Regis College, the Jesuit graduate School of Theology at the University of Toronto, has agreed to a long term lease with the University of Toronto to acquire the use of Christie House and portions of Fontbonne Hall located at the corners of Wellesley Street and Queens Park Crescent East. Effective immediately, construction will commence on both buildings in preparation for the academic school year that commences September, 2009. This development would not have been possible without the support of the Sisters of St. Joseph – Toronto and the Jesuits in English Canada.
Jean-Marc Laporte, Provincial Superior of the Jesuits in English Canada, is excited about the move and has stated that, “the present location of Regis, located near the University of Toronto campus, has served us well, however, this move will bring it where it needs to be, on the campus together with five other schools of theology affiliated with the University of Toronto. This is an exciting opportunity for Regis to bring its traditions in theology and spirituality in closer dialogue with men and women of different faiths but who share our passion for a society that enables all to flourish in harmony. With the help of our supporters we look forward to our move to this beautiful building now available to us but also renew our dedication to serve the Church of the 21’st century.
Joseph Schner, President of Regis, expressed his joy at the successful completion of this collegial process. “All of us at Regis wish to thank the Sisters of St. Joseph and the Jesuits in English Canada for their vision and generosity, the University of Toronto for its welcoming care, and their administrations for bringing the process to such a promising completion. It is now Regis’s task to flourish in our new home.”
Regis College has its origins in the Jesuit Seminary called the College of Christ the King (Collegium Christi Regis); it was originally located on Wellington Street in downtown Toronto. Founded in 1930, the College initially offered courses in undergraduate philosophy and science. In 1943, a curriculum of theology was inaugurated. While it continues to prepare Jesuit and other seminarians to the priesthood, the majority of students prepare for lay ministry in parishes, schools, hospitals, military chaplaincy and correctional facilities in the Archdiocese of Toronto and in the Church throughout North America and abroad. It also trains scholars who will devote their lives to doing and teaching theology. For Regis, the pursuit of academic excellence always includes a spiritual dimension. Spirituality is not simply studied or a way in which to pray, but is integral to the life of the College.
Regis College has been at its present location at 15 St. Mary Street since 1976.