A Message from Magdalen College’s New President

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Dear Magdalen Community,

As I begin my tenure as president, I want to share with you my excitement about this college and ask for your prayers.

On my first day on campus, I walked into the beautiful chapel and sought the intercession of the Eastern Fathers, whose images appear in stained glass on the left (the east), and the Western Fathers whose images appear on the right (the west). At the front of the chapel, the first window on the right is of the resurrected Jesus, calling the name of Mary Magdalen. Across the aisle in the opposite window is the image of Mary Magdalen, recognizing her risen Lord with the expression, “Rabboni!”

Magdalen College is a place where we are invited, along with our namesake, to encounter Christ anew and to understand all things in light of his resurrection.

I am thrilled that my family and I have the opportunity to join this community, nestled in this special place. The faculty here are not only first rate in terms of knowledge and teaching, but they are also faithful, and they care deeply about the students in their classes. The curriculum immerses those students into the great conversation around great books, exploring the questions that matter most with guides like Augustine, Dante, Aquinas, Chesterton, and O’Connor. The inspiring choir tunes students’ hearts to the good and the beautiful, as it unites them into a meaningful body much bigger than themselves. Its beauty is matched only by the natural landscape of Mount Kearsarge and the surrounding hills and forests…and, of course, the blessed sacrament itself, around which we gather as a community daily.

I am eager to learn, sing, worship, and journey alongside the students when they arrive on campus for the new school year. My family and I—including our 2-year old daughter—can’t wait to have them over to the president’s residence for good food and conversation.

Magdalen has so much potential to form students for a life of flourishing—indeed, for resurrection life! The challenges that face us in the months ahead, though, are significant. They are challenges that require the active work of the Holy Spirit. That is why the first thing I would like to do as president is to ask you to join me in praying for this extraordinary collegiate community. It would mean a great deal to the faculty and staff to know that you are interceding regularly for Magdalen College. May I ask you to commit to doing so, especially during the noon hour when we are praying the Angelus and celebrating Mass on campus?

I also invite you to tune in this Wednesday, July 7 at 7:00pm EST (register here) for a live conversation in which I’ll be sharing more about my own journey and why I am joyful and hopeful about Magdalen. Just remember 7/7 at 7pm!

I look forward to seeing you virtually on Wednesday and in person the next time you can make it to campus! Thank you for your commitment and care for this college, and for considering joining the patriarchs, whose images are etched in the stained glass of the chapel, in prayer for it.

With warm regards,

Ryan Messmore
Magdalen College of the Liberal Arts

Learn more about Dr. Messmore.

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