Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Jennifer Friesen

8/17/2008 (7 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Students can take courses in everything from Sacred Art and the Metaphysics of St. Thomas Aquinas to Catholic Spirituality and the Theological Vision of Pope John Paul II.

The mission of Redeemer Pacific College is ‘to develop dynamic Catholic leaders through higher education: men and women committed to lifelong Christian growth and intellectual formation who strive to bring all whom their lives touch into vital relationship with Jesus and his Church.’

The mission of Redeemer Pacific College is ‘to develop dynamic Catholic leaders through higher education: men and women committed to lifelong Christian growth and intellectual formation who strive to bring all whom their lives touch into vital relationship with Jesus and his Church.’


By Jennifer Friesen

Catholic Online (

8/17/2008 (7 years ago)

Published in Americas

VANCOUVER, B.C. (Catholic Online) - Many Catholics in North America are aware of the new (or renewed) "orthodox" Catholic institutions of higher education that have sprung to life on this continent over the past two decades. Franciscan University in Steubenville, Christendom College in Virginia, and Ave Maria University in Florida head the list of those institutions seeking to be fully faithful to the Church's magisterium. Now the west coast of Canada can boast its own addition to this line-up: Redeemer Pacific College, in Langley, just outside the city of Vancouver, British Columbia.

Redeemer Pacific College (RPC) opened its doors in the fall of 1999 with the blessing and support of Archbishop Adam Exner of the Archdiocese of Vancouver. In addition, right from its inception, the RPC program was nurtured by Franciscan University in Steubenville. For example, two of the members of the College Board of Governors, Dr. Stephen Militec and Dr. Andrew Minto are distinguished FUS faculty; in addition, the renowned Catholic author and Bible scholar Dr. Scott Hahn, Professor of Theology at FUS, serves on the RPC Board of Advisors. This living link with Franciscan university remains vital to the identity of the College. RPC founder and President Tom Hamel explains:

The mission of Redeemer Pacific College is 'to develop dynamic Catholic leaders through higher education: men and women committed to lifelong Christian growth and intellectual formation who strive to bring all whom their lives touch into vital relationship with Jesus and his Church.'

The word "dynamic" is key here: it involves our commitment to nurture in our students not only "head-knowledge" of authentic Catholic doctrine, but also "heart-knowledge" of the personal love of Jesus Christ for each and every individual.

Back in 1997, Hamel took this vision of what Catholic higher education should be to Fr. Michael Scanlan, President of Franciscan University in Steubenville, and found there a kindred spirit. Scanlan has said of the famous renewal that he pioneered at FUS:

"A campus may be said to be Catholic to the degree that it creates an environment that fosters [adult] conversion to Christ and his Church. Students must be convinced of the need to own their own faith, and not just rent their parents'. Through hearing the Word of God proclaimed, and celebrating the sacraments, the students are encouraged to encounter the Lord in a personal way, firsthand."

Alongside this commitment to "dynamic" Catholic orthodoxy, RPC has a second -and altogether unique -feature: the College is located just outside the front gates of the largest Protestant Evangelical University in Canada: Trinity Western University. Hamel himself is a graduate of TWU, and he notes: "although not a Catholic institution, God is an integral part of the TWU experience. TWU provides a welcoming environment to all Christians, where Catholics and Evangelicals can share with each other their faith-perspectives, remaining true to their own traditions while discovering common ground -and even, on some issues, a common cause."

Hamel claims that, in general, Catholics and Evangelicals have been forced to drop some of their prejudices about each other in recent years, given the way all mainstream Christians have been under assault in Canada by the rapid advance of secularization and "political correctness." He cites the fact that Catholics and Evangelicals today stand shoulder to shoulder on Pro-life and Pro-Family social issues, and work together to protect of freedom of religion. "The same dynamic is at work between Catholics and Evangelicals at RPC and TWU;" says Hamel., "we do not wash over our differences, but we have learned the truth of what Bl. Pope John XXIII once said: 'There is more that unites us than divides us.'"

