Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A Comment on the St. Louis Catholic Blog Story Below

I have plenty of stories that could show the frailty and vunerability of that school. Not only that, but the Legionares of Christ is an evil, evil operation that is not following with the Catholic Church. It disturbed me, even as a child, at how much they basically 'worshipped' this priest "Father Marcial". They even had a special day (which could be likened to a holy day) for this "founder" of the Legionares. It makes my stomach churn when I remember all the things that they did to my family and I, persecuting us and driving us out because my parents refused to join some association that basically made them give more money to the school. Oh, and may I point out that their problems with the high school started at least six years ago. When I was in seventh grade, they had a meeting for the parents where they basically begged all the parents to stay at Gateway Academy and not send their children to other high schools. The school is a cult. It's depressing that such a thing has to happen. There are so many psychological scars that my brother and I have from being treated so terribly at that school. We still struggle with them even today.

1 comment:

GA_Alum said...

I know this post is very old, but I stumbled across it and felt compelled to drop my two cents in.

Gateway is a school that was founded by six wonderful businessmen, who had a vision of founding a truly Catholic school; not just one that claims to be Catholic by teaching watered down morality courses and offering Mass once a month, but one that truly instills the value of the Catholic Church in every student who enrolls.
Gateway's problems arose when they became associated with the Legion. I really do think that if they had never went to the Legion, and instead become an Archdiocesan school or gone to another order, GAHS would still be operating this year. So, no, I'm not some crazy Legion lover, and don't tell me I am because I'll tell you your full of shit.

That being said, I have to defend Gateway in some aspects. When I enrolled as a freshman, I had come from a parochial grade school, and even though I had been in religion classes for nine years, I realized how little I knew about my faith. My peers knew so much and had such an appreciation and respect for their faith that I really admired. Beyond just religious education, I received a GREAT education all around. I hated how hard my courses were while I was in high school, but now, at a private liberal-arts college (to which I received a full academic scholarship), I realize that my high school education prepared me so well for college work. Example: My Spanish II textbook for college was the same one as my Spanish II book at GA. My teachers were amazing. I feel like I learned SO much in high school its just mind-blowing, and I know it sounds phony, cliche, and what have you, but I swear, Gateway gave me the best education I could ask for.
I feel like I was really formed as a person at Gateway. I was really shy and nerdy in grade school. Being at Gateway, in a class with 10 other students, I was forced to come out of my shell. I have gone from being a total follower to being a leader, and I think that my experience at Gateway really helped with that.
As far as the connection between the Legion and Gateway, I really feel that students could be as involved with the Legion as they wanted to be. I personally was never forced to be a part of any apostolate or club sponsored by the Legion.
We had Spiritual Direction offered whenever we wanted, and that entailed walking around campus or finding a place to just sit and talk to one of the Consecrated women for thirty minutes or so about whatever you really wanted to talk about. They would ask if you wanted to talk about your faith or if you had any religious questions, but if you said no they didn't pester you and try to delve into your spiritual life at all. Spiritual Direction was also in no way required. I went maybe three times in four years.
In fact, the only required religious activities were weekly Mass (regular Catholic mass), and attending daily religion classes (taught verbatim from a widely published textbook, by a lay teacher). There were plenty of opportunities for Spiritual growth/formation/warping (depends on your view) outside of the classroom, but never were students required to actively follow the legion and become involved with its apostolates.
I realize I wrote quite a bit, and I apologize for any grammatical/spelling mistakes. To sum it up, I feel that I grew so much in high school. I became confident, outgoing, lighthearted, well educated, and most of all, I developed a deeper understanding of my faith. I am heading the formation of a Catholic Student Union at my Methodist college, and I go to Mass every Sunday. I don't say that to brag in any way, but I feel like, through leading by example, the faculty and staff at Gateway helped me to see how rewarding a strong spiritual life can be. I LOVED my years at Gateway, and I am deeply saddened to think that my High School- my second home for four years, is no longer in existence.