Health, Adoration, Gamewatch (9/29/2015)


October is just around the corner and if you're an MLB fan, the "hunt for October" is almost over; people will soon start to care more about baseball again.  Speaking of caring, October is Awareness Month: everything from Breast Cancer Awareness to Mental Health, Energy, Sexual Violence, to Squirrel Awareness.  The month of Rosary happens to be October (and May) as well--Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary is October 7th! Lots to celebrate and pray for in National Popcorn Popping Month and here's how Duncan Hall is doing that:

Wellness and Mental Health Awareness
This Friday at 4pm, Annie Eaton, a University Care Consultant, will join us in the 24 to offer resources for dealing with mental health and wellness.  Everyone of us knows someone who is effected by mental health so please come to help yourself, help others. Chick-fil-A always make people happy so we'll get some Chick-fil-A. Invite your friends from other dorms as well. All are welcome.

Friday Adoration
Also on Friday from 7:30pm-9pm, there will be adoration in the Duncan Hall Chapel and confessors will be available during adoration.  It is a beautiful and peaceful hour and a half and all are welcome to join the ND community in prayer and meditation. 

As part of the Man Hour rotation, Friday Adoration is this week's Man Hour; thus, no Man Hour meeting on Thursday but all are encouraged to attend adoration on Friday.

Clemson Outdoor Gamewatch
Saturday at 8pm in the Duncan Courtyard. Free food, entertainment, and POPCORN! BYOBAC (Bring Your Own Blankets and Chairs! We will sing YouTube karaoke in between commercials. It'll be fun! Invite your friends.

Adventures with Nhat
I have blocked out "one on ones" time slots in my calendar to make myself available for you. Feel free to utilize it however you wish: meeting to talk about study abroad, sports, hike, lunch, dinner, or whatever. I want to spend time with my boys.

Study Abroad
If you are thinking of studying abroad, please fill out this google form so I can better write your letter of recommendation.

Looking Ahead:

Catholic All Star Week!!!
Sunday's Mass attendance was the lowest I've seen at Duncan Hall. So as a reminder, we have Mass from Sunday through Thursday at 9pm:
Tonight: Feast of the Archangels: Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael
Wednesday: Memorial of Saint Jerome
Thursday: Memorial of Saint Therese of the Child of Jesus
Friday: Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels
Duncan Hall Dorm Wide Rosary
Wednesday October 7th at 8:30pm in the Chapel as we celebrate The Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary.

Energy Week Next Week
See attachment for all the events and celebrations.

Free Flu Shots Next Week
Supplies are limited so get your shots in. See attachment.

Hall Council 10pm tonight:

  • Apparel Roll Out Tonight! Promise!

  • Duncan Stories
  • Pool Tournament Championship
  • Sign up for Ping Pong Tournament
  • Fellowship

That's all boys. I hope you have a great week! Go Irish, Beat Clemson!

Peace brothers,
Nhat Nguyen



"My Pope"

A reflection for Campus Ministry:

I remember vividly where I was on March 13, 2013, when Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope. I was living with some Jesuits in downtown Baltimore, Maryland, and when the white smokes blew on that Wednesday afternoon, we were filled with a sense of hope and joy.  Along with the surprise and excitement of a new Pope, Bergoglio’s decision to pick Francis as his papal name mirrored what Saint Francis of Assisi most commonly represents: peace, joy, and comfort.  The election of Pope Francis was a spiritually high moment for me for many reasons, and the most obvious was the witness of those around me being proud to be a Catholic.  Everyone can claim, “Francis is my Pope.”

We all have these spiritually high moments or mountaintop experiences; every one of us has moments we can recall of great happiness and joy, a great sense of peace and meaning that come into our lives. As we look back on these moments, how many times do we just want to hold on to them? “They are so wonderful. I hate to see them end,” we say. To hold on to this joy, happiness, and peace is a gut-instinct we all have. We hold on even stronger when we don’t think other experiences can top them, or when we don’t trust that they can ever happen again. In a spiritual sense, as good as it is to hold on to something wonderful – a love that is freely given, an experience of life that gives us new meaning to our lives – we ultimately have to let them go.  We eventually have to go down the mountain. But we let go of our experiences so that something new can be realized.  We are blessed with moments on the mountain. We are blessed with new insights about our lives. We are blessed constantly with the joy and happiness we share with each other. That should give us a sense that if this is good, then everything will be ok.

