Ave Maria’s Tom Monaghan makes extraordinary offer to TAC seniors

Free law school tuition


Monaghan at Thomas Aquinas College Wed.

Monaghan at Thomas Aquinas College Wed.

The following comes from an Oct. 30 release from Thomas Aquinas College.

On Wednesday afternoon Thomas Monaghan, the onetime owner of Domino’s Pizza and the founder of Ave Maria University, visited Thomas Aquinas College to make an extraordinary offer to members of the Senior Class: free tuition at the Ave Maria School of Law for all three years of their legal education.

The offer is part of Mr. Monaghan’s effort to make Ave Maria the preferred law school for the nation’s top Catholic lawyers. “We are planning on giving a full ride next fall to 50 students, primarily students from Newman Guide schools,” he said. “And I would love to have all 50 come from this school, because I think it’s the finest Catholic school in the country, and you guys have the perfect background for law school.” To take advantage of the offer, students would first need to gain admission to Ave Maria and meet all the necessary requirements.


At a lunchtime gathering in the College’s newest classroom building, St. Gladys Hall — complete with Domino’s Pizza — Mr. Monaghan discussed the details of his generous scholarship program with some 40 students. “I’m excited to be here,” he began. “Everywhere I go, when I’m asked about Catholic higher education, I always mention TAC because I think it’s the best Catholic college in the country. The quality of its spirituality and academics are second to none.”

He then quickly added, “Now the best Catholic university in the country is Ave Maria!”

Thanking Mr. Monaghan for his visit and for his offer, Thomas Aquinas College President Michael F. McLean returned the compliment. “Without a doubt, Ave Maria has the strongest Catholic legal curriculum in the country,” he told the students. “So I encourage you to attend to Mr. Monaghan’s words and, if you are interested in Ave Maria, to pursue an opportunity to study there.”


To read the original release, click here.






To add a comment, click on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ icons OR go further down to the bottom of comments to the Post your comment box.


  1. What a wonderful story! See what goodness there still is in our broken world. Hope to see lots of Thomas Aquinas students going to law school 🙂

  2. This is a wonderful and amazing offer !
    Ave Maria School of Law is one of the nation’s most outstanding law schools, according to The Princeton Review 2014).
    The education services company features the school in the new 2015 edition of its annual book, “The Best 169 Law Schools”.

    As a former Marine himself, Tom Monahan, also gives scholarships to qualified Veterans.

  3. Ave Maria School of Law has been named the best Catholic Law School in the United States for the devout by PreLaw Magazine. The winter 2014 issue of the magazine ranked AMSL first among 28 Catholic law schools.

  4. If only all businessmen loved JESUS and the CATHOLIC CHURCH as this Tom Monaghan does.

  5. Society needs good moral lawyers these days !

  6. Uh. As recently as 2011, Ave Maria law school had the lowest bar passage rate in the state of Florida. Only 11 of 23 graduating students passed the bar exam, for a bar passage rate of 48%, which was 20% worse than the next worst law school.

    The town of Ave Maria also is built upon a questionable constitutional legal provision. It is held as a “special disctrict” which gives the development company government powers. Now, the typical special district includes a provision to return governing authority to local citizens, but Ave Maria doesn’t have this term. Consequently, in theory, the development company (largely controlled by Monaghan) can issue autocratic rules in perpetuity.

    You can read about Ave Maria’s strange legal existence here: http://www.miaminewtimes.com/2011-10-20/news/ave-maria-university-a-catholic-project-gone-wrong/

    • Anonymous says:

      Jon J.
      So you know more than the Princeton Review, as to what constitutes an excellent Law School ?
      Are you going to try to sell us the Brooklyn Bridge next ?

      What Law School did you graduate from and when ?

      • Georgetown. And I also studied law at Oxford University in, you know, England.

        And yeah, if the Princeton Review is endorsing a law school with a current bar passage rate of 56.6%, then I sure as heck know more than they do. Btw, you can see the current bar passage rate cited here: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/2014/10/08/famu-law-students-continue-improve-bar-exam/16920227/

        56.6% is still the worst of all 12 Florida law schools. No. 1 is University of Florida, which is nothing more than a competent state university law program.

        Btw, I don’t practice law. I am one of 7 founders of an early-stage health care IT firm. Whether this company “hits” or not is still a question that has yet to be determined by the marketplace.

  7. More highlights about Ave Maria University and town:

    Tom Monaghan built a large church in the center of the town and wanted to appoint his own pastor, putting hiim on conflict with the local bishop.

    Monaghan almost bankrupted the school due to his out of control ambitions for a powerful athletics department.

    Monaghan also wanted to create a town free of pornography and birth control, and also provided NO POLICE FORCE for residents. He ignored warnings by a Notre Dame law professor that enforcing such rules would be unconstitutional due to 1st Amendment issues.

    The egotistical Monagha doesn’t care about the law, the constitution, Church authority, or the Truth. Telling students that Ave Maria is the best catholic law school in the country is a LIE when less than half of your class can pass the bar. Aspiration is not the TRUTH.

    Monaghan is acting like a medieval Baron that thinks he can rule his own little world because he’s a billionare without regard to the rights of others.

