Weekly Video Picks

How Green Was My Valley (1941)

This Oscar-winning adaptation of the novel is the chronicle of a Welsh coal-mining family in the early 20th century as remembered by its youngest son (Roddy McDowall). Huw Morgan's father (Donald Crisp) and five older brothers work in the mines. However, Huw is considered smart enough to aim higher, gaining admittance to a school that sends its best students to university. Hard times bring lower wages and an attempt at unionization. A strike divides the family, pitting the oldest sons against the father and Huw who decides to remain in the mines rather than enter the middle class. Director John Ford ( Stagecoach) masterfully evokes the rituals of the Morgans' working-class life — the scrubbing off of coal dust after work, the weekly collection of wages, the family meals and the constant singing.

George Wallace (1997)

The Democratic governor of Alabama defiantly standing in the doorway of the state university to block the admission of the first black students in 1963 is part of the American memory. In this Emmy-winning cable TV mini-series, Wallace (Gary Sinise) is first seen as a promising liberal politician who is defeated in his initial race for governor because he publicly attacks the Ku Klux Klan. Vowing never to make that mistake again, he abandons his conscience and becomes a hard-core segregationist. Director John Frankenheimer ( The Manchurian Candidate) dramatizes his change of heart in later years as the governor begs forgiveness from the black community he once opposed.

— John Prizer

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito says of discerning one’s college choice, ‘There has to be something that tugs at you and makes you want to investigate it further. And then the personal encounter comes in the form of a visit or a chat with a student or alumnus who communicates with the same enthusiasm or energy about the place. And then that love of a place can be a seed which germinates in your own heart through prayer.’

Choose a College With a Discerning Mind and Heart

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito, assistant professor of theology at the University of Dallas (UD) and subprior (and former vocations director) of the Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of Dallas, drew from his experience as both a student and now monastic religious to help those discerning understand the parallels between religious and college discernment.