The Gregorian Institute Shield, composed of the crossed gold and silver keys of the Papal Insignia, an open book with the words 'Via Veritas Vita' ('The Way, the Truth, and the Life') written on its pages, three golden six-sided stars on a red banner, and a Germanic cross.

at BENEDICTINE COLLEGE

Benedictine President Calls for Coronavirus Novena

The Coronavirus pandemic has been top of mind for days now.

Benedictines live by the motto, “Pray and Work.” Prayer can never be our only response to a problem, but we should never leave it out, either. At Benedictine College, we are working hard on this problem, coordinating efforts with Kansas health officials, Atchison authorities, and an interdisciplinary Task Force that has been meeting daily.

I thought now would be a good time to take a breath and do what we as a community do best — call upon Our Lady’s intercession for a swift end to the spread of the virus and for her maternal protection for all.

Therefore, please join me in this Novena to Our Lady of Monte Berico for a swift end to the spread of COVID-19 and for her maternal protection of all those suffering from the virus and those affected by it. Our Lady under this title is historically associated with plagues, the National Catholic Register points out in suggesting this Novena.

If you begin this Novena on Saturday, March 14, the last day of the Novena will be Sunday, March 22, when many of our students will be returning to campus. Of course any nine days you choose to do it are entirely appropriate.

Novena to Our Lady of Monte Berico

O Most Holy Virgin, Mother of God and my Mother Mary, I thank you that you have deigned to appear on Monte Berico and I thank you for all the graces you grant here to those who turn to you. Nobody ever prayed to you in vain. I, too, resort to you and beg you for the Passion and Death of Jesus and for your pains: welcome me, o’ merciful Mother, under your mantle, which is a maternal mantle; grant me the particular grace that I ask of You [your petition here] and protect me from all evil and especially from sin which is the greatest evil.
Oh make, oh Mary, my Mother, that I always enjoy your loving protection in life and even more in death and then come to see you in heaven and to thank and bless you forever. Amen.
Madonna of Monte Berico, pray for us.
O sweet Virgin, pious mother of love,
Like this Ave rising from the heart.
Ave, ave, ave, Maria
Ave, ave, ave, Maria
O Virgin, shine as a star in the sky,
Motherly defend your faithful children.
Ave, ave, ave Maria
Ave, ave, ave, Maria

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Stephen Minnis

Stephen Minnis

A native of St. Joseph, Mo., Stephen D. Minnis received his Bachelor’s degree from Benedictine College in 1982 and his Juris Doctorate degree from Washburn University in 1985 and Master’s of Business Administration degree in 1993 from Baker University. Minnis began his legal career in the county prosecutor’s office for Johnson County, Kansas. At Sprint Corporation, he held the position of director, state regulatory and general attorney for 14 years. Minnis was a contributing author to Inside the Mind: Achieving Success as a CEO (©2008 Thomson Reuters/Aspatore) and has given numerous talks on spirituality in the workplace and academic freedom to groups across America, including the Heritage Foundation, Legatus, and Catholic Charities. He was one of only five college presidents to be included on the Committee on Catholic Education Ex Corde Ecclesia Working Group in Baltimore in 2012 and he was invited by the Vatican to participate in the 2012 Pontificia Comisión Para América in Rome. Minnis and his wife, Amy (Kohake), a 1984 Benedictine graduate, live in Atchison, Kan. The couple has three grown children, Matthew, Michael, and Molly.