    • Jon J.
      I live in FL, and the County Police Force polices all areas of the County unless a specific city wants to pay for an additional police force.

      Bishop Dewane is my Bishop, and I attended the dedication and opening Mass where the Bishop gave his blessing, etc.
      Our Bishop attends Ave Maria blessings and functions frequently.

      Ave Maria is in full accord with “Ex Corde Ecclesiae ”

      And Ave Maria uses the CCC.

      You are also a liar about the development company of the community which is the Collier Development Company of which Monahan holds no financial holding.

      And the Princeton Review knows much more about Law Schools than you do.

      If anyone wants further info as to the faithfulness of the university, they can contact our Diocese Bishop’s office directly.
      Jon J., your credibility is now officially in the toilet, due to your using anti-Catholic secular sources or your own stupidity.

      • Ave Maria is now accredited as a “catholic institution”. This is true.

        What is also true, is that Monaghan marketed Ave Maria as a pre-eminant catholic institution for FOUR YEARS before Ave Maria had earned this designation.

        Secondly, I don’t care what Princeton Review has to say in light of the information about the bar passage rate. What is the current bar passage rate? I find it difficult to believe that standards have improved so much in 3 years that a school in the toilet is now the pre-eminent catholic law school in the country. We might give Monaghan SOME leewy for “puffing” that is common in marketing—but he can’t claim too much or lose any contact with the truth.

        Btw, the blogger that attacked Ave Maria was, and is, a devout catholic. She was strongarmed out of meetings in the university due to actions she took in the town—a ban that was due to asking uncomfortable questions about Lord Monaghan.

        As for Collier, Monaghan was taken on by the management company as a full business partner. Monaghan did donate any profits from this holding to Ave Maria, but it does mean that Monaghan has significant power in both the university and with the management company.

        • Jon, I remember a visit to Hilltop Farm, Beatrice Potter’s home, and having tea at a woman’s home in the nearby village. The woman said how disdainful Potter was etc and that her father was by far the more talented. The more someone succeeds the more envy and jealousy he or she provokes. There are always those willing to believe them as they too feel better about their own deficiencies and failures. When I think what this man has accomplished, snarky little jibes are inevitable. He’s not perfect, but then who of us are? Only Catholics admire his zeal and drive apparently. My brother worked for him in Ann Arbor and found him to be honest, unpretentious and generous.

          • Though I have no knowledge of who in the world Beatrice Potter is, or what in the heck Hilltop Farm is, I’m sure that AMU’s pathetic 56.6% bar pass rate is far more objective a meaure than any “talent” that might be possessed by some random woman’s husband.

            I’m hardly “envious” of Tom Monaghan’s (so far) abject failure to build a quality law school.

            I am disgusted by him trying to lie about it.

          • Sorry. I misspelled her name! Maybe that’s why you don’t remember the name. Beatrix! Haven’t you ever read Peter Rabbit or Squirrel Nutkin to your children?? Tsk tsk

          • Ann Malley says:

            There is a gaping void of that which is cultural in the current culture, Dana. Hence the ‘who in the world is Beatrice Potter’. Even a Google search would correct the spelling error and yet the ‘educated’ individuals are clueless.

            God bless and please continue using references that draw a – wha? – from certain posters. If anything, perhaps, just maybe, they’ll look into the issue and learn something.

          • When it comes to children’s fiction, I read Lord of the Rings (well before it was a movie), and the Narnia books. I have also read Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland. However, for the most part I was reading adult history from a very early age—so I am not that well versed in children’s literature.

            For example, I read (and at least somewhat understood) rise and fall of the 3rd reich when i was 12. At 13, I read Hans Delbruck’s 4 book treatise on warfare (The History of the Art of War).

            So, Dana and Ann. you can take your condescending comments about my failure to read fluff and stick them up your faux erudition.

          • Anonymous says:

            Jon J- we all know-they are just being abusive. And why? Cause you said something they didn’t like. Real Christian women.

          • Ann Malley says:

            Sometimes reading adult material before one is psychologically prepared to handle it – despite whether one understands the words – can be very damaging, JonJ. It skews the formation and lends a false sense of understanding to those who would otherwise develop true understanding under proper guidance and balance. The latter being requisite to developing rational perspective.

            Your ‘erudition’ bespeaks nothing but a burning hot agenda of anger, a feeling of superior knowledge without the age/wisdom to temper it, and an unrestrained frustration at those things which are – despite what you wish they would be. That includes you too, mous, with regard to ‘Real Christian Women’.

            Real women, and Christian women at that, know very well how to deal with children who lash out angrily. So expect more of the same, dear ones. Much as I will continue you to brand anything rational or based in truth to be castigated as ‘abuse’. Wisdom is the key, mous, that and a seasoning you cannot gain from a book or any amount of pop-culture soundbytes.

            God bless you both. You too, Dana 🙂

    • Jon J, as a resident of Ave Maria Univeristy, I have no idea who has told you the lies.
      Monaghan never almost bankrupted AMU for sports. He paid for much himself, and solicited money from others.

