Our team and our inspiration
Director - Mario Jardon, Ph.D.
Mario moved to Canada in 1995. He completed Bachelor's and Master's studies in Chemical Engineering at Laval University (Quebec City) and then worked several years for a biopharmaceutical company. In 2004 he moved to Vancouver to undertake doctoral studies in Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of British Columbia. After completing his doctorate he did post-doctoral research in molecular biology at the BC Cancer Agency and Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.
He enjoys and performs classical music, including piano and singing. He has participated in fundraising events to benefit non-profit causes. He also practices long-distance running and squash.
Chaplain - Fr. Eric Nicolai
Fr. Eric was born in Montreal in 1963. He is a convert to the faith from Lutheranism, being received into full communion with the Church in 1982. In 1987 He obtained a Bachelor's degree from McGill University specialising inArt History. In 1990 he completed a master’s degree at Laval University in Quebec City.
He went on to obtain a doctorate in theology at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome. He was ordained there in the Basilica of Sant’Eugenio by Cardinal Angelo Sodano in 1994.
He later worked as chaplain of Northmount Boys School in Toronto and at Parkhill centre in Ottawa.
Since 2000 he has been chaplain at Riverview. He travels regularly to Kingston, Ontario where he preaches recollections, and does spiritual direction with the people in contact with the apostolates of Opus Dei. He also regularly preaches retreats to seminarians, priests, and lay people, and gives talks, and courses as part of his ministry. He is fluent in English, French, Spanish, Italian, and German.
Riverview and Opus Dei
The parents and educators who make Riverview a reality are inspired by the message of St. Josemaria. He founded Opus Dei, an institution of the Catholic Church to which the activities of spiritual formation organized by Riverview are entrusted.
Saint Josemaria Escriva was born in Barbastro, Spain in 1902.
He was ordained to the priesthood in Saragossa on 28 March 1925. On October 2, 1928 he founded Opus Dei.
After suffering persecution during the Spanish civil war (1936-1939) he set up some of the first student residences in Madrid and other cities in Spain.
From 1946 onwards he lived and worked in Rome, overseeing the growth and expansion of Opus Dei throughout the world.
The first members of Opus Dei arrived in Canada in 1957. Riverview opened its doors in 1968.
St. Josemaria died in 1975. Pope John Paul II canonized him in Saint Peter's square on October 6, 2002.
You can read his written works and learn more about his life here.
History of Riverview
Everyone remembers all the talent displayed in the musical get-togethers, as well as the yearly pilgrimages to Rome for the UNIV congress.
Many students have passed through the doors of Riverview over the years. There was the Ganunda Boys Club in the 1970s where parents brought their children for character formation, catechesis, and outdoor fun.
Later in the 1980s students came form McGill, Concordia or other universities to participate in the cultural get togethers with professors and other intellectuals.