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Looking toward the future in light of the presidential election: a message from Loyola University Maryland President Rev. Brian F. Linnane, S.J.

| By Rita Buettner

Rev. Brian F. Linnane, S.J., president of Loyola University Maryland, sent the following message to the campus community on Nov. 9, 2016:

Dear Members of the Loyola Community,

Although the presidential campaign is now behind us, many members of our community may still be grappling with the negative tone and discourse that preceded—and now follows—the election. We also must consider that any time of leadership transition can bring its own anxiety.

At times like this, and particularly as we work toward a bright future for our nation, it is important for us to remember that the election is, indeed, a demonstration of democracy in action. The voices of many in our nation have been heard. The outcome of any election is, however, also a reminder to us that other voices are often not heard, and that each of us has a role in standing up for those who do not have a powerful voice in our nation, in our community, and around the world.

With hope and faith in the strength of our nation, let us come together to pledge to work toward a bright future with equity, inclusion, and peace for all. Let us commit to supporting one another, collaborating in creating a better world, and to living out the values that are dear to each of us as members of this Catholic, Jesuit university community.

I have been reflecting on the Catholic tradition of the Common Good—the belief in the dignity of all persons, and the need to value and protect their freedoms and ensure each of them has a voice. We cannot secure the good of everyone unless we are attending to those who are on the edges of society. Today, as we consider this leadership transition for our nation, it is particularly important that we not lose sight of that. Government has a role, of course, but so do each of us, as we work to protect and support the Common Good.

Throughout the election season, we have offered opportunities for students to discuss issues civilly, kindly, and with an eagerness to listen and learn. We will continue to seek those opportunities for students in and out of the classroom, including at a teach-in to be held next week. Students will receive more details on that event soon. I hope you will continue to engage in civil discourse and listen to those whose opinions do not match your own—recognizing that their opinions may be just as valid, if not more valid, than yours.

During the collaborative process of listening and engaging as a community that gave birth to the University’s new strategic plan, The Ignatian Compass: Guiding Loyola University Maryland to Ever Greater Excellence, we began to talk about what it means to be an Ignatian citizen. That is a role each of us embraces as men and women for and with others, seeking to look beyond ourselves, and working to identify our role in service, leadership, and community. As we begin this next chapter for our nation, let’s come together as Ignatian citizens, pledging to do the best we can to strengthen Loyola, Baltimore, the United States, and our community around the globe.

Sincerely,

Rev. Brian F. Linnane, S.J.
President

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