Saturday, April 1, 2017

Fordham University

See pages 359, 360 and 386 for the foundation of St John's College in 1841 and the transfer of its administration to Jesuits in 1846. Somewhere I have read that the name "Fordham" referred rather to an estate along the Harlem River and that Rose Hill, the 106-acre purchase made by Bishop Hughes in 1839, was at the east end of the estate. See pages 111 and 132 for references to the first diocesan synod, held at St John's College, Fordham, in 1842. In 1905, the Jesuits renamed the college Fordham. Thomas Shelley's book, the Bronx references of which I am here indexing, is rich with footnotes. See footnote #14 on page 360 for a helpful history of Fordham University. Page 421 has a photo of Keating Hall. Page 522 refers to the San Juan Fiesta at Rose Hill in 1956. Page 598 reminds the reader that The Bronx was honored with its own cardinal in 2001, Cardinal Avery Dulles, .S.J., residing at Fordham University.
In 2008, I wrote the above paragraph. In January, 2017, I had the good fortune to find in the Nassau Library System a copy of "Fordham: A History of the Jesuit University of New York: 1841-2003" by Msgr. Thomas J. Shelley, Emeritus Professor of Church History at Fordham University, the same historian who wrote the Bicentennial History (with the page numbers I have been referring to throughout this blog on Bronx parishes).
Msgr. Shelley's 500-page history of the university is fascinating, insightful, and full of details and intriguing anecdotes. The author excels in placing university events in the context of New York, political, and church history. The quotes are good: Alban Butler, Church history is largely the story of quarrels between two good men. And Martin Spalding, on religious orders: too much esprit de corps and too little Catholic spirit.
One must remember that the university chapel was originally (in some form before renovations) the parish church of Our Lady of Mercy.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Four Bronx schools to lose grades K-8.

Sad to report, Dr. Timothy McNiff, Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of New York, has announced the closure of three parish schools in The Bronx, and the elimination of grades K-8 in one other.  Closed are Visitation School in Kingsbridge, where the church lost regular services in August, 2015, St. Ann School, Bainbridge Avenue, likewise with a church without regular worship, and St. Mary School, Carpenter Avenue.  The school at the parish of Sts. Peter and Paul, Brook Avenue, Morrisania, will become a Universal Pre-Kindergarden school financed by the City of New York.
Please see the link HERE.  The superintendent's euphemism is "operational changes."

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Catholic New York special section 1.19.2017

Available on the internet is the special Catholic Schools Week section published 1.19.2017. A link is HERE.
The sixteen pages include high schools and elementary schools in the seven counties of the Archdiocese of New York. However, my focus is on the elementary schools of The Bronx. The sole paid advertising for Bronx elementary grades is for Mount St. Michael Academy, grades 6-12. Cardinal Hayes HS and Fordham Prep also placed ads.
One hundred forty elementary schools will have Touring Tuesday on January 31, 2017, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.  Of the forty-four Catholic elementary schools in The Bronx, eighteen are listed with a schedule for Open House. The special section lists school names, dates and times, but not phone numbers or addresses.  
For Bronxites living near Manhattan or Westchester, please do not overlook nearby schools, such as Good Shepherd School, one block from the Bx12 bus terminal in Inwood.
More information may be found at
Scroll down on that home page to Coming Events. Or use the information links at the top of the home page.
The New York Daily News on 1.26.2017 published an Advertising Supplement for Catholic Schools.  In several aspects, this supplement gives better coverage to Bronx Catholic elementary schools than I saw in Catholic New York (above).  The link to the Daily News supplement for Catholic schools is HERE. Don't give up when you see ads for a few New Jersey schools. Continue scrolling through the pages and you will find more Bronx schools.