The 1960's

In the 1960s, the Newman Club grew in popularity and strength, but Bucknell was still a difficult environment for it to thrive. In 1962, Bucknell had a student body of approximately 2245 students, but only about 190 of them were Catholic.

The president of the Newman Club from 1962 - 1963 was Forrest S. Chilton IV. He served with fellow student officers to give the Newman Club a strong foundation. Under the guidance of the officers, the Newman Club was very active. They kept good relations with the popular Christian Association (CA) on campus and started to organize their own activities.

The Newman Club even began its own publication, the IDEA, which brought to Catholic students important news and controversial stories. It first started as a small booklet of papers, but later evolved into a full newspaper. A survey from the November 1969 issue outlined the attitudes of those involved in the Newman Club at this time.

The Newman Club also sponsored regular lectures and intellectual conversations, especially those given by priests such as Father Eggbert Donavan, O.S.B., the Chaplain of the Penn State Newman Club. A Newman Club Concert featuring The Brothers Four was even scheduled one year and was held in Davis Gym.

Finally, in 1966, Father Bernard H. Petrina arrived at Bucknell to serve as the Newman Chaplain. He was stationed at Sacred Heart Church, where Father Woodrow W. Jones was currently serving as pastor. Father Petrina also served as the Newman Chaplain at Bloomsburg State College and Susquehanna University at the same time. These assignments were given to him by Bishop George Leech of the Diocese of Harrisburg.

From 1966 to 1967, another group of student officers led the Newman Club, which now took the name Newman Association. The 1966 bylaws outline what the group was like at this time. An election ballot at that time also showed the competition for the position of President of the Newman Association. This particular election was won by Sam Clopper.

Father Petrina was instrumental in advancing the Newman Apostolate by organizing the first Catholic Mass held on campus. This mass was held at Rooke Chapel on September 18, 1966. A letter to parents describes that year in more detail. Bulletins the weeks after also described the new schedule and important events.

A record also shows the financial condition of the Newman Apostolate in its early years. At this time, Father Petrina worked with the university chaplain, Chaplain Buckey, to advance spiritual life on campus.

In September 1968, Sister Theresa Marie arrived at Bucknell to assist Father Petrina with campus ministry work at Bucknell and Bloomsburg. Sister Theresa Marie was available to meet with students and help with spiritual programming. A letter to parents helped inform people of this new change.

In November 1968, Charles Kalb served as the president of the Bucknell Newman Association. By 1969, there were about 450 Catholics at Bucknell, a large number compared to the 190 Catholics at Bucknell in 1963. Father Michael Barrett served as pastor of Sacred Heart Church. A Christmas bulletin shows events that took place at the parish. Records also show that Father Louis A. Creeden served as pastor of Sacred Heart Church around this time.

In 1969, Father Petrina had his residence moved from Lewisburg to Bloomsburg where he resided at the Newman Center at Bloomsburg State College, 329 Iron Street, Bloomsburg, PA 17815. The Newman Club at Bucknell continued to schedule events and activities for its members. Details were included on this December 1969 calendar. Mass continued to be celebrated on campus and the club grew in numbers.

The cover and inside of this brochure gives a more detailed description of CCM at Bucknell in the 1960s.