Benedictine College Scholarship Ball to Honor Archbishop Naumann

Benedictine College Scholarship Ball to Honor Archbishop Naumann

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Archbishop Naumann at the Benedictine College Baccalaureate Mass

The annual Benedictine College Scholarship Ball is one of the premier fundraisers in the Kansas City area. This year, co-chairs Kevin and Colleen O’Malley and Lene Westerman have set the event for the evening of Saturday, February 29, 2020, at the Overland Park Convention Center, 6000 College Blvd. The Scholarship Ball includes dinner, awards, entertainment and dancing to live music by the Michael Beers Band. More information and reservations are available online at

Each year, the Ball features the presentation of the Cross of the Order of St. Benedict. The College established the award in 1969 as a way to recognize alumni and friends who have supported charitable institutions, provided civic or religious leadership, and demonstrated professional excellence. This year, the prestigious award goes to the Most Reverend Joseph F. Naumann, D.D., Archbishop of Kansas City in Kansas. The award recognizes his role as the shepherd of the Catholic Church in northeastern Kansas where he supervises 125 parishes and 40 Catholic schools in 21 counties.

Joseph Naumann grew up in St. Louis and graduated from Cardinal Glennon College. After serving as a deacon in Florissant, Missouri, and completing his theological studies at Kenrick Seminary, he was ordained to the priesthood on May 24, 1975. He was assigned to several parishes in the St. Louis area over the years and became the coordinator of the Pro-Life Committee of the Archdiocese of St. Louis in 1984. He was named Pastor of Ascension Parish in Normandy, Missouri, in 1989. In 1994, he became Vicar General of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and after three years, was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of St. Louis / Titular Bishop of Caput Cilla by Pope John Paul II. He was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Kansas City in Kansas in 2004 before becoming Archbishop in 2005.

Archbishop Naumann is very active within the Church on issues of marriage and life. He serves as Chairman of the Kansas Catholic Conference and is a member of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Marriage and Family Life. He was recently chosen by his brother bishops to lead the U.S. Catholic Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee of Pro-Life Activities.

The pro-life cause has long been of importance to Archbishop Naumann. While serving as archdiocesan pro-life coordinator in St. Louis, the archdiocese established a Project Rachel ministry for women recovering from abortion, as well as the Lifeline Coalition. He was a founding board member of the Vitae Foundation, which promotes effective pro-life messaging. He is also a regular participant in the annual March for Life in Washington, DC, supports a variety of pro-life organizations, and regularly participates in pro-life Rosaries in front of abortion clinics.

“The pro-life issue has been, and remains, one of the paramount moral issues that the Church tries to give some guidance on to our own people, as well as society at large,” he told the Catholic World Report in 2017.

Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas.  The school is proud to have been named the best private college in Kansas by the Wall Street Journal, one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report, and one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation by First Things magazine and the Newman Guide.  It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging.  It has a mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.