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April 2016

John Carroll University writer in residence, Rev. Donald Cozzens

John Carroll University writer in residence, Rev. Donald Cozzens

Rev. Donald Cozzens, Author and Popular Commentator on Catholic Issues, to Speak at Jesuit School of Theology Commencement on May 21

Popular writer and commentator, known for diving into sometimes divisive Catholic cultural and religious issues, will speak to JST-SCU graduating class.

SANTA CLARA and BERKELEY, Calif., April 4, 2016 - Rev. Donald Cozzens, the author of the renowned book The Changing Face of the Priesthood, and a sought-out speaker on numerous religious and cultural issues, will be the featured commencement speaker at the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University (JST-SCU).

Cozzens will address the 2016 class of more than 40 graduating students and their families and friends, at a ceremony taking place at 3 p.m. May 21 at the chapel of Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Avenue, Berkeley, California.

“We are delighted to welcome Fr. Cozzens as our commencement speaker this year,” said Thomas Massaro, S.J., the dean of JST-SCU. “His work as a pastor, campus minister, spiritual director and professor makes him an excellent choice as JST’s commencement speaker. We look forward to welcoming him to Berkeley.

A priest of the Diocese of Cleveland, Cozzens is the author of several books about church matters, including the award-winning The Changing Face of the Priesthood (Liturgical Press, 2000) and Notes From the Underground: The Spiritual Journey of a Secular Priest (Orbis Books, 2013). He is known as a church insider unafraid to address the clergy-abuse scandals, the “cancer” of clericalism, and the role of women in the Church.

Currently writer in residence and adjunct professor of theology at John Carroll University, he previously served as president-rector of Saint Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology in Cleveland, vicar for clergy and religious, and diocesan director of Newman Campus Ministry.

“I look forward to joining the graduates of the Jesuit School of Theology on their special day,” said Cozzens. “As graduates of JST, they are the future shapers of the Catholic Church and other faith communities worldwide, and are leaving well-trained in ministry and theology within the varied cultural contexts of the world.”

Cozzens has contributed to an array of publications including Theological Studies, Commonweal, America Magazine, the Boston Globe, and National Catholic Reporter, among others. The New York Times says Cozzens “is one of the most respected moderate voices on Catholic issues.”

His first novel, Master of Ceremonies, a thriller set in the Baltimore archdiocese and published in 2014, won First Place from the Catholic Press Association in 2015.

He received a bachelor of sacred theology degree (S.T.B) from Catholic University of America in 1965, the same year he was ordained a priest, and went on to receive an M.A. from University of Notre Dame and a Ph.D. from Kent State University.

During the commencement event at JST-SCU, Cozzens will receive an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree.

The students graduating from JST-SCU will be receiving degrees including Master of Divinity (M.Div.); Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.); Master of Arts (M.A.); Master of Theology (Th.M.); Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.); Licentiate in Sacred Theology (S.T.L.) and Doctor of Sacred Theology (S.T.D.).

About the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University
The Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University, located in Berkeley, California, is a preeminent international center for the culturally contextualized study of theology. Its mission is to inspire and prepare men and women to become leaders in the Church, academy, and society, serving others through a faith that does justice. Rooted in Ignatian spirituality, JST educates and trains Jesuits, religious, ordained, and lay students from across the United States and from 40 other countries for lives dedicated to ministry and scholarship.

About Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California’s Silicon Valley, offers its more than 9,000 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, and engineering; master’s degrees in business, education, counseling psychology, pastoral ministry, and theology; and law degrees and engineering Ph.D.s. Distinguished nationally by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master’s universities, California’s oldest operating higher-education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. For more information, see

Media Contacts
Deborah Lohse | SCU Media Relations | | 408-554-5121
Steven Padilla | JST Director of Marketing | | 707-330-6559

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