Prior to World War I and the advent of Planned Parenthood in 1916, women did not overwhelmingly seek higher education. Most aspired to meet their prince charming, fall in love, get married, have babies, and be a homemaker – the scriptural role of helper to her husband and bearer of the next God loving and fearing generation – a life of truth, goodness and beauty. Fast forward some decades – women in the workforce, feminism, birth control, materialism, increased cost of living, abandonment by the sole supporter and lastly, divorce. Yes, times have changed, but the nature and role of woman has not “the Lord God then built up into a woman the rib that he had taken from the man.” – Genesis 2:22
Woman, ordained by God, has a monumental role in humanity that only she in her femininity can ever fulfill. She has been given the responsibility to secure the generations of children and to aid her husband in the keeping of the home while he focuses on his duty of providing for and securing the family. That is, if she indeed is called to the married life. All women are called to mother beyond biology, no college education required. The heart of a woman is greatly needed to keep the world in check and temper disoriented passions by the example of her purity. The challenge is not falling into the trap of the secular world to “succeed” at all costs and triumph more than men in academia and the workforce.
We must be seekers of wisdom – the knowledge of Truth – before we seek academia. In this way, we can know God’s purpose for our lives. I recently had the honor of chatting with Alice von Hildebrand, an esteemed educator, author, and philosopher. When I posed this topic question to her, her response was a quick, “Nonsense!” She affirms that “intelligence must be at the service of Truth” and that “only through faith can reason be properly humbled.” Each woman must first “study” Him who created her for His good purpose. It is then that she can make the important decisions for her life and the lives of those she loves.
It is not possible for college to make a woman “more” if her ambition is first toward the Lord. This may include college to fulfill her mission, though it is not absolute and not largely necessary in helping her husband, rearing children, and maintaining her home. It is a great privilege, however, to receive an education through college, but we must make sure that we do not equate attaining a degree with a woman's dignity. Each of us must discern God’s perfect will, avoiding the influences of a confusing and noise-filled culture. God will not waste the education we attain formally or otherwise. Let us use it well, with a willingness to put aside our afforded degrees for the sake of husband, children, and home, and in a larger scope, for the sake of the world.
God is always grooming and pruning me, giving me opportunities – this blog post for instance. My goal is to stay true to the woman He created me to be – to know, love and serve Him in this life so I can be eternally happy with Him in Heaven. College or not, I leave that up to Him. My fabulous husband has supported our family for all of these years, and I have always been a homemaker, rearing and schooling our children. So… no, going to college does not make me more of a woman. It confirms that God will use me as He sees fit. So far, it’s been five plus decades of awesome living! With Our Lady’s help, I pray the words of St. Alphonsus Ligouri, “Grant that I may love You always, then do unto me as You will.”
Theresa Falciano is a wife of twenty-eight blissful years, a homeschooling mom, and grandma. Though not college educated, her very favorite subjects are health and holiness, earning certificates in Scripture study and Health Education. She loves clean and simple living, morning coffee, the chirping of birds, the sun on her face, reading several books at one time, and always the Truth - Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.
Image by: [Elissa Voss https://www.elissavoss.co]