CJ Educators Unite in Italy

Two CJ educators traveled to Italy this summer for separate reasons, but came together for memorable experiences.

School chaplain and math teacher Fr. Bob Jones, SM went to Rome as a delegate in the 35th General Chapter of the Society of Mary.

“It is an international meeting of Marianist brothers and priests that happens every six years at the General House in Rome,” Jones explained. “The General Chapter is a legislative body that evaluates current practice, sets policy, and elects a new Superior General and his Council. The Chapter wrote a document that will be circulated to all members of the Society of Mary which maps out the next six years for the congregation. Because of its international character, we worked in English, French and Spanish - using translators as needed.”

Science teacher Matt Fuhs was in Italy to support his family. 

“My wife, Mary, along with two other psychology professors, took a group of 16 University of Dayton students to Italy for study abroad courses,” shared Fuhs. “We were there for the entire month of July and took our two boys. Since my wife was working, it was my job to be dad.”

Once realizing they would both be in the country together around the same time, Jones and Fuhs planned a time to meet up.

“Fr. Bob came up with the idea of celebrating Mass while we were there and we could bring the UD students for a congregation,” Fuhs said. “Later, I told him that my wife and I were going to be celebrating our anniversary, and he immediately offered to renew our wedding vows.”

“A memorable part of the trip was being able to celebrate Mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Saint John XXIII altar with the Fuhs family and UD students in attendance,” agreed Jones.”It was extra special because I was able to witness Matt and Mary's renewal of wedding vows for their 10th wedding anniversary. Later in the month, we were able to meet up again and have pizza together at a Roman ristorante. Having lived in Rome for three years, I really enjoyed hearing about their adventures in the city, especially from their 8-year-old son.”

Jones added, “After my time in Rome, I was able to spend five days in Spain, visiting the Marianist communities in Vitoria and San Sebastian (both in northern Spain.) There are Marianist schools in each of these cities, so it was great to visit places that do the same thing we try to do here at CJ as we implement the Characteristics of Marianist Education. I should also mention that in 24 days in Rome, I never once ate the same pasta dish twice (and I ate pasta every day!)  Also, there is no comparison to Italian gelato!”

“My time in Italy has brought a greater appreciation for air conditioning, and made me realize that American drivers and traffic are not that bad,” Fuhs joked. “It has also left me wondering why our pizza crust is so thick and why I have to walk more than 100 yards to find ice cream (gelato) in America.”

Posted September 5, 2018