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Are Your Kids Safe In A Catholic College?
CRISIS Magazine - e-Letter ^ | Deal hudson

Posted on 02/04/2003 2:25:28 PM PST by Polycarp

Are Your Kids Safe In A Catholic College?

CRISIS Magazine - e-Letter

February 4, 2003

**********************************************

Dear Friend,

Let me warn you up front: You're not going to like this one bit.

Last time I wrote to you, I mentioned the great success of the March for Life. To me, one of its most successful aspects was the huge crowd of young people it attracted. The event was a family affair, but more than anything you got the feeling that the teens in the crowd were going to be the torchbearers of the pro-life movement.

Well, if a recent study is to be believed, many of those same pro-life teens who go to Catholic colleges won't come out that way.

The Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA compared results of a survey administered to college freshmen in 1997 with a survey given to these same students as graduating seniors in 2001.

The results? Students attending Catholic colleges are more likely to increase in support for legalized abortion and same-sex marriages than students attending private four-year colleges. See for yourself:

* After four years at a Catholic college, student support for abortion increased from 46.3 percent to 60.1 percent, a sharper increase than among students at private colleges (51 percent to 62.2 percent).

* With regards to same-sex marriage, Catholic student support jumped from 57.3 percent to 73.5 percent (80.4 percent among women). Students at private schools saw less of an increase, from 55.7 percent to 67.3 percent.

* Catholic college students increasingly agreed with the following statement after four years at school: "If two people really like each other, it's all right for them to have sex even if they've known each other for only a very short time." Agreement rose from 32.8 percent to 54.3 percent (68.6 percent among men), compared to only 51.8 at four-year colleges (62.5 percent of men).

* The number of students professing to be Roman Catholics at a Catholic college dropped from 73.4 percent to 68.8 percent. At the same time, students professing no religion rose from 6 percent to 10.9 percent.

What's happening here? Parents used to worry that Catholic colleges would be no better for their children than regular four-year colleges. Now it seems that some Catholic schools might actually be worse!

Certainly this isn't the case at all Catholic schools. Places like Thomas Aquinas, Ave Maria, Christendom, Steubenville, and the University of Dallas all maintain a strong Catholic identity, and parents would have little to fear if their child attended these schools.

But this is only a handful of smaller schools in a much larger field of colleges and universities across the nation. The fact that a majority of them can't be trusted to deliver a quality Catholic education is unsettling.

To tell you the truth, it really bothers me. My own daughter Hannah will start her college search in a couple of years, and it looks like her options for a good Catholic school are shrinking. There's plenty of room for diversity, but how much diversity can there really be if a majority of the schools can't be trusted?

First, there was the problem with professors at Catholic colleges not seeking a mandatum from their bishops saying that their teaching would be in line with Church doctrine. The deadline for acquiring the mandatum has come and gone, and still many professors have refused to comply.

Then more recently, we learned that some Catholic colleges were providing links to Planned Parenthood from their Web sites. Most of the links have been taken down now but only as a result of media attention and pressure from outraged Catholics.

Many people argued that these approaches were pluralistic and allowed for a freer range of thought on college campuses, but it seems to have had only a negative effect on the minds of the students. These are undoubtedly some of their most formative years, and the reality that they might not be safe in a Catholic institution -- even less safe than at a secular four-year college -- is outrageous.

Unfortunately, there's no surefire way to tell if the school your child is attending is up to par or not. Sometimes the school's reputation precedes itself, but sometimes that's not enough. The school might have a very strong president, but if the professors aren't in line, then the administration will make little difference. Having strong professors is a better sign of health, but even then, a "progressively-minded" administration could end up stifling their good intentions.

The best way to protect your children is to arm them with a solid foundation in Catholic morality and theology BEFORE they go to college. You simply cannot assume that the "Catholic" college they're heading off to will form them in the faith. More often than not, they won't.

College is often the first real test of a young person's values and integrity. Sadly, we can no longer be confident that Catholic colleges will help him pass that test.

Talk to you soon,

Deal


TOPICS: Activism; Catholic
KEYWORDS: catholiccollege; catholiclist; college; university
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1 posted on 02/04/2003 2:25:28 PM PST by Polycarp
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To: .45MAN; AKA Elena; al_c; american colleen; Angelus Errare; Antoninus; aposiopetic; Aquinasfan; ...
pinging
2 posted on 02/04/2003 2:25:48 PM PST by Polycarp
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To: Polycarp
Some friends of ours sent their oldest to Fairfield in CT. They now tell everyone they know NOT to send their kids to Catholic colleges unless they want them to lose their faith. Their son refuses to even go to Mass with them anymore. I have another friend who attended St. Bonaventure (ironically at the same time as the couple mentioned above) She took a major in Theology, but in the process totally lost her Catholic Faith, and that was 30 years ago!!

