The Diocese of Gaylord has 14 schools listed on its website (Traverse City has their Catholic school system designated as three separate schools based on grade level, making a total of 16 schools listed). Additionally, St. Michael Academy is an independent Catholic school in Petoskey.
The diocesan schools are prominently displayed on the Diocese of Gaylord website with easy to navigate tools to find a local Catholic school. Lately, the nation has been challenged, and schools in particular, with regard to confusion of sexual identity or even human identity in schools, both private and public. Secular and demonic forces are increasingly foisting sexually disoriented activities in schools. Some schools are “struggling” with furries, ie, students who claim to be a dog or a cat. Litter boxes have even been noted to have been found in some schools to address this “need”.
The Diocese of Gaylord, under the Administrator Bishop Walter Hurley, adopted the following policy in 2021:
THE HUMAN BODY AS A CONSTITUTIVE ASPECT OF THE HUMAN PERSON
The Church teaches that our differences as male and female are part of God’s good design in creation, that our bodies –including our sexuality – are gifts from God. In fact, ‘”being man’ or ‘being woman’ is a reality which is good and willed by God” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 369). A person cannot change his or her sex. A person should accept and seek to live in conformity with his or her sexual identity (sometimes called “gender identity”) as given by God. The human person is a body-soul union, and the body-created male or female-is a constitutive aspect of the human person. Having a proper understanding of the human body and more generally, of the moral law – enhances, rather than restricts, man’s freedom.
1. It is the policy of the Diocese of Gaylord that all schools, shall respect the biological sex of the human person as given by God and shall apply all policies and procedures in relation to that person according to that person’s God-given biological sex.
2. Employees and volunteers shall conduct themselves in accord with their God-given biological sex.
3. Diocesan schools partner with families to educate and form students consistent with the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ and His Church. Students and parents (or legal guardians) shall conduct themselves in accord with their God-given biological sex.
Policy Adopted: June 2021
Approved by the Most Reverend Walter A. Hurley
This policy reflects the teaching of the Church. It is surprising to some faithful that Bishop Hurley, well known for his shuttling of molesting priests from location to location (vs. removal of the offending priest) would have been the cleric to adopt this policy. Let us pray that this policy is not only enforced but explained, promoted, and used positively in Catholic schools to help in providing a safe space for appropriate child development. Let us pray that our clergy, including Bishop Walsh, have the fortitude to proclaim this truth.