It is with great sorrow that we come together today with the departure of our president and dear friend, Fr. Julio Giulietti, S.J. We have all come here to seek the truth, and to know and understand what has happened within the university walls and what has become of the reputation of WJU. In this light, please invite anyone to read the blog and feel free to comment as you wish.

Any posts with profanity are not welcome, otherwise, please speak your mind. You are a part of this university and we want to hear your voice!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

In Memory of Bishop Schmitt

The beloved Bishop Bernard Schmitt, retired and loved Bishop of Wheeling-Charleston, died peacefully on August 16, the day before his birthday.  Bishop Schmitt had a good relationship with Wheeling College, especially with Fr. Giulietti whom he thought was smart and knew what a Catholic and Jesuit institution should be.  That friendship led Bishop Schmitt to include WJU in his will as part of his desire to assist catholic education in his beloved West Virginia.  Not long after Fr. Julio was foolishly fired from the college, Bishops Schmitt changed his will so that no funds would be left to the college upon his death.  The Sister of the Visitation were also in Bishop Schmitts will.  But when they were not allowed by the local bishop to sell their property to their friendly neighbors and shortly departed West Virginia, they too came out of the will.  This in not news to those who were close to Bishop Schmitt.

Let's shift topics.  According to friends working at a West Virginia bank, the present president, Mr. Byer (I forgot what number president he is since there were so many over the last eight years!) is full of strange news.  He's broadcasting that the college is ready for a gigantic burst of new students.  People who know money, WJU and the Tri-State area are perplexed.  They wonder where this fellow's mind might be. From where will these students come from?

One natural location would be the catholic schools in Pittsburgh.  Fr. Giulietti smartly cultivated those catholic schools so that many seniors went to attend the college only to find that he was fired.  Most of them left by mid-year.  No others have arrived since.  The leadership of the catholic schools in Pittsburgh seem not willing to point their students toward WJU.  My Pittsburgh acquaintances say they feel it is no longer a Jesuit school although some dysfunctional and retired ones live there. Duquesne is the only catholic school on their radar.

Does not