Regnum Christi

Divine Mercy University Honors Senior Scholar and Founding Member, Dr. Paul Vitz, at This Year’s Commencement Exercises

Divine Mercy University (DMU) celebrated 151 graduates this year at its 22nd Graduation Mass and Commencement Exercises on May 20th, 2023, at St. Theresa Catholic Church in Ashburn, Virginia.

Mass was celebrated by Very Reverend Jamie R. Workman, J.C.L., Vicar General of Arlington Diocese, who encouraged the graduates to be fearlessly open to the transformative power of Christ’s love. “Love is a powerful force, and divine love all the more – it can captivate the human mind and will, it can invite, and it can transform lives,” he said in his homily. “Accompanying those who are seeking great healing themselves, we first have to recognize the healing that we need in Christ, and to not be afraid of the transforming aspects of his divine life that can take place within it, if we let it.”

Following the Mass, Fr. Charles Sikorsky, LC, JD, JCL, who has served as the president of Divine Mercy University for 16 years, provided the opening remarks of the commencement exercises. “In a world where so many are searching desperately for meaning and existential clarity, few paths provide for the good than the one that you have chosen,” said Fr. Sikorsky. “While this may seem like a daunting task, and one well beyond your capabilities, be not afraid, because you’ll never be working alone. Keep always open the doors of your hearts to Jesus Christ and his presence so that through your lives, the doors of so many other hearts will be open to his love, his mercy, and a new life that only he can give.”

This year’s commencement address was presented by Dr. Paul C. Vitz, Ph.D, senior scholar and one of the founders of Divine Mercy University. After 60 years of service to the psychological sciences, including 24 years at Divine Mercy University, Dr. Vitz will be retiring this year, and in honor of his contributions to the school and to the field of psychology and mental health, he was awarded an honorary doctorate.

Dr. Vitz is an internationally recognized psychologist who has devoted his life to an integrated approach to psychology and the human person from a uniquely Catholic Christian perspective, and is one of the founding members of the Institute for Psychological Sciences, now Divine Mercy University. Throughout his long career, Dr. Vitz has made major contributions to the integration of Catholic Christian theology and anthropology with the psychological sciences and mental health practice. Most notably, he has published, with two colleagues, A Catholic Christian Meta-Model of the Person, which blends the insights of three wisdom traditions – the psychological sciences, philosophy, and theology – to provide a framework for the whole person, and provides an integrative approach to understanding the human experience.

In his commencement address, Dr. Vitz reflected on his life dedicated to the field of psychology, which began nearly 70 years ago in 1953 when he was a psychology major in his freshman year at the University of Michigan. “Psychology has greatly improved since then,” said Dr. Vitz, “A lot of new changes have come in, and the nature of the human person has expanded. Each of these new schools found an important aspect of the human person that had been neglected.”

“Now, after the human person has been expanded, we come in with a meta-model, an  overarching representation of the nature of the person, in which the Christian faith is made clear, and we can allow redemption to be, in fact, the acceptance of Jesus in our life as our redeemer. So that’s where psychology has finally come to – it’s a new perspective, a large perspective, and a time to be explicit about our faith! Here at DMU, we are trying to make modern secular psychology something that will no longer be hostile to the faith, and that, in fact, can be used positively.”

Dr. Vitz concludes: “Of course, we can get very discouraged. Despite the conflicts and difficulties that come with being a psychologist or psychotherapist, we have to remember what our Lord said. Jesus said ‘I have overcome the world, be of good cheer. Don’t fear, be of good cheer.’”

Although he is retiring from Divine Mercy University, Dr. Vitz’ legacy of integrating the Catholic perspective with the understanding of the human experience will live on in the psychological sciences, in the school, and in the lives and mission of the students as they accompany those who are suffering, are present to those in need, and share the insights regarding the whole human person with everyone they encounter. “The Holy Spirit puts great men and women into society, especially when that society is crumbling, and he gave us Dr. Paul Vitz, to fit a very critical role in a very critical time in instituting the university,” said Thomas Cunningham, Chairman of the Board of Directors at DMU. “Now the Holy Spirit is looking to you, graduates, to fill that role.”

Divine Mercy University (DMU) is a Catholic graduate institution of higher education offering degree programs in psychology and counseling, founded in 1999 as the Institute for the Psychological Sciences. The university is dedicated to the scientific study of psychology with a Catholic understanding of the human person, marriage, and the family. The university offers Master of Science (M.S.) degrees in Psychology and Counseling, and a Doctoral (Psy.D.) degree in Clinical Psychology.

Divine Mercy University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award masters and doctorate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Divine Mercy University.

The IPS doctoral program in clinical psychology (Psy.D.) is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association (APA). *Questions related to the program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation: Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation American Psychological Association 750 1st Street NE, Washington, DC 20002 Phone (202)-336-5979 / Email: [email protected] / Web:

For more information about the degree programs at Divine Mercy University, contact 703-416-8300 or visit or [email protected].

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Alex Kucera


Alex Kucera has lived in Atlanta, GA, for the last 46 years. He is one of 9 children, married to his wife Karmen, and has 3 girls, one grandson, and a granddaughter on the way. Alex joined Regnum Christi in 2007. Out of the gate, he joined the Helping Hands Medical Missions apostolate and is still participating today with the Ghana Friendship Mission.

In 2009, Alex was asked to be the Atlanta RC Renewal Coordinator for the Atlanta Locality to help the RC members with the RC renewal process. Alex became a Group Leader in 2012 for four of the Atlanta Men’s Section Teams and continues today. Running in parallel, in 2013, Alex became a Team Leader and shepherded a large team of good men.

Alex was honored to be the Atlanta Mission Coordinator between 2010 to 2022 (12 years), coordinating 5-8 Holy Week Mission teams across Georgia. He also created and coordinated missions at a parish in Athens, GA, for 9 years. Alex continues to coordinate Holy Week Missions, Advent Missions, and Monthly missions at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Cumming, GA.

From 2016 to 2022, Alex also served as the Men’s Section Assistant in Atlanta. He loved working with the Men’s Section Director, the Legionaries, Consecrated, and Women’s Section leadership teams.

Alex is exceptionally grateful to the Legionaries, Consecrated, and many RC members who he’s journeyed shoulder to shoulder, growing his relationship with Christ and others along the way. He knows that there is only one way, that’s Christ’s Way, with others!