Students at RPC take courses at both TWU and RPC, ultimately receiving a TWU undergraduate degree. This enables Catholic students to have access to the full range of Trinity Western's university programs (TWU presently has over 2,500 students and 39 academic majors). It should also be noted that Trinity Western is a top-notch Canadian university: for example, it recently received an "A+" grade for academic excellence from one of Canada's national newspapers, The Globe and Mail.

The courses students take at RPC automatically count toward their TWU degree, and RPC has an array of course offerings, especially in Theology and Philosophy, all taught from a Catholic perspective. Senior theologian at RPC, Dr. Robert Stackpole, explains:

The goal of our academic program is to enrich the Catholic students that come here with a deeper appreciation of the Catholic heritage, and to help them attain a deeper commitment to the Catholic Faith. At RPC, students can take courses in everything from Sacred Art and the Metaphysics of St. Thomas Aquinas to Catholic Spirituality and the Theological Vision of Pope John Paul II. Indeed, in many ways, it is the dynamic orthodoxy of Pope John Paul the Great that really inspires us.

To help insure fidelity to that goal, all RPC Theology professors receive a "mandatum" from the Archdiocese of Vancouver, in accordance with Vatican guidelines, and all RPC professors take an oath of allegiance to the magisterium at the start of every academic year.

Catholic students can pick up credits at RPC toward a Catholic Liberal Arts Certificate, a Catholic Theological Studies Certificate, or do a full RPC "Minor in Catholic Studies," as part of Trinity Western's "Christianity and Culture" program. "In other words, you can do a Minor in Catholic Studies, which includes the study of the Catholic Tradition of Philosophy and Theology, even while pursuing a major in any university subject, " Dr. Stackpole says. "In fact, many of the courses you would take at RPC for these programs also, at the same time, fulfill core graduation requirements for TWU -- so it's not an extra-burden."

The Catholic Studies Minor also forms a part of RPC's new "Catholic Teacher Education Program." Designed to fit with TWU's own Education major, the TWU-RPC teacher training program guarantees placement in local area Catholic schools for the students' practicum and professional development year, and is recognized as an authorized teacher training program throughout Canada, and in most states in the USA.

Whatever course of study a student may choose to pursue, happily, the College also has an ever-increasing number of student scholarships available. Pres. Hamel exclaims: "The generosity of Catholics in our area to RPC has been amazing, and continues to grow. We have about 60 students at RPC now, most of them assisted in one way or another both by RPC and TWU scholarship programs."

The spiritual formation program at Redeemer Pacific is also one of its special features. With its own Dominican Chaplain, and assisted by the local clergy, the College now has Mass on campus almost every weekday during the semester, and Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction on every First Friday of the month. The students can also take monthly day-retreats at the Benedictine Abbey in Mission, B.C., less than an hour's drive away. Moreover, Guest speakers are frequently invited to RPC to enrich the students' appreciation of the Catholic worldview; in recent years these have included apologists Peter Kreeft and Mark Shea, ethicist Janet Smith, and journalist Rev. Raymond de Souza. Meanwhile, weekly student "Discipleship" groups meet together for fun and fellowship, and to read the Scriptures and pray together.

"The result is a close and mutually supportive Catholic community here," Hamel says, "where nobody is just a student I.D. number, and everybody 'matters.'"

For more information about Redeemer Pacific College, please see the College website at, or call us at 604-888-7727. Visitors and inquirers are always welcome.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Americas

Donald Trump's head, specifically his head, is now worth $100 million Watch

Image of This head is worth a cool $100 million, a fact which can only make it bigger.


