Registration - How NOT to Marry a Jerk or Jerkette


 How to Avoid Marrying a Jerk or Jerkette

A Love Thinks seminar by Nathan Sather...

Definition of a Jerk: Someone who is persistently resistant to change

Saturday, February 10

9 am - 3 pm

Please arrive at 8:30 to receive materials for this event.

St. Paul's Newman Center Student Lounge

Cost: Free! Lunch and workbook provided

Must register to attend... 


Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, Strangers in a Strange Land (Henry Holt, 2017)

“Simply put, America can’t be the way it once was.” (Original italic.) This is not so much a lament as it is a reality check: Catholics upset with the culture can work to change it, but they cannot expect a return to more placid times. That is one of the most defining conclusions in this intellectually rich volume.

Archbishop Chaput has a great command of theology, history, sociology, and political science—his range is wide and deep—making him the right person to analyze current conditions and make cogent prescriptions for change. His love for the Church shines through over and over again, which is why this is a book that Catholics of every leaning can embrace.

What’s wrong with America is as obvious as it is distressing. The social order is in disarray on many fronts. Young people are spiritually lost, having no moral anchor to guide them. Pornography is commonplace; its destructive elements are wreacking havoc in relationships. Cohabitation and divorce are also creating problems for men, women, and children, fraying bonds that are integral to our well being. But there are some good signs.

We’ve made progress on abortion—especially among youth. “They’ve seen what abortion does. They’ve lived with the fact that they could have been aborted. The humanity of the unborn child is obvious on any ultrasound machine.” Where we’ve gone backwards, and nowhere is this more apparent than with young people, is with gay marriage and gender ideology.

June 2015 was a watershed moment in American history. That is when the U.S. Supreme Court, in Obergefell v. Hodges, imposed gay marriage on the states.

For Chaput, the effects were far reaching: “It changed the meaning of the family by wiping away the need for the natural relationships—husband and wife, mother and father—at the heart of these institutions.” Just as ominous, “the state implicitly claims the authority to define what is and isn’t properly human.” Indeed, he calls this ruling “poisonous,” precisely because it weakens marriage and the family, the two most important bedrocks of a free society.

Gender ideology is an offshoot of this phenomenon, blurring the lines between the sexes. Nature is the enemy: cultural elites teach that whatever exists is a social construction, having nothing to do with nature, or nature’s God. This represents “a revolt against biology itself—and it’s not without its own peculiar form of bullying.”

We have reached the state where those who do not accept gay marriage and gender ideology are condemned as bigots. Tolerance does not extend to those who believe in traditional marriage, or to those who see the sexes as binary, as either a man or a woman. Worse, when there is a showdown between gay rights and religious liberty, the latter is trashed, even though it is cited in the First Amendment (the Constitution says nothing about two men marrying).

These changes all took place in a nation dominated by Christians. Chaput notes that Catholics and Protestants have long shared the same basic faith and worldview, but success has spoiled us.

“Over time,” he writes, “we Catholics have succeeded very well—evidently too well.” Thus did we miss the opportunity to claim a “Catholic moment” in the culture. As a consequence, our “appetite for comfort and security has replaced conviction,” making it more difficult to bring about a much needed cultural renewal.

Our affluence is a function of our democratic and capitalist society, and while there is much to celebrate, it also has the effect of weakening the authority that resides in civil society. Parents, teachers, the clergy, and civic leaders have seen their moral muscles atrophy in the wake of the ever-increasing role of government. Now we take our cues from public opinion and market forces. The results are not sanguine.

We’ve been compromised. Truth is under attack, and the pernicious notion that all moral values are equal has triumphed. So we speak about “abortion rights” without ever saying exactly what the term means. The fluidity of our moral vocabulary allows us to skirt reality, bringing us to the point where “sucking the brains out of unborn children, or trading in their body parts, is not so appalling.”

Chaput does not sugarcoat our condition, but he is not without hope. “The gift of hope creates in us a desire for heaven and eternal life as our happiness,” he says. But to many Americans, despair and presumption have eclipsed hope. They are a reflection of our secular pursuit of progress, and our conviction that we need no external moral authority. This makes us more likely to follow the Machiavellian politics of a Saul Alinsky than to accept the challenges of the Beatitudes.

