The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) joins the Catholic higher education community in mourning Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who passed away this morning at the Vatican. In an address delivered to Catholic educators during his 2008 visit to the United States, Pope Benedict said:

“Education is integral to the mission of the Church to proclaim the Good News. First and foremost every Catholic educational institution is a place to encounter the living God who in Jesus Christ reveals his transforming love and truth (cf. Spe Salvi, 4). This relationship elicits a desire to grow in the knowledge and understanding of Christ and his teaching. In this way those who meet him are drawn by the very power of the Gospel to lead a new life characterized by all that is beautiful, good, and true; a life of Christian witness nurtured and strengthened within the community of our Lord’s disciples, the Church.”

We remember his lifelong love of education; his commitment to serving the poor; his formidable contributions to theological reflection; and his dedication to the global Catholic Church. May he rest in peace.

Contact: Deanna Howes Spiro, Vice President of Communications, AJCU