15390764_904648989368_8549601740928517001_nI apologize for the radio silence here at DatingGod.org so far this week. I wanted to post a brief note to let my readers know, first of all, that I haven’t receded again into the shadows of blogging; I’m very much still here. But these last few days have been unusually hectic. As some of you may be aware, over the last four years I have been working on a Ph.D. in systematic theology at Boston College. That means that in addition to the speaking, leading retreats, sacramental ministry, teaching, and writing books and articles, I’ve also been writing another kind of book, my dissertation. Well, on Monday I defended my dissertation successfully and completed my degree, which is wonderful. In addition to the time required for preparation and the events related to the defense, this also required me to fly between Chicago and Boston in short order because of my teaching schedule back in Chicago. There’s definitely no rest for the weary in this case: I had to teach the next day, and so flew back to Chicago early on Tuesday and returned to the campus of the Catholic Theological Union fifteen minutes before my first appointment on my schedule for the day.

It’s been a tremendous journey and one for which I am incredibly grateful. I am indebted to all of the faculty that have been mentors and guides, especially Professors Brian Robinette, M. Shawn Copeland, and Mary Ann Hinsdale, IHM, who served on my dissertation committee. Boston College fully funds Ph.D. students in theology, which means that I had a full ride for the 4 years I studied there, and so I’m very grateful both to the University and to the Society of Jesus in general for their mission and commitment to academic excellence. I’m grateful to my family, friends, and friars. As a Franciscan friar, I have been supported by my Provincial Minister (i.e., religious superior) as well as the communities in which I have lived during my studies.

Although this isn’t a typical reflection on a usual current event or scripture passage, this is a recent news item that I wanted to pass along. So, no, I’m not that kind of doctor—a physician—which is what most people think of when they think of “doctor.” But in addition to having an honorary doctorate, I now have an earned doctorate and I rejoice in the gift of a vocation to education, research, and teaching that this credential will allow me to continue living out.

Photo: Jaisy Joseph


  1. Fr. Daniel, Congratulations on completing your Studies and receiving your Doctrate. You have been truely blessed with a fine brain which you use so well as a student, preacher, author and speaker and so much more. Thank you and may you be blessed as you continue to break open the mystery of God and his word for us. By the way when are you coming to Ireland ?

  2. Congratulations Dan. You worked very hard both on your doctorate and the ministry of the Word. Thanks for sharing your words and to the Friars and Jesuits. As I heard it said of the Pope, you have the mind of a Jusuit and the heart of a Franciscan. Pax et Bonum.

  3. Congratulations to Dr. Horan, OFM! I am a professor whose job it is to assist Candidates through the Dissertation and Defense process, so I know what a difficult journey led to this wonderful accomplishment. We are all blessed by the increase of knowledge that has been brought into the world through your Dissertation.

  4. God is good, all the time!!!
    May you continue to share your gifts and help us on our journey to come closer to our Sacred Three♡♡♡♡

  5. Congratulations! I know you have worked hard for this and pray that you continue your fine work. As a member of Holy Name Province, I am happy for one of our brothers to continue the Franciscan Spirit and touch the lives of so many people. I wish you only the best.
    Fr. Bill, ofm

  6. Very happy for you, Fr. Dan. I hope as Christmas comes closer, you will find some time for rest, relaxation during a wonderful (wonder-filled) season.

  7. Congratulations and God bless. Though we’ve never meet, I will always mentally connect you with “Arch Street”. I stopped there so many times as a girl and young woman growing up in Somerville.

  8. Congratulations! Only someone who has been through this mill can understand your relief and joy and having accomplished this goal. So pleased for you!

    Mara Leinani

  9. Dear Dr.Dr. Daniel (or Dr. Daniel, humbly as you are?), my sincere congratulations with this (really ‘earned’) doctorate. May you find some rest now the burden of the thesis isn’t more weighing on your shoulders. I have never met a person with so much responsibility towards his talents, thank you! — It was great to meet you about 2 years ago in the Franciscan Centre in Greensboro, NC. Let me know when you would be in the Netherlands, where I am living now.

  10. Congratulations! It was an honor and a pleasure to have you as the speaker for the Inter-Franciscan Formation program last month.

  11. Congratulations! We appreciate all your hard work and devotion to studies and thank you for sharing the fruits of your labor with the world community.

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