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Fredericksburg campus ministry building will be renamed

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For years, the building’s façade at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg only listed its purpose — Catholic Student Center. Now, thanks to Father Christopher T. Vaccaro, chaplain and director of campus ministry, it will be named the St. John Bosco Center.

“Most buildings on campus have a proper name, not just a name of what goes on in the building,” he said. “The chapel inside is named for St. John Bosco.”

For ease of direction and to encapsulate the program under a patron, Father Vaccaro suggested the building be named after St. John Bosco, and Arlington Bishop Michael F. Burbidge approved the plan.

Father Vaccaro said he has a great devotion to St. John Bosco, patron saint of young people. When he became the chaplain and director of campus ministry in 2014, Father Vaccaro found a large gold statue of the saint on his office desk and the chapel named after St. John Bosco. He saw it as a confirmation of his desire to follow the method of St. John Bosco in his new assignment — “to always explain things reasonably, using the faith as the basis of life and education and always being kind,” Father Vacarro said.

He hopes to have the name on the outside of the building by the end of August.

“I think the naming will lead to more students asking who St. John Bosco is,” Father Vaccaro said. “This hopefully will allow them to deepen their appreciation of what he did for the church and deepen their desire to serve God with great fidelity, like he did.”

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2017