Catholic Student Center Chaplains
Fr. William Tepe (1955-’67)
The Catholic community of UMD owes Fr. Tepe a great gratitude for serving as the first diocesan chaplain and overseeing the construction of the Center in 1965. He began in 1955 as the chaplain for the campus Newman Club. Fr.Tepe led the club’s development of catechism courses, Pre-Cana Conferences, the daily Rosary, and Communion breakfasts. Planning and fundraising for the new Center began in 1958. Fr. Tepe’s hard work came to fruition when the Center was dedicated on April 10, 1965. He faithfully continued his ministry on campus until 1967.
Fr. William Kane (1964-’86)
Fr. Kane arrived at Maryland in 1964 and officially took over the chaplaincy in 1967. Fr. Kane showed an exceptional care for the students of the University. He drew upon the enthusiasm of students by creating student leadership committees to advise the Chaplains. Through this involvement, the Center was able to institute new programs of study and community service. Many students affirmed Fr. Kane’s empathy and wisdom through his individual counseling. Fr. Kane’s 22-year service to the Catholic Student Center culminated in 1986 and he now resides at Little Flower Parish in Bethesda.
Fr. Thomas Kalita (1986-’94)
Fr. Kalita joined the Center in 1986. Throughout his tenure, Fr. Kalita developed the liturgical capacities of the Center. First, the coat room was refurbished into a chapel to reserve the Blessed Sacrament. Later, Fr. Kalita inaugurated a Sunday evening Mass that became the most popular. Finally, in 1991, Fr. Kalita led the construction of the permanent chapel in place of the old auditorium. He also expanded the RCIA program to include preparation for Baptism and Confirmation. Fr. Kalita’s service to the Center ended in 1994 and he now serves as the Pastor of St. Peter’s Parish in Olney, MD.
Fr. Robert Keffer (1994-’99)
Fr. Keffer arrived at the CSC in 1976 as associate chaplain. After a period at the CSC, he was assigned to the chaplaincy at George Washington University. Fr. Keffer returned to UMD in 1994 to serve as chaplain after gaining experience at GWU and as the Director of Campus Ministry for the Archdiocese of Washington. Fr. Keffer is now in residence at Resurrection Parish in Burtonsville.
Fr. Bill Byrne (1999-2007)
Fr. Bill was assigned the chaplaincy beginning in 1999. In his time as chaplain, Fr. Bill started many programs to foster the community and help students discern their vocation. These initiatives include: Wednesday night dinners, bringing FOCUS to campus, building the grotto, starting the Knights of Columbus and Catholic Daughters, and instituting the Vianney and Magnificat dinners for men’s and women’s discernment. Fr. Bill’s legacy lives on through his favorite memory: hiring Paulina. Fr. Bill is now the pastor of St. Peter’s on Capitol Hill.
Fr. Kyle Ingels (2007-’10)
Fr. Ingels’ service to the CSC began in 2007. He witnessed uniquely to the University by acting as the chaplain for the varsity football team under coach Ralph Friedgen. He also invited Fr. Frank Donio to assist at the Center, a relationship which continues today. Fr. Kyle now serves as the Director of Campus Ministry for the Diocese of Colorado Springs.
Fr. Rob Walsh (2010-Present)
Fr. Rob is a UMD alum (‘92) and returned to the campus in 2010 as chaplain. His primary aim is to foster the Catholic culture among students. He initiated the remodeling of the worship space at the CSC, with its dedication in April of 2013 as the Chapel of Christ the Divine Teacher. Fr. Rob is particularly proud of the many students who have entered religious life and seminary, and others who’ve gone on to serve as FOCUS missionaries.