      Collier Dev Co donated that land for a Fire Dept, and Police sub-station (County Police) as part of the required County development process.
      The Collier County Sherriff will tell you that Ave Maria is one of the least active crime areas on the grid.

      You need to tell your sources that they are very dishonest, and when you repeat their misinformation you look foolish.
      FYI – the secular MIAMI TIMES hates the Catholic Faith, and is more than 100 miles away. – Their reporters do not visit and investigate any stories at Ave Maria, but repeat the lies of a few others. The owners of the Miami Times is the Village Voice – but the same owners change their name every few years so its hard to keep track.

      • As a resident of Ave Maria, Brian—just who are you employed by? Are you signing Monaghan’s tune because its one of his companies that signs your paycheck?

        The article I cited quoted Reverand Tom Fessio, who is both a priest and former Division I college baseball player and is the former athletic director of Ave Maria University beore Monaghan fired him.

        Monaghan did pour a considerable amount of his fortune into Ave Maria University and the town.

        If you live there, you may be biased simply because you live in an environment where most people are beholden to Monaghan. What is NOT in question is the strange legal existence of Ave Maria, with DOES NOT PROVIDE FOR ANY RETURN OF LEGAL POWERS TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT.

        • Jon, you’re just eaten up with venom and jealousy. Wow.

        • NOT One of the businesses operating within the town of Ave Maria are owned by Tom Monaghan.
          No, I have never worked for anything owned or established by Monaghan, which is none of your business anyway.
          Where do you work ? ? ? ? (not that I care)
          You are really losing it in your effort to defame and discourage Catholic education.

          Why don’t you check things out prior to lying, so you won’t look so stupid, JonJ.
          Why don’t you just mind your own business since you have little truth and nothing to offer?
          Stop doing the devil’s work – the devil mixes fact and fiction

          • Anonymous says:

            Like I said, there is an overreaction to any criticism of AMU that is bizarre – just look at Brian’s response. Over the top much?

          • Want some fact Brian?

            Ok. How did Tom Monaghan make his billions?

            He sold greasy pizza and Cokes—which are laden with triglicerides.

            That’s a combination that creates heart disease, strokes, and type II diabetes. How many millions of Pizza’s did Tom Monaghan sell, and how many poeple’s heart attacks and strokes fueled his billions?

            Now, to be fair to Tom Monaghan, he started his company in 1959. The consequences of a high fat diet combined with triglycerides was not known. However, the effects of cholestorl and high fat diets was well known in the late 70’s and mainstream by the early 80’s.

            Tom Monaghan sold his company in 1990. Now, does a moral an ethical individual who made billions by, inadvertantly, participating in at least thousands of early deaths, have some kind of moral obligation to others if that is the basis of his wealth?

            Has Tom Monaghan tried to inform people about the dangers of consuming the food he used to sell? Has Tom Monaghan ever expressed any regret over the early deaths he most likely caused?

            Would not a devout Christian behave in such a way, or would they keep their billions while nary saying a “too bad” the the faceless dead?

          • You want some fact?

            Ok. Monaghan is a full parter with Collier Development. Now, my informmation is from an article in 2009, but I haven’t found anything recent that specifically addressess the legal structure behind Ave Maria and asserts a different structure.

            According to the Naples Dailey News, Tom Monaghan and Collier Barron created the Ave Maria Development Compay to develop the town. And, an executive committee whose members are drawn from Collier and Monaghan’s organization runs the development, including a provision in the enbling statute that allows the largest landowner in Ave Maria to appoint 3 out of the 5 board members that hold governing power over the town.

            Btw, Florida law typically required developers to return governing powers to the local community in 10 years, but Collier and Monaghan’s lawyers got rid of this term. Internal memos of Collier obrained by Naples Daily News indicated Collier is fully aware of this term. They KNEW they, and Monaghan, could control the town in perpetuity.

            So Brian, has anything changed? Does Lord Monaghan still hold
            taxing power over residents? Can Lord Monaghan use their governing identity to issue municipal bonds—financing which costs less than a corporate bond issue?

            Btw Brian, since you won’t take my word, and yours is completely unreliable since you cannot admit that Monaghan is lying about the pre-eminent nature of his law school with a 56.6% bar pass rate, you need to provide a source.

            Btw, I could educate a group a cockroaches myself and I would get a better than 56.6% bar pass rate.

          • Catherine says:

            “Btw, I could educate a group a cockroaches myself and I would get a better than 56.6% bar pass rate.”

            Luke 14:11 “Because every one that exalteth himself, shall be humbled; and he that humbleth himself, shall be exalted”.

            Acts 8:21 “Thou hast no part nor lot in this matter. For thy heart is not right in the sight of God.”

            Acts 8:23 ” For I see thou art in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity.”

    • From the Bishop of the Diocese (on the Bishop’s letterhead) not a secular news media outlet – – –
      ” Bishop also thanked Thomas S. Monaghan, founder of Ave Maria University, for his forthright commitment to Catholic education and his Catholic Faith.
      His leadership and vision brought the monumental undertaking of building a Catholic University in Southwest Florida to where it stands today. ”

      So much for Jon J’s falsehoods and baloney.