As I reflect on how Pope Francis has impacted my life, I am reminded of this spiritually high moment. My life is a constant roller coaster journey of mountaintop experiences and deep valley struggles. But what “my Pope” represents to me is hope and joy. No matter how bad a situation is, no matter how busy I am, no matter how difficult a relationship is, there is hope--the hope that everything will be ok because I’ve been to the mountaintop. I remember what it was like to be there. The revelations from these mountaintop experiences put in perspective the deep valley struggles. I believe that Pope Francis’s visit to the U.S. will be another mountaintop experience that I can recall to help me realize the perspective of my joys and sorrows.  “We are pilgrims along the way,” writes James Martin, S.J., and Pope Francis has been an influenced companion for me, a constant reminder of “The Joy of the Gospel.”

Nhat Nguyen is the Rector of Duncan Hall.



A Great Honor

Rector was invited to the Duncan Student Center Groundbreaking Ceremony before the Texas game and it was a great honor to be in the presence of the Duncan Family who has given so much of their generosity to Duncan Hall and the University.  David Duncan spoke on the behalf of the family and expressed their deep gratitude to be a part of this Notre Dame family and legacy. He said that Ray and Sally have instilled that sense of gratitude in their children so he encouraged everyone to give back to the community, church, school, hospital, in the capacity that they are able. May God continues to bless the Duncan Family for the abundant generosity they have given to others. 

Raymond T. and Sally Duncan

Raymond T. and Sally Duncan



Donuts, Pope, Basketball (9/22/2015)

In the midst of another stressful week with the craziness that is term papers and multiple choice exams, here's a few study tips from the Internet: chew gum while test-taking to pump oxygen to the brain, listen to jazz music to "relieve boredom," and turn your course material into rhymes for ideal memorization.  If you do happen to have a free moment, however, please feel free to join us for any occasions below.  We can't promise A's on tests and papers, but we can offer a little bit of peace of mind.

Open Door Policy
We'd love to see how you're doing. To the extend that you are comfortable, please feel free to have your door open or cracked when you're home.

GameDay Weekend
Yes, it's another home game this weekend and the protocols remain the same.  In addition, make smart decisions surrounding GameDay and pre-game activities. 


Pray for no more injuries.

Unofficial Parents Weekend
Since a lot of parents and families are coming into town this weekend, Duncan Hall will host a "coffee and donuts" in the 24 on Saturday morning from 10am-12pm.  We will be serving: DUNKIN' DONUTS AND COFFEE. Official Parents Weekend at Duncan Hall is the weekend of the Wake Forest game on November 14th.

Pope Scope
Here is the Official Schedule For Pope Francis’ Visit to U.S. Feel free to use the 24 TV to follow our Pope. Noteworthy:

  • Thursday at 10AM: Speech to the Senate and House of Representatives (Joint Session of Congress)
  • Friday at 8:30AM: United Nations General-Assembly
  • Sunday at 4PM: Papal Mass for World Meeting of Families

Thursday Pick Up Basketball
A few Highlanders has challenged the Rector to the game of basketball so on Thursday afternoon around 4:15pm, anyone who wants to play basketball are welcome to meet us at the Rock.  #BringThePain #BetterBringYourAnkleBraces

Green Blazers
Deadline to order and pay is TONIGHT after Hall Council. Christian Woods and Lukas O'Donnell with be available after Hall Council to take orders and/or collect payments.

Man Hour
Man Hour continues this Thursday at 10pm in the 2-4.

