California Catholic Daily reporter, Mary Rose, visits a California college each week and asks students about God, good, and evil. Interviews with Francine and Trinity, high school students, outside the Bookstore and with Miranda, who is studying education, near the General Education building at Contra Costa College in San Pablo, north of Berkeley, on March 9, 2020.
Francine and Trinity
Do you consider yourself religious?
Francine: Yes. Since it’s been part of my daily life, I just grew up with it and then I never really discriminated against it because people around me also accept it. It’s just like a normal thing for me and everyone else around me.
Trinity: Yes. Right. Same for me. It’s basically just a part of what I do every day and my morals.
Do you practice a particular religion?
Francine: For me it’s Christianity.
Trinity: I’m Catholic.
The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is always wrong. What do you think about it?
Trinity: I wouldn’t have an abortion, but, for other people, I feel like it’s really based on who they are. They can really just do what they want, it’s their body.
Francine: For me, I think it’s wrong, but I also think since it is our body, then it should be something we decide but of course with guidance from others. For religion, they don’t really talk about that in my religion or I haven’t gotten to that point yet.
The baby’s body is even more involved in an abortion than the mother’s – should the baby get a choice?
Trinity: I feel like it’s just hard to say. It’s the kid, but you can’t really get their opinion on it. So it’s according to the mom’s life and how they’re doing, it’s kind of just their choice at that point.
Francine: And then I guess it’s also with their education, like how much they know about what they’re doing, a choice if they want to go that way or this way and if they understand both ways.
Can a mother kill her newborn since we can’t get the baby’s opinion and the mother’s life is so greatly affected by the baby?
Trinity: She couldn’t kill it, there’s a lot more other options, too, like, finding another parent, putting it up for adoption.
A pregnant woman also has other options, like adoption.
Trinity: That’s true.
Francine: Yeah. I don’t know.
What about the traditional Christian teachings on marriage being between one man and one woman?
Francine: I guess that’s a strong thing for my religion. For me, I would respect those people as persons but I just wouldn’t respect as much the way they live. But I would still respect them, and I just wouldn’t be involved myself.
Trinity: I feel like it depends also on the church, too. Because the church that I go to, the priest isn’t really against same sex marriage and stuff like that. It’s really just like, if they are Catholic, if they just devote themselves to other parts of the religion, they won’t really just judge them based off of their orientations.
Do you consider yourself religious?
MIranda: Not really. When I was younger, yeah. I was going to church every Sunday, doing my schooling like I was supposed to. Then as I grew older, I kinda grew apart from church because we moved and there wasn’t a local church, so I grew out of it. My mom had separated from my dad and so it was this whole thing that she couldn’t take us there anymore. She had to work all the time. Sundays were her only days off, so we stayed at home to be with her. So that’s kind of why we grew away from it. I believe that there is a God and that He watches over us and that one day we’ll all go where he is.
If someone asked you why you believe in God, what would you say?
Miranda: I believe in God because we all have to go somewhere one day. And to think that we’re going to meet the Father Who made us all together, I believe in that. And there is Someone looking out for us in this world even if It’s Someone you can’t see. So it’s like, just because you can’t see Him, it doesn’t mean He’s not there.
If someone asked you who Jesus is, what would you say?
Miranda: The Son of God. That’s kind of all I would say.
How do you decide if something is right or wrong?
Miranda: What I think is right is something that’s not going to have consequence from it. Knowing that, if I do this, it’s the right thing at the right time, no one’s going to get hurt from it. But doing wrong is when, knowing that someone that you love or someone who’s not even someone that you love but someone you care about is going to get hurt from it, that’s something that’s wrong. Knowing that someone was hurt because of it or that there was damage done from it, that would be a wrong consequence. And if you get a bad feeling from it, that’s also a feeling of you’re doing something wrong.
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