I spent my teenage life studying in Catholic Schools. When I was in high school, I went to Immaculate Heart of Mary Academy, the leading Catholic school in my hometown, Pinamalayan. And in college, I’m currently studying in De La Salle University, which is also a Catholic school. That’s why I really know the feeling when students studying in this kind of institution share their good and bad experiences. And most of these are things only experienced by Catholic students, which we call in millennials term, Problems Only Catholic Students Understand.
This blog post doesn’t mean that I hate studying in these schools or such. It’s just that this is how we, millennials, call the list. In fact, I enjoyed my college and high school days. My best memories in life happened in IHMA and DLSU and no doubt that these places are the foundation of my knowledge. There may be rules that are only for Catholic students but I must say that these are part of the memories and knowledge I have now. Attending in Catholic school is a unique experience and this list will prove you that.
1. Conservative! In my high school, we are not allowed to have boyfriend or girlfriend. But men, I’m sorry if I accidentally fall in love to a guy and he felt the same way. When my teachers discovered, the Discipline Office called us twice with our parents and they want us separated. Thankfully, we had our parents’ consent which enables us to continue our relationship until now.
2. Second, conservative! But this time, their conservatism is with regards to our dress code. We usually have this all-white uniform that falls bellow the knee and our hair accessories should be the same color as our uniform. In DLSU, although we do not have uniform, campus attire should be decent and modest. Some extremes are not acceptable.
3. In usual Catholic schools like my high school, dress codes also applies to the civilian clothes that we wear during garden and classrooms cleaning, additional classes, school activities like intramurals and academy days and so on, and not to mention, prom dresses! Before the night of the formal party, attires were checked.
4. Speaking of prom, you have to leave a room for the holy spirit when you dance with your partner. Always remember to stay at least one Bible length away. And yes, there are no sweet music played during the night. In my high school, you are not allowed to choose your partner for your first dance. Your luck is the one who will decide.
5. Theology and Religion classes are fun. But as students, we have to admit that additional subjects make our workload heavier. We have to be familiar with the Bible and with God. We have to know the story of St. John Baptist De La Salle. However, additional subjects means additional knowledge so yeah, I don’t consider this a problem that much.
6. We attend mass twice or thrice a week and sometimes, twice a day. Aside from Sunday masses, students in my high school also have to attend a mass which we call sacrifice mass. This starts at six in the morning before our flag ceremony. We also have dawn procession that usually starts at four in the morning. Yes, we have to force ourselves to be morning persons.
7. Right after sacrifice mass, we line up for the flag ceremony. Well, all schools have flag ceremony every morning, right? But we have longer flag ceremonies because we have long prayers. We offer our prayers to a lot of saints. Longest flag ceremonies are during October because we pray the rosary. Yep! We have to stay under the sun that long.
8. We do not just have long prayers but have a lot of prayers – one in the morning, one at noon, one at three in afternoon and one every class period. Don’t get me wrong. I do not have any problems with that because Catholic student or not, I’ll pray. It’s just so funny to see my classmates who were caught by the rain and who were called by nature but needed to stop because of the prayers.
9. There are times that we are required to give whenever there is voluntary contribution. How ironic is that! While I do not have any problems with donating, I know my classmates do have because not all of us have the money. I’m aware that this is for a good cause and they will be offering this to those who truly need it, but do they think that they’re getting it to those who also need it?
10. We all know that the Catholic Church makes their stand to issues that are against the teachings of God like RH-Bill and same-sex marriage. As part of the Catholic community, we fight with them even though some students have their own stands. Recently, young St. Scholastica students who took part in Marcos rally were in the news. Do you really think these students weren’t forced?