MOSAIC Fall 2016 Fall 2016 - Page 28

ACADEMIC NEWS W E AV AND FACULTY SPOTLIGHT: DR. PATRICIA COONEY HATHAWAY L ong before she started her academic tenure with the seminary, there was a connection for Dr. Patricia Cooney Hathaway. Her family’s strong Catholic faith was nurtured in Detroit and was a catalyst for her love of Christ and the Church. “My vocation as a theologian was nurtured by a long line of family members who had a deep faith devotion to the Church of Detroit,” Dr. Cooney Hathaway says. “My grandfather, Henry Brennan, president of W.E. Wood Company, built Sacred Heart Seminary, Blessed Sacrament Cathedral, St. John Seminary, the IHM Motherhouse 26 in Monroe, and other church buildings in Detroit. I thank him often, especially when I enter our beautiful chapel.” Beyond her grandfather, there were other family contributions to the Archdiocese of Detroit. “My uncle, Msgr. Harold Markey, was a legendary diocesan priest who founded the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO). He believed that the body as well as the soul of youth had to be nurtured,” Dr. Cooney Hathaway says. “My uncle, Fr. Vincent Brennan, SJ, taught Scripture at the University of Detroit. My aunt, Sr. Margaret Brennan, IHM, was one of the first sisters to receive a doctorate in theology, and she also was mother superior of the IHM sisters at the time of the Second Vatican Council. “And of course, I could not forget my mother, Mary Catherine, and my father, William, who modeled for me and my eight brothers and sisters an active living of their faith in everyday life and also instilled in us a sense of responsibility for the well-being of others.” Sacred Heart Major Seminary | Mosaic | Fall 2016 This witness of family faith wasn’t wasted on Dr. Cooney Hathaway. She received a bachelor’s degree in English from Marygrove College, and then began her theological studies at Catholic University of Amer ica in Washington, D.C., where she earned her master’s degree in religious studies and her doctorate in systematic theology, psychology, and spirituality. Detroit beckoned Dr. Cooney Hathaway home when she returned to marry Thomas Hathaway in the 1980s. She soon was offered a pivotal opportunity by Sacred Heart to share her love of Catholicism and theology. She is now a professor of spirituality and systematic theology at the seminary, a distinguished spiritual director, and a sought-after speaker. “I am the only one left of the original faculty who began the Graduate School of Theology,” says Dr. Cooney Hathaway. “I was invited by [rector] Msgr. John Nienstedt to serve on the curriculum committee, E