When Mother Mary Clarissa Dilhoff moved Marian College to Indianapolis in 1937, she called it “a preposterous venture.” Moving an enterprise from the wilderness of southern Indiana to an unfamiliar city during the height of the Great Depression was one of many courageous decisions that Marian University has made in its history. Throughout their history, the Sisters of St. Francis, Oldenburg returned to four central themes:
- Prayer is a part of everything they do.
- Purposefulness; they attend to the needs of the times.
- Make a commitment to excellence.
- Be creative and innovative with the resources available.
In 2003, we created the Rebuild My Church program to prepare ordained and lay leaders. Then in 2004 we collaborated with the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and opened The Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary to prepare college seminarians for major seminary. There are currently 34 seminarians at the Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary, with 26 graduates. There are 95 students in the San Damiano Scholars Program at Marian University, with 85 graduates.
We also teach our Franciscan values: dignity of the individual, peace and justice, reconciliation, and responsible stewardship to every student who attends our university so they will continue to give back to their churches and communities throughout their lives.