Mercyhurst to host Intercollegiate Gathering

Mercyhurst College will be hosting more than 100 students from various area colleges on Saturday, Feb. 4, as part of the Erie Diocese’s annual Intercollegiate Gathering.

The annual gathering is a daylong event organized by the Erie Diocese in an effort to bring together Catholic college students from schools all over the Erie Diocese.

This will be the first time Mercyhurst College has hosted the event since 2007.

Students from Gannon, Edinboro, Penn State Behrend, Allegheny College, Clarion and Grove City will be visiting Mercyhurst for the event.

Greg Baker, director of Campus Ministry at Mercyhurst, says the event will “give Catholic students the sense that there are many students who take their faith seriously on other campuses.”

The event will center on the theme “Can You Hear Me Now?”

“The small groups from the day will have the names of various cell phone carriers … and the talks throughout the day will focus on our ability to slow down and hear God’s voice,” Baker said.

The keynote speaker for the event will be Monsignor Pat Keleher, a longtime campus minster at the University of Buffalo.

Events for the day include group discussions and workshops designed to further explore the theme of the event as well as allow students to get to better know people from other schools who share their faith.

Jackie Francois, an accomplished Catholic singer/songwriter, will be performing and giving talks as part of the event.

“She’ll be sticking around that evening to do a concert in Christ the King Chapel,” Baker said.

Francois is from California and has traveled the country performing and leading worship since 2006.

“(The event) is Catholic in its focus, but we welcome students from every tradition,” said Baker. “We try to give students a sense of solidarity that there are people that share similar struggles and have similar questions … We hope students leave the day feeling a little more educated about the topics, more inspired and more energized.”

The Jackie Francois concert and all parts of the Intercollegiate Gathering are open to college students of all faiths.