The following comes from a May 31 story in the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat.
Mike Truesdell, president of Santa Rosa’s Cardinal Newman High School, announced he will resign his post at the end of this month after nine years at the Catholic institution marked by recession, a quick transition of the formerly all-boys school to a co-ed format and a recent clash with Santa Rosa’s bishop over a controversial morality clause the bishop proposed for the diocese’s teachers.
He is set to take over as president of a Jesuit high school in Ohio in the coming school year.
Truesdell, 60, told Cardinal Newman board members, faculty and staff of the decision Friday at the annual staff barbecue. The school year ended Sunday with graduation.
“There’s been a lot of good work done at Newman and there’s an opportunity to do some good work elsewhere,” Truesdell said in an interview late Friday.
Truesdell’s departure, however, follows a rocky several months for Cardinal Newman and other Catholic schools under the control of Bishop Robert Vasa, who, since taking office in early 2011, has sought to exert his strict interpretation of church doctrine on a diocese that historically has had a more tolerant approach.
In February, Vasa proposed a contract amendment for all 200 Santa Rosa Catholic Diocese teachers under his control — including Cardinal Newman instructors — that would have required them to affirm that “modern errors” such as contraception, abortion, gay marriage and euthanasia are “matters that gravely offend human dignity.”
….One Cardinal Newman teacher said Vasa’s approach diverged sharply from Truesdell’s.
“I think Mike feels the bishop has a different vision for the school and that his efforts were not appreciated by the bishop,” said Jeff Scharfen, who teaches English at Cardinal Newman. “That’s my impression.”
“I think he wants to go where his energy and efforts are appreciated,” Scharfen said of Truesdell.
Truesdell downplayed any suggestion he had clashed with Vasa and said the morality clause had not driven him to look for a new job.
“That was not a motivation for me at all,” he said.
He would not say whether he agreed with Vasa’s approach, but did defend the school’s Catholic identity, which he called “very strong.”
A search commmittee has been formed to find Truesdell’s replacement. But Vasa, who could not be reached Friday, retains final say over who is hired….
To read original story, click here.
If Truesdell in fact opposes the new policy of doctrinal orthodoxy, why then good riddance. But some principals don’t like folks looking over their shoulder for whatever reason. Maybe it’s just as personality conflict. Anybody up in Santa Rosa know the real cause?
I wonder just where he is expected to be in Ohio? Shouldn’t the prospective school be forwarned, as in forearmed? He sounds like a menace, but not unusual or even beyond the ordinary…just the commonplace, garden variety oh-s0-predictable modernist living for the humdrum, the mediocre, the ‘we-know-more-than-God’ school of thought. I think he’d find the NYC diocese a much better fit, don’t you?
Yes, Parents whose children attend the OHIO Jesuit School have the right to know that Truesdale does not support a mortality clause for those who teach their children.
The reasonably steady enrollment at Newman is illusory, since their rush to become co-ed was simply a way of absorbing Ursuline students and essentially merging the two schools. Declining Catholic school enrollment in general will eventually send Newman down the same path unless serious changes are made. Let’s hope Bp. Vasa makes a wise choice for a replacement.
Huh! Makes you wonder.
In Marin County, San Domenico’s Head of School was abuptly dismissed in December after making remarks “inconsistent with the values” of the school, founded by the Dominican Nuns.
Archbishop Riordan High School, also in the Diocese of San Francisco, terminated its principal (the brother of Bishop Thomas Daly) last summer, with no explanation at all.
Since there are “Dominican Nones” and there are “Dominican Nuns”, please explain further your comment: “founded by the Dominican Nuns”!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
Kenneth, my post was quoting from the website of the school itself, when it explained the termination of the Head of School.
The Dominican Sisters FOUNDED San Domenico School, but, truth be told, I have no idea just how Catholic is really is nowadays…
For something as important as the leader of a Catholic seminary, university, or high school, perhaps the local Bishop should always be involved in the selection process!
This would prevent the school from making a stupid choice that leads, later, inevitably, to terminations, departures, scandals, etc., that do the school and the Catholic Faith no good at all.
At the very least, the Bishop should have the final say on who gets to lead such important Catholic schools!!!
As has been said by others – Faithful Catholics adhere to: Holy Scripture, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition, Code of Canon Law, and GIRM (General Instruction of the Roman Missal) for the Ordinary Form of the Mass.
God Bless Bishop Vasa, for requiring adherence to Church teaching, rather than allowing Diocese employees to do their own thing. We should all support him and encourage other Bishops to do the same.
If Truesdale supports: “….. contraception, abortion, gay marriage and (or) euthanasia then he is a heretic and schismatic – and should not be teaching in any Catholic School.
Parents study the CCC as requested by Pope Francis, to accurately know the Faith. Then teach your children accordingly.
The primary job of teaching children belongs to the Parents.
You can not trust all schools because they merely advertise themselves as ‘Catholic”. They are only as good as their teachers.
To the book people: Faithful Catholics follow Jesus. Why some people continue to fixate on the word “adhere” is odd. This means “glue”, or “duck tape”. I guess they envision the faithful as duck taped to the official books mentioned in the book people blogs. It seems to present the image of the adhering people walking around with these various books duck taped or glued to their clothing or head, ears, arms, legs, backs … books and documents stuck to various parts of them as they walk around. The ancient Jews were told to adhere the Ten Commandments to themselves … but they still screwed up. It would be better to actually follow Jesus instead of tape some book to one’s forehead.
If he’s at odds with Bishop Vasa he’s at odds with the Church. It’s not surprising that he’s heading to a Jesuit high school.
There will be more and more to come in cleaning up the Santa Rosa Diocese.
Folks on the wrong side of Church doctrine have had their say for so long they set themselves up as little kingdoms. The only kingdom that really matters is the Kingdom of God; for that he has given us Holy Mother Church and the Bishops. Thank you Lord, Thank you for serving the Faith, Bishop Vasa!
Most all of the post-Vatican II Catholic schools are a total Catholic moral and religious fraud– and a waste of money, for Catholic parents! There is a far worse problem, in that falsely teaching Catholic students to be immoral, corrupt, and poor with their religious Faith– also creates a terribly immoral Nation, with corrupt citizens, who reject God!! Such a country cannot last long!! Like ancient Rome, its days are numbered!! This is the sad truth, and very few people realize it!!
post- VII schools
He will fit right in at a Jesuit school. Most of today’s Jesuits do not follow Church teachings.
Try aggressively fighting contraception in Catholic high schools, where 90% of American Catholic parents already use it, is not simply wasteful but insensitive and hurtful. many Catholic families can’t afford unlimited numbers of children in their homes. This isn’t Mexico, where many families have 8-12 children, and struggle to support them with basic necessities, much less college educations. The laity have already voted with their feet and their wallets; let’s move on to better issues, like the rights of the unborn. Were it not for the growing domestic Hispanic population in the US, the Catholic Church’s attendance numbers would be in free fall.
NFP (Natural Family Planning) has been scientifically improved for those who are financially or emotionally strapped.
NFP is permitted by the Church.
good cause you still have not read the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition”.
There is no good reason for contraception which is intrinsically evil.
CCC: ” 2399 The regulation of births represents one of the aspects of responsible fatherhood and motherhood. Legitimate intentions on the part of the spouses do not justify recourse to morally unacceptable means (for example, direct sterilization or contraception). ”
CCC: ” 2370 Periodic continence, that is, the methods of birth regulation based on self-observation and the use of infertile periods, is in conformity with the objective criteria of morality.
These methods respect the bodies of the spouses, encourage tenderness between them, and favor the education of an authentic freedom.
In contrast, “every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible” is intrinsically evil.
Thus the innate language that expresses the total reciprocal self-giving of husband and wife is overlaid, through contraception, by an objectively contradictory language, namely, that of not giving oneself totally to the other. This leads not only to a positive refusal to be open to life but also to a falsification of the inner truth of conjugal love, which is called upon to give itself in personal totality. . . . The difference, both anthropological and moral, between contraception and recourse to the rhythm of the cycle . . . involves in the final analysis two irreconcilable concepts of the human person and of human sexuality. “
The CCC is good for the legalist mind but the Bible is good for the spiritual and religous mind.
Bishop Vasa, in the diocese he served in before he came here, was one of the first Bishops to cut ties with a “so-called” Catholic hospital. Others are converted when they see how seriously a Bishop takes his faith in not allowing the Catholic name to be sullied by the practices of heathens. The Catholics in the pew take notice and the ones not in the pew begin to wonder if they have strayed too far. Standing on the teachings of the Church cannot be wrong.
And Skai: If you hadn’t noticed the CCC is ripe with footnotes and references to the precise biblical support for the teachings there in, but also includes encyclicals and what is foundational to our Faith: Tradition! Remember the Bible came from the RCC.
good cause, you have no knowledge how many Catholic parents use contraception. You would believe any wind that blew your way.
Bishops have the authority for EVERYTHING “CATHOLIC” within their own Diocese.
At the very least, Bishops can refuse any school/university/hospital/organization the right to advertise itself as “Catholic” with cause.
If the organization continues to fraudulently call itself Catholic, the Bishop can make if very public and even excommunicate those responsible.
A few Examples in the USA –
1) Bishop Olmstead prohibited a hospital from calling itself “Catholic” for violating Church teachings. (It no longer calls itself Catholic).
2) Bishop Finn continued the prohibition against the “National Catholic REPORTER” from calling itself “Catholic”. (The heretical and schismatic “Reporter” continues to fraudulently call itself Catholic, but the Bishop has publically made it known that the ‘Reporter’ is not Catholic and he is retaining the right to excommunicate those responsible – per his statement.: “The Bishop’s Role in Fostering the Mission of the Catholic Media” Key.
3) In 1996 Bishop Bruskewitz issued a public and automatic decree of excommunication for those in his Diocese who belonged to:
Call to Action; Planned Parenthood; Catholics for a Free Choice; Hemlock Society (now renamed C0mpassion and Choices); Freemasonry. (Note: Call to Action appealed to the Vatican but in 2006 the Congregation for Bishops upheld the Bishop’s action.) These excommunications have not been lifted in that Diocese by the current Bishop.
Always report serious abuses to the appropriate Diocese Bishop.
(If it becomes necessary, report them to the US Papal Nuncio and the Vatican.)
You have this obligation and right under Code of Canon Law 212 #3.
Provide appropriate documentation and also include quoting the Church teaching being violated from the CCC, Code of Canon Law, or GIRM (General Instruction of the Roman Missal).
The CCC, Code of Canon Law, and GIRM can be found on the Vatican web site.
PETE, it might seem heroic that these bishops cut the ties to some formerly Catholic organizations, but just imagine how you might regard them had they actually converted these groups into Catholics. That is what the great saints do.
Even Bishop Vasa’s public statement to require a morality clause in two years, is getting rid of the ‘weeds’ in his Diocese.
God bless Bishop Vasa of the Diocese of Santa Rosa.
Publically support him.
My son will be a freshman at CN in the fall. CN motto is “prepared for college, prepared for life”. I am sending my son there because it is a Catholic school, but I imagine that many if not most parents are more interested in the sports and academics rather than the religious education. The school seems to be run as a business that offers parents a good service and a quality product. Nothing wrong with that, because it cost $15,000 a year to attend. The Catholic faith is present in masses, religion classes, volunteer work and campus ministry. Luckily they have a faithful priest and a sister on staff to present the true faith.
lisag, it is the Parents’ prime responsibility to teach children the Faith.
When he is old enough and literate enough (abt age 16 or 17) have him read the CCC in entirety.
He could end up knowing as much as or more than some teachers. And certainly will be able to challenge them and catch their errors if necessary.
Such helpful info, everyone! Thank you!!