EAST AURORA, N.Y. — Sr. Margaret Carney, OSF, president of St. Bonaventure University, was keynote speaker at a recent awards dinner launching the 150th anniversary celebration of Christ the King Seminary (CKS) here. At the Oct. 21 event, Fr. Richard Siepka, president and rector of Christ the King, presented its annual Cure of Ars award to the Most Rev. Edward U. Kmiec, bishop of Buffalo, and CKS trustee and benefactor Ellen Koessler.
According to an article in the December 2007 issue of Western New York Catholic, the seminary has recently designed a new strategic plan that outlines ways to expand its reach, including creating satellite sites.
Sr. Margaret was invited to be keynote speaker at the seminary because of the long-time connection of both institutions; the seminary began as an integral part of St. Bonaventure University. From its early years, the school was called St. Bonaventure’s College and Seminary. The original seminary building was destroyed in 1930. Thomas Plassman, OFM, long-time rector, renamed the seminary in honor of Christ the King in 1933 although CKS did not have its own building until 1952. Bonaventure became a university in 1950 with CKS as its school of theology.
Several Holy Name friars have served as rectors at CKS through the years including:
Callistus Smith, OFM (1959 – 1964)
Juvenal Lalor, OFM (1964 – ‘73)
Alban Maguire, OFM (1973 -‘76, oversaw the relocation of CKS to East Aurora in ‘74)
Daniel Lanahan, OFM (1976-’ 82)
Kevin Mackin, OFM (1982 -‘88)
Daniel McLellan, OFM (1988 -’90)
The Province withdrew its corporate sponsorship in 1990, although individual friars continued to teach there, according to Provincial Vicar Dominic Monti, OFM. Long-time friar faculty members over the years have includedAlcuin Coyle, OFM, David Sweeney, OFM, Joe (Donatus) Doino, OFM; Gerald Dolan, OFM, Bonaventure Hayes, OFM; Vincent Grogan, OFM; Charles O’Connor, OFM, Thomas Sheehan, OFM, and Gabriel Scarfia, OFM, who has taught there approximately 35 years, according to Dominic, who also served at the seminary.