This has been going on for quite a while. We didn't even consider Catholic colleges when our older two went. The oldest attended UMass-Amherst because he got a 4 yr. scholarship. The other attends Carnegie Mellon because he considered it the best place for his major, which is Computer Science.

We have 2 more coming up. Our daughter has expressed interest in Ave Maria; we became Founders last year. Our youngest son will need an engineering program. Unfortunately, I don't think any of the good Catholic Schools have one; they seem to be mostly Liberal Arts.

3 posted on 02/04/2003 2:44:12 PM PST by SuziQ
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To: Polycarp
Very important for any parent helping teens choose colleges.
Our oldest will be attending a private secular college; we are considering Steubenville for our second, but we have also heard good things about St.Joseph College in Maine.Any comments?
4 posted on 02/04/2003 2:53:08 PM PST by Dusty Rose
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To: Polycarp
Isn't there a rating system somewhere for Catholic Colleges? It doesn't concentrate solely on the academics but also delves into the spiritual environment. Am I just imagining here or not?
5 posted on 02/04/2003 3:04:41 PM PST by Salvation (+With God all things are possible.+)
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To: SuziQ
I think the University of Portland in Oregon has an excellent engineering program. Also fantastic science program. One of my daughter graduated from there.
6 posted on 02/04/2003 3:06:00 PM PST by Salvation (+With God all things are possible.+)
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To: SuziQ
Congratulations on some very talented kids. A boy at my son's high school applied early decision to Amherst and he was turned down! Had a perfect 1600, sports, high gpa, and extracurrilculars. Tough school. V's wife.
7 posted on 02/04/2003 3:20:03 PM PST by ventana
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To: Polycarp
Short answer: NO!

Here is a message I received in an email group that offers some pretty good advice about keeping your kids Catholic:




I always recommend that Catholics NOT attend Catholic colleges or
universities, with a few exceptions based on the school itself (i.e.
Christendom or Thomas Aquinas) or based on a particularly strong
department (i.e. Philosophy at Fordham...whereas theology at Fordham
would by and large be a waste of time, money and a soul.) Most
Catholic schools are notoriously anti-Catholic. People accused
Jewish comedians in the 50's and 60's of being self-hating Jews.
Well, Catholic academics, clergy and religious of the 60's, 70's,
80's, 90's and 2000's are self-hating Catholics. No doubt. There
is nothing worse than going to a Catholic school expecting to find
the Truth, and doing nothing but losing the Faith.

Instead I direct kids to go to a massive state school in a place
where there is a Traditional Chapel or Parish nearby. I recommend
state schools because:

1. Everyone knows the big state schools. It does make it easier
when it comes time to find a job. Who has the better network, Ohio
State or Whatsamatta U.?

2. Big state schools have EVERYTHING any person could really want to
study (except orthodox Catholic theology). And, just about
everything at a big state school is done well, whether its English
or Physics, Latin or Farsi. Big state schools have EVERYTHING.

3. State schools are more affordable than private schools.

4. Every state has at least one big university center and a network
of smaller state colleges and community or ag/tech colleges.
Basically, state schools are everywhere.

Let me pause to make an example: Let's say your daughter decides to
go to University of Arizona in Tucson. U of A is a reputable state
school (unlike my beloved ASU....Wooooo GO Sun Devils...PARTY!!!).
(By the way, there is no licit Mass near ASU. If you want your
daughter to go to Life Teen Masses, then you have found Mecca here.)

ANYWAY... There is an Indult Mass every Sunday evening in Tucson.
So let's say your daughter goes to U of A for whatever...
...let's say archaeology. And on sundays she and a group of friends
hop in a car and head to the Indult Mass. Troubles are over. She
gets a good education and she goes to a Traditional Mass. But since
you're in Idaho, Tucson is a little far. How about sending her to
college in Denver? Bishop Chaput is one of the best we have in
America (the world?) right now.

