Update: The School of Ministry's Landregan Lecture and Reunion, scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 7, have been cancelled due to inclement weather.
The School of Ministry will present its "Dei Verbum" and "Lumen Gentium" Distinguished Alumni Awards to two deserving alumni at the school's 15th Annual Landregan Lecture on Dec. 7. Mary Elizabeth Morgan, a Catholic Biblical School graduate from Bossier City, La., will be honored with the "Dei Verbum" Award, and Lari Newman-Williams of Dallas will be given the "Lumen Gentium" Award, an honor bestowed upon an alumnus of the School of Ministry graduate program.
"With these annual awards, we acknowledge two graduates whose established records of outstanding accomplishment reflect the fruit of theological education for transformative service," said School of Ministry Dean Mark Goodwin. "They have given exemplary service to their local church in general, the work of faith formation in particular and the larger community, especially the poor and in-need."
Mary Elizabeth Morgan graduated from the School of Ministry Catholic Biblical School in 2013 as part of the first class from the Diocese of Shreveport, La. Morgan is a member of Christ the King Parish in Bossier City, La., and she currently works as a nurse in that area. She is well-known in the diocese as a selfless and caring minister who is generous with her time and energy. Among other commitments, she is active in prison ministry, home visitations, taking food to the poor, working in a free clinic and doing pre-Cana at her home parish.
Lari Newman-Williams graduated with the master of pastoral ministry degree in 2007. After serving many years as a catechetical volunteer in the parish, Newman-Williams now works as a parish administrator at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Southeast Dallas. She returned to the classroom as the first student in the School of Ministry's church management program, a joint venture with the University of Dallas Satish & Yasmin Gupta College of Business. She completed this graduate certificate in 2012.
Newman-Williams serves in her parish as a cantor, liturgist, pastoral council member and volunteer with the youth ministry program. She is integrally involved in the black Catholic community and has chaired the diocesan black Catholic "Come Home for Christmas" initiative. In 2012, she was awarded the Servant of Christ Award in recognition of outstanding leadership and service to the African American Catholic community of Dallas. In 2013, she demonstrated her continued support for her alma mater when she began working on a research project on contemporary parish life with undergraduate pastoral ministry majors at the School of Ministry. Newman-Williams and her husband Ronnie have been married for 31 years. They have one daughter, Annelle.
Awards will be presented at the 15th Annual University of Dallas Landregan Lecture, which honors Steven T. Landregan, archivist, author and former editor of The Texas Catholic. This year's lecture will be delivered by Miguel H. Diaz (pictured). Drawing on his breadth of experiences as a Trinitarian theologian and a U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See, Diaz will present on the topic: "Hearer of the World: The Search for God, Diplomacy, and the Common Good." More information can be found at udallas.edu/landregan.