Hail Mary, Incorporated
They say money cannot buy happiness. But as history has demonstrated time and again, it's never stopped anyone from trying.
Thomas Monaghan is the man who built his fortune on Domino's Pizza, before giving it up to do philanthropic work, in the hope of sharing his Catholic faith with others. A man considered by those who know him to be very devout, he used his generosity to found Ave Maria College in Michigan. This was a good thing, as devout young people and their families invested their time and treasure in this dream.
But after a few years, a humble liberal arts college wasn't big enough. An attempt to enlarge the campus to the scale of a university was foiled by the locals townspeople. But when you are a rich man, you are accustomed to having your way. And so (while we can never be completely sure of the inner motives of any man), Mr Monaghan decided to move the whole she-bang to Florida. Thus was founded Ave Maria University.
The only problem was, this involved shutting down the little college in Michigan.
But then a number of students and faculty in Michigan began to show their ingratitude. This was a puzzling response. After all, the only thing they had to do was relocate themselves -- and in some cases their families -- a second time, to follow a dream built by another. It wasn't as though they had the truly big task of throwing money and influence around, thus earning the lion's share of the credit.
And, as if this indignation were not enough, a group of parents got involved, with the audacity to erect a website to complain of their sorry state. Seems they thought their money was just as good as Mr Monaghan's. Sadly, it was not, for he is a rich man, and they are not.
So, the forces of sanctified capitalism will prevail over the cries of shattered plans and allegedly broken promises. A university is being built in Florida, and a town named Ave Maria, obstensibly in honor of Our Lady, will be built alongside it. They have an impressive website, successful developers, and (lest we forget) millions of dollars.
What of those left behind? Perhaps their grief will pass, and they will come to see the wisdom of those with greater means and influence, and know that the greater good has been served. An impressive show of brick and mortar will rise from the midst of an intemperate climate, a house of discernment for vocations will be erected to educate souls for the glory of God, and thousands of frustrated Republicans with sufficiently-respectable incomes will be able to drive their minivans from their safe suburban homes to daily Mass -- in Latin, of course.
And after all, isn't this what it really means to be Catholic?