Friends of Murray Library


Who are the Friends of Murray Library? 

From its formal beginning in 1993, Friends has promoted the mission of Murray Library with a variety of purchases, projects and programs that extend beyond the library’s operational budget.  We invite you to join us in our efforts to enrich the resources of Murray Library, a central component in the education of Messiah students and the greater Messiah community.


Purposes of Friends of Murray Library

  • To stimulate interest in the collections and facilities of Murray Library.
  • To provide an opportunity for those interested in the library to participate in exhibits, programs, and volunteer activities.
  • To attract gifts of books, manuscripts, and other materials for the library’s enrichment.
  • To encourage and receive financial contributions for needs beyond the library budget, such as building special collections.

Friends Bylaws:

  • Click here to review. 


Benefits enjoyed by Friends:

  • Library borrowing privileges, including DVDs
  • Twelve interlibrary loan requests per year
  • Invitation to Friends events
  • Receipt of Friends mailings
  • Eligibility to serve on Friends Board

Become a Friend today:

Choose from one of the following categories:

  • Student Contributor ($5 annual)
  • Single Contributor ($35 annual)
  • Family Contributor ($50 annual)
  • Sponsor ($100 annual)
  • Lifetime Contributor ($500 one-time)

To view an online brochure with membership application, click here. If mailing the application, please send to:

Friends of Murray Library
Messiah University
Attn: Tracy Sheaffer
One University Avenue, Suite 3002
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055

To register and pay online, click the “Become a Friend” button at the top of this page.



Library Student Research Grant: Since 2003, Friends has awarded more than $19,000 to fund selected proposals by Messiah students for research projects.  Their research uses both Murray Library resources and additional resources at other institutions and organizations.

Please join us in congratulating Micaiah Saldana, the 2022-2023 Friends of Murray Library Student Research Grant awardee.  Micaiah will graduate in 2024 with a bachelor’s degree in English with a Concentration in Professional Writing.​ 

Her research project is entitled “My Last Military I.D.” and Other Stories From Growing Up Army. As an English major, Micaiah has learned a lot about storytelling.  Whether studying stories in literature courses or learning how to craft them in writing courses, stories have always been central to her academic studies at Messiah University.  This focus on stories has greatly influenced Micaiah's project.  The main goals for her project are to harness the power of storytelling to provide a space for fellow military kids (children of U.S. service members) to feel seen and to help members of the non-military community better understand and interact with the military community.

Micaiah’s research will culminate with a presentation at the annual Friends dinner in the fall of 2023.  Dr. Christine Perrin and Dr. James LaGrand are her faculty advisors. 

Congratulations Micaiah! 


21st Annual Dinner details coming soon - celebration of Friends 30th Anniversary!

20th Annual Dinner & Program: Friends 20th Annual Dinner & Program was held on Friday, November 4, 2022 in Hostetter Chapel.  We were delighted to welcome Anita Voelker as our keynote speaker.  Anita taught for many years in the Education Department at Messiah University.  In her presentation, "A Peek Through the Looking Glass: Why Children's Books Matter," Anita discussed how many readers have one particular children's book that sustained them in childhood and fortified them in adulthood.  Anita's presentation enabled guests to peek through the proverbial looking glass to discover the richness of children's literature through both images and words.

Over 100 guests attended and enjoyed a buffet style meal catered by Messiah's Two Bridges Catering


Special Collections:

Each of Murray Library's four special collections traces its beginning to Friends of Murray Library.

  • Artists' Books - Visually exciting and intellectually provocative, artists' books push to the outermost limits our assumed definition of what a book is, and turn the practice of reading into a novel experience. Simply defined, artists' books are a hybrid art form in which books and art intersect. Many of the over 300 artists' books in Murray Library's collection are the work of well-known book artists, including works by Messiah University art faculty. Friends continues to fund new acquisitions to the collection, enhancing its use as an interdisciplinary teaching resource. To view an online brochure of the Artists' Books collection, click here

  • Ruth E. Engle Memorial Collection of Children's Book Illustration - Dedicated in April 2004, this collection of original picture-book art by award-winning illustrators was established with gifts given to Friends of Murray Library in memory of Ruth Engle, a charter member who also served on its board. New artworks are added to the collection, funded by Friends and gifts from donors. Currently, more than two dozen artworks are on display, reflecting a variety of media, styles and subjects and including works by illustrators from Australia, China, England, Korea, Mali and Russia, as well as the USA. View the online portfolio featuring 15 of the more than 40 works currently in the collection. For a complete list of other illustrators represented in the collection, please click here. Better still, visit the collection, free of charge, during library hours

  • Canadian Literature - Friends committed more than $10,000 to establish this special collection, currently consisting of more than 900 titles by such influential Canadian authors as Margaret Atwood, Rudy Wiebe, Robertson Davies, Leonard Cohen and Alice Munro, each identified by a Friends-commissioned bookplate. The collection is being expanded to include poetry, plays, critical and other non-fiction works.

  • W. Jim Neidhardt Collection on Religion and Science - Dr. W. Jim Neidhardt's keen interest in the relationship between modern science and the Christian faith, as well as the presence of several longtime friends at Messiah University, led him to give his extensive personal library of Murray Library. Subject areas in the collection are astonishingly diverse, ranging from physics, engineering and theology to cybernetics, chaos theory and aesthetics. A Friends-commissioned bookplate bearing Neidhardt's likeness portrays aspects of his lifework and identifies volumes in the collection.

Friends Board Members:

Mr. Aaron Bert
Ms. Libby Coldsmith
Ms. Sarah Fischer
Mr. Chad Frey, Chair
Ms. Ilse Kryemadhi
Dr. James LaGrand
Ms. Madison Myers
Ms. Linda Poston, Murray Library Director
Ms. Jamie Rice, Murray Library Staff Liaison
Ms. Alissa Ringer
Ms. Tracy Sheaffer, Murray Library Administrative Assistant
Student Representative


Friends of Murray Library Student Chapter

If you’re a student interested in the library, then you should join FoML students!  You can participate in events, exhibits, and volunteer opportunities, all in the name of learning!  Cost to join is $5.  For more information, email Tracy Sheaffer at