Since the foundation of the University of Portland, Holy Cross brothers and priests have lived and ministered in its residential halls. First as rectors and prefects, then as hall directors and chaplains, they have seen to many and varied responsibilities across the University's history. More recently as pastoral residents, they assist the qualified lay men and women who administer the halls in the creation of supportive living and learning environments that foster a holistic education of the heart and mind; communities where mutual respect, faith and service to others is promoted and valued by all. Members of the Congregation of Holy Cross share in the life of the residence halls as a pastoral presence to the hall's community and its individuals.
Through the witness of his vocation, a pastoral resident holds a privileged position for entrée into the lives of the hall's residents and staff, so as to assist them in the discovery of the deepest longing in their lives. Pastoral residents, therefore, are a critical component to the residential experience at the University of Portland and play a unique role in the personal development of our students and the Catholic character of this institution. Pastoral residents assist hall staffs to enflesh and live out the Holy Cross vision of residentiality as it is understood at the University of Portland.
Collaboration: A pastoral resident collaborates with Campus Ministry and the Office of Residence Life for the effective pastoral care of the residential community. He works closely with the hall director, the assistant hall director, and the resident assistants to provide for pastoral care within the residence hall. He assists within the hall not as a manager or disciplinarian, but primarily as a resource for the hall staff, to assist them in the care of residents and in their own personal and spiritual development.
Presence: A pastoral resident is available to students, spending time getting to know his hall's residents, attending hall programs, and serving as a resource for students and staff. Some pastoral residents host regular gatherings for students to get to know him and one another.
Spiritual Cultivation: A pastoral resident oversees the weekly hall Mass, coordinates the planning of and participates in the annual hall retreat, makes the sacrament of Reconciliation available to residents, and otherwise fosters spiritual life in the hall. If the pastoral resident is a priest, he presides and preaches at the Masses in the hall chapel. He may also assist Campus Ministry on a campus-wide level with celebrating Mass or helping with retreats.
"[My pastoral resident] is great, and although I'm not religious, I go to Mass every week and am always comfortable talking to him because of how friendly, funny, and kind he is."
"I honestly don't know where I would be without my pastoral residents. [They] have helped me through some of the hardest times in my life."
"[My pastoral resident] is very caring and is always looking out for students' interests. He has lots of advice to offer, in terms of religious, spirituality, academic, or just advice about life in general."
"I love talking with [my pastoral resident]. He's always very comforting and thought-provoking when I talk to him."
"[My pastoral resident] loves football and watches games with the guys, that's the coolest thing ever. Do you watch football with your priest? Didn't think so."
To learn more about pastoral residents, contact Campus Ministry.