Panuska College Freshmen Learn Value of Service
Rev. Matthew Ruhl, S.J., spoke to Panuska School of Professional Studies' Class of 2013 about the relevance and importance of volunteer hours required of the students. His presentation was held last month in the Byron Recreation Complex.
Father Ruhl used examples from the Bible in his presentation entitled "Charity vs. Charitable."
"‘Love your neighbor' is not a suggestion. It's not a guideline It's not even a hope. It's a command," said Father Ruhl. He said that while the Bible does not fully explain how to love God, it clearly explains how to love your neighbor by doing service for those who are in need.
Father Ruhl spoke about the overwhelming amount of Americans looking for jobs and the 14 percent of Americans living beneath the poverty line to remind students that there are a substantial amount of people in need. Catholic Charities, a group with whom Father Ruhl is associated, is attempting to cut the poverty rate in half. In helping to achieve this goal, Father Ruhl will be participate in a cross-country bike trip from Washington, D.C. to Florida next summer. Ruhl spoke about his trip and, at the end of his presentation, Debra Pellegrino, Ed.D., dean of the Panuska School of Professional Studies, presented him with a donation on behalf of The University of Scranton for his trip.
Following Father Ruhl's presentation, upperclassmen and graduate students facilitated a group discussion with the freshmen. They spoke about their majors, what they hoped to do for service learning, and why service learning is a required component of their major.
Dean Pellegrino hoped that students would find the event beneficial to understand how service learning connects to their majors as well as how service influences them.
"A Jesuit education transforms you. We're different. That's why we are here. I want our students to understand that," said Pellegrino.
Fr. Ruhl is the pastor of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Kansas City, Mo.