SANTA PAULA, CA—August 18—Auxiliary Bishop  Robert E. Barron will offer the opening Mass of the Holy Spirit at Thomas Aquinas College on August 22 in the Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel on the campus in Santa Paula. He will also preside at the matriculation ceremony following at 10:30 a.m. in St. Joseph Commons. Bishop Barron will join Thomas Aquinas College president Michael F. McLean in greeting each of the college’s 102 new freshman, and will address the students as they prepare to begin a new academic year.

“While Bishop Barron is known around the world for his award-winning documentary series Catholicism, he is first and foremost a faithful shepherd of souls and a trusted guide in the Catholic intellectual life. We very much look forward to having him with us on Convocation Day,” said McLean.

Due to steadily rising retention rates, enrollment at the college is the highest it has ever been at the four year, Catholic school — 389 students. “We are delighted to be able to consistently attract young people from across the country who are so well-suited to our unique program of Catholic liberal education,” said dean Brian Kelly.  “It will be a great joy to welcome the new freshman class and our returning students to campus,” Kelly said.

The Most Reverend Robert E. Barron is the Episcopal Vicar of the Santa Barbara Pastoral Region, one of the five Pastoral Regions in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Bishop Barron is the founder of Word on Fire, a media ministry, and is the host of its award-winning documentary series Catholicism.