Campus Watch

Compliant Conferences


Jan. 11 — While the Diocese of Steubenville, Ohio — which includes Franciscan University of Steubenville — was one of 20 dioceses that failed to comply with some rules of the U.S. bishops’ child-abuse prevention guidelines, the university itself was declared in compliance.

Last year the university asked whether its youth conferences were subject to diocesan child-protection regulations. The events draw 6,000 teens to the school every summer.

The diocese found them in compliance. It is policy that high-school students who stay in the dormitories are required to keep their doors open at all times and all sending dioceses must have background checks and child-safety education programs for their chaperones.

Anti-Catholic Proposal?


Jan. 10 — Teams from Catholic schools won eight of the 14 fall sports state high school championships in Kentucky this year.

Now some want to “level the playing field” by banning students who receive financial aid — most of whom attend Catholic schools — from playing sports.

Proposal 13, currently before the Kentucky High School Athletic Association board, would deny eligibility for state competition for anyone receiving state aid. The proposal would ultimately have to be approved by the Kentucky Board of Education before becoming rule.

“The proposal,” said a Catholic Conference of Kentucky news release, “seeks to punish students whose taxpaying parents chose to send them to a faith-based school and need some financial assistance to do so.”

Anti-Catholic ‘Art’?

U.S. NEWSWIRE, Jan. 7 — “Holier Than Thou” is the title of a sculpture at Washburn University in Topeka, Kan., that has spawned a lawsuit filed Jan. 7 by the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based Thomas More Law Center.

The sculpture is of a Catholic bishop “with a grotesque facial expression wearing a phallus on his head that is shaped like a bishop's miter,” according to U.S. Newswire.

Despite calls from Catholic leaders around the country as well as a letter from Archbishop James Keleher of Kansas City, Kan., the university has refused to remove the sculpture.

Theology on Campus

KNIGHT-RIDDER, Jan. 6 — Theology on Tap has apparently taken the campus of Columbus State University in Columbus, Ga., by storm.

The secular college in the sparsely Catholic-populated South — but where more and more Catholics are emerging — presents the program through its Neumann Society Catholic group on campus.

Recent topics included “Why Is a Priest Needed for Confession?” and “There's Something About Mary.” Baptists, atheists and Catholics all attend the talks.

A senior at the university started the program after realizing the myths about Catholicism that abounded on campus, the news service reported, such as the thought that Catholics are not Christians and that they worship Mary.

Satellite School


Jan. 1 — Chicago-based St. Xavier University opened a new campus in south suburban Orland Park on Jan. 5.

The $8.3 million, 31,000-square-foot building replaces the 17,500-square-foot satellite campus in nearby Tinley Park.

Currently about 600 students will be located at the new site. By next January, the paper reported, the university is considering bringing its nursing program to the new facility, which holds approximately 1,250 students.