    • Anonymous says:

      Watch out JonJ, the Monaghan thugs are coming after you now!

      • Anonymous, you mean the TRUTH police who will not let LIES stand on a Catholic web site.

        Trolls need to learn to be accurate or face the consequences.

        • Oh oh the consequences!

          Gosh Ed, I’m shivering in abject terror from the consequences you will bring to bear agaist me.

          The TRUTH is Ave Maria is a substandard law school with a terrible bar pass rate of 56.6%—which puts Ave Maria among the worst law schools in the country, and makes it the worst law school in Florida.

          The TRUTH is that Tom Monaghan called this school the pre-eminent catholic law school in the country, knowing it to be a lie. Monaghan’s apirations mean nothing to a law graduate that can’t get a job.

          The TRUTH is that the radically conservative orthodox posters here like Tom Monaghan’s views b/c he spouts the same rhetoric—so you WANT his lies about the excellence achieved his law school to be true because you like his ideas and world view.

          • JonJ, Because you lied about so many things in your posts, no one
            is going to believe a thing you say.

          • Your Fellow Catholic says:

            What has JonJ lied about? Nothing, so far as I can tell. He did post one article that was a little old, but he told us how old it was, so there was no lie. He has a post elsewhere on this page where he talks about triglycerides and high fat diets, when he meant to say (I assume) the disaccharides (sugars) in the coke. Triglycerides are what make up most fats. JonJ didn’t lie when he confused triglycerides with disaccarides, it’s just a little confusion, but his point was extremely valid. I think people can be excused for inadvertently mixing up their organic chemistry. To paraphrase Dr. Bones McCoy, JonJ might say, “I’m a lawyer, da****, not a chemist!”

            As a matter of fact, I distinctly recall my first Dominos pizza in the 70s, I was at a high school academic camp. It was the first time I ever heard of the possibility of ordering a quart sized single serving Coke. Now who the blazes needs a quart sized coke, and any parent in any era can recognize that there is no nutritional value in that much sugar and that much caffeine. As far as I can tell, Dominos was the first to introduce what became the BigGulp, and now huge percentages of our kids are obese and diabetic. The biggest I had seen was 16 oz and even as a 15 year old, I thought THAT was excessive.

        • Gosh Brian,

          Time for some Theology 101. A statement is not a lie if the individual making it has a good faith belief in the statements truth. If such a statement is WRONG, then it is an ERROR and not a lie.

          In my case, I provided support for my good faith belief that my statements were true. I am, however, certainly capable of error. But, jjust because I do not immediately accept your sources and your opinion as the truth does not make me a liar.

          Now, in the case of Monaghan, its very hard to believe that the former President and CEO of AMU, and its founder and no. 1 (by far) donar, does not know the bar pass rate of its law school. Thus, for him to tell prospective students its the pre-eminent Catholic law school in the country is a like that borders on fraudulent marketing.

          Its one thing to sell a $10 dollar pizza that way, especially when “taste” is a highly subjective criterion. It’s another when you try to use similiar tactics to market a law school that requires a massive financial investmet for most people, and even in the case of his offer to TAC students for free tuition, a 3 year invesstment of their time.

          Further, such a student will not be able to go to law school again in the sense sommeone with an LLM will not have the same market cachet as a top young graduate from an elite school. A highly qualified student risks significant career damage by attending an academic joke like Ave Maria.

          In short, Monaghan is putting his ego driven need to succeed as a law school founder ahead of the well-being of others. It’s one thing entirely if he’s forthright about the reasons why he is offering the deal, but to use puffery in that circumstance does not seem to me to be consistent with moral Catholic behavior.

      • For those who may not be aware, JonJ, Anonymous, St. Peter, and ‘Your Faithful Catholic’ all support the INTRINSIC EVIL of HOMOSEXUAL (Sodomy) MARRIAGE,
        and they each try to falsely denigrate everyone who disagrees with them.
        They are trolls on a Catholic web site.

        They do not care about TRUTH – which is paramount.

        • Now Martha, don’t go bearing false witness against thy neighbor.

          I consistently take the position here that I do NOT exp ect the Church to endorse, or participate, in gay marriage.

          I do contend that the Church has taken immoral positions with respect to homosexuals in court cases that is inconsistent with Church doctrine.

          I do think the Church has stood by while society at large persecuted homosexuals and did nothing beside mouth some meaningless platitudes about how homosexuals should be treated with dignity.

          I do say that “catholics” who yelled and screamed about documents coming from the Synod on Faith and the Family that suggested that homosexuals had gifts from God that they can share with the rest of society, I wonder at their so called devotion to “truth” when they don’t accept this statement that is clearly in line with Chruch doctrine.

          Sinners—despite their sins—do have gifts from God that they should be allowed to share with the rest of society. Gluttons of all stripes are not precluded from holding a job (the Catholic church supported a legal position that said organizations should be able to exclude people for having a homosexual orientation in BSA vs. Dale, the Church has also supported the idea that employers should be able to fire employees for being gay). And cahtolic do not seem to think that the morbidly obses should be prevented from having a job without continued employment being conditioned on losing weight and endin g their gluttony.

