SU Voice Alumni Blog

A Holiday Message from President Stephen Sundborg. S.J.

Posted by President Stephen Sundborg. S.J. on Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 3:30 PM PST

Dear Alumni, 
 
This year as I write my Christmas message to you, I am aware that this is the last year I will be doing so as president of Seattle U. Two dozen years is a very long time to be president! I believe that it is time for a new era at Seattle U after 21 Jesuit presidents and I am thrilled with the choice of Eduardo Peñalver to lead our university in accord with our mission in a new day and in a new world. You can be confident as alumni that he will foster what was most important in your education and experience at Seattle U when you were students and what you have advocated and supported as alumni. I love to say that no one knows better than our alumni whether Seattle U is achieving its mission, because the fulfillment of that mission is only proven in the quality and service of your lives. 
 
This will be an unusual Christmas after a most unusual year especially because of the pandemic. I was thinking that perhaps the most relevant aspect of the birth of Christ at Bethlehem for this year is the statement, “There was no room for them in the inn.” Christ was born out-of-doors. This makes me think of grandparents meeting with grandchildren only out-of-doors or a son or daughter greeting an elderly parent in a care home through a window from outside or friends of mine who gathered for Thanksgiving with their Canadian daughter and her family in a tent straddling the border. Perhaps how Christ was born can speak in a new way to us this year and can convince us that he is present with us in love and mercy in all that we are experiencing in these non-normal times. My wish for you our alumni is that you will know his presence in your lives this Christmas. 
 
Though there are few on campus we have lit our Christmas tree and the trees by the Chapel of St. Ignatius. They flank the wonderful new Jim and Janet Sinegal Center for Science and Innovation, which is so impressively taking shape and is a beacon of hope for the education of new generations of students who will one day join you as alumni living the mission. They are our hope and so are you.   
 
Most importantly, in my last year as president, I want to thank you for your loyalty to Seattle U and your support of it and its educational mission. For you, our alumni, we are calling this year “Our Moment for Mission: The President’s Challenge.”  I thank you for living our mission and for supporting it. 
 
A Blessed Christmas, 

Stephen Sundborg. S.J.