Mark Your Calendars:
Mental Health Resources
As part of the "What I Learned at ND" series, Annie Eeaton, a Care Consultant in Student Affairs, will stop by Duncan Hall next Friday (10/2) at 4pm to give a presentation on Mental Health and offers valuable resources that the university offers. Everyone is encouraged to come because all of us know someone who's struggling with mental health. Come help yourself, help your friends.

Clemson Game Watch!
Game time and network has been posted (Next Saturday at 8pm on ABC). Duncan Hall will host a GameWatch in the courtyard (yes, bring your own blankets and lawn chairs) and Nhat will DJ in between commercials.

Highlander Highrise Date Change
The Highrise has traditionally been the weekend after Junior Parents Weekend; however, the Willis Tower is not available that evening so right now we are looking at Saturday February 13th.  Mark your calendar.

That's all folk! Good luck the rest of the week. If you have any questions, feel free to send them my way! Come to Hall Council at 10pm tonight.




Blazers, Man Hour, Catchphrase (9/15/2015)

Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, and it is a big deal, or at least it should be, at Notre Dame because it is the feast day of the Congregation of Holy Cross. The C.S.C., founder of Notre Dame, exalts in the Cross of Christ, not as a burden nor a suffering, but as a sign of hope! Their motto is "Ave Crux, Spes Unica--Hail the Cross, our only Hope!"  From its very inception, the C.S.C. was inspired to see Jesus and his holy Cross through the luminous eyes of Notre Dame, French for "Our Lady." They strive to imitate Mary's unshakable fidelity and find strength in her maternal love; it is in imitation of Mary, Mother of Sorrows, that all of us who follow her Son might come to know the Cross as our only hope.  So amidst of the busy week of tests, meetings and assignments, I hope you find strength in Notre Dame, Our Mother.  As for this week in Duncan Hall, I'll keep it short so you can get back to your studies:

GameDay Weekend
Please read the attached GameDay memo and remember to fill out the Overnight Guest Form and give it to your RAs.

InterHall Schedule; Come Support Our Highlanders
Football vs. Morrissey Sunday at 2:15pm at Stephen Fields.
Baseball has a bye week

Green Blazers Update
Blazer Commissioners will be available for payment tonight after Hall Council. Cost is $75 cash or check payable to Duncan Hall or Credit Card for $77. Deadline for order and payment is next Tuesday after Hall Council. In addition, if you would like to exchange your Green Blazers, contact Lukas O'Donnell a

Man Hour
Man Hour returns bigger and better this Thursday at 10pm in the 24. We are taking a new spin on Man Hour this year with a four week rotation that includes social, fellowship, practical, and spiritual. You will want to come this year, even without Michael Wajda.

What I Learned at ND
Come out this Friday afternoon at 4:30pm to hear what a Highlander Alumnus is up to with life after college.  This is an informal presentation with opportunity to ask questions. Light snacks will be available. 

The Return of Midnight Catchphrase
Catchphrase returns every Sunday at midnight.

Make sure to check your mailbox periodically; some are getting full. If mail is mistakenly placed in your mailbox, then push it back into the mailroom or slide it under the mailroom door.

That's all for this week. Remember to call your mother/home. SYR pictures will be up on the website by the end of the week.

Peace brothers,



Fire, Ice, Dance (9/8/2015)

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As a native of Virginia and with the ND football team traveling to VA this weekend, I feel impelled to open this weekly newsletter with some Virginia Fun Facts. Just like Notre Dame was named after "The Virgin Mary, Our Lady," Virginia was named after another virgin: England's "Virgin Queen," Elizabeth I (for being childless). However, on the Catholic spectrum, the two couldn't be further apart: Elizabeth I cleared house when she became the Queen of England and persecuted a lot of Catholics. Contrarily, Virginia's official state motto is "Virginia is for Lovers" and Virginia's current state capital, Richmond, also served as the capital of the Confederate States of America. Similarly, Duncan Hall is a place where everyone can come together and claim as their "capital;" and we have an arrays of happenings this week:

Fire Drill
The first fire drill of the year is TONIGHT at 7:30pm. There will be two each semester and the rest will not be announced.  Please exit the building through the nearest exit and gather in the front lawn. When the fire department gives the "All Clear" from the front door, then we may reenter the building. Thank you for your cooperation.