          • This stands based upon your own posts. You can not couch it any other way.
            For those who may not be aware, JonJ, Anonymous, St. Peter, and ‘Your Faithful Catholic’ all support the INTRINSIC EVIL of HOMOSEXUAL (Sodomy) MARRIAGE,
            and they each try to falsely denigrate everyone who disagrees with them.
            They are trolls on a Catholic web site.
            They do not care about TRUTH – which is paramount

        • Most of the Anonymous posters here do not support gay marriage.
          There is a least one who does.

          • Anonymous, if you do not want to lumped in with everything the poster ‘Anonymous’ writes, change your name.
            I think you are the same person playing troll games to confuse.
            Satan loves confusion.

      • . Thugs? (Toothy grin, snickers politely). Forsooth! We’ll not tolerate such. Impudence, thou knave! (Slaps glove across anon’ chin). Choose yr seconds wisely. Or alas, in his case, randomly.

  8. Jon J,, when you are smart enough to earn millions of dollars,
    and when you give millions of dollars out of your own pocket toward faithful Catholic Education,
    and when you pay for Catholic education scholarships out of your own pocket;
    and when you establish a Catholic radio station;
    and when you donate to Priests for Life;
    and when you build a school and church for the poor in Nicaragua – – – –
    ONLY then can you cast the first stone.

    Tom Monahan does a lot more that does not make the religious or secular press.

    What have you personally done in your life to help others ?

    • Brian,

      How interesting that you think that i should defer to Tom Monaghan, presumably because I am not smart enought to make millions of dollars and then donate that money.

      How is this attitude that reflects nothing more than a heirarchy built on worldly status should matter in regard to a question about faith? Did you forget about “blessed be the poor”, “the meek shall inherit the earth”, and “through the eye of a needle”?

      Anyway, anyone who has been through the ups and downs of founding a company knows that business “success” does not necessarilly reflect “intelligence”. Complete imbeciles like the Kardashian, and Kim Zolciak are multimillionaires without having an ounce of “smart”.

      In silicon valley, the intelilgence among even failed companies is shocking. Luck has a lot more to do with the process than most would like to admit.


    ” Ave Maria School of Law is one of the nation’s most outstanding law schools, according to The Princeton Review, which features the school in the new 2015 edition of its annual book, “The Best 169 Law Schools” “.

    According to the Princeton Review, Jon J. has no clue what he is talking about and 69% pass the bar on their first attempt.

    • 69% is still a crummy bar passage rate. If you recall, the 48% bar passage rate cited in 2011 was 20 points WORSE than the next worst law school. That means that Ave Maria is now drawing even with the bottom echelon of bar passage rates.

      Thus, Monaghan is LYING when he calls it a pre-eminant anything. And, does “The Princeton Review” have anything to do with Princeton University? I think not. Ratings can be heavily influenced by massaging the rater, and that’s easy to do when an individual has a lot of money.

      Bar passage rate is a truth that isn’t dependent on “secular” or “biased” opinions either way. And 69% is bad. Even 3rd and 4th tier law schools have better bar passage rates. Elite schools have bar passage rates in the high 90 percentiles.

      • Richard C, says:

        JonJ. since when do you know more than a Diocese Bishop that someone in that Diocese is Faithful or not ?

        No one said Tom Monahan is a Saint – except you.
        But he is much more Faithful than you (based upon several of your postings).

        Prove your alligations against Monahan. I would sue you for slander if I were him. (And I’m not even Catholic.)

    • JIM, you’re the one that doesn’t know anything.

      You are using the logical fallacy of “appeal to authority”. I know you don’t know about things like the logical fallacies from classical rhetoric, but–then again—I went to a law school with a bar passage rate over 90%.

      • Richard C, says:

        It does not matter JonJ, you used figures from 5 years ago to lie to people.
        Ave Maria Law School in FLORIDA is not very old to begin with.

        • Anonymous says:

          JonJ gave you a link to an article backing his humbers that is one month old. It reflects the numbers from this summer’s bar exam. Please stop telling people they lie just because you don’t like what they say.

        • Anonymous says:

          “University of Florida recorded the highest passage rate (90.6 percent) while Florida State University students were second at 81.8 percent. The Ave Maria School of Law in Collier County had the lowest passage rate (56.6 percent) among the state’s 12 law schools.

          from a link JonJ presented 2 hours before your statement: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/2014/10/08/famu-law-students-continue-improve-bar-exam/16920227/

          This means that the bar passage rate is actually trending DOWNWARDS. To his credit, Monahan is doing his best to get better students to the school.

          Please chill on the rhetoric. Why so defensive? Are you trying for the top honors in the #churchofnasty ?

        • Well Richard, that was the first article i had ever read about Ave Maria Law School. Btw, it was not 5 years old, it was from 2011.

          Of course the current bar pass rate of 56.6% is nothing to brag about, and is still the worst in Florida by a large margin.

          So yeah, Monaghan is STILL lying when he calls AMU the pre-eminent catholic law school in the country.

      • Aha! 🙂
        “This was the noblest Roman of them all:
        All the conspirators save only he
        Did that they did in envy of great Caesar;
        He only, in a general honest thought
        And common good to all, made one of them.”

