Newman University will bestow the Cardinal Newman Medal to Reverend Monsignor Robert Hemberger at the 2015 Cardinal Newman Banquet and Awards Ceremony. The event will begin at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 21 in the Dugan-Gorges Conference Center on the Newman campus.
The medal – the highest honor bestowed by the Newman Board of Trustees – is conferred upon those who demonstrate in their daily life an appreciation of the spirit and ideals of Cardinal Newman, and who have been instrumental in the growth and development of the university.
Monsignor Hemberger, a former member of the Newman Board of Trustees who retired in 2014, has had a lasting and widespread impact on the Catholic Diocese of Wichita and on Newman University. He is widely known and appreciated for his gentle, congenial nature, his ability to inspire and encourage others, and his gift for bringing out the best in people. He has long been a supporter of Catholic higher education and of Newman University. In addition to serving as the diocesan representative to the Newman Board, he supported the St. Gianna Catholic Healthcare Academy, the Tom Seiler Teacher Academy at Bishop Carroll Catholic High School, and the Newman Master of Theology program. He is viewed as a great source of wisdom, and often sought out for advice. He was also a generous supporter of the university.
Monsignor Hemberger was ordained to the priesthood on May 30, 1970. During his 44-year tenure with the Diocese he served in many roles, including assistant pastor at St. Anne and All Saints parishes in Wichita, chaplain at St. Francis Hospital, Halstead Hospital and for the Sisters of St. Joseph, director of Marriage Encounter, assistant chancellor for the diocese, Judicial Vicar of the Tribunal, Diocesan Administrator, and Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia. He also was involved in the development of stewardship, the healthcare ministry, the Catholic Care Center, the Spiritual Life Center, The Lord’s Diner, the synod, and the recent Cathedral renovation. He received a Licentiate in Canon Law in 1985 from Catholic University, Washington, D.C.
In addition to the bestowal of the Cardinal Newman Medal, the banquet will honor the recipients of the 2015 Alumni Awards:
- Sister Teresita Elna S. Oporta, FSpif, MSW – Beata Netemeyer Alumni Award
- Reverend Thomas A. Welk, CPPS – Leon A. McNeill Distinguished Alumni Award
- Mark and Ann (Roder) Fox – St. Maria De Mattias Award
- Margaret Weilert – Spirit of Acuto Award
For more information, or to reserve tickets for the Cardinal Newman Banquet and Awards Ceremony, click here or call 316-942-4291, ext. 2163. Reservations are requested by Feb. 16
The Banquet and Awards Ceremony is part of Cardinal Newman Week, the annual week-long celebration of the life and teachings of Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman, the 19th century Catholic theologian and educator for whom the university is named. Beginning this year, the Cardinal Newman Week activities are part of Heritage Month, a series of events that celebrate the heritage of Newman University founders the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, Cardinal Newman, and the university’s Catholic tradition. Heritage Month began on Feb. 4 and will run through March 4, and will feature more than a dozen activities. Newman officials said they plan to make it an annual event.
Among the highlights of Heritage Month are a Mass with Gregorian Chant, a traditional English High Tea, the Cardinal Newman Mass, the Cardinal Newman Lecture featuring Stephanie Mann, and a book signing by Roy Wenzl, co-author of The Miracle of Father Kapaun. Heritage Month will conclude with a recognition of the day St. Maria De Mattias founded the Adorers in 1834.
Click here for complete details on Heritage Month activities.