So where does this leave us? Citing an early Christian author who observed a similar condition, “They [Christians] live in their own countries, but only as aliens.” To understand Chaput’s point, consider that the subtitle to this book is Living the Catholic Faith in a Post-Christian World. That is our challenge: how do we as Catholics navigate the secularization of America, and the moral crisis it has spurred?

Contrary to what some commentators have said about Strangers in a Strange Land, Chaput is not asking us to throw in the towel; he asks that we consider how the early Christians handled their challenge. He says that “they didn’t abandon or retire from the world. They didn’t build fortress enclaves. They didn’t manufacture their own culture or invent their own language. They took elements from the surrounding society and ‘baptized’ them with a new spirit and a new way of living.”

In other words, for us to change society, we must first attend to our own spiritual health. What does it mean to be a Catholic? Recapturing our lost identity is not simply a good thing to do—it is the foundation of our ability to help renew the culture. There is much work to do: the baby boomers have failed to “pass along our faith in a compelling way to the generation now taking our place.”

Chaput outlines three challenges to the Catholic community: individualism, institutionalism, and clericalism.

“Christianity invented the idea of the individual.” (Chaput’s emphasis.) Yes, by stressing the unique God-given qualities that inhere in every individual, and by recognizing that we are all equal in the eyes of God, possessing the same human dignity, Catholic teachings transformed the traditional group identities of tribe, clan, kinship, and social statuses. Unfortunately, a modest interpretation of individualism has given way to an extremist one.

Radical individualism is not something to cheer about. The idea that we don’t need God—we are self-sufficient—is vacuous, failing to satisfy our base needs. “I’m spiritual, but not religious,” is a popular refrain, but it is a dodge. Indeed, the idea that we are on automatic pilot needing no external moral authority is absurd.

There is a Catholic tendency to see the Church as some huge institution that is self-propelling, needing little input from the faithful. This is the meaning of institutionalism, the fatuous notion that we do not have to participate in the life of the Church in order to remain Catholic. But what kind of Catholic is it that passes the buck, as well as the basket?

Clericalism is an unhealthy situation where the laity settle into a second-class condition, leaving to priests all responsibilities for governance. This cannot be corrected, however, by merely extending more rights to men and women in the pews—they must be willing to assume concomitant responsibilities. Many do not.

St. Augustine instructed us not to entertain the notion that a just and perfect social order is possible: we are all sinners, making perfectibility an illusion. But that doesn’t mean we do not have the power to transform society. Indeed, Chaput argues that “we can’t simply withdraw from public affairs.” So what should we do?

“The surest way to transform a culture is from the inside out.” What Chaput has in mind is “colonizing and reshaping the culture’s appetites and behaviors.” This begins at the micro level: he is not talking about some grand social engineering agenda, he is talking about you and me. “To recover the Church’s identity,” he contends, “we first need to recall our own.” That way we can “bring the Gospel to all those we encounter.” We are all called to do so.

This will not be easy. Chaput does not mince words: “The world hates the story Christians tell. It no longer believes in sin. It doesn’t understand the forgiveness of sinners.”

When I read those words, I immediately thought of Richard Dawkins, arguably the most famous atheist intellectual in the world. The English author says that sin is “one of the nastiest aspects of Christianity.” Of course, to admit to sin is to admit to God, and he will have none of it. And as Chaput informs, “If we don’t believe in the devil, sooner or later we won’t believe in God.”

Words such as sin and evil are no longer part of our vocabulary, though the experience of 9/11 helped to resurrect them for a while. In our therapeutic society of grief counselors and consoling dogs, human tragedy has nothing to do with sin: we can be reclaimed by talk, if not by yoga.

Despite the subtitle of Chaput’s book, he emphasizes that the first thing that God asks of us is “to realize that the words ‘post-Christian’ are a lie, so long as the fire of Christian faith, hope, and love lives in any o

f us.” But that means we cannot “tag along as compliant fellow travelers with a secular culture that’s now, in so many ways, better described as apostate.” (His accent.)

Chaput, then, is not preaching resignation, pulling back into some safe quarters. We have a moral duty to change ourselves and change society, but to do so we must be realistic: the secularism is stacked against us, requiring us to rebuild our Catholic identity in ways that work.

When I was a board member of the National Association of Scholars, a non-sectarian organization seeking to restore higher education, I was asked by the executive director to reach out to like-minded professors who belonged to NAS in the Pittsburgh area. We met from time to time in each other’s home, or on the campus of one of the colleges or universities.

