2009 Catholic Identity College Guide

See how Catholic universities answer 10 questions about their Catholic identity.
by Register Staff Writer | Source: NCRegister.com

The National Catholic Register and Faith & Family college guide is made possible through the cooperation of bishops, college presidents, our benefactors, and our advertisers. This year, 28 schools agreed to take our survey.


The Schools

1. Aquinas College

4210 Harding Road

Nashville, TN 37205

(615) 297-7545


Enrollment: 826


2. Ave Maria University

5050 Ave Maria Blvd.

Ave Maria, FL 34142

(877) AVE-UNIV (283-8648)


Enrollment: 672


3. The Augustine Institute

P.O. Box 1126

3001 South Federal Blvd.

Denver, CO 80236

(303) 937-4420


Enrollment: 30 full-time; 60 part-time


School’s comments:

Mass: “We strongly encourage all our students to frequent the sacraments and to adore Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament oratory. Although we do not have a full-time chaplain on our own campus, we connect our students with local parishes for daily Mass and local priests and religious for confession and spiritual direction.”

Health: “We do not provide student health services. But if we did, we certainly would exclude all referrals to abortion clinics.”

4. Belmont Abbey College

100 Belmont-Mount Holly Road

Belmont, NC 28012

(888) 222-0110


Enrollment: 900


5. Benedictine College

1020 North Second St.

Atchison, KS 66002

(913) 367-5340


Enrollment: 1,330


School’s comments:

Dorms: “We have a single-sex housing philosophy that intentionally promotes a theology of the body based on Christian anthropology. One hall has both men and women in it, but they are separated by floor with a sophisticated security system that prevents intermingling between floors past visitation hours.” (There are 10 dorms total.) 

6. The Catholic Distance University

120 East Colonial Highway

Hamilton, VA 20158-9012

(888) 254-4238, ext. 700


Enrollment: 1,200


School’s comments:

Mandatum & Oath: “As an online university, our faculty are predominantly adjunct. However, every member of our faculty and staff is approved by the president who is the bishop of the Diocese of Arlington. Since our theology faculty are primarily adjunct, the mandatum is taken in the diocese of their full-time employment.”

Campus: “CDU is an online university."

7. The Catholic University of America

620 Michigan Ave., NE

Washington, DC 20064

(202) 319-5000


Enrollment: 6,440


School’s comments:

Mandatum: “Catholic theologians (and philosophers and canonists) are members of an ecclesiastical faculty and must receive a ‘canonical mission’ from the local bishop/chancellor that obliges them to ‘teach in the name of the Church’ — it is different from the mandatum. They must receive a nihil obstat from the U.S. bishops on the board and from the Holy See before they can be tenured.”

Oath: “The Catholic faculty recite the profession of faith in the presence of and along with the local bishop/chancellor and president at the opening Mass of each academic year. Catholic faculty have not been required to take the oath of fidelity because of the canonical mission / nihil obstat binding the ecclesiastical faculties.”

Dorms: “We have both single-sex residence halls as well as residence halls with floors segregated by gender. New residence halls are under construction.”

8. Christendom College

134 Christendom Drive

Front Royal, VA 22630

(800) 877-5456


Enrollment: 385


9. The College of Saint Thomas More

3020 Lubbock Ave.

Fort Worth, TX 76109

(817) 923-8459


Enrollment: 50


10. DeSales University

2755 Station Ave.

Center Valley, PA 18034

(877) 4DESALES


Enrollment: 2,300

(1,450 undergraduates)


11. Franciscan University of Steubenville

1235 University Blvd.

Steubenville, OH 43952

(800) 783-6220


Enrollment: 2,435


12. Holy Apostles College and Seminary

33 Prospect Hill Road

Cromwell, CT 06416-2005

(860) 632-3010


Enrollment: 285


13. Institute for the Psychological Sciences

2001 Jefferson Davis Highway,

Suite 511

Arlington, VA 22202

(703) 416-1441


Enrollment: 60


14. John Paul the Great Catholic University

10174 Old Grove Road,

Suite 200

San Diego, CA 92131

(858) 653-6740


Enrollment: 100


Mass: “JP Catholic is tied closely to our local parish, which offers two daily Masses. We offer one campus Mass weekly and confession twice per week on campus. The parish also offers weekly confession and our chaplain is available at all times for spiritual direction. Beginning in [the 2008 school year], we will have a priest student and then we will have Mass daily.”

