Catholic Education in America historically has been rooted in the study of the Catholic faith and that faith was an integral part of one’s experience at the University level. However, recently there has been a trend to expeditiously remove any signs of Catholicism from many of these campuses.
For example, how can a Catholic University remain loyal to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church and allow openly homosexual persons to remain on their staff? How can a Catholic University allow the teaching of abortion? How can a truly Catholic University allow its professors to continually date students, some half their age? How can a Catholic University allow a staff member to serve openly as a surrogate Mother?
To answer these questions, one must look at what Catholic Education has become. In most Catholic Universities, the primary goals are: making money, creating new programs, and increasing enrollment. All fine and this needs to be done, but the primary focus should be on Catholicism; its tenets, its beliefs, its practices, and the opportunity for the students to receive the Sacraments. Catholicism itself has taken a back seat to the secularization of the once Catholic University.
Moreover, let’s consider a Franciscan University. One, I will not mention by name but I believe has become a CINO University (Catholic In Name Only), which describes itself in its Mission and Ministry statement as having
“Franciscan Values as a Community of Learning, a Community of Reverence, a Community of Service”
It has to be noted that there is nothing uniquely Catholic about this statement. Many secular Universities offer the same values, although they would certainly not call themselves Franciscan. Furthermore, a Catholic University that offers outreach programs to the poor and homeless is very noble, but Secular Universities also do this.
So What does make a University Catholic more than one in name only? Here are a few points to consider: Does the College offer daily Mass? Is the “Mandatum” adhered to by the Theology Professors? Any Catholic institution that minimizes or subverts Ex corde Ecclesiae, written by Pope John Paul II and has the force of Canon Law, has serious problems with its Catholic identity.
Click this link for more information from The Cardinal Newman Society on this topic:
Lastly, there are about 28 distinctly Catholic Colleges and Universities in America. The Newman Guide is a free publication and lists them all. They all have great programs, extracurricular activities, and segregated housing. Mainly they offer what Catholic young people need; growth in their faith!
God Bless You!