        Julius Caesar 5.5.75-8, Mark Antony, of Brutus
        Envy, the cause of so much villainy and strife.

  10. Jon, both Saint John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have had special audiences with Tom Monahan, and the first thing Pope Benedict asked Tom was “how is Ave Maria”. – This was reported by the VATICAN Press.

    Your dishonest allegations about who is Faithful to the Church and who is not, is insanity at best.
    Some of the Professors of Theology hired by Monahan have been appointed to the PONTIFICAL Academy of Thomas Aquinas, which you can find on the Vatican web site.

    • Papal audiences do not mean that Monaghan is a saint himself.

      For example, the Church once endorsed the witch-hunting work by the writer of The Hammer of God. Now, to the Church’s credit, they withdrew their impramatur when they found out what that nutjob was preaching and doing.

      Similarly, in the 70’s, the Vatican Bank was drawn into the fringes of a mafia security fraud scandal by Italian businessman Michele Sidona—who had extensive Vatican connections, and (i believe) multiple audiences with the Pope.

      Now, I have a hard time believing the Vatican Bank knowingly participated in securities fraud, but—at the least—they put their trust in someone Dante would call an Evil Counsellor.

      The truth is that the Vatican, and the Popes themselves, suffer from all the worldly limitations that any bureaucracy faces. The right hand doesn’t necessarily know what the left is doing. Consequently, Papal audiences and inquiries about how Ave Maria is doing, do not mean everything that happens there is in accordance with Vatican knowledge.

      The idea, for example, that Ave Maria has passed Geoorgetown Law School or Notre Dame Law School with their 68% bar passage rate (up from 48% in 2011) is a joke.

      • Jonel Peterson says:

        You are lying again JonJ. Who said Georgetown and Notre Dame are also not good law schools? I’d be surprised if they also were not listed in the top schools.
        You really hate good Catholics don’t you. You do not want people to take advantage of scholarships.
        You lied about the zoning and community development by Collier Development Company. (Monahan was involved in the planning of the Oratory, and University.)

        Btw Georgetown and Notre Dame violate Church teaching frequently and do not adhere to “Ex Corde Ecclesiae” as required which is part of the Apostolic Constitution.
        They should be forbidden to call themselves “Catholic”.

        • Now Jonei,

          For Monaghan’s statement calling Ave Maria the pre-eminent catholic law school in the country, either 1) it has academically surpassed every catholic law school in the country, which includes Notre Dame and Georgetown or 2) somehow, Georgetown and Notre Dame are not genuine “catholic” law schools.

          Now, we know that 1 is a joke. Ave Maria is barely competitive with UNACCREDITED law schools, with their current bar pass rate of 56.6%, much less than schools like Georgetown and Notre Dame which typically have bar pass rates over 90%.

          For 2 to be true, then Monaghan would have to know more than Church authorities about what makes a law school catholic. Either way, Monaghan is an egotistical liar.

      • Meeeeeeeooooooow!

  11. Don’t feed the trolls.

    Let’s change the theme to a positive one: the excellence of Thomas Aquinas College. I visited TAC once in Santa Paula, CA (while also visiting Ojai) and it is a wonderful Catholic college where many students and faculty members attend daily Mass together. The school produces many vocations to the priesthood and sisterhood.

    Trolls who hate the Catholic Church and the Catholic magisterium hate this and want to foment internal .

    Mr. Monaghan is a multimillionaire who has decided to fund the law school educations of 50 students for the entire three years, preferably students from TAC. Given the fact that a law school education commonly leaves students deeply in debt, I think it is a great idea, and who cares what a troll thinks about the quality of Ava Maria law school.

    Perhaps another way of comparing bar passage rate is this: if Ave Maria law school attracst better students who are both strong Catholics and strong student academically, then the bar passage rates will improve. Isn’t that a good thing?

    Trolls have a common trait: they beat a dead horse to distract attention from the truth.

    • errata:

      …foment internal strife…


    • Anonymous says:

      So Mark, just curious: Why is there a history of treating critics of the school to such nasty tactics as have been reported widely, and you see it here on this page? Why not just deal with the substance of the criticisms like every other institution does? Why go for the jugular if there is no substance to the accusations?

      • LIES / inaccuracies should never be propagated, and must be dealt with surely and swiftly, and accurately.

        TRUTH is important on a Catholic web site.
        Liars need to be promptly chastised.

      • Anonymous, you are talking mostly about:
        JonJ, St, Peter, Your Faithful Catholic, and yourself (Anonymous) as being “critics” of most things Catholic. And sometimes Bob One.
        You are each trolls on a Catholic web site.

        Same offenders, same dishonesty, same inaccuracies, same Trolls, all the time.
        Be honest for a change.
        We don’t need you to be critics. Your opinions are not important to Catholics, because they usually violate the Faith.

    • With a bar passage rate of 56.6%, they are getting the true market value of a legal education at Ave Maria University.

      Btw, 56.6 is the correct current number, the person above who cited 69% isn’t correct and I have included the link in the post above.

      Of course, one thing that sets me off is Monaghan lying about the quality of his law school. Having been a law student myself, and seeing people from lower tier school struggle to get jobs, I think it’s unconscionable to lie to students about the quality of the legal education they will receive.

      Honesty would be to say that Ave Maria is dedicated to teaching the law from a orthodox catholic perspective, and that we are working at improving the bar passage rate. Calling it the pre-eminent Catholic law school in the country (which implies it is academically ahead of Georgetown, Notre Dame, and Loyola Marymount) is a joke—and, to my mind, is far too similar to the “puffing” that occurs in mainstream marketing which is really nothing more than lying.

      This is especially true when you have someone who is attempting to trade on his orthodox identity and so-called moral viewpoint in order to attract students. The honest position is to talk about how they are strong on doctrine but are currently weak on academics.

      I would even accept a sort of ego-stroking pitch in which AMU tells prospective students that can change if we can attract bright young students with your academic capabilities.

    • Blah, what matters is how Ave Maria’s graduates perform in practice, of which bar pass rate is a primary measuring stick.

      A 56.6% pass rate is humiliatingly bad. Among low schools, that puts Ave Maria among the worst law schools in the country. A 56.6% pass rate puts you among unaccredited institutions—you obviously aren’t a pre-eminent anything.

  12. People here have awfully short memories about Monaghan and his various antics at Ave Maria University, including: 1) accepting $4 million from pro-choice, thrice-divorced Tom Golisano in return for honoring him on campus by naming their fieldhouse after him (at least Notre Dame didn’t also take a $multimillion check from Obama in return for honoring him, at least as far as we know); 2) the scandalous tenure and firing of Fr. Joseph Fessio as Provost; 3) donating $10,000 to the Cardinal Newman Society so that AMU could get a more favorable review; 4) Ongoing persecution and harassment of this female reporter from The Wanderer for daring to publish the truth about AMU: http://romancatholicworld.wordpress.com/2009/08/04/the-chronicles-of-ave-maria-%C2%A9-ave-maria-the-promise-the-reality/ 5) almost 10 years of scandals of all types regarding the law school in particular are documented here: http://fumare.blogspot.com/

    The list simply goes on and on. Students at TAC should run the other direction when offered Tom Monaghan’s money.

      • Pete, you do realize that the local dioceses recognize both Georgetown and Notre Dame as catholic institutions?

        Are you saying you know more than the local bishop about what is, or is not, a catholic institution?

        Are you saying that what is accounted a Catholic institution can be due to politics, or the unfortunate devotion of some bishops to revenue? If so, the same could be said about Ave Maria’s gaining the “catholic” designation in 2011

        If you are saying we must look at the actions of the institution in question, then Monaghan’s lies about the quality of his law school must be considered. He is, in effect, defrauding the students that pay tuition if he’s being misleading about the quality of his school.

        That act should certainly be considered about a school’s “catholic” identity if we are to consider Georgetown’s and Notre Dame’s issues with respect to doctrinal conformity.

        • JonJ, you certainly don’t know much about the zoning process in the majority of States. Developers always need approval for everything as part of the zoning process for the County as well as all State requirements.
          Collier Development donated land for public as well as Catholic schools inside Ave Maria town, paved at their expense the nearest major road outside the community for several miles (public use) from 2 to 4 lanes, donated land for environmental purposes, etc.
          It’s all 100% legal, the people who live in and nearby are very happy, the tax base for the County has increased.
          GOOD JOB Ave Maria !

          (If you don’t like it, stay in your own home town.. Ave Maria Town does not need evil people like you.
          I feel sorry for you that you have nothing better to do with your life, that is constructive.

          FYI, I thought I told you before that the partnership was Monaghan did the Unviersity, Oratory, and private stuff; while Collier worked with the homebuilders and public facitilies, etc.

          JonJ, you are one very jealous dude.

          PS You lied (again) in one of your posts about no fire and police service.
          This is all good, there is no beef.

        • We are just starting to work with the Bishops in both Diocese to get Georgetown and Notre Dame to comply with the Apostolic Constitution or force them to quit fraudulently advertising themselves as “Catholic”.

          The Universities can make the decision on whether they want to continue advertising themselves as Catholic or be public institutions, based upon their own chosen behavior.
          But they can not violate Apostolic Constitution and fraudulently call themselves Catholic.

          Neither adhere to “EX CORDE ECCLESIAE in entirety as of this printing.

        • JonJ must be one of those “Catholic” residents of Southwest Florida who hate everything about the orthodox Bishop Dewane and orthodox Ave Maria.

          • I’m not certain, but I doubt JonJ lives in FLORIDA (he made too many errors in his posts using anti-Catholic media sources for the most part); I do live in FL and

            I’m not certain, but I doubt that JonJ is a Catholic, unless he is a Catholic heretic.

            I am certain that many of his posts are anti-Catholic.
            I am certain that JonJ will promote only the gospel of JonJ in the public media.
            I am certain that JonJ’s goals, are not to help people get to Heaven.
            (These are based upon his own posts over the past several months.)

  13. In any case, no good deed should go unpunished!

  14. Georgetown?
    Wasn’t that a Catholic school once upon a time?

  15. Jonel Peterson says:

    Monaghan is a Catholic with a particular interest in pro-life causes. He established or helped establish a number of Catholic organizations and Catholic educational establishments. In 1987 Monaghan received Holy Communion from Pope John Paul II in his private papal chapel at the Vatican. The orchestral Ave Maria Mass, by composer Stephen Edwards, was commissioned by Monaghan “to express in music the spiritual commitment behind the founding of Ave Maria College and Ave Maria School of Law.” This mass, recorded and released on CD in 2002, was dedicated by the composer to the victims of September 11. Monaghan publicly promotes daily attendance at Mass, daily recitation of the rosary and frequent sacramental confession. He has also committed to spending what remains of his $1 billion fortune on philanthropic endeavors.

    For all you TROLLS out there, you have never met Tom Monaghan are merely repeating false statements for your own political beliefs and harming the Catholic Faith.
    And by the way TROLLS and Dave N., if you had done reasonable research –
    you would know that his Diocese Bishop has stated Monaghan is a Faithful Catholic – someone provided a link directly from the Bishop. (Not that you trolls would care.)
    This is about Catholics getting a good Catholic Education, not about any personality which the trolls are trying to discourage.
    Also if you trolls cared about TRUTH you would know that Mr. Monaghan has retired from the

    • Jonel Peterson says:

      Also if you trolls cared about TRUTH you would know that Mr. Monaghan has retired from the position of Chancellor/President several years ago.

    In 1983 Tom Monaghan established the Mater Christi Foundation, today known as the Ave Maria Foundation, to focus on Catholic education, Catholic media, community projects and other Catholic charities.
    In 1987 he helped form Legatus, an organization for Catholic CEOs of companies earning more than $4 million per year to promote and support “…moral ethics in business in conformity with the teachings of the Roman Catholic church so that the lives of all can be enhanced”. The name was taken from the Latin word for commander of a legion. Legatus was to serve as a spiritual resource and social community for “top-ranking Catholic business leaders”.

    His 1987 Vatican visit moved him so much he returned to the United States committed to promoting the Catholic faith. He soon established Ave Maria Radio, the Ave Maria List pro-life political action committee,
    and the Thomas More Law Center, a public interest law firm dedicated to promoting social conservative issues such as opposition to abortion, same sex marriage, and secularism.

    The Ave Maria foundation donates resources to help alleviate poverty in Central and South America.
    In addition, his foundation established the Spiritus Sanctus Academies.. These elementary schools are administered by the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist. This order of teaching sisters has benefited from Monaghan’s philanthropy. In 10 years, it has grown rapidly, from 4 to 70 nuns.

    The Ave Maria Foundation has subsequently fine-tuned its focus to higher education, and has established both a university and a law school.

  17. Arthur Lee says:

    Bar pass rates are often not a reflection of the quality of instruction at a law school as much as the quality of the applicant pool. New and smaller schools simply don’t have the ability to select among hundreds of applicants with LSAT scores in the 90th+ percentile like Stanford or Harvard. Even a large state school, and some can boast of having pre-eminent law schools, can pick from a stellar applicant pool. A run of the mill lawyer can teach a law class, and the ability to pass a bar exam can be learned from a book. Top schools often get their rankings from the size of their libraries and the prolificacy of the law treatise authors on their faculties, who frankly couldn’t care about teaching bar pass techniques. A new school with under 30 exam takers hardly presents a representative sampling which can be meaningfully compared with a large established law school. And finally, passing the bar is such a mundane exercise that it really has no predictive value in terms of the quality of the lawyer who is admitted. I’m licensed to practice in 2 states for 30 years, and I’ve seen excellent lawyers who came from unaccredited schools and others come out of top tier schools who were hardly functional. God Bless AMU for striving to provide legal education in an authentic Catholic context. For that, there is nobody who competes with them.

    • Agree with Arthur’s post. My experience accords, and btw, hold onto your seats, some lawyers are not ethical, and some unethical lawyers graduated from name law schools. Just a local example: remember the Stanford Law grad and his wife, also a Stanford Law rad, who were involved in a set-up and fraudulent transaction to discredit a teacher? He was with recently convicted of a crime arising out of that situation and will likely lose his license. And she isapparently divorcing him (unknown if her license is in jeopardy). No doubt both had high LSAT scores and outstanding g.p.a.’s (although one might now wonder if the grades were received honestly).

      Good law school academics are just one part in the formation of a “good lawyer.” Practice experience, diligence, empathy, good judgment, reasonable fees for services rendered, pro bono activities, the list goes on and on…Some folks need to take the bar exam twice or more. Some become good lawyers, some don’t.

      If Mr. Monahan is able to provide free tuition to Ave Maria for three years of law school to hundreds of law students over the next decade, while enrolling many outstanding Thomas Aquinas College students, the impact will be quick and amazing.

      Ave Maria and its community will benefit from the infusion of excellent, mostly Catholic students who typically attend daily mass and who will likely take legal leadership/service positions in the community following graduation that reflect Catholic values.

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.

Speak Your Mind

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.