Week 15 – March 9, 2015 Entered -- September 1976 Took Vows -- August 1978 Ordained -- June 1986
Fr. Ruff holds a doctorate in liturgy and currently serves as pastor of Old St. Joseph's Parish in Philadelphia. He has taught at Jesuit universities and diocesan seminaries on the East Coast, as well as served in various campus ministry positions.
As a Jesuit with graduate training in liturgy and homiletics, I have had to cultivate a sense of humor about stereotypes concerning Jesuits as presiders. If I had a dollar for every time I've heard the jibe "More lost than a Jesuit during Holy Week," or the crack about a successful Jesuit liturgy being "one where no one is seriously injured," I could probably end poverty in a small third-world country!
But happily, I am currently in my seventh year as pastor at Old St. Joseph's, the oldest Catholic parish in Philadelphia founded by Jesuits in 1733, and under our care except during the hiatus created by the Society's suppression worldwide. Here, Sunday after Sunday, I delight in disproving the old jokes by presiding with reverence and care, and by preaching with the intent, as St. Augustine recommended, not only to teach, but also to persuade and delight.
When people tell me that my homilies have touched them, answered their spiritual questions, or made a lasting impression, then I experience "The Joy of the Gospel"? In my vocation as religious and priest. I am also blessed to be teaching homiletics to diocesan seminarians at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary; and even after four semesters, I remain excited and hopeful at the promise I hear in their preaching at such an early stage in their formation.
My thanks goes first, of course, to Jesus; but I am also grateful for the spirituality, the vision, and the generous fraternal support of the Society of Jesus. I can't imagine spending the past almost forty years of my life in any other way that would have offered as much opportunity and fulfillment. And in all of it, I am serving alongside Jesus as his disciple. What's not to love?!
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Reflection from Br. Christopher Derby, SJ -- Secondary Education (Week 51) Br. Derby is a former Vocation Director of the Maryland and New York Province of the Society of Jesus. He currently teaches religion at Canisius High School in Buffalo, NY.
Reflection from Rev. Kevin C. Hughes, SJ -- Secondary Education (Week 49) Mr. Hughes is currently in his second year of Regency, teaching high school science and mathematics at McQuaid Jesuit in Rochester, New York.
Reflection from Rev. Thomas R. Slon, SJ -- Outgoing Socius (Week 47) After serving as Socius for six years for the New York and now the UNE Provinces, Fr. Slon is on a well-deserved sabbatical awaiting his next assignment.
Reflection from Rev. Donald M. Ward, SJ -- Parish Ministry (Week 46) Fr. Ward currently serves on the parish staff at St. Therese Catholic Church in Mooresville, NC. He has worked in high school ministry as well as served in the missions.
Reflection from Mr. Jason G. Downer, SJ -- University Campus Ministry (Week 45) Mr. Downer completed First Studies in the spring at Loyola University Chicago. He began Regency this fall as a campus minister at St. Peter's University in Jersey City.
Reflection from Rev. Christopher Fronk, SJ -- Navy Chaplain (Week 44) Fr. Fronk currently serves as the Navy Command Chaplain on the USS George H.W. Bush in Norfolk, VA. He will finish active duty in Fall 2016 and become the President of Jesuit High School in New Orleans.
Reflection from Rev. Francis X. McAloon, SJ -- Professor (Week 42) Fr. McAloon is a professor of Christian spirituality and Ignatian studies the Fordham University Graduate School of Religion and Religious Education.
Reflection from Rev. Christopher G. Llanos, SJ -- Missionary, Teacher & Formator (Week 40) Fr. Llanos currently serves as the regional superior for Jamaica and is acting chairman of St. George's College. He also lectures at St. Michael's Theological College.
Reflection from Mr. Kevin C. Spinale, SJ -- Theological Studies (Week 38) Mr. Spinale is about to begin his third year of theological studies at Boston College School of Theology and Ministry. His Ordination to the Diaconate is this coming October.
Reflection from Rev. James W. Moore, SJ -- Praying (and helping others pray) for the Church, the World and the Society (Week 37) Fr. Moore has had a distinguished career in education both at St. Joseph's Prep and then for most of his career in Administration at St. Joseph's University.
Reflection from Rev. Raymond J. Donaldson, S.J. -- Teacher, Pastor, Minister (Week 36) As a priest, Fr. Donaldson has taught mathematics at the Gesu School in Philadelphia and was pastor at Holy Cross Church in Durham, NC, for six years. In the fall, he begins his new assignments as Minister in the Ciszek Hall Community and Vocation Promoter for the Maryland and Northeast Provinces.
Reflection from Rev. James J. Miracky, S.J. -- Higher Education (Week 35) Fr. Miracky currently serves as the Provincial Assistant for Higher Education for the Maryland and USA Northeast Provinces. He has extensive experience in college administration and as a college professor at several of our higher education institutions.
Reflection from Rev. George T. Williams, SJ-- Pastor (Week 34) Fr. Williams serves as the Catholic chaplain at San Quentin State Prison, Marin County, California and is an adjunct professor of pastoral ministry at the Jesuit School of Theology at Santa Clara University.
Reflection from Rev. Cesare Campagnoli, SJ-- Pastor (Week 33) Fr. Campagnoli currently serves on mission to two parishes in Pavia, in the region of Lombardy, Italy -- Sts. Peter & Paul (Pancarana) and St. Ambrose (Cervesina).
