As we rejoice in the Easter Season, I would like to keep you all informed of items of importance to Saint Mary's College.

During the past several weeks we have all been interested and prayerful observers of the events surrounding the death of Pope John Paul II. I would like to thank the many members of our community who have organized prayer services, and made their expertise available to both the Saint Mary's College and wider communities of the Bay Area. I have also been reflecting on the privilege of my own relationship with the Pope, whom I came to know personally during my years as Vice Chancellor in Bethlehem and Secretary General in Rome. I have attached some reflections excerpted from my talk at the Extended Education Commencement last Saturday, April 2. Our Generalate in Rome has also been busy these days in responding to the pilgrims and others in Rome. You can see some reflections and photos by Brother Donald Johanson on the Institute website at www.lasalle.org.

Each April, the Brothers of the Christian Schools celebrate the life and heritage of our Founder, St. John Baptist De la Salle. This year, a diverse array of associated activities will be held on campus throughout the week of April 25-29. These daily events, open to all faculty, staff and students, will be oriented around five expressions of our core traditions: Inclusive community; Faith in the presence of God; Quality education; Respect for all persons; and Concern for the poor and social justice. The week will culminate with our annual Carnival 4 Kids, which brings underprivileged children to
campus for an afternoon of fun.

The College recently received an expedited letter from the Department of Education's Western Regional Office in San Francisco confirming that its September 2004 review of the College's administration of the Campus Security Act (Clery Act) resulted in "no findings of noncompliance." I would like to thank all those at the campus who participated in the DOE's review to arrive at this very positive outcome.

On March 17, (St. Patrick's Day, a good sign!) we received a positive response from the Valley Foundation to our request to extend the date on their gift for Filippi Hall. This building will house the School of Education, the Academic support services, and provide much needed faculty offices and classroom space. The letter included a schedule of payments of the $5,000,000 gift during the construction period, which now must be initiated by June 2006.

Brother Mel Anderson, who served as President of Saint Mary's College from 1969 to 1997, was among five leaders in higher education honored earlier this week at a reception celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) in Sacramento. AICCU is honoring 50 individuals this year who have made significant contributions to independent higher education in California.

Congratulations to our various spring intercollegiate and club teams for competing hard and successfully despite the adverse weather conditions which have made some of our fields unplayable.

And finally, I have appointed a committee to organize the presidential Inaugural ceremonies and events. The events will be in September, with the Inauguration on Friday, September 23, as part of a full week of activities celebrating the core traditions of the college. The committee is composed of Br. Donald Mansir, Professor Carole Swain, and Vice Provost Frances Sweeney. Information will be forthcoming as plans firm up.

I wish all continued good will and good health as we work our way towards the always busy and frenetic end of the semester.

Brother Ronald Gallagher, FSC

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