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Commissioning Ceremony

Blessing of the hands 2014

Fr. John Lyon, OP,  and Sr. Michael Mary Gutowski, RSM, DNS, bless the hands of nursing student Amber Arceneaux in OLHCC's "blessing of the hands" ceremony for sophomore nursing students on Feb. 17. 

In a symbolic and moving "blessing of the hands" ceremony on Feb. 17, Our Lady of Holy Cross College (OLHCC) commissioned 63 sophomore nursing students to embark on their clinical education.

The blessing of the hands is an annual ceremony at OLHCC which commemorates student progress as they begin their work with patients.  It also recognizes the spiritual dimension of nursing practice, a foundation of OLHCC's nursing program.  Campus minister Fr. John Lydon, OP, anointed the hands of each student with oil, used as a base for medicine in ancient times, and requests the divine blessing that each student's hands be used as instruments of healing.

"As nursing students enter their sophomore year and begin their actual clinical education, we at OLHCC recognize this important milestone with this special blessing," explains Patricia Prechter, RN, MSN, EdD, Provost and Chair of the Department of Nursing and Allied Health.  "Understanding that nursing has a spiritual dimension is the basis for all we do academically at OLHCC."

More than 900 nursing graduates of OLHCC practice in the metro New Orleans area.  OLHCC offers a bachelor's degree in nursing and an online RN to BSN program.  The nursing program distinguishes itself with high rates of passing the national licensure examination. 

About Our Lady of Holy Cross College

A fully accredited Catholic liberal arts college on the West Bank of New Orleans, OLHCC offers more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs.  Students enjoy a personalized academic experience on an active campus where they are encouraged to explore values and pursue service opportunities.  Some of our most distinctive programs are in Nursing, Biology, Counseling, Education and Theology. The Marianites of Holy Cross, whose distinguished history of educational service to New Orleans dates to 1848, founded the college in 1916.  Ronald J. Ambrosetti, PhD, became the 17th president in July, 2012.