15. Magdalen College

511 Kearsarge Mountain Road

Warner, NH 03278

(603) 456-2656


Enrollment: 75


16. Mount St. Mary’s University

16300 Old Emmitsburg Road

Emmitsburg, MD 21727

(800) 448-4347


Enrollment: approx. 1,600


School’s comments:

Dorms: “Women are on one floor, men are on another floor.”

17. Our Lady of Corpus Christi

1200 Lantana St.

Corpus Christi, TX 78407

(361) 289-9095


Enrollment: 12


School’s comments:

Mandatum: “The local bishop does not require a mandatum; if he did, we would require it.”

Dorms: “At this time we have only one dorm, so men and women are separated by floor. As we grow and build new dorms, we will not have co-ed dorms.”

18. Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Academy

P.O. Box 249

18 Karol Wojtyla Square

Barry’s Bay, Ontario

K0J 1B0 Canada

(877) 369-6520


Enrollment: 60 full-time, 20 part-time


School’s comments:

Mandatum: “Both our new bishop and OLSWA would like the school to have the mandatum and are working to put this in place.”

19. St. Gregory’s University

1900 W. MacArthur St.

Shawnee, OK 74804-2499



Enrollment: 700


School’s comments:

Oath: “The local bishop has conferred the mandatum through an interview with proposed faculty members, conducted either by the bishop personally or by his appointed vicar general.”

20. Saint Vincent College

300 Fraser Purchase Road

Latrobe, PA 15650

(724) 532-6600


Enrollment: 1,800


School’s comments:

President: “The president is prepared to take the oath of fidelity at any time; however, this was not requested by the local bishop, who did preside at the inauguration.”

Oath: “Our theology professors who teach in the seminary take the oath of fidelity, but those theology professors who teach only in the college are not required to take the oath, as stipulated by canon law.”

Dorms: “Students are segregated by floor or wing requiring card access, and we strictly enforce all visitation policies.”

21. Southern Catholic College

330 Southern Catholic Drive

Dawsonville, GA 30534

(866) 722-2003


Enrollment: 168


22. Thomas Aquinas College

10,000 North Ojai Road

Santa Paula, CA 93060

(805) 525-4417


Enrollment: 360


School’s comments:

Mandatum: “Since our archdiocese grants the mandatum only to those with a terminal degree in theology, we do publicly require it of such faculty members.”

23. The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts

6 Manchester St.

Merrimack, NH 03054

(603) 880-8308


Enrollment: 96


24. University of Dallas

1845 East Northgate Drive

Irving, TX 75062

(972) 721-5203


Enrollment: 2,985


School’s comments:

President: “The president is prepared to do so at the bishop’s request.”

Mandatum: “All possess it now. The mandatum is a personal, not an institutional requirement.”

Oath: “Canon law calls for a profession of faith, not the oath of fidelity.”

25. University of Sacramento

1531 I St., 2nd Floor

Sacramento, CA 95814

(916) 443-4760


Enrollment: about 97 (graduate only)


26. University of St. Thomas

3800 Montrose Blvd.

Houston, TX 77006

(713) 525-3500


Enrollment: 3,350


School’s Comments:

Dorms: The university maintains living areas for undergraduate students. These include dormitory/residence rooms, co-ops, and apartments. “Only one dorm, but men and women are separated by floors and by wings.”

27. Walsh University

2020 East Maple St. N.W.

North Canton, OH 44720

(800) 362-9846


Enrollment: 2,705


School’s Comments:

Dorms: “All dorms have single-sex wings and/or floors. Some residence halls are four-person apartments that are single-sex, as well.”

