Sean Hayes has “roots and wings” vision for Campus Ministry
St. Jerome’s University’s Director of Campus Ministry, Sean Hayes has a “roots and wings” vision for his new role on campus. He brings three decades of commitment to seeking truth in Catholic education that supports students exploring their role in the world and nurtures their spiritual growth.
“In the pluralistic world we live in,” Hayes noted, “We need roots to weather the shifting sands of today and ground us in who we are as people and as a community. Then we need to go off, to explore and discover and think critically, while becoming socially responsible people who create life for themselves and others. Campus Ministry needs to be part of this process.”
Hayes sees Campus Ministry as a place that must be open, safe, and welcoming of exploration and discovery. Where people of all faiths, and those with none or in the beginning stages, can feel included and invited to encounter themselves and each other, while discerning their role in the world, and their relationship with God.
“Through seasonal liturgical experiences, weekly mass, meditation practices, social outreach, and servant leadership encounters we will work to make these goals come alive,” Hayes added. “It is simple. I want students to feel welcome and be open, share their gifts and talents, question and wonder, and help co-create the world we wish to see.”
Hayes received his Master’s in Theological Studies from the University of St. Michael’s College (at the University of Toronto). He was a founding member and most recently led the development of religious studies curriculum as the Director of Campus Ministry at Villanova College in King City. His experience is broad reaching and includes working as a youth ministry director; a developer of retreats for youth and teachers through a continuing education program sponsored by the University of Toronto; and doing missionary work with Me to We (Equador), Habitat for Humanity (United States), and Covenant House in New York City and Toronto.
“As one of the few Catholic Universities in Canada I am committed to bringing a truly “Universal” perspective and building on the already welcoming and inclusive environment at SJU so we may be ONE “Gathering of the Whole”. These are the two meanings of the word Catholic and it is my hope that Campus Ministry can reflect and deepen these encounters.”
With the campus closures due to the pandemic, Hayes is not deterred in his mission. “We support all students across the broad spectrum of faiths and beliefs in our community and focus on our shared commonalities and what unites us in the world,” Hayes noted, adding that whether you are at home or living on campus, connected to a faith tradition or someone with questions and doubts, “please join us for virtual programming, connect with us for an online coffee chat, and follow us on social media.”
Use this link for more information about Campus Ministry at St. Jerome’s University, to sign up for our e-bulletin, or for students to find out ways they can get involved.