The Feast of Saint Benedict

A cross hangs in the Abbey ChurchDear Members of the Saint Anselm College Community,

Today we celebrate the Feast of Saint Benedict, founder of Western monasticism and author of the rule that guides monastic life for our Benedictine community.  Some 1,400 years after his death, we are still called to emulate his life and works, sharing in the spiritual wisdom and guidance lived out to this day by religious communities around the world as we “listen with the ear of your heart.”

In our Conversatio program, Saint Anselm students learn of Benedict’s life at Subiaco and Monte Cassino and study his preeminent work, The Rule of Saint Benedict. We also look to our own Benedictine community for inspiration and direction on living a life of meaning, and for one Anselmian, this particular feast marked the beginning of a journey of spiritual formation. Yesterday, Ryan Sarasin, Class of 2017, received the religious name Brother Aloysius and over the coming year will consider his calling to the holy vocation of Benedictine life.

Please join me today in contemplative reflection for all that our Benedictine roots bring into our lives, and in thankful prayer for our own Benedictine community of Saint Anselm Abbey.

May God continue to bless Saint Anselm College, our Abbey, and all who live, work, and study here.

Steven R. DiSalvo, Ph.D.


A Message to the Class of 2017

I am pleased and proud to offer my very warmest welcome to the families and guests who join us today, along with my heartfelt congratulations to our graduates on this auspicious occasion. Today marks Saint Anselm College’s 124th Commencement Exercises. A diploma will soon be in your hand, symbolizing the hard work that you have completed over the past years. Although you will leave campus today for the last time as a student, please know that you are always welcome to return. I hope that you will never forget this Hilltop that became your home.

Many of your professors, members of the administration, staff and the monks of Saint Anselm Abbey who have guided and supported you on this journey are here today to partake in the collective celebration that is Commencement. Also present are your parents and families, whose guidance and compassion has sustained you over the past four years in ways large and small, and who now proudly watch as you prepare to take your next steps forward, strengthened by that foundational love and support.

Commencement represents hundreds of individual journeys of personal and academic growth, of goals set and achieved, majors selected and abandoned, discoveries made, relationships formed and horizons opened. Whether it was a service opportunity that changed your career track, an encounter with a presidential candidate, or a moment of jubilation that came with carrying your team to victory, each graduate who ascends the stage today brings a personal story of joy, heartache and perseverance, sometimes against the most difficult of obstacles. With this celebration, we also remember in prayer the parents, grandparents and other family members lost by these graduates who cannot be here with us today.

Members of the Class of 2017: I have the honor of handing you a Saint Anselm diploma, after which you will go forth into the world. On behalf of the Saint Anselm College community, I wish you the greatest success and happiness as you pursue graduate studies at institutions including Boston University, Columbia, and Northeastern, start law school at the University of Notre Dame, or begin careers in schools, hospitals, corporate headquarters, political offices, and non-profit agencies, and serve in streets and villages of the most vulnerable across the United States and around the world.


We send you with God’s blessings upon you and your families and upon the remarkable life of creative and generous service that lies before you. For you have learned in your four years what generations before you have also come to know: Anselmian today. Anselmian tomorrow. Anselmian always.

Feast of Saint Anselm of Canterbury

State of AnselmToday we observe the feast of our patron, Saint Anselm of Canterbury.

In celebrating his life and works, may we reflect on the many blessings afforded to each of us as members of the college community named in his honor. Let us also give special thanks to our own monastic community, and all that they bring to our campus, and each of our lives.

Chapter 72 of The Rule of St. Benedict, reminds the reader that: “no one is to pursue what he judges better for himself, but instead, what he judges better for someone else.” This humbling text, which calls all of us to “listen with the ear of your heart,” guides our monastic community, and inspires us to live meaningful lives as humble servant-leaders.

The true spirit of Saint Anselm lives today in each of you who share a common character as Anselmians. Every day as we live and work together on this beautiful Hilltop campus, we must never forget those who have come before us, or those who will one day follow in our footsteps.

With God’s blessings on this Feast Day of Saint Anselm,

Steven R. DiSalvo, Ph.D.