Reflection from Rev. Anthony P. SooHoo, SJ -- Special Studies, Young Adult Ministry (Week 32) Fr. SooHoo is currently in special studies at NYU, works with the young adult ministry at St. Ignatius Loyola Parish in Manhattan and coordinates Charis Ministry Retreats in the Archdiocese of NY.
Reflection from Rev. Bruce R. Bavinger, SJ -- Missionary, Teacher (Week 30) Fr. Bavinger is the Superior of the Jesuit Community at St. Raphael the Archangel Church in Raleigh, North Carolina. He also serves as a parochial vicar and vocation promoter there.
Reflection from Mr. Patrick C. Nolan -- Missionary, Teacher (Week 29) Mr. Nolan just finished regency as a teacher and college counselor at Yap Catholic High School. In the fall, he returns to the U.S. to begin theological studies.
Reflection from Rev. William R. Campbell, SJ -- Education (Week 28) Fr. Campbell's work stretches over many of the educational apostolates of the Society of Jesus, from pre-secondary to secondary education. He is the outgoing President of Cheverus High School and is transitioning into higher education as the Vice President for Mission at the College of the Holy Cross.
Reflection from Rev. Brian Conley, SJ -- Religious Superior, Hospital Chaplain and Clinical Pastoral Educator (Week 26) Fr. Conley is the current superior of the Boston College High School Jesuit Community and works as a CPE supervisor at Brigham and Women's Hospital.
Reflection from Rev. Anthony J. Azzarto, SJ -- Secondary Education (Week 25) Fr. Azzarto currently teaches religion at St. Peter's Prep where he also serves as the alumni chaplain and as a student guidance counselor.
Reflection from Rev. Michael F. Tunney, SJ -- Artist, Professor and Administrator (Week 22) Fr. Tunney is an accomplished artist who currently teaches fine arts and serves as the Director of Mission and Identity at Canisius College in Buffalo.
Reflection from Rev. Joseph J. Hayden, SJ -- Pastor, Preacher and Caregiver (Week 21) Fr. Hayden currently ministers alongside of the Superior to the Jesuits needing assistance at the St. Claude la Colombiere Jesuit Community residence.
Reflection from Rev. Joseph M. McShane, SJ -- University President (Week 19) Fr. McShane is the President of Fordham University. He previously served there as the Dean, as well as in other higher education administration positions at Le Moyne College and the University of Scranton. Fr. McShane holds a Ph.D. in Church History.
Reflection from Rev. Mark Hallinan, SJ -- Pastor, Hispanic Ministry (Week 18) Fr. Hallinan serves as pastor of multiple parishes on Staten Island, NY -- St. Mary of the Assumption and Our Lady of Mount Carmel+St. Benedicta.
Reflection from Rev. Thomas M. Simisky, SJ -- High School Ministry (Week 16) Fr. Simisky teaches Spanish and is assistant to the principal at Fairfield Preparatory School. In the fall, he will become the President of Fairfield Prep.
Reflections from Rev. Daniel M. Ruff, SJ -- Pastor (Week 15)Fr. Ruff holds a doctorate in liturgy and currently serves as pastor of Old St. Joseph's Parish in Philadelphia. He has taught at Jesuit universities and diocesan seminaries on the East Coast, as well as served in various campus ministry positions.
Reflection from Rev. Thomas L. Sheridan, SJ -- Praying for the Church and the Society (Week 14)Fr. Sheridan is professor emeritus from St. Peter's University in theology, as well as an active spiritual director and pastoral minister in various parishes. He now assists in community ministry at Murray-Weigel Hall.
Reflection from Rev. Charles L. Moutenot, SJ -- Spiritual Director (Week 12)Fr. Moutenot serves the Society of Jesus as the Director of the USA Tertianship Program in Portland, OR. He has extensive experience in the work of the Spiritual Exercises and in internal governance of the Society.
Reflection from Rev. Andrew N. Downing, SJ -- Professor of Theology (Week 11)Fr. Downing is a new Professor of Systematic Theology at the Gregorian University in Rome, Italy. He recently completed his doctoral studies and defended his dissertation at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN.
Reflection from Rev. Herbert B. Keller, SJ -- Secondary Education (Week 10)Fr. Keller is the outgoing President of Scranton Prep. He has served in various roles at other Jesuit high schools on the East Coast.
Reflection from Br. Robert L. Carson, SJ -- Teacher, Student Counselor (Week 8)Br. Carson is a teacher and student counselor at St. Joseph's Prep in Philadelphia and also serves as a permanent deacon in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
Reflection from Rev. Francis X. Clooney, SJ -- Harvard Professor (Week 7)Fr. Clooney is the Parkman Professor of Divinity and Director of the Center for the Study of World Religions, Harvard University.
Reflection from Mr. Vincent J. Marchionni, SJ -- Regent, Teacher (Week 6)Mr. Marchionni is in Jesuit formation as a second year regent teaching history at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Baltimore, Md.
Reflection from Rev. William A. Barry, SJ -- Spiritual Director (Week 5) Fr. Barry is a former provincial, former tertian master, prolific writer on the Spiritual Exercises, and a renowned spiritual director.
Reflection from Rev. John P. Mulreany, SJ -- Missionary, Teacher (Week 4) Fr. Mulreany teaches English and social studies at Yap Catholic High School and serves as vice-superior of the Jesuit community in Yap.