My sister wanted to go to one of these little private liberal arts
schools like I made the mistake of going to. Worthless. Less than
worthless. With the exception of the Lacrosse and Fooball teams,
and my fraternity house, you could not pay me enough money to go to
school at Hobart again. Millions of dollars? No thanks, I'd prefer
to have my soul intact. I talked her into going to University of
Wisconin at Madison, one of the biggest state schools of all time.
She LOVES it. My sister is about as opposite of me as can be. She
was always very quiet and had very few friends...in fact no friends
as far as I can remember. She just hung out in her room and read
books and studied. Now my sister has made more friends in the first
semester than she's had her whole life. She's even active in clubs
and he school newspapers. A former hater of sports, she even goes
to the football games. (Of course, at Wisconsin, isn't attendance
at football games mandatory?) All this from a hermit. Crazy.

Anyway, Catholic kids can really blossom at a big state school.
Just find one that has a Traditional Chapel nearby. You've raised
her right. She'll know what to do.


8 posted on 02/04/2003 6:42:33 PM PST by Maximilian
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To: Polycarp
This is outrageous. What’s it’s the point of having Catholic colleges if these are the results? They’re shooting us in the foot (and heart and head for that matter).

It appears that on so many levels, our Church has been infiltrated by those who which to destroy it.
9 posted on 02/04/2003 7:10:09 PM PST by Barnacle (Navigating the treacherous waters of a liberal culture)
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To: SuziQ
Some friends of ours sent their oldest to Fairfield in CT. They now tell everyone they know NOT to send their kids to Catholic colleges unless they want them to lose their faith.

Absolutely true. True story from Boston College:

When I arrived there in 1989, one of the first people I met was a very nice young lady from Florida. She was a Theology major and we were in some of the same classes so we became somewhat friendly. As the years went by, I lost track of her. I happened to see her toward the end of our senior year, and we had a little chat. I found out that she was now a "practicing" pagan (worshing Venus, I think) and an out-and-about lesbian.

I always wondered what exactly they taught her in her theology classes....
10 posted on 02/04/2003 7:43:51 PM PST by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: Polycarp
This article made me do a little digging. Planned Parenthood apparently sponsored a Marquette University professor of moral theological ethics' April 9, 2002 talk at the U of Wash. Sickening, really.

Here are a few blurbs for follow-up and/or discussion:

Dan Maguire, professor of moral theological ethics at Marquette University, will discuss the views of major religions on family planning at 7:30 p.m. April 9, 2002, at University of Washington's Kane Hall, Room 220. The talk, which is free, is sponsored by Planned Parenthood of Western Washington, among others.

Other Planned Parenthood news: Ultra pro-abort Marquette University professor of (so called) moral theology Daniel Maguire was the featured speaker at the 2002 Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) national convention prayer breakfast. Maguire has been traveling the Planned Parenthood and college campus circuit, promoting his book, "Sacred Choices: The Right to Contraception and Abortion in Ten World Religions." Maguire, a former priest, left the priesthood to marry in 1971 only to abandon his wife for another woman 20 years later.
http://www.prolifewisconsin.org/072202.htm

This article:
http://www.crisismagazine.com/november2001/endnotes.htm
profiles the subject of two professors and Ex Corde Ecclesiae (1990).

Maguire is still at MU. I wish I knew that when the Dean came looking for donations!

11 posted on 02/04/2003 7:50:27 PM PST by Kryptonite
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To: Salvation
Isn't there a rating system somewhere for Catholic Colleges? It doesn't concentrate solely on the academics but also delves into the spiritual environment. Am I just imagining here or not?

If there's not, there should be. Isn't there some enterprising Catholic journalists (or a collusion of several) willing to tackle this issue?? It's fairly important, I'd say.
12 posted on 02/04/2003 7:58:36 PM PST by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: Polycarp
When I was eighteen I decided on engineering school because I said to myself, "no one's going to tell me that 2 + 2 = 5." The decision doesn't look so bad in retrospect, although the best choice would have been Christendom, Steubenville, Aquinas or Dallas.
13 posted on 02/05/2003 4:22:15 AM PST by Aquinasfan
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To: ventana
A boy at my son's high school applied early decision to Amherst and he was turned down!

A blessing in disguise.

14 posted on 02/05/2003 4:24:38 AM PST by Aquinasfan
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To: Maximilian
2. Big state schools have EVERYTHING any person could really want to study

Like "elevator surfing" and "funneling"? Puh-leez! State colleges are just as bad (or worse) as Catholic colleges. Frankly, most college educations are worse than nothing. I'm pinning my hopes for the disintegration of academia on the on-line University of Phoenix's of the world.

15 posted on 02/05/2003 4:30:54 AM PST by Aquinasfan
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To: Aquinasfan
Well, I am pursuing an on-line Religious Education Master's degree. You cannot believe what I am up against both from my professor, the textbook and my fellow students. We are doing a spiritual "self analysis" assesment using a color-grading system and Gail Sheehy's stages of spiritual development, and Fowler's. Ugh. Anyway in an online debate, one guy says thank goodness we live when we live regarding children's spiritual development because we are now dealing with the bad ol days of Pre-Vatican II. I asked him to explain how children't spiritual development was impacted by Pre-Vatican II and he neatly side-stepped the question by ranting on about Pre-Vat II being all about "clericalism" and the mistreatment of woman. I pointed out that by any measure, Pre-Vat II did not enjoy the wholesale loss of faith, loss of religious orders (clericalism, I guess in his view) divorce, sexual alienation between the sexes (which he disputed) and general all around crappy condition of the world today. He said pre-Vat II clericalism is the reason for the sex scandals today, I agree with Weigel that we are experiencing every bit as much clericalism today as ever before; the secreting away of predatory pederasts by the powers that be is sheer clericalism. Anyway, this on-line thing will take a while too, because the INFECTION IS EVERYWHERE!!! V's wife.
16 posted on 02/05/2003 5:08:45 AM PST by ventana (( I am really freaked-out by how bad it is))
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To: Aquinasfan
although the best choice would have been Christendom, Steubenville, Aquinas or Dallas

Dallas initiated a purge of the conservative Catholic faculty that gave them their reputation. They were always a minority anyway, sort of like the Ignatius Institute people at San Francisco. Janet Smith, to take one example, is gone.

The other 3 are probably the best of the bunch, but none of them are traditional Catholic. The president of Steubenville claims that 75% of the students have been born again in the charismatic experience. I have personally talked with people at the university who are appalled at some of the charismatic activities such as Saturday evening psuedo Masses involving breaking of bread in the dorm rooms.

Christendom does not have a Latin Mass within an hour's drive. And the bishop just came to visit them and told them to stop kneeling for communion. Intellectually they seem to be pretty solid.

But overall, if one wanted to go to a college or university which was traditionally Catholic and presented the faith as it has been believed for 2000 years until Vatican II, I believe that there are exactly zero options.

17 posted on 02/05/2003 8:10:44 AM PST by Maximilian
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To: Aquinasfan
Like "elevator surfing" and "funneling"? Puh-leez! State colleges are just as bad (or worse) as Catholic colleges.

Of course they are, but at least you recognize them for what they are. They do not masquerade as "Catholic."

Frankly, most college educations are worse than nothing.

Absolutely correct. But one does need to make a living in this world. State schools are the quickest, easiest, cheapest, and least dangerous way to get a degree.

I'm pinning my hopes for the disintegration of academia on the on-line University of Phoenix's of the world.

Those of us with children of college age have to do something in the meantime. For example, my daughter did the summer program at Christendom, but she thinks it's crazy to spend 4 years and $75,000 studying Plato when you can read those books on your own. She wants to be a nurse, and she can get an RN in 2 years, for practically no money, while living at home, and attending the Latin Mass every Sunday. Sounds like a better deal all around.

18 posted on 02/05/2003 8:17:07 AM PST by Maximilian
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To: Polycarp
Sent my oldest to St. Norbert's in Green Bay.

I now refer to the place as "St. Norbert's Methodist Bar and Grill." Good at getting them in and out in the 4-year window, good at helping them find jobs.

Bad, REALLY bad, at simply reading the text in the Roman Missal for Mass and in moral theology. REALLY bad at running dormitories.

First and best sign is ALWAYS: can they read the Missal "as written?" If not, your kid is in trouble.
19 posted on 02/05/2003 9:25:04 AM PST by ninenot
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To: Maximilian
But one does need to make a living in this world. State schools are the quickest, easiest, cheapest, and least dangerous way to get a degree.

But that's the rub. Why is a BA necessary to be successful in business? The question-begging rationale I usually get is: "you can't get a job without one." Why are we obsessed with formal schooling, especially those of us who have been there?

Those of us with children of college age have to do something in the meantime. For example, my daughter did the summer program at Christendom, but she thinks it's crazy to spend 4 years and $75,000 studying Plato when you can read those books on your own. She wants to be a nurse, and she can get an RN in 2 years, for practically no money, while living at home, and attending the Latin Mass every Sunday. Sounds like a better deal all around.

Bingo! Her plan makes a lot of sense to me too.

20 posted on 02/05/2003 10:49:54 AM PST by Aquinasfan
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