Duncan Ryan Week Final Updates
Tuesday: Scavenger Hunt throughout Campus meeting in Ryan 24
               Time: 8:00 pm
Wednesday: Compton Free Skate ($3 Skate Rentals)
               Time: 8:00 pm- 9:00 pm
Thursday: Duncan-Ryan Field Events in Duncan Fields!
               Time: 5:00 pm
Friday: Duncan-Ryan BBQ (one more time folks) at the Duncan Courtyard
               Time: 6:30 pm

Friday Adoration
Duncan Hall will be hosting a campus-wide adoration this Friday in the Saint Walter's Chapel from 7:30pm-9pm. All are welcome to come and pray in the presence of the Eucharist; there will be time for praise and worship music as well as individual prayer. Come and go as you wish. Invite your friends. Take some time to quiet down in a highly busy environment. Email AR Dom ( with questions.

Duncan Hall "Country Club" SYR
The SYR is this Saturday from 10pm to 1am and sign ups are live on; please refer to the attached dance expectations and let me know if you have any questions.

Free Paint Ball Tickets
Duncan Hall has 72 paint ball tickets for any Highlanders who are interested in them. The tickets include Playing Field, Gun Rental, Safety Gear; however, Paintballs and CO2 must be purchased at Field. Closest location: Total Control Paintball and Airsoft. Contact them for details and see Rector for tickets.

Housekeeping Items
-Mail: If a package requires signature confirmation, then you will have to take the "pink slip" to the post office in Hammes Mowbray to pick up the package. Hint: If it's not too sensitive, then inform your sender not to require signature.
-Work Orders: Please report any maintenance issues to your RAs, including bathroom issues. Routine maintenance repairs are charged to the "building account." Vandalism is not tolerated and there are restitution fees for those repairs.
-Door Alarms: Exterior Door alarms are armed so if you prop the door open for longer than 100 seconds, the door alarm will beep. 
-Posters: The entrance and stairway door dividers (the center post between the two doors) are reserved for Hall Staff and dorm postings.

Hall Council at 10pm tonight
-For those who are participating in the dorm wide Fantasy Football, draft is tonight after hall council.

That's all folks! Today is the Feast Day of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A total coincidence! Started the email yesterday... Mass in the Chapel at 9pm Tonight.

Peace Brothers,
Nhat Nguyen



Football, SYR, Competitions (9/1/2015)


Happy Texas Week! The state of Texas is known for a lot of things, mainly for its size: "everything is bigger in Texas" referencing its geographic. Texasian is also known to be Texas-tough: "Don't Mess with Texas." Finally, football! Fight Night Lights originated in Texas, and legend has it that high school football in Texas is just as big as college and pro football. "Football is a religion in Texas," some would say. We will find out just how big and tough Texas is when the University of Texas visits Notre Dame Stadium this weekend. NBC will broadcast the game, and SportCenter will bear witness. Duncan Hall has some pretty big happenings this week as well:

Football Weekend
Please see attachment regarding GameDay Weekend. Remember to use good judgement this weekend. Hopefully there will be a lot of this for us on Saturday (BYU is in the same "Independent" non-conference as ND so I am liking our chances):

Duncan Ryan Week
Tentative schedule: Sunday-Breakfast (possibly at Duncan); Monday - Volleyball and Lawn Games; Tuesday (9pm-10pm) - Scavenger Hunt; Wednesday(8pm-9pm) - $3 Skate Rentals at Compton Family Ice Arena; Thursday  - Field Events?; Friday (6pm-8pm)- BBQ; and ending the week with a Duncan SYR Dance.

SYR Guidelines
Sign Ups (up to two Ryan dates or one non-Ryan date) and detailed directives will be available next Tuesday, but here's what you need to know:
Parietals at Duncan Hall begins at 10pm on Saturday (9/12): No female guests nor social gatherings after 10pm, (ie go to the dance!). Dates may arrive in Duncan Hall at 8:30pm; and only those attending the dance may host or participate in a social gathering before the dance. Otherwise, no social gatherings on Saturday. Once you leave the dance, you cannot re-enter the ballroom. Again, parietals start at 10pm; therefore, you cannot bring your dates back to Duncan. Hall Staff will be at front desk on Saturday. If you have questions, please ask. Your Highlander Highrise participation in February is contingent on your behavior at the SYR.

Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion & Lector Training
Want to help with the Duncan mass?  We are looking for new ministers of holy communion & Lectors.  Join us next weekend for EM and Lector training for BOTH new and returning members of the Duncan community.  There will be two training sessions:
- Sunday (9/6) at 5PM
- Monday (9/7) at 9:30PM (following daily mass)
If you miss these two sessions and still wish to help out, you can attend one of the official Basilica training sessions in lieu of the in house session at Duncan.  Email Dom at with questions.

Expectation of Responsibility
To follow up the floor meetings, attached is the written language for the new duLac policy. Please take care of one another, get help where help is needed. Let me know if you have any further question about the policy.

Floor Meeting Make Up
For those who missed the mandatory floor meetings last week, please come to the make up session on Sunday (9/6) at 10:15pm in the Chapel. We took attendance so those who did not make it, be sure to come on Sunday. Let me know if you have any conflict.

Inter-Hall Football Try Outs
Duncan Hall football tryouts will be on Wednesday at 7PM. Please report to the 24 lounge at that time with sneakers/cleats/whatever else you may need. Registration is open on IMLeagues until 11PM tomorrow. If you would like to try out, it is necessary that you sign up prior to this time. Hope to see you all there, and as always, please feel free to contact Stephen Treacy <> with any questions!

Hall Council at 10pm

Come to Hall Council tonight to hear some more big happenings this week, like: Duncan Brotherly Competitions
-Fantasy Football

-Pool Tournament

I cannot stress the importance of making good decisions this weekend surrounding GameDay.  Everyone is excited; we've been waiting all spring and summer for this weekend so make sure you celebrate it appropriately.  Without sports, there isn't much to talk about so here are the all-time series between Texas and ND. 

Peace brothers,

Nhat Nguyen



Welcome Home (8/24/2015)


Welcome home! Here's to a new beginning:

Monday Mingles at 6:30pm

Before the school year begins, please join your fellow Highlanders in the Duncan Courtyard for a little get together around 6:30pm. Pizzas will be provided; feel free to bring lawn games. Hopefully this will give the freshmen an opportunity to meet the upperclassmen and vice versa. The weather will be perfect, southern California-like: 72 degrees with sunshine.

Freshmen: 8pm Academic Program in the 24 (24Hour Lounge)

Tuesday Mass and Picnic

University Opening Mass at 5:30pm at the Joyce Center. Followed by a Picnic on North Quad; DINING HALLS WILL BE CLOSED for the occasion!

Meet in the lobby at 5pm for a walk over, wear your green jacket if you have one. Seating by dorms so find us if you're meeting us there.

Mandatory Hall Meetings in Chapel

(Attendance will be taken)

Tuesday at 9:30pm for 1st floor

Wednesday at 8pm for 2nd floor

Thursday at 7pm for 3rd floor

If you have a conflict, please notify your RA which meeting you can attend.

Hall Council Tuesday at 10pm

Come to the first hall council on Tuesday at 10pm to learn about upcoming dorm events like:

  • Thursday Cookout with Ryan Hall

  • Duncan Ryan Week

  • Duncan SYR Dance

  • Duncan Apparel and Green Blazers Updates

Duncan Mass

Sunday - Thursday at 9pm, no Mass Tuesday because of the university's Mass.

That's all for now. Hope you're settling in okay; let me know if you have any questions.

Peace brothers,
Nhat Nguyen