Chicago Archbishop Blase Cupich will be the commencement speaker next month at Boston College’s graduation, the university announced Thursday.
Cupich also will be presented with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree May 18 at Boston College’s 139th annual Commencement Exercises, according to the university.
After speeches in past years by Secretary of State John Kerry and Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny, university spokesperson Jack Dunn said, “Boston College was looking for a notable speaker who could impart wisdom to our 4,000 [graduating] students.”
“We chose Archbishop Cupich because of his role as a champion for the economically and socially disenfranchised and his role in leading the third-largest Catholic diocese in the United States.”
Dunn said Cupich is “free to shape his own remarks,” but he’s sure his words at commencement will resonate with the new graduates.
Pope Francis is popular with students at the Jesuit, Catholic university, the spokesperson said, and not only was the archbishop appointed by the first Jesuit pope, but also his ministry has shared a similar emphasis on those on the margins.
Boston College had reached out to the archbishop after his installation last fall, he said. The university has an enrollment of nearly 14,700 undergraduate and graduate students, according to its website.
Cupich has no other commencement addresses scheduled this spring, according to a spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Chicago.