28. Wyoming Catholic College

163 Leedy Drive

P.O. Box 750

Lander, WY 82520

(307) 332-2930


Enrollment: 67 (35 returning sophomores and 32 incoming freshman)


How to Participate in the Guide

To be added to our list of Catholic colleges and universities, a school must answer the survey questionnaire. N/A (not applicable) answers must be explained. If so desired, No answers may also be explained. (See the guide for examples of explanations.) Send answers to:

Robyn Lee

Register College Survey

432 Washington Ave

North Haven, CT 06473

RLee at NCRegister.com

Fax: 203 230 3838

The Survey


Questionnaire Sources

The Catholic Identity College Survey offers objective questions about a university’s Catholic identity. We designed the survey so that a “YES”answer reflects essential elements of the renewal of Catholic identity called for by Pope John Paul II’s 1990 apostolic constitution on higher education, Ex Corde Ecclesiae (Out of the Heart of the Church), its 2000 Application to the United States, canon law, and other Church documents.

The Institution

President: Canon 833: The president of a Catholic university is personally bound to make a profession of faith, according to the formula approved by the Apostolic See, in the presence of the chancellor or diocesan bishop or a delegate at the beginning of the term of office. The Profession of Faith and the Oath of Fidelity, Acta Apostolicae Sedis 1989: The obligation of a special oath of fidelity has been extended to presidents of Catholic universities.

Board: U.S. Application: “To the extent possible, the majority of the board of trustees should be Catholics committed to the Church.”

Faculty: U.S. Application: “The university should strive to recruit and appoint Catholics as professors so that, to the extent possible, those committed to the witness of the faith will constitute a majority of the faculty.”

The Mandatum: Canon 812: It is necessary that Catholic theologians have a mandatum from the diocesan bishop.

Pope John Paul II (to American bishops, 2004): “By their very nature, Catholic colleges and universities are called to offer an institutional witness of fidelity to Christ and to his word as it comes to us from the Church, a public witness expressed in the canonical requirement of the mandatum.

U.S. Application: “Catholic students have a right to receive from a university instruction in authentic Catholic doctrine and practice, especially from theologians.”

Mandatum text: “I hereby declare my role and responsibility as a teacher of a theological discipline within the full communion of the Church. As a teacher of a theological discipline, therefore, I am committed to teach authentic Catholic doctrine and to refrain from putting forth as Catholic teaching anything contrary to the Church’s magisterium.”

U.S. Application: “If a particular professor lacks a mandatum and continues to teach a theological discipline, the university must determine what further action may be taken in accordance with its own mission and statutes.”

Oath: Canon 833: Catholic theologians are personally bound to make a profession of faith, according to the formula approved by the Apostolic See, in the presence of the university president if he is a priest, or the diocesan bishop or a delegate, at the beginning of their term of office.

The Profession of Faith and the Oath of Fidelity, Acta Apostolicae Sedis 1989: The obligation of a special oath of fidelity has been extended to Catholic theology professors.

Campus Culture

Daily Mass: U.S. Application: “Catholic students have a right to be provided with opportunities to practice the faith through participation in Mass, the sacraments, religious devotions, and other authentic forms of Catholic spirituality.”The university “shall make provision for effective campus ministry programs, including the celebration of the sacraments, especially the Eucharist and penance, other liturgical celebrations, and opportunities for prayer and spiritual reflection.”

Speakers: The U.S. Bishops’ 2004 Catholics in Political Life: “Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors, or platforms that would suggest support for their actions.”

Clubs: U.S. Application: “It is important for Catholic universities to implement in practical terms their commitment to the essential elements of Catholic identity, including activities of officially recognized student and faculty organizations and associations.”

Dorms: U.S. Application: “It is important for Catholic universities to implement in practical terms their commitment to the essential elements of Catholic identity, including the commitment to create a campus culture and environment that is expressive and supportive of a Catholic way of life.”

Health: U.S. Application: “It is important for Catholic universities to implement in practical terms their commitment to the essential elements of Catholic identity, including the commitment to provide health care in conformity with the Church’s ethical and religious teaching and directives.”

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