Donald Trump's head, specifically his head, is now worth $100 million. Sinaloa drug cartel boss, EL Chapo Guzman has reportedly increased the bounty on Trump, asking him to be delivered "dead or alive." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - El Chapo is the leader of the ... continue reading

Two of Mexico's most dangerous criminal imprisoned on U.S. soil Watch

Image of Forty-two-year-old Valdez, who also goes under the name of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two of Mexico's most violent and dreaded criminals are now imprisoned on U.S. soil. Edgar "La Barbie" Valdez Villarreal and Jorge Eduardo "El Coss" Costilla Sanchez are among the most notorious of 13 suspects sent to the U.S. in an unusually high-level judicial ... continue reading

Cuban President pressured by Obama to make moves Watch

Image of


President Barack Obama has broadened opportunities for Americans to spend money, travel, and open businesses in Cuba following two rounds of regulatory reforms since December. While America has been on the move, it seems Cuba has limited its movements to reopening its ... continue reading

Cuba's homeless mysteriously vanish prior to the papal visit Watch

Image of Cuba's homeless vanish before Pope Francis' visit and reemerge just as mysteriously afterward.


The streets of eastern Holguin, Cuba are now flooded with homeless people, following Pope Francis's visit; the homeless went missing during the Pope's tour of the country. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Dozens of homeless now re-flood the streets of eastern ... continue reading

First U.S. Hispanic Saint: Pope Francis to canonize Junipero Serra during U.S. visit Watch

Image of Father Junipero Serra's canonization will

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis and the Vatican have announced plans to canonize the Blessed Junipero Serra during the Pope's visit to the United States on September 23. Serra will become the United States' first Hispanic saint. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Often times, the ... continue reading

The 'silent genocide' of the Brazilian Guarani tribe Watch

Image of Guarani tribe members were promised land in 1993 and have yet to see it, so they fight (Survival International).

By Talia Ramos

One of the oldest tribes in South America, the Guarani Indian tribe, was displaced after ranchers claimed their lands, forcing them to sleep on roadsides. Due to their persecution from the politically-powered land owners, the surviving Guarani people have been asking ... continue reading

South American femicide continues to increase at shockingly high rates Watch

Image of Rape, murder, and kidnapped victims in Mexico continues to increase.


Aidé Nava, a mayoral candidate and mother from Ahuacuotzingo Village in Mexico was found decapitated on the streets of her own town. Gangsters are believed to be behind several kidnappings where women are tortured, raped and decapitated.  MUNTINLUPA CITY, ... continue reading

Why Pope Francis' last speech in Cuba was a masterstroke of genius Watch

Image of Pope Francis has become a political force to be reckoned with.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis concluded his visit to Cuba by delivering a masterful speech calling for a new revolution in the socialist country. He delivered his speech just before departing on Tuesday. Though steeped in religious tones, the call to action is courageous and clear. LOS ... continue reading

'It's like a sign of God': Costa Rican community amazed by unusual cloud formation Watch

Image of Beautiful display of cloud iridescence.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Last Tuesday a cloud phenomenon occurred in Costa Rica, leaving people both mystified and horrified. LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA (Catholic Online) - Several cities such as San Jose, Parrita, Pavas, Escazu and Hatillo reported the colorful cloud anomaly. Hundreds posted ... continue reading

Pope Francis wasn't the first to visit Cuba - what happened during previous Papal visits? Watch

Image of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI meets with Fidel Castro (L'Osservatore Romano Vatican-Pool/Getty Images).

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis is the third pope to visit Cuba. Who were the first two and why did they decide to visit? LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA (Catholic Online) - Pope Benedict XVI and Pope John Paul II each made the trip to Cuba in 2012 and 1998 respectively.TIME called John Paul's ... continue reading

All Americas News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Joel 1:13-15; 2:1-2
13 Priests, put on sackcloth and lament! You ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 9:2-3, 6, 16, 8-9
6 the enemy is wiped out -- mere ruins for ever -- ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 11:15-26
15 But some of them said, 'It is through Beelzebul, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 9th, 2015 Image

Sts. Denis, Rusticus, and Eleutherius
October 9: The first mention we have of these three martyrs who died around ... Read More