Assumption College: An Atheist’s Nightmare
June 13, 2013 in Alive Campus
I’m sure you’re wondering why an atheist is going to a Catholic college, anyway. And I’ll tell you why. Growing up in the inner-city, my parents would rather have died than wave goodbye to me every morning as I drove away on a public school bus. When I was young and religious, this didn’t matter to me, but by the time I was in sixth grade, I began to question these teachings and I realized that I didn’t believe in this strange God-creature that made us out of nothing and yet was somehow always there without a creator of his own. I had gone to the same school from first until sixth grade, and because it went through to grade eight, I never thought of transferring into a public school which might actually foster my skepticism. I did not want to go to a Catholic high school, but my mother was not supportive of me and I ended up going from Sacred Heart School to Trinity Catholic High School, and from there, confused about the college process and unaware of what I wanted, I ended up at Assumption College, the holy grail of Catholic assholery.
Of course I’m used to seeing dying, emaciated Jesus judging me from his T-shaped guilt-device on every wall, so the little things don’t bug me too much. But being forced to take two theology classes in a college setting is highly disturbing, especially when I’m barely going to make it through in four years with all of the classes I need to take, anyway.
There’s a chapel on campus, which doesn’t worry me to any extent other than than the vague notion that I might burst into flames upon entering it (which didn’t happen, as I’m sure you can tell). But I steer clear of it, even though we get emails every week reminding us that, surprise, surprise, there is mass that weekend and anyone can attend. How nice. Assumption College, as a whole, not individually (the opinions of the faculty are quite different from the overall message of this establishment) reminds me of that self-important Christian who offers to pray for the atheist to find God. We even prayed before a game of Bingo, once. Hey, why would God care about the prayers of the homeless when He can respond to those of middle-class white kids?
I’ll get into the nitty-gritty of what going to a Catholic school is like. For a girl like me, with intensely heavy periods which are accompanied by mind-blowing pain, the only solace is the Depo Provera shot, which literally stops menstruation. Birth control pills, for me personally, causes me to have my period twice a month– extremely counterproductive. The Depo shot, which actually works, needs to be given to me by a professional. Unfortunately, my school refuses to provide me with this service (who knows what kind of debauchery I could fall into unless I go through my monthly womanly unclean-time), so I must go to a clinic off-campus, by taxi. This clinic is in dire need of some funding, because the spiders have taken over, and for someone with arachnophobia (AKA me) this place causes some extreme anxiety.
The school also refuses to give out things like free condoms in a strange, stereotypically Catholic attempt to rule the lives of legal adults. We have a yearly sex-talk panel, where some faculty members (including someone from campus ministry… what?) answer the students’ questions. Women are not allowed to sleep over guys’ rooms, and vice versa– a solid piece of heteronormative bullshit. The president tried to use his influence to get the school to vote a certain way by sending out an email tot he whole campus.
It’s an all-around uncomfortable place. The only things getting me through are great friends, great professors, and knowing that I’m already halfway through.