Does BC have strong religious affiliation?

One of my daughters is considering BC for undergraduate finance degree. I heard recently that BC has strong christian religious affiliation. I wonder how suitable then it could be for us who are not Christian.

Definitely take a few minutes to search older discussions in this subforum about nonreligious students attending BC. While about two-thirds of the students identify as Catholic, I have yet to see a nonreligious or non-Christian person post about this being a problem while attending.

BC is a Jesuit university. The Jesuits are an order of Catholic priests. Jesuit educational values include developing students into “men and women for others.” One need not be Christian or religious to appreciate Jesuit educational values.

Two semesters of theology are required, the choices for which are set forth on the website (one can look further at descriptions in the course catalog online). The website also includes detail on Jesuit values and the history of the Jesuits, etc.

Yes, it is strongly religious. You don’t have to be Catholic to attend and get a lot out of BC, but you do need to be respectful of the institution and its practices. You WILL NOT change anything, like that the insurance provided to students does not include birth control, that non-catholics will not be allowed to get married in the church just because they are graduates, that there will be a graduation mass and prayers at meetings and ceremonies.

The current Pope is a Jesuit. Don’t mistake BC as ‘catholic lite.’ Enlightened and accepting (and even welcomed, as the Jesuits like a good debate), but not ‘lite’.

It’s as religious as you’d like it to be, plenty or not at all. From a personal faith perspective. Yes, it is a Catholic school so there are administrative issues that are governed by the Catholic practices. But not as a matter of day to day personal beliefs at all. BC also has a real commitment to service that is part of culture and to the core curriculum. They believe in a well rounded education.

Theology classes can be from the many highlighted above. Many are comparative in nature, looking at the historical, beliefs and cultural roots of two separate religions. Say Hindu Judaism or Islam. And they don’t stress dogma.

No masses or religious classes at all. No parietals like Notre Dame.

Many students identify as Catholic. But my non catholic d has had absolutely zero issues. She does like the service component and slightly more socially conservative atmosphere. But she is part of young democrats and they are one of biggest groups on campus. And very liberal like many college kids.

There are no REQUIRED masses and just the 2-3 required religious classes. There are plenty of masses and religious classes available. There are plenty of religious experiences available like speakers, choirs, art exhibits.

That’s what I meant. Certainly there are masses and religious experiences available. Same as at many others. Heck even Umass Amherst too. There are no required religious classes that are indoctrinatory. I believe one available is something along the lines of the history of God.

OP —BC is not a secular institution. It’s not trying to convince anyone to be Catholic either. So yes, it has a strong Catholic affiliation. I would not say it is overly “religious”The science classes are science classes. Teaching evolution of all things There are parties. Tailgates. Hookups. It’s college.

BC is a Jesuit University. My S went to a different Jesuit university and had friends of different religious as well as atheists/agnostics who were happy there. In our expereince, the Jesuits are educators first and foremost and do not force religion on anyone. That said, to be comfortable at a Jesuit university I think one should; 1) be respectful of religion; 2) have no issue with seeing some religious symbols on campus (ex. crucifix); and 3) look at the core curriculum and be fine with the idea of taking any required philosophy/theology courses. If possible, I’d recommend a visit to campus…

Just visited BC today. At the info session, they had an admissions person do a presentation and four students to answer questions. a parent asked how many students are Catholic and how does it affect your daily life if you are not Catholic. The admissions person said 70% of the students are Catholic and there are about 60 masses per week if that’s something you want to take advantage of. And many retreats offered for both Catholic and non-Catholic students. Only one of the students replied to the question - she was raised in a Catholic home but described herself as the ‘black sheep’ - I guess she meant not practicing. But no one really addressed what it’s like for non-Catholic students. To my atheist daughter it felt too religious for her.

@CAtransplant, I am a student here @ BC. in response to your daughter’s perceived impression/observation about BC being too religious for her, let me say that I have to remind myself that BC is a Jesuit institution. On a day to day basis, there is nothing religious “in my face” evidencing BC is a religious college. Not to be facetious, but, except for the church Commonwealth Ave, I cannot recall seeing a crucifix on display anywhere? Perhaps I don’t pay attention, but I cannot recall a cross anywhere? Classroom work, activity , discussion is secular. No conversion therapy either- :slight_smile:

@bbfan1927 that’s interesting. But I don’t think she will change her impression from the info session and while I’m sure BC is a great school, there are also a lot of other great schools so I don’t think this one will end up on her application list. That doesn’t mean it won’t be great for other students of course.

@CAtransplant I can tell you BbFan is 100 percent correct. But there is definitely a service orientation at BC and school commitment to a broad liberal arts education for all students, no matter what major. That’s a Jesuit ideal. And wonderful for many and not so for others. That’s the choice. Not religion versus secular.

My Freshman daughter wrote her application essay about —not being confirmed on purpose —for issues with religion. She not only got in but loves it. That’s like the exact opposite of religion. And good she is in a culture that has tolerance for all faiths and non faiths.

And her spring break is Appalachia as part of a service trip for health clinics. So no religion for her but service is important. Not the same thing. And it’s a a school strength. She can go to Daytona some other year. I’m glad she’s learning to give back as part of her education.

Your impression from one brief meeting is just that, an impression. Not the real life truth.

But to each his own and good luck! That’s why we have so many schools for our kids.

In D’s year, Student admissions did have an atheist on the panel and he said that Jesuits were welcoming to folks of all faiths, or no faith. As long as the students are interested in giving back to their community – in whatever form – they’ll fit it.

That being said, the purpose of college visits is to see if it could be ‘home’ for four years. If it doesn’t work for your D, it doesn’t work. My two kids turned up their noses at plenty of colleges, all for their own reasons. My son refused to apply to Yale bcos of its ‘fake’ gothic architecture. (yeah, I don’t get it either.)

@CAtransplant, Well, if she didn’t like BC she will hate Notre Dame, Georgetown, Villanova, and especially Holy Cross. BC is the least religiously imposing of the group- based upon my visits. I will say one more thing. Yes, there are many great schools, but BC students are truly exceptional; everyone looks out for each other, no classmate left behind…All are intelligent, accomplished, driven, sophisticated but there is an intangible- they all have a heart, Its a brotherhood and a sisterhood…Perhaps it is the influence of a religious community? I don’t know…what I do know is I wouldn’t trade my BC class for Harvard’s…I’m sure your daughter will find her match. Good luck.

Boston is in the northeast. The region is secular. If you want to find the Catholicism in BC you will. If you want to ignore what there is you can.

My sons are attending 48 Hours this weekend. I’ll have to ask next week if there was a religious component (they will be ok either way). I try to limit myself from 20 questions! I know one has gone to mass on Sunday night but not in the Commonwealth Ave Church (smaller setting).


Interested to hear your feedback! D was supposed to attend a previous one but had something come up. I was sorry for her. It sounds awesome.

@privatebanker I’ll post some info after the weekend. I just can’t promise how much they will share!

Thank you. I know. It’s like pulling teeth. :-??

Bbfan1927 mentioned the church on Comm Ave…which is the church most associated with BC, but unless things have changed in recent years, it doesn’t actually belong to BC. It’s next to BC, used by BC students, & is the location for some official events, but is not part of BC.