Why the Bible favors increasing the tuition
Davis Gonsalves | Thursday, March 8, 2018
I usually rank stuff in my articles, and although these are not rankings exactly, you should think of the following quotes as a collection of thoughts ranked equally at number one. I’m not upset about much, but I was absolutely shocked when members of our Notre Dame community were distressed by the tuition increase. It was my understanding that when one declares membership at Notre Dame, they have declared themselves as part of the elite and must suffer the burden that comes with this culture, tuition prices included. I am here to explain why, to all those who think a raise in tuition is wrong, you are not only anti-Notre Dame but anti-Christian, too. Starting with the first quote:
Ecclesiastes 5:10: “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with income. This too is meaningless.”
See, it’s meaningless! Why is everyone so upset if it’s ultimately inconsequential? We at Notre Dame don’t even love money either, we just like it a lot, but don’t know if we’re ready to commit. This passage is saying once we get to the L word, we will always appreciate cash because we’ll desire its whole being, never being satisfied. It’s flattering towards wanting more money if anything.
Proverbs 13:11: “Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.”
Good thing we only have the most honest money when we calculate families needs but change the cost of tuition later. The administration is doing exactly what God asks, gathering little by little, too; 3.6 percent is the lowest tuition increase in 50 years, how can you people forget that? I don’t understand the doubts on if our money will grow into something beautiful, when we can see Crossroads off in the distance. Indiscriminately gathering money for amenity projects is possibly the highest form of beauty.
Proverbs 17:16: “Why should fools have money in hand to buy wisdom, when they are not able to understand it?”
I think all of us need a reality check and realize we are fools that cannot buy our wisdom. Instead, we should give a high majority of our money to those that have proven their extreme clarity of thought and can actually understand how to act. It is arrogant for me to think that I could use $68,000 dollars to actually benefit me in any other way. Foolish tasks, like helping pay rent in our small home, medical insurance for our family or my brother’s high school tuition, simply serve to distract from the fact that I need a new architecture building far more.
Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”
This quote may seem like it’s against my point for whatever odd reason, but all doubts are rectified when you realize that at Notre Dame, we are worshipping God who just so happens to also love money. This isn’t like the time of Jesus where people who simply wanted money never prayed, this is the modern culture where we have proven we can pray and always look to have more cash. Look at our Christian, billionaire president for example. Otherwise, how could it make sense that a University run by priests would want more money if they had enough? Instead, by obeying the order, you are obeying God. Simply submit, and let them handle the financial aspect as a sign of worship.
Matthew 13:44: “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”
What this tells us is we should have joy when we come to treasure. If something costs more, it is inherently better and should be thought of as such. I don’t even need to sell all I have to help pay for this increase in tuition. My family has done much of that already with the previous price. The administration is doing the hard work for us, really.
Psalm 37:16–17: “Better the little that the righteous have than the wealth of many wicked; for the power of the wicked will be broken, but the Lord upholds the righteous.”
I think everyone knows how hard it is to give up wealth. We have all come to dilemmas where we want to hold on to what we’ve earned and act on sinful urges like paying for household utilities. Spending $68,000 dollars a year helps to alleviate this burden by simply stripping us from the wealth we may unwisely spend. If we are to be righteous, we must own little so the Lord will uphold us. Forcefully donating to this university is the straight and narrow path.
I have heard arguments that say Notre Dame should not simply look at the rising cost of tuition nationwide and instead become an example. Lowering tuition serves as a call to what Christ really wanted in a preferential option for the poor. Maybe we have placed too much value on education, and the amenities take away from an actual Catholic identity. I say to those people: wrong! I have definitively proven that a real Catholic identity means not attempting to find an authentic cost of tuition and instead raise it incrementally. That way when we graduate, tuition will only be worth a few houses. Home is where the Dome is. If you are not elite enough to pay, then why did you come to Notre Dame? According to the New York Times, less than 1 percent of students here come from poor families and go on to be rich adults. Exactly how Jesus planned keeping wealth away from the wicked. I also understand the same study showed we were 63rd out of 65 elite universities in enrolling students from the bottom 20 percent. I wonder what’s keeping them all away? Guess they just aren’t righteous enough.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.