Holocaust Educator Celebrates Golden Jubilee
Sister Lois Sculco, S.C., Ph.D., vice president for Mission and Student Life and administrator of the National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education at Seton Hill University, celebrates her Golden Jubilee with the Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill in 2010.
More than half of Sister Lois’ 50 years in ministry has been spent working with students at Seton Hill University.
“Life as a Sister of Charity has given me a great opportunity to serve the Church and the people of God in so many ways, particularly to spend so many years in the ministry to students at Seton Hill,” said Sister Lois.
Sister Lois began her work at Seton Hill in 1968, where she met Sister Gemma Del Duca. In 1987, Sister Gemma and Sister Noël Kernan founded the National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education. Sister Lois then accompanied Sister Gemma to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Authority. She said this was a “life-changing experience,” and inspired her to become involved with the National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education and in the cause of Catholic-Jewish relations.
The passion Sister Lois has coincides with the mission statement of the National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education: “To counter anti-Semitism and to foster Catholic-Jewish relations by making the fruits of Holocaust scholarship accessible to educators at every level, especially Catholic colleges and universities throughout the United States.”
Sister Lois shares her passion and scholarship with Seton Hill students through an interdisciplinary course, Integrated Senior Seminar, which includes meeting survivors of the Holocaust, reading about the Holocaust, participating in the Kristallnacht Remembrance Service and visiting the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.
“Sister Lois is, in many ways, the conscience of Seton Hill,” said JoAnne Boyle, president. “She keeps us mindful of our greater mission in everything we do. In her work with the Center, and as our vice president for Mission and Student Life, she helps Seton Hill students to transform themselves as they prepare to transform the world.”
Often, Sister Lois’ work takes her around the world. She has led trips to Poland, Israel, Korea, and Italy.
In May 2001, Sister Lois led a group of Seton Hill students and traveled to Poland to join more than 500 individuals from around the world on the “March of Remembrance and Hope: A Student Leadership Mission.” Travelers visited the ghettoes of Krakow and Warsaw and concentration and extermination camps. In October 2007, she traveled with a group from Seton Hill and Congregation Emanu-El on an Interfaith Community Tour through Israel in order to learn more about the lands of the Bible and religious origins.
For her humanitarian contributions to the National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education and in her position as vice president for Mission and Student Life, Sister Lois received the 2008 John E. McGrady Award sponsored by the Catholic Youth Association of Pittsburgh.
A member of the Council of Centers for Jewish-Christian Relations, Sister Lois served a term on the organization’s Board of Directors from 2002-2005.
Sister Lois earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and English from Seton Hill University. She received a Master of Arts degree in English from Duquesne University and a Master of Arts degree in human resource development from Azusa Pacific University. Sister Lois obtained her Doctor of Philosophy degree in human development from Fielding Graduate Institute.
In the tradition of the Catholic Church, the word “Jubilee” is used to designate an anniversary year. Historically, the 50th anniversary of religious life, the Golden Jubilee, is considered the most significant. Special reverence is held for the Golden Jubilee as it signifies a strong vocation and commitment of giving one’s life to serve God and others.