Brother Consolmagno will be greeted with a special assembly at 8 a.m., followed by a tour of the campus which includes the only observatory owned and operated by a Catholic school in Florida. Brother Consolmagno will deliver a special presentation to members of the school as well as special guests at 12:40 p.m. in the Cosculluela Hall.
Brother Consolmagno will be presented with a plaque from the School President in front of the student body during the morning assembly.
“We are honored to have Brother Consolmagno visit Belen Jesuit on the occasion of the 160th anniversary of the Fr. Benito Vieñes, SJ Observatory and to talk to our young men,” said School President Jesuit Father Guillermo M. García-Tuñón. “Brother, is a well-known researcher and renowned astronomer.”
“Our young men will benefit greatly from the insight Brother Consolmagno will share with them from his many experiences,” said Mr. Jose E. Roca, Principal.
The Fr. Benito Vieñes, SJ Observatory is at the service of its students at Belen Jesuit and the Miami community. Belen is the only school in the United States equipped with a 16” telescope with a CCD camera for astrophotography and one of only a few schools in South Florida with an observatory. The school traces its history to its origins in the Colegio de Belén in Cuba. The school in Cuba had an observatory and was considered among the best in the world. The observatory at Belen Jesuit is named after Father Vieñes who is credited for establishing hurricane forecasting as well as with publishing the first hurricane advisory in the history of meteorology. Weather forecasts are radioed daily to various cities in Florida. The observatory was made possible by donations from the Belen Jesuit Class of 1972.
Belen Jesuit Preparatory School is located at 500 SW 127th Ave in Miami.
Brother Guy Consolmagno SJ is Director of the the Vatican Observatory and President of the Vatican Observatory Foundation. A native of Detroit, Michigan, he earned undergraduate and masters' degrees from MIT, and a Ph. D. in Planetary Science from the University of Arizona; he was a postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard and MIT, served in the US Peace Corps (Kenya), and taught university physics at Lafayette College before entering the Jesuits in 1989.
At the Vatican Observatory since 1993, his research explores connections between meteorites, asteroids, and the evolution of small solar system bodies, observing Kuiper Belt comets with the Vatican's 1.8 meter telescope in Arizona, and applying his measure of meteorite physical properties to understanding asteroid origins and structure. Along with more than 200 scientific publications, he is the author of a number of popular books including Turn Left at Orion(with Dan Davis), and most recently Would You Baptize an Extraterrestial? (with Father Paul Mueller, SJ).