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Ave Maria University Officially Recognized as a 'Catholic University'

The entire Ave Maria University community should be encouraged and inspired by its new designation

The recognition of Ave Maria University as a Catholic University recognizes their commitment to continue to be guided by the teachings of the Catholic Church and faithfulness to the Apostolic Constitution Ex Corde Ecclesiae. It is the responsibility of the local Bishop to provide pastoral care to the University community, as stated in Ex Corde Ecclesiae.

Ave Maria University

Ave Maria University


AVE MARIA, FL (Catholic Online) - Today, Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida, made perhaps the most significant announcement in the history of Ave Maria University. During the investiture ceremony for new Ave Maria University President H. James Towey, Bishop Dewane announced that he grants recognition of Ave Maria University as a Catholic University.

Bishop Dewane commented, "This announcement marks a special time in the history and faith life of Ave Maria University. While the University continues to grow, it is the deepening of its roots of faith that is of primary importance to me as the Bishop of this Diocese. The Catholic Church views Catholic Universities in very high regard, and with that the entire Ave Maria University community should be encouraged and inspired by its new designation."  

Ave Maria President Jim Towey expressed appreciation and joy upon hearing the news. "I am grateful to Bishop Dewane for his confidence in our future and thankful for Tom Monaghan and all those who built the foundation that made this announcement possible.  This recognition means a lot to us as we continue on the path toward new excellence," said Towey.

Bishop Dewane also took time out to congratulate President Towey as he enters into this new phase of leadership, which will move Ave Maria University into a bright future. Bishop also thanked Thomas S. Monaghan, founder of Ave Maria University, for his forthright commitment to Catholic education and his Catholic Faith. His leadership and vision brought the monumental undertaking of building a Catholic University in Southwest Florida to where it stands today.

The Code of Canon Law regulates the establishment and conduct of a Catholic University by the competent ecclesiastical authority, which in this case is Bishop Dewane. The recognition of Ave Maria University as a Catholic University is granted upon their commitment to continue to be guided by the teachings of the Catholic Church and faithfulness to the Apostolic Constitution Ex Corde Ecclesiae. First and foremost, it is the responsibility of the local Bishop to provide pastoral care to the University community, as stated in Ex Corde Ecclesiae.

Bishop Dewane has served as an ex officio member of the Ave Maria University Board of Trustees since 2009. Ave Maria University was founded in 2003. The Quasi-Parish of Ave Maria Oratory was established in 2008.

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For more information please contact Billy Atwell at 941-486-4702 or atwell@dioceseofvenice.org, or contact Dawn Montecalvo, Montecalvo, Woliver & Associates at 239-595-0846 or dawn@montewoliver.com.

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Keywords: Ave Maria University, Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Diocese of Venice, President Jim Towey, Thomas S. Monaghan, Ex Corde Ecclesiae



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1 - 4 of 4 Comments

  1. PaxVobiscum
    2 years ago

    Isn't this the college founded by the pizza guy?

  2. Theresa
    2 years ago

    I had already heard of the "good news" re. AMU and I can attest to the "catholicity" of the University via experience. Young and old are welcomed to studies at this growing Catholic University. If I may say so here for any who might be interested, there is also an Institute of Pastoral Theology (IPT) at AMU with 3-4- satelite locations in other places in the country. The IPT offers weekend classes for non-traditional students who work and may have families, and who would like to earn a Masters in Theological Studies--It is a wonderful, wonderful program of studies.

  3. FaithfulListener
    2 years ago

    Congratulations to Ave Maria University on your 'official' recognition by your local bishop as a Catholic university! But be careful! Don't allow yourselves to become too Catholic. In today's Church and with many of our bishops, that can be dangerous! So like the rest of us, play the game and hope for the best! Catholic education, grade school thru college, etc., has all but become a joke in too many parts of our country. Too many instituons are 'catholic in name, only! What they do, teach, allow, promote, tolerate, encourage, permit, is in all too many cases a scandal to the Church! It's began in the 60's and still continues strong today. So play the game and the very best of luck to you!

  4. mikem
    2 years ago

    I read this article because I was curious as to whom, which entity, could recognize a University as being "officially" Catholic. Could the government do that? No. But the government just declared some Catholic University to be non Catholic. According to the government a University is either too Catholic to get aid, or not Catholic enough. Figure that out. But, as this article says, Canon Law places a Catholic University under the bishop. If that is the case, I wonder why Seton Hall University, which is supposed to be the University of the Archdiocese of Newark, NJ, can have an openly homosexual teacher teach a pro-homosexual class, - and the Archbishop claims he can't do anything about it!!! I should research which items of the Canon Law apply and go over to Seton Hall and find out what their real structure is, and why the Archbishop has been pushed out of there. I really should. But it just stinks too much. CONGRATULATIONS AVE MARIA !! Hail, Hail, Mary.

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