Welcome to Boiler Catholics!

Purdue Catholic Students

Empowered by the Spirit, Boiler Catholics strives to promote an active Catholic lifestyle for students at Purdue University.

By actively living the gospel, students of Boiler Catholics are committed to building our faith community, sharing our faith, strengthening our Christian conscience, working for justice, and facilitating the personal development of leaders for the future.

In order to fulfill our mission we strive to:

  • Foster a sense of fellowship by encouraging participation in ministry and activities
  • Provide opportunities for spiritual growth and deepening the understanding of God’s word, including its application through social justice
  • Provide a link between Purdue student parishioners and resident parishioners
  • Offer opportunities for community service
  • And facilitate an on-going integration of faith in our daily life

We call our membership to carry out its commitment in a respectful and joyful manner, consistent with the Gospel, seeking to be a visible, active and welcoming organization for all students.

Any Questions?

Meet the Officers of Boiler Catholics

Rich Lopez

PCS President | lopez336@purdue.edu

Rich Lopez

Major: Robotic and Mechatronic Engineering Technology, Minor in Electrical Engineering Technology, Junior

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I began by going to Mass on Sundays when I first arrived as a freshman, but that was about it for a couple of months. I then began attending the Wednesday 9 PM Mass to relax midweek, and I was pleasantly surprised when I saw how many students attended. This level of involvement really drove me to find the community I yearned for during my freshman year. I then started going to the Tarkington Ignite and was soon after invited by a stranger, soon to become a good friend, to attend Boiler Awakening 17 retreat, and the rest is history. I have been an Ignite leader, small group leader for the New Student Overnighter, LifeGuides teacher, and a Socials Coordinator before being elected President.

Favorite Bible Verse: “What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31)

Bio: I am from New Palestine, IN, a little town surrounded by cornfields east of Indianapolis. I grew up in a family of 10, so, needless to say, I am pretty excited to be a leader of the big family at St. Tom’s. I went to New Palestine High School and had about 200 people in my graduating class, so Purdue was definitely a step up from that. My home parish is St. Michael Catholic Church in Greenfield, IN, which is where I learned the foundation of my faith from a couple of great priests. I love to listen to music, bake, and socialize with friends, old and new, in my spare time.

A caring family and fantastic friends have surrounded me for most of my life, and one thing I have learned is that the right relationships will push you towards Heaven, the ultimate goal. I pray that we can make lasting and powerful bonds and strive for eternal salvation hand in hand and that I can serve you well in my time as President of Boiler Catholics.

Cassidy Lurk

PCS Vice President and Treasurer | clurk@purdue.edu

Cassidy Lurk

Major: Biological Engineering, junior

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I got involved by a complete accident. I started by going to Sunday mass and Sunday night dinner first semester of freshman year. I attended the New Student Overnighter, and the next thing I knew, I was named coordinator for the following year. I have also gone on numerous mission trips, played on many intramural teams, attended Wednesday night mass regularly, and I have staffed Boiler Awakening a number of times.

Favorite Bible Verse: “But Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.” (Psalm 3:3)

Bio: I am from the great town of O’Fallon, IL, which is an Illinois suburb of St. Louis. It has the perfect balance of typical midwestern “corn-country” living mixed with big city vibes. I enjoy staying active by running and doing handstands (yes, I can walk on my hands); however, my passion in life is food. I am a HUGE foodie. I currently work at Panera Bread, and my dream job is in the food industry doing research and development towards new products. I love cooking extravagant meals, and I could have an 8-hour conversation with you about the versatility of corn starch. Other interests of mine include country music, dad jokes, and coffee. I’m always down for a chat about life, love, or Jesus (or all 3!) over a nice cup of coffee, so feel free to caffeinate with me anytime!

AnnMarie Hemmerling

PCS Secretary | hemmerla@purdue.edu

AnneMarie Hemmerling

Major: Visual Communications Design

How I got involved at St. Tom’s:I was one of those freshmen who signed up for the Flocknote and for the New Student Overnighter before even coming to Purdue. I wanted to experience everything that St. Tom’s had to offer, and I was so excited about it, I could hardly wait! During the ministry fair at the beginning of the year, I signed up to do Intramural Sports, where I met some FABULOUS students on my first Intramural soccer team. Through that team, I was invited to join an Ignite group, which I really benefited from because it helped me form stronger friendships with a small group of student parishioners, which then got me involved in tons of other things! My experience at St. Tom’s is better than I ever could’ve imagined, and I am praying for you that your experience will be even better than mine!

Favorite Bible Verse:  “For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.” (Psalm 62:5-6)

Bio: I am from Schererville, Indiana, which is up by Chicago, and I am the youngest of five children. Some things I REALLY enjoy: soccer, music, reading, making people smile/laugh, ROLLERCOASTERS (in all caps because… rollercoasters – in reference to Ben Rector’s official music video for “Brand New”), fall weather (If I could live somewhere that was 60 degrees and sunny all year round except for the occasional thunderstorm and two weeks set aside for snow, that would be ideal. Let me know if you ever find such a place.), and my mom and dad’s homemade chocolate chip cookies (I challenge you to try and make a better chocolate chip cookie. It would be a win-win for me cause then I’d get to eat cookies.) But annnywaaaay, that’s a little bit about me, and I am so excited to get to know all of you amazing students better during my time as secretary!

Julia Kuhn

Boiler Catholics Intern | kuhn38@purdue.edu

Major: Human Services, Senior

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I was blessed to jump right into everything that St. Tom’s had to offer as a freshman, with the encouragement of my older brothers and two sister-in-laws who were also very active in ministries in their time here at Purdue. Some of my favorite ministries from my freshman year included attending New Student Overnighter, Spring Break Mission trips, Ignite, Boiler Catholic Seminars, Boiler Awakening, teaching Religious Education and playing on several Intramural teams with other fellow Boiler Catholics. Once I dipped my toes in, I had to cannonball into everything that St. Tom’s could offer and haven’t looked back since!

Favorite Bible Verse: “Arise, shine, for your light has come.” Isaiah 60:1

Bio: I’m a small-town girl that grew up on a hobby farm right outside of Fort Wayne with my four older brothers and two younger sisters where we were kept very busy raising cows, sheep, goats, turkeys, chickens, ducks, rabbits, llamas, dogs, cats, and honeybees. We spent most of our summers outside preparing to show projects at the county fair and most of our winters inside studying our homeschool curriculum which certainly was a load of fun! I was active in the Lifeteen youth program and choir at my home parishes which sent me on the right track to join the fun at St. Tom’s. My life is so much better with the absolute cutest nephew and niece in it so if you ever need an overload of cute baby pictures, I’m your gal!

Now that I’ve journeyed to the Black and Gold capitol, you can find me studying and hanging out at St Tom’s, heel-clicking in absurd places, working at either of my two jobs as a chiropractic assistant or at Starbucks as a barista, cracking dad jokes or looking to find the very best place to watch a sunset on campus. I’m delighted to meet new friends, so please say hi and introduce yourself when you see me on campus!


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