The purpose of these meetings was to build bonds, to establish a confidence in our pursuit of truth, not politics. In short, to embolden us, thereby setting in motion a determination to change our institutions, knowing that we had the backing and resources of our colleagues. Did it work? Higher education is still a hotbed of activism, but matters would be worse if we simply went quietly into the night.

As Archbishop Chaput aptly notes, we have a moral duty to bring the Gospel to our fellow citizens, and that cannot happen if we run for safety, living in some cocoon. If we can transform the Catholic community, we can transform society, or at least put the brakes on our precipitous moral decline.


Review by Bill Donahue - Catholic League

2017 Bike Race Results

VICTORY!! bisonCatholic defends the trophy against high winds and great odds and will rule the prairie for yet another year!

Final Score:

NDSU = 63 || UND = 37

  • Top 20 times: NDSU = 12 || UND = 8 (See times below)
  • Funds raised: NDSU = $70,958.77 || UND = $43,358.68
  • Starting riders: NDSU = 168 || UND = 88
  • Finishing riders : NDSU = 156 || UND = 87

Congratulations to our Top Fundraiser - Laura Sauer 3rd Place Fundraiser - Samuel Mettler  
Top Rider and winner of the GoPro Camera - Branden Scheel  Rider's Drawing - Joshua Bartholomew  



*Finishing Times:

Bib Number First Name Last Name Finishing     Time
578 Branden Scheel 0:58:09
561 Ivan Schleppenbach 0:58:13
? Unknown   0:58:20
536 Mirco Morganti 00:58:58
687 Francis Landman 01:03:59
711 Chris Yanta 01:04:03
746 Cooper Bierscheid 01:04:48
744 Cody Eppler 01:06:36
566 Austin Volla 01:06:39
538 Joseph Mettler 01:06:44
745 Derek Holt 01:10:07
576 Taylor Schloemer 01:10:12
732 Caleb Mohr 01:10:14
736 Lief Rasmussen 01:10:20
737 Jordan Jangula 01:10:28
738 Randy Mettler 01:10:30
509 Joshua Fons 01:11:52
542 Jesse Jangula 01:12:04
716 Jason Dickherber 01:15:27
554 Kenny Dieter 01:17:01
555 Andrew Dieter 01:17:04
501 Ben Bisel 01:17:09
533 Nathan Stracke 01:18:21
580 Fr. James Cheney 01:20:02
728 Sally Traut 01:20:28
707 Kent Wanner 01:20:49
524 Tanner Fischer 01:20:55
681 Michael Mettler 01:23:04
689 Alex Hylen 01:23:53
709 Daniel Wanner 01:25:00
539 Martin Schneider 01:26:07
572 Bryan Remarke 01:26:33
591 Matthew O'Reilly 01:26:48
579 Jacob Byron 01:26:57
684 Aaron Knudtson 01:26:58
523 Lane Jeffers 01:27:04
529 Joshua Geinert 01:29:28
569 Christopher Trom 01:29:56
525 Colton Keller 01:30:00
686 Thomas Whalen 01:30:06
600 Liz Bitzen 01:30:39
508 Gregory Schlesselmann 01:31:38
715 Cole Bishop 01:32:59
558 Alex Courneya 01:33:25
570 Aaron Hingst 01:33:31
505 Bryan Wilburn 01:34:42
589 Amanda Peters 01:34:50
594 Amy Scegura 01:34:52
503 Tara Splonskowski 01:35:07
725 Casey Christianson 01:36:08
748 John Jennen 01:36:37
510 James LaPlante 01:36:39
700 Kim Herdering 01:36:42
749 Nathaniel Stark 01:36:53
750 Sara Stark 01:37:00
751 Calvin Stark 01:37:01
562 Jenna Fischer 01:37:03
598 Isabel Schindler 01:37:05
717 Fred Bisel 01:37:08
699 Ryan Sable 01:37:33
713 David Hoff 01:37:36
734 John Boehn 01:37:41
691 Alfred Schwalbe 01:38:10
704 Claire Endres 01:38:46
714 Rachelle Bitz 01:38:57
583 Tricia Zikmund 01:39:49
585 William Todt 01:41:42
586 Rebecca Todt 01:41:43
599 Andrew Mahoney 01:43:27
530 Chris Veith 01:43:29
595 Mikayla Rekken 01:43:56
521 Laura Sauer 01:43:59
718 Joshua Bartholomew 01:44:02
702 michael Revier 01:45:09
553 MiaLaia Young 01:45:27
545 Clare Schumaker 01:46:16
705 Alexis Wanner 01:47:14
710 Anthony Wanner 01:47:18
727 Andrew Haberman 01:47:20
596 Anne Brien 01:47:24
688 Ben Clark 01:48:05
571 Kevin Maile 01:48:46
735 Miranda Miranda 01:49:39
520 Ricardo Zamora 01:50:00
527 Katie Weidner 01:50:07
544 Bailey Bitz 01:50:40
511 Halley Score 01:51:16
513 Betsy Pearson 01:52:25
597 Veronica Schindler 01:52:25
682 Abby Zikmund 01:52:43
547 Anna Reinholz 01:52:48
567 Daniel Neff 01:53:04
565 Jennifer Krick 01:53:07
685 John Bitzan 01:53:18
694 Ann Endres 01:53:55
537 Nicolette Bitz 01:55:00
733 Matt Henja 01:55:08
543 Chris Volk 01:55:35
534 Charles Arrigoni 01:56:05
729 Mark Volk 01:56:16
532 Michelle LaPlante 01:56:31
540 Rachel Doran 01:56:35
693 Natalie Shimpa 01:56:36
541 Clare Reinhardt 01:56:37
552 Kylee Williams 01:56:42
557 Dean Pearson 01:56:48
574 Aaron LaPlante 01:57:20
560 Rachel Borgert 01:58:12
680 Jacob Rossbach 01:59:20
549 Sarah Bisel 02:00:15
526 Tyler Schill 02:00:32
563 Chris Savageau 02:02:13
556 Julia Pearson 02:02:17
519 Mary Pearson 02:02:20
507 Josephine Lomasney 02:02:54
504 Mary Haman 02:03:09
593 Christina Krieger 02:03:10
517 Timothy O'Reilly 02:04:45
516 Kirstin Volk 02:04:45
683 Elizabeth Dorle 02:07:38
518 Kori Stephens 02:07:51
701 Ryan Honl 02:08:32
515 Mitchell Joyce 02:09:11
592 Zachary Jemming 02:13:18
528 Sarah Carter 02:15:18
724 Mary Asfeld 02:17:10
506 Ashley Stoppleworth 02:17:13
584 Kaylee Pierce 02:17:17
531 Jasmine Stockert 02:17:40
551 Rachel Baniecke 02:18:15
730 Julia Bisel 02:18:54
698 Nathan Powers 02:20:23
548 Anne Argenziano 02:21:23
575 Andre LaPlante 02:22:01
546 Monica DeKeyser 02:22:04
726 Lloyd Traut 02:22:35
696 Desiree Fleming 02:22:41
697 Tim Fleming 02:22:42
708 Lisa Wanner 02:22:50
712 Mark Wanner 02:22:50
706 Erika Wanner 02:22:58
692 Jessica Vasek 02:24:36
731 Laurie Bisel 02:27:49
743 Kate Peters 02:28:39
747 Stephanie Jennen 02:28:44
535 Reilly Swanson 02:32:19
690 kacey morgan 02:32:19
522 James Fedor 02:32:19
512 Amanda Kensok 02:32:19
590 TeenaJoe Fischer 02:33:08
719 Katie Wicklund 02:33:13
514 Mackenzie Cox 02:33:41
703 Matthew Meagher 02:34:04
722 Kristine Wicklund 02:34:51
721 Kyle Wicklund 02:34:52
568 Daniel Kraemer 02:34:55

Thursday Night Events!


Every Thursday night after Mass, join us for snacks, games and fellowship in the student lounge!

Where: St. Paul's Newman Center Student Lounge

When: Thursday Nights at 9:45 p.m.

See what's happening THIS Thursday - check out our CALENDAR


Dorothy Day House Volunteering








Volunteer at the Dorothy Day House helping in the food pantry and  making a meal for the homeless! Meet at Newman for these events, which typically take place on the first WEDNESDAY of the month...see our CALENDAR for dates & times!

It's a fun and involved way to give back to the community!