Davidson Senior Caitlin McCarthy ‘20 is offering a reward of $200 to any student able to find her religious background. Two weeks ago, McCarthy, along with fifty other humanities students attended the Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee Area. The group left for the conference on Thursday, February 13th and returned the following Sunday. That night McCarthy realized something was missing upon her return — her religious tradition.
Immediately, Caitlin took to the Holy Grail of lost and found items: the Davidson College 2019-2020 Facebook page. Among a series of posts about catcards, heirloom bracelets and airpods, McCarthy asked her peers if anyone had seen her religious faith laying around campus. She concluded the post by asking if any students were headed to the “airport” region within the week to look out for her lost faith.
Within days, Caitlin received numerous direct messages from student sympathizers who had gone through the same experience. Many claim to have lost their religious tradition on the highway between their hometown and Davidson College. Some had found new religions on campus, but none resonated with Caitlin.
After a series of dead ends, the senior turned to The Yowl as a final plea to the Davidson Campus to help her find her religious tradition. Caitlin explains that “I…..I think I might have been a Catholic? My last name is Irish but, race is also a construct so I don’t know anymore.” McCarthy went on to explain that her parents attend a Non-Denominational church, but has no memory of ever attending a service with them during her youth.
McCarthy worries that her faith was lost months or even years before attending the interfaith conference, but was too concentrated on the hustle and bustle of Davidson life to realize when it went missing. She went to The Oasis to consult with the four different chaplains (Buddhist, Jewish, Catholic, and Presbyterian), but they were all very supportive of whatever faith she wanted to choose, which turned out to be completely unhelpful.
“I mean, maybe I just need to listen to what my tour guide said when I first visited Davidson,” McCarthy said. “She said, ‘Religion is whatever you want it to be here, and if it’s not for you it can be completely invisible.’ My faith is doing the invisibility thing right now.”
Caitlin encourages anyone who has seen her particular faith to come forward and claim their reward.