensions of Nature”. Fr. Rafael Martinez (Santa Croce) at the podium, and from left to right: Dr. Enrico Berti (University of Padova), Fr. Kevin Flannery (Gregorian University), and Fr. Stephen L. Brock (Santa Croce).

“Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth—in a word, to know himself—so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves.” St. John Paul II

These opening words from St. John Paul II’s encyclical on the relation between faith and reason are a succinct and beautiful expression of the principle at the core of Santa Croce’s School of Philosophy. In the history of Christian philosophy there are a few other famous expressions of this basic idea. St. Augustine wrote, “I believe in order that I may understand.” Another phrase from St. Anselm of Canterbury is his motto, “faith seeks understanding.”

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Santa Croce Hosts Symposium


Pope Francis greets Fr. Phillip Goyret, Dean of the School of Theology, at the Celementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican, where the Holy Father presented the Ratzinger Prize to two scholars who distinguished themselves through their work in theology. 

Since its inception in 2010, the Joseph  Ratzinger - Benedict XVI Foundation has recognized scholars whose work demonstrates a meaningful contribution to theology in the spirit  of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI).

The Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in partnership with the Foundation, sponsored a symposium on November 24-25, 2016, titled: “Eschatology: Analysis and Perspective” which was held at the university. 

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A New Leader for Opus Dei and Santa Croce

[January 24, 2017 - From the internet edition of the Catholic Herald Newspaper]

Mgr Fernando Ocáriz Braña has been elected the new prelate of Opus Dei, with Pope Francis approving the election on Monday.

Mgr Ocáriz takes on the leadership of Opus Dei, a personal prelature that aims to  help ordinary people seek holiness in everyday life, following the death of the previous prelate, Mgr Javier Echevarría on December 12.

Since 1994 he has been the Vicar General of Opus Dei and in 2014 he was named Auxiliary Vicar of the Prelature. Over the past 22 years he accompanied Mgr Echevarría in his pastoral trips to more than 70 countries. In the 1960s, as a theology student, he lived in Rome alongside St Josemaría, the founder of Opus Dei.

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Rest in Peace Grand Chancellor Bishop Javier Echevarría


With hearts full of sadness, but also full of hope, we announce the death of Msgr. Javier Echevarría, the Grand Chancellor of Santa Croce and Prelate of Opus Dei, who passed away on the night of December 12th at the age of 84. 

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Marriage Process Reform - Free Online Course

The university’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) was recently launched by the Canon Law department. MOOC courses are available to an unlimited number of students at no cost over the internet. The course is An Introduction to the Canonical Marriage Process Reform, designed for professionals in the field, is in response to reforms initiated by Pope Francis in 2015. Course lectures, accompanied by multimedia material, are offered by Santa Croce professors Héctor Franceschi, Miguel Ángel Ortiz and Massimo del Pozzo. This course (in Italian)is a new way for the university to serve the worldwide church. 


You may request a demo of the course at this website address:

The university will send you an email link to sign up for the course. You may also request information for other online courses.

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New Journal "Church, Communication & Culture"

The Faculty of Church Communications, celebrating its XX anniversary this year, just launched an academic journalcalled Church, Communication & Culture, which is of international character and gratuitously offered online. 

The journal, dedicated to “deepen the knowledge and dialogue between religion, communication and culture in the public sphere”, is published by the English publishing house, Taylor & Francis.


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Church Communications in the Spotlight

Krakow_graphic.jpgA recent graduate from the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross’ Licentiate Program in Church Communications, Jamie Lynn Black, is a young American working on the International Media Team for World Youth Day in Krakow. She previously had the opportunity to coordinate international media for Pope Francis’ visit to Philadelphia, and is featured in a recent article by CNA which highlights emerging trends in the Church’s engagement with social media. Click here to read the full article.


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"Covering Catholicism in the Age of Francis"

5th edition of "The Church Up Close" International Workshop for JournalistsPope_Francis_for_Church_Up_Close.jpg

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