Attorney to address immigration issues
for September Fellin Lecture

Ellen Boegel will use four stories to answer the question “Who needs immigration laws?” during a lecture sponsored by the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., this fall.

Boegel will speak at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25, in O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium at the college. The lecture is open to the public at no charge.

Ellen Boegel will deliver Fellin Lecture September 25%2C 2016The attorney and author will consider the nation’s legal definition of refugees and the process through which they enter the United States, as well as what constitutes American citizenship and what draws refugees to the United States. The presentation also will include suggestions of how listeners might get involved with refugee questions through education, political action and service.

Boegel is an associate professor of criminal justice, legal studies and homeland security at St. John’s University in Queens, New York. She completed her law degree at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and clerked in Manhattan, New York, for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and then worked in Counsel’s Office at the Unified Court System for the State of New York. She now serves as a pro bono attorney panelist on the New York State Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs and as a volunteer attorney with the New York Legal Assistance Group Mobile Legal Help Center.

A regular columnist for America Magazine, Boegel received a first place award for best coverage of marriage from the Catholic Press Association in 2014 for her explanation of the church’s position on marriage in a Nov. 25, 2013, column titled “Final Appeals” in America. 

Boegel’s speech is part of the Mary L. Fellin Lecture Series, sponsored by the Benedictine Sisters. The series is intended to support the liberal arts orientation of Benedictine College from a feminine perspective through lectures presented by distinguished women. Boegel’s lecture is the 20th in the series, which began with a lecture by Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ, in 1997.

The Mary L. Fellin Lecture Series

The series is named after Mary L. Fellin, a woman who had devoted her life to others.

Mary grew up in Marshfield, Mo., one of 12 children. She earned a nursing degree from St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, Mo., and became a private duty nurse.

Later, she purchased a five-and-dime store near the town square in Marshfield, Mo., where she operated Mary’s Variety for more than 30 years. A just and service-oriented storekeeper, she held her customers in high regard, provided children with penny candies and served with a smile. Her frequent blessing: “Be happy.”

Her generous donation to Mount St. Scholastica upon her death aids the Mount in its sponsorship of Benedictine College. The goal of the fund is to support the liberal arts orientation of the college from a feminine perspective through lectures presented by distinguished speakers.

Past lectures are:

2016, Common Ground, Uncommon Excellence, Carolyn Woo

2014, Combating Trafficking: A Call to All for Action, Kimberly Ritter

2013, Atchison Blue: A Writer’s Search for What Really Matters, Judith Valente

2012, Reading the Scriptures with the Mind, Eyes and Heart of a Woman, Barbara Reid, OP

2011, Catherine of Sienna, A Woman for Our Times, Nancy Murray, OP

2010, Christ and the Earth, Prepare to be Astonished, Elizabeth Johnson, CSJ

2009, Economic and Social Justice: The Vision of Catholic Social Teaching, Amata Miller, IHM

2008, Illuminating the Word: The Saint John’s Bible, Mary Irene Nowell, OSB

2007, Dialogue of Hope: The Future of Catholic Relations with Muslims, Sandra T. Keating

2006, Benedict, Francis, and Thomas: Contributions to Environmental Ethics from a Catholic, Christian Perspective, Jame Schaefer

2005, Responsibility of an Artist in View of 9/11, Diane Couture, SSJ

2004, Seeking Understanding in an Expanding Universe, Aileen A. O’Donoghue

2003, The Life that Matters: One Woman’s Perspective, Kathleen Norris

2002, God of the Bars and the Brothels: One Woman’s Journey, Edwina Gateley

2001, Resurrection, the Body and You, Carolyn Osiek, RSCJ

2000, Strange Attractors: Leadership and Spirituality, Vicki Bergkamp, ASC

1999, The Catholic Liturgical Tradition: Remembering Who We Are, Mary Collins, OSB

1998, Justice by the Numbers: Pensions, Prisoners and Ice Hockey, Mary W. Gray

1997, The Gospel Mandate: “Love One Another As I Have Loved You,” Helen Prejean, CSJ