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HomeLocalAround the ArchdioceseNew recreation center for St. John Vianney seminarians breaks ground

New recreation center for St. John Vianney seminarians breaks ground

A new recreation center named for one of St. John Vianney Theological Seminary’s most beloved rectors broke ground March 18 with a small blessing and ceremony.

The Monsignor Michael Glenn Recreation Center is slated to start construction later this year on a plot of land located on the campus of the St. John Paul II Center for the New Evangelization in Denver. The current building they use for exercise is over a century old, and has become largely inadequate to continue using as such.

“A lot of outside groups are using it,” said Father Daniel Leonard, current rector of the seminary. “It’s [also] too small and it’s over a conference room, so they can’t always use it.”

As the seminary has grown over the years, the need for a new, dedicated facility for the seminarians has become much more apparent.

Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila blessed the land on which the new center will be built. Then, a small groundbreaking ceremony with the archbishop, the rectors, and various archdiocesan leaders and benefactors took place.

Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila blessed the land for the new Monsignor Michael Glenn Recreation Center for seminarians during a small ceremony March 18. (Photo by Aaron Lambert)

“The work we are beginning today should enliven our faith and make us grateful,” Archbishop Aquila proclaimed. “God has given us our physical powers in order that we may serve him joyously, help one another and, by discipline, … make our body fit for every good work. Let us pray for his help through this celebration, that he will bring this construction to successful completion and that his protection will keep those who work on it safe from injury.

Named for Monsignor Glenn, who served as rector of the seminary for 12 years and was an avid outdoorsman and led a very active lifestyle, the new facility will feature several modern amenities, including a basketball gym, weightlifting and cardio room, bocce court, outdoor turf soccer field and more. Monsignor Glenn died from cancer in 2019. The recreation center seeks to preserve his legacy among the men he cared about most — seminarians.

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Monsignor Glenn integrated physical well-being into his spiritual life as he guided hundreds of men through their priestly formation. As current rector, Father Leonard stressed the need for the new recreation center as being an integral part of the formation of the archdiocese’s future priests.

“When we look at the whole person and the formation of the whole person, we need to have holy priests and healthy priests,” he said.

Aaron Lambert
Aaron Lambert
Aaron is the Managing Editor for the Denver Catholic.
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