The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Reverend Robert Sheeran

Seton Hall University
South Orange, NJ

Sponsor: Rep. Hon. Michael Ferguson, (R-NJ)
Date of Prayer: 07/19/2006

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

(Mr. FERGUSON asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)

Mr. FERGUSON. Madam Speaker, I would like to welcome Monsignor Robert Sheeran to the House floor and thank him for taking time to be our guest chaplain today. Monsignor Sheeran is joining us in part because Seton Hall University is celebrating its sesquicentennial this year. The celebration started last year on October 1, and for the past year Seton Hall University in South Orange, NJ, where Seton Hall is located, has been celebrating its 150th anniversary.

New Jersey's largest Catholic university was founded in 1856 by Bishop James Roosevelt Bayley and named after the first American–born saint, Mother Elizabeth Ann Seton. Seton Hall is the oldest diocesan university in the United States.

Monsignor Sheeran has a long history with Seton Hall University, receiving his bachelor's degree in classical languages, and, finding his way back to his alma mater in 1980, he served as rector of Saint Andrew's College Seminary. He was then appointed assistant provost of the university in 1987 and promoted to associate provost in 1991.

After another short leave, he returned to Seton Hall to hold the position of executive vice chancellor in 1993, and 2 years later he was appointed to be president of Seton Hall University, and is still serving as president today.

I am honored to welcome Monsignor Robert Sheeran to the United States House of Representatives. On behalf of the whole House, I congratulate him on Seton Hall's milestone.

(Mr. PAYNE asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)

Mr. PAYNE. Madam Speaker, it gives me great pleasure to welcome to the United States House of Representatives today's guest chaplain, Monsignor Robert Sheeran , a friend and an innovative leader who serves as the 19th president of my alma mater, Seton Hall University, which happens to reside in my 10th Congressional District of New Jersey.

After studying at Seton Hall as an undergraduate, Monsignor returned to the university in 1980 to serve as rector of St. Andrew's College Seminary. In 1987, Monsignor Sheeran was appointed assistant provost of the university.

[Page: H5384] GPO's PDFUnder his leadership, the school saw a marked decrease in undergraduate attrition.
After completing Harvard University's management development program in 1989 and being promoted to the assistant provost in 1991, he was selected as a fellow of the American Council on Education. Upon his return to Seton Hall, he was appointed executive vice chancellor, a post he held until his appointment as president 2 years later.

Under Monsignor Sheeran's leadership, Seton Hall has moved forward technologically, with the distinction of being named one of the most connected college campuses in the United States by Forbes magazine. Under construction is a new science and technology center which will help train graduates to compete in the workforce of the future.

In addition, the White House School of Diplomacy and International Relations has formed an innovative partnership with the United Nations, which is of special interest to me as a member of the House International Relations Committee and one of the two congressional delegates to the United Nations serving in the House.

I hope that Seton Hall will play a constructive role in confronting the many foreign policy challenges our Nation faces. I know my colleagues join with me in welcoming Monsignor Sheeran and thanking him for his devoted service throughout his life.

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Lord God, bless America, our land and our people.

Bless America, among the greatest of all human endeavors.

Lord God, make America worthy of the dreams of our founders.

Worthy of the sacrifices of those who have gone before us and who have given their lives for us.

Make America worthy of the calling and leadership that You place on our shoulders in this our generation.

Let wisdom, goodness and generosity grow and take deeper root in our people and in this chosen body of representatives.

This day, Lord, you have given to us as our day. These hours before us are ours, set before us to do good as You show us the good, and to avoid evil as You show us the way.

May our work, in some small way, be part of your work, never in vain and always to the glory of your Holy Name. Amen

To learn more about Members who have sponsored a Guest Chaplain, please visit the Congressional Biographical Directory