Sunday, September 4, 2011
Not Yet Out....
Suffice it to say that Lutheran congregations are not alone in their shyness. Many Baptist and other congregations have chosen names that either ignore or mask their confessional identity. You might think that these would be useful shorthand descriptions of who they are, what they believe, etc. Apparently not.
I stumbled across a piece which indicates that Lutherans are not the only ones to be embarrassed about or who choose to make their identity hard to find. It turns out that a study found that more than 60% of the [Roman] Catholic colleges did not use the qualifier “Catholic” on their home pages. Using the term Catholic on the home page is certainly a clear and expeditious way of communicating this; most would expect that if a college is Catholic, then the Catholic identity would be front and center, so to speak.
In this study seven markers were used to identify a college. These included the word "Catholic" on the home page, a description of their affiliation with a sponsoring "Catholic" identity, academic or mission statement, social services, human resources information for employment, "Catholic" worship, and "Catholic" heritage. It turns out that only a few of them passed and the great majority did not fully identify themselves as Roman Catholic institutions. Now you might think that in the competition for students, a Roman Catholic institution might strongly show its identity since there are so many Roman Catholics. Hmmmm..... could it be that this is a more universal problem?