Monday, May 6, 2013

Dear CINO College Alma Mater...

Dear CINO College Alma Mater,

I know that I'm taking a risk by posting a picture from my graduation day one year ago on my instagram. I know that there are some of you that are aware that I keep this blog. I know that you know that I have never mentioned the school nor any of the staff by name so (therefore) you cannot legally do anything to me. I will keep it this way but I will say a few things.

I hope that, a year after I crossed that stage and received that diploma (case), some of my professors didn't go back to "teaching" what was taught prior to and during my two years as an undergrad. You all know that, as a "Catholic" school, students apply because they're looking for the Truth. We are wanting to learn about what our Lord Jesus Christ taught during his ministry here on earth. We are wanting to get closer to Him. We do not apply and begin classes to hear how you think the Catholic Church is wrong. We do not want to hear that YOU think that Church teachings are outdated, how liberation theology is the proper way to interpret the Bible (which, by the way, at least two professors admitted that y'all were not allowed to teach but still did), how the priesthood is horrible (even the lone priest I had as a professor told his class how poorly y'all treated him because he was a man of the cloth), how the Pope is a "super rat in red shoes" (as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was called by a particular professor), nor do we want to "learn" things that cause more damage to the Church. Actually, I learnt more about other religions than I did about my own. Yeaaaah....

I am sure that some things were toned down while I was in certain classes because they were all well aware that I was the "traddie" student. Everyone in the department knew. Some professors made me feel like I was a backwards thinking brat, a thorn in their sides. Some verbally expressed (though not bluntly) and others made me cry. In class. Many a tears were shed and many a panic attacks were endured during those two years. Still, I (in my own "rebellious" way) found ways of resisting the nearly daily assaults on the Faith. I wore my white chapel veil (mantilla) to the Red Mass. I was seen leaving the chapel before or in-between classes. You guys didn't like that but it was my way of rebelling. I hope that if there is another student who feels the same way as I did about what it being "taught", you won't make her feel as wretched as you made me feel.

CINO College alma mater, please explain something to me. Why did some of the professor try so hard to condemn Priests, Religious Sisters who wear habits, the Pope (don't know what you all say about Pope Francis since I am of the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI era), many Church teachings, great men of the Church (such as St. Thomas Aquinas), and those of us who you would consider "traditional" because we follow what the Church believes regarding marriage, abortion (against it), contraceptives, etc? Why are referrals to have abortions given at the health clinic (and, yes, the Cardinal Newman Society has already outed you on the fact)? Why did two of my friends leave due to anxiety and depression (and one mental breakdown) for refusing to go along with what you taught about the Faith? Why were things like the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Marriage looked at as pointless? Why was there no reverence for the Eucharist when there was Eucharistic Adoration (to which I was often the only student present)? Why did one professor teach that Santeria was basically Catholicism with some culture stuff sprinkled in? Why do you teach about tolerance and love when you couldn't even show that to us who were orthodox Catholics?

I will admit that I once wanted to go into teaching and hoped to return, just to show future students that not all of us dragged the Church and clergy through the mud. But, no. I'm not going to do. God has slowly shown me that, while I do love school and being in an academic setting, my gifts are better used as a Speech Therapist. I will never, however, give up the fight against schools like yours; schools which confuse young minds and drag them further away from Church. There are many young people who are considering attending these kinds of schools but I am going to let them know what the experience is for a practicing Catholic. Again, I won't talk trash about you -- how childish and uncharitable would that be? -- but I will tell them the truth.

The only things I learned while at your institution were how to protect myself, my mind, and my soul... and what is taught on the "other side" of arguments so I can properly defend the faith. For that, I thank you. Do I wish I did not feel behind my friends in terms of what I knew about the Faith because none of it was taught at your school? Yes. Do I wish things had ended up differently? Yes. Would I try to dissuade other orthodox Catholics from attending the school? Oh yes. But would I trade it all for two schools at another school? No.

Though I cried, hyperventilated, and lost sleep throughout the two years I attended the school, I was given a confidence that I did not know I had... and I was brought closer to God because I saw what was being taught and how hurtful some things must have been to Him. Not because it's going to physically hurt Him but because He sees how much damage some people are doing to their souls at this school. I'm going to pray for every student that is in the same shoes I was in. I am going to pray that those who can be easily swayed will keep away from your entrance and will go elsewhere. I will pray that those who are up for the fight are more successful than I was. I will pray that one day proper Church teachings will be taught. I will not stop praying for current and future students (as well as the staff) until things change.

I want you to know that, a year after I said "goodbye" to you, I am doing well. Sure, I'm about 15-20 lbs lighter than you last saw me because of a stomach illness that I am still trying to shake off but I am happy. God has helped me get my life back on track. I am learning about the most important thing in my life (my Faith and my love of God). As Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati used to so, "Verso l'alto" (to the top); I'm going onward and upwards.

I hope that this open letter hasn't offended you too much. It was not my intention to get you all upset but it was my intention to open your eyes and make you realize that some of us do realize what's going on and we do not like it. Think about the future of your students, about their souls and your own. Please do the right thing.

I have not much else to say except "thank you" for the "education" I received and the opportunity given to me to complete my B.A. Please do not expect me at any reunions or to give any donations until liberation theology and books like this are no longer taught and assigned. Nothing against some of the lovelier staff but I cannot, in good conscience, support a school that tries to destroy the Church that I love so much.


P.S. Stop sending me fundraising tickets. They're going to keep meeting the waste bin until I feel I can begin supporting y'all.


Anonymous said...

Your story is an inspiration. You showed great courage and fortitude i only hope I could be equally brave in such circumstances. You took a courageous stand against wishy washy teachings that are responsible for the much of the malaise and dysfunction in our church. You made a stand for a 2000 year old truth and suffered at the hands of those who are supposed to uphold and educate the teachings of that same truth. 
As Winston Churchill said " The truth is incontrovertible . Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it but in the end. There it is".
God bless you Emmy and keep up the the good work. 
David . Ireland

Dan S. said...

A few years ago I met a freshman girl from a local Catholic university. What book was she studying in her introductory theology class? The Catechism? Vatican II? The Summa? Nope. “Mujerista Theology.” I skimmed the book. If I remember correctly, the author didn’t mention Jesus anywhere in the first few chapters. Although I thought this Mujerista stuff was pretty much a waste of time, I wasn’t particularly offended that it was being taught. What did bother me, though, was that this young girl was being indoctrinated by her professors from the get-go instead of first being formed in the basic structures of her faith. After building a solid foundation, students can wrestle with complicated or controversial questions of theology.

I don’t mind if Catholic professors are “liberal” in their approach to teaching the faith, as long as the students are exposed to the “orthodox” position and are respected. Your professor who referred to Pope Benedict as a "super rat in red shoes" is likely a very disturbed, angry, hurt person. That individual’s ideology in the classroom is a minor concern compared to the underlying problem of their abusive attitude. And it seems that many of your other professors suffered from a severe lack of professionalism and maturity. I don’t want to dismiss your orthodoxy concerns, but I really want to emphasize that these individuals conducted themselves in an abusive manner. If it were a conservative school and they made a non-Catholic cry or feel harassed, it would be similarly offensive.

I’ve learned the hard way that, just because an organization or individual calls themselves “Catholic,” it doesn’t mean they won’t be abusive or manipulative. I pray that I can forgive those members of the Church who have hurt me and those who I have hurt.

Some of my most frustrating experiences, in and out of the Church, have been the opportunities for the most growth and learning for me. I hope this happens for you in your “CINO” college experience.