Press & Testimonials


Some thoughts from our participants:

"What have I learned?  Father Bob Pecoraro said something that struck me.  “We have to reconcile people to themselves.  We have to give them the chance to be whole.”  I personally feel that we need to act as lights for unity; we need to be a beckon, a symbol of hope.  Once people have hope, they can be united through a better vision, a vision of a better way to live.  But we can’t do this without unity.  If we are not truly with each other and for each other, we can’t expect to help anyone to return them to themselves.  Put simply, plant your feet firmly where God wants us to be, and nothing else matters."

- Caleb Blodgett 


"What is really inspiring is the amount of people here, team and guests, who have the passion and the stories to back up the passion for action.  The other piece I feel has [been] and will be huge for me going forward is the process of discernment and the Examen."

- Jesse Brodka



 "This Institute has exposed me to a variety of ways that I can help out, both locally and on a global scale.  Instead of assuming I know what people need, I should instead offer my services and listen."

- Shannon Callaghan



BTLI has also been featured in a number local and national magazines...


From the Jesuit East.

“Young people today want to make a difference,” says Christopher L. Coble, PhD., vice president for religion at the Lilly Endowment. “Programs like the one at Canisius connect them to faculty and religious leaders who will help them explore that longing by drawing more deeply on scripture and theology as they make decisions about their futures.”


From the National Catholic Reporter.

“Participating in Be the Light this past summer has really helped me explore my spirituality in a deeper sense,” said Maggie Treichler, a Canisius College student who served as a student leader. “I have been struggling with how often it seems that the bad outweighs the good in the world, especially with this year’s elections. But when I look back at the institute, I think about all the high school students who participated and remember that there is still good in the world.” 

From Western New York Catholic.

"My experience at the Institute was amazing," added Sandy Stahl, also from Orchard Park High School. "It strengthened my faith and love for God. I learned to be more outgoing and not be shy about being with people, no matter the circumstances. I also learned we're not 'helping' people but rather just being with them and comforting them. I would definitely recommend the Institute to anyone interested in becoming deeper in their faith."


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