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MAFC Program Welcomes Largest Class
Photo: MAFCAt its annual retreat on Aug. 18, the Center for Faith and Culture's Master of Arts in Faith and Culture program kicked off its third year at the University of St. Thomas by welcoming the largest incoming class to date. Eighteen part-time and full-time students will begin their first full academic year this fall. The students will join 13 students returning to continue their MAFC studies.

During the retreat, the Rev. Donald Nesti, CSSp, director of the Center for Faith and Culture, led the students in an exploration of this year’s theme, “Spiritual Journey of the Twelve: Being Evangelized and Evangelizing.” The retreat gave new MAFC students a chance get to know returning students and served as an opportunity for all students to reflect on important program questions and ideas.

“The MAFC is structured to offer the students an opportunity to respond to the call of Jesus," Fr. Nesti said. “There is no better way to understand this than to reflect on Jesus’ call to the Twelve and their journey with him in receiving the Good News and learning how to share it with others.”

The cohort of MAFC students ranges in age from 26-62 years old. The students have diverse backgrounds in engineering, theology, law, finance, business, health and wellness, education, and journalism. The group includes three novices of the congregation of St. Basil, as well as students of Spanish, Nicaraguan, Thai and Vietnamese origin.

The MAFC degree seeks to integrate historical, sociological, anthropological, theological and spiritual dimensions in the American way of life. The program is designed to form civic community and church leaders capable of assisting others in the integration of personal and communal faith as faithful citizens.  The MAFC degree provides working professionals, educators and ministers with both an intellectual and practical formation program that responds to the demands of living in today’s cultural context as a people of faith.
Incoming MAFC Cohort of 2012
Pictured left to right: Top row – Fr. Donald Nesti, director, Duane Bradley, Rick Frantz, Butch Callegari, Steven Huber, Kittisak Chooklin, Lake Johnson, Julian Ohizu, Hoc Minh Nguyen, Sao-Mai Nguyen, Dr. Adam Martinez, associate director.
 Bottom row – Mary Lee Pruzinsky, Raquel Varela, Marion Fernandez-Cueto, Ana Mar
ía Egea, Myra Romain, Wendy Millhouse, Jennifer Peterson.
Not Pictured: Chris Collins, Long Pham

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The University of St. Thomas, dedicated to educating leaders of faith and character, is a private institution committed to the liberal arts and to the religious, ethical and intellectual tradition of Catholic higher education. St. Thomas is Houston’s only Catholic University and was founded by the Basilian Fathers in 1947.


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