Belmont Abbey College Establishes Permanent Belmont House in Washington, D.C.
Belmont, N.C. (October 19, 2023) – Belmont Abbey College announces today the establishment of a permanent residence in Washington D.C. with the purchase of a property for its thriving Belmont House, made possible with a $1.7 million gift from Dr. Maximo Alvarez. Belmont Abbey College has established a new home for the Belmont House in Washington, D.C., located in close proximity to the U.S. Capitol. The college established the original Belmont House in 2021 where it has helped to return Christian voices to the public square, promote Judeo-Christian values, and prepare young professionals to engage with our culture and politics in fruitful and ethical ways. The venue has brought together people of faith, people in government, policy experts, and Catholic ecclesiastical leaders from around the world, particularly where Catholics and Christians face severe persecution. The recent bipartisan Nigerian resolution addressing the systematic ongoing and egregious violations of religious freedom in the country is one fruitful example of these consequential discussions.
In the spirit of the Benedictine Hallmarks of hospitality and stability, the Belmont House on Capitol Hill is in service to the church and country. The work of the Belmont House seeks to restore the witness of faith to its rightful place in the public square. Even within its first two years, Belmont House has become a significant Catholic intellectual and public policy venue in our nation’s capital, and thanks to Dr. Maximo Alvarez, the Abbey looks forward to a future Made Strong in Washington, and someday in other centers of cultural influence across the United States.
Having immigrated from Cuba to the U.S. as a child under Operation Pedro Pan, Dr. Alvarez now serves as a trustee of the Pedro Pan Group, an outreach of the Catholic Welfare Bureau of Miami still working to sponsor and assist immigrant children in need. Founder and President of Sunshine Gasoline Distributors, Inc, he has long been both a vital force in the Florida business community and an exceptional philanthropist, whose generosity demonstrates an unwavering commitment to giving back.
Today Dr. Alvarez’s exceptional generosity continues to champion those often denied a voice in the public square. Reflecting on his journey, Dr. Alvarez expressed his gratitude for the pivotal role Belmont Abbey College played in his success. He stated, “I’m here to express my gratitude for the years that I spent at Belmont Abbey. Belmont Abbey is another entity, to which I owe my success. Today I’m just paying back a little bit of what was given to me. If I gave away everything I have today, it wouldn’t even be 10% of what was given to me through charity by the people of this country.”
While Dr. Alvarez’s legacy already extends far beyond any simple calculation, his contribution, through the Belmont House, to Making Strong the future, not only of Belmont Abbey College, but also of this country, is genuinely incalculable. Belmont Abbey College plans to refurbish and enhance the newly purchased property, ensuring it is ready to welcome the public. Learn more about Made True: the Campaign for Belmont Abbey College by visiting www.bac.edu/madetrue.
About Belmont Abbey College: Founded in 1876, Belmont Abbey College is a private, Catholic baccalaureate and liberal arts institution. Our mission is to educate students in the liberal arts and sciences so that in all things, God may be glorified. Guided by the Catholic intellectual tradition and the Benedictine spirit of prayer and learning, we welcome a diverse body of students and provide them with an education that will enable them to lead lives of integrity, to succeed professionally, to become responsible citizens, and to be a blessing to themselves and to others. Our beautiful and historic campus is conveniently located just 10 miles west of Charlotte, N.C., and is currently home to more than 1500 students. For more information, visit https://belmontabbeycollege.edu/.