California Catholic Daily reporter, Mary Rose, visits a California college each week and asks students about God, good, and evil. Interviews with Fernanda, who is studying business, outside Runner Cafe and with Naomi, who is studying biology, in Runner Park at CSU Bakersfield on February 10, 2020.


Do you consider yourself religious?

Fernanda: To a certain point, yeah. I believe in it, but I don’t usually go to church a lot because I don’t have time because I have a full time job. I do believe in it and I do follow the concept, but at home, I don’t really go to church. I go when I don’t work.

If someone asked why you believe in God, what would you say?

Fernanda: I would tell him that the reason why I believe in God is because that’s how I was raised, so it was like a household thing. 

Do you think there’s evidence for the existence of God?

Fernanda: I think it’s mainly just what people say that goes on. I think it’s just someone that we have faith in and hope that is there to give us faith.

Do you think God exists or is it just a concept in our minds?

Fernanda: At first I thought there was Somebody, but now I think it’s just something that we think is there. 

If someone asked you who Jesus is, what would you say?

Fernanda: If somebody asked me who Jesus was, I would say he’s somebody that we have faith in and that we think is there so he can give us hope.

Is your religion a Christian religion?

Fernanda: Catholic. 


Do you consider yourself religious?

Naomi: Religious? I don’t know if it’s religious. I believe in God, I guess that’s spiritual. I feel like ‘religious’ is different. My beliefs govern like certain decisions that I make. Like I won’t make some because I feel that I believe in God. 

If someone asked you why you believe in God, what would you say?

Naomi: Just from personal experience. I grew up in church and it’s just been a part of me for as long as I’ve known.

If someone asked you who Jesus is, what would you say?

Naomi: God’s Son. I don’t know, the Savior.

Do you believe in an afterlife? 

Naomi: Yeah, I do. Follow Jesus and live your life accordingly. 

Do you follow the Bible?

Naomi: Not really. Not as much as I should, but I would say in some aspects of my life, yes. In others, maybe not.

So if you need to follow Jesus to get to heaven and you’re not…?

Naomi: Yeah, I don’t know. I understand that there’s supposed to be a heaven or hell, but just taking religious studies classes, it would kind of suck if Jesus was just like, ‘you didn’t do everything exactly how I wanted you to, so you’re just going to hell, sorry.’ I would hate that my religion would be that way, you know? So I don’t really look at it as, ‘okay, I don’t follow it, so I’m automatically going to hell.’ It’s more like, ‘seriously, is it that bad?’ I don’t know. That’s just what I think.

How do you decide what’s too bad?

Naomi: Killing somebody is too bad. That is like, whoa. But I also feel like people could be forgiven, so maybe nothing is too bad.

Do you think abortion is wrong?

Naomi: I think morally it’s wrong, but I also feel that people are given a choice. 

Is murder a choice, too?

Naomi: It’s wrong, still, but people can be forgiven.

If someone asked you what they had to do to go to heaven, what would you say?

Naomi: I guess they would have to read the Bible to see what it’s supposed to be like, how you’re supposed to go through your life. It kind of governs the way that you’re supposed to live. So I would tell them that they would have to follow the Bible, but then also – I don’t necessarily promote church, so I wouldn’t want to tell him to go to church – but to build a relationship with God through prayer and talking to Him.

If you enjoyed this story, consider making a donation to support Mary Rose and the Inquiring Minds column, so that we can continue to provide this insight into the religious beliefs of California college students. You can do so by visiting our Donation Page.