HARRISBURG, Pa. – The Most Reverend Ronald W. Gainer, Bishop of Harrisburg, released the following statement today related to the announcement that the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences, which is the educational arm of Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health, and Saint Joseph’s University, a Catholic Jesuit university in Philadelphia, have entered into a definitive agreement to merge:
“The Diocese of Harrisburg is the only diocese in Pennsylvania that does not house a Catholic university or college. Today’s news of the merger between the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences and Saint Joseph’s University changes that. Both the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences and Saint Joseph’s University have proud, distinguished histories of providing exceptional educational opportunities for their students. This merger will continue those histories, while expanding collegiate level Catholic healthcare training and opportunities in our Diocese.
“During this time of transition, my prayers are with the faculty, staff, students, administrators, and families of both the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences and Saint Joseph’s University. I welcome Saint Joseph’s University to the Diocese of Harrisburg and look forward to future collaborations with this Catholic Jesuit institution.”
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The Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg was established on March 3, 1868. It covers 15 counties in south and central Pennsylvania, is home to 89 parishes and 35 Catholic schools, and has over 200,000 Catholics.
The announcement from Saint Joseph’s University can be found here.