Ashley Thompson | Features Writer

There is a 23 percent drop in religious service attendance from students after three years in college, according to the Higher Education Research Institution at the University of California, Los Angeles. The Catholic Student Association (CSA) is a group that tries to avoid these kinds of drops by inviting anyone, not just Catholic students, to the organization’s meetings on Wednesdays at 6 p.m.

The group meets at 715 Franklin St., across from the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, only a five minute walk from APSU’s campus. The Catholic Student Association spends time in their meetings educating on the Catholic faith, speaking on any issues that may be occurring and connecting them with faith.

“In our meetings we enjoy pizza after blessing it and usually we have philosophical discussions. We try to watch a video a few minutes long and then discuss how it relates to Catholicism. And if anyone ever has questions over the Catholic faith, we answer them. Sometimes we even have guest speakers come and talk,” CSA social chair of the association and junior history major Christopher Mattox said.

The association gathers together at meetings to grow faith but also welcomes anyone with questions. The CSA also goes on retreats when they can.

The club has been around for over 20 years and used to be called the Newman Club.

“What I think makes our group so great is having these educated advisers like our group has. They are well educated in the faith, and know so much about what we go through as college students because they have been there. They are college professors and know the struggles we face as college students. I think they are our greatest resource here for the CSA as a whole,” junior political science major Laura Picataggio said.

CSA is group that follows the Catholic goal of serving.

“The main thing Catholic faith is about is serving,” professor of Latin and Greek and adviser for the CSA Timothy Winters said.

He said with religious services being abandoned by students, it is important to an association like the Catholic Student Association that is available and open to all.

“Almost every prominent scientist is an atheist. Catholic scientists were at the forefront of great scientific discovery. People too often associate faith with anti-intellectual. Like, if you believe in God, therefore you shouldn’t believe in evolution,” Latin and Mythology teacher and adviser of CSA Mary Winters said, “Catholicism is not at all against any of those theories.”

The CSA meets on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. and enjoys pizza and lessons. It is open to everyone, and the advisers and president are always open to questions.