May 2, 2017
During a celebration dinner in which Rev. John E. Conley, C.S.C. (’73, ’77) was honored for his 20 years as rector of Siegfried Hall, the Monogram Club provided the evening’s icing before Conley’s 66th birthday cake was served to the crowd gathered inside McKenna Hall.
In a surprise ceremony, the Monogram Club presented Father Conley with one of its highest accolades, an honorary Monogram. In addition to his duties at Siegfried Hall, Conley has served as team chaplain of the Notre Dame hockey program since 2012. The Monogram Club’s second vice president Don Casey (’82, ’83, swimming & diving) and Notre Dame hockey head coach Jeff Jackson, a fellow honorary Monogram Club member, presented Conley with the honor.
“When you think about the countless men who have gone through Siegfried Hall, both athletes and non-athletes, who have been counseled and become better people for their association with Father Conley, you know this is a very, very special person,” said Casey at the reception, which was held April 22.
Conley was ordained a priest in the Congregation of Holy Cross in 1979. He received both his B.A. in History and his Master of Theology degree from the University of Notre Dame. He also received a Masters in Educational Administration degree from Loyola University of Chicago.
“I was surprised even as I was humbled at the honor bestowed on me by the Monogram Club,” Conley said. “Welcomed as an honorary member of this association of Notre Dame athletes, I look to continue to play a part in the formation of men and women who strive for excellence in every way and who represent the very best ideals of this great University.
“Father Basil Moreau, founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross, taught that at such a place as Notre Dame, `the mind will not be cultivated at the expense of the heart.’ The Monogram Club has always fostered this principle by supporting the spiritual, intellectual and physical development of its own especially through the bond of sport.”
Father Conley served as teacher and assistant principal of Notre Dame College Prep in Niles, Illinois, as well as principal of Bourgade Catholic High School in Phoenix, Arizona. Before he became the rector of Siegfried Hall in 1997, he was the director of vocations for the Indiana Province of the Congregation of Holy Cross. During this time, he had lived in residence at Alumni Hall.
“It’s been a privilege to serve as Siegfried Hall’s rector for 20 years and recently as the Notre Dame hockey team chaplain,” Conley said. “I stand in a line of Holy Cross priests, Brothers and Sisters stretching back 175 years to Notre Dame’s foundation who have faithfully taught, served and lived among our students.
“I’m proud of this mission of Holy Cross expressed here at Notre Dame in the learning and lifelong formation of students, athletes and alumni. We labor to assist others to recognize and develop their own God-given talents and to share these gifts with others. In doing so we hope they will discover the deepest longing in their lives.
“I pray that Notre Dame, Our Mother, who is our life, our sweetness and our hope will always intercede with her Son Jesus for us, her loyal sons and daughters, who entrust ourselves to her protection and care.”
Father Conley walking with the hockey team prior to the 2017 Frozen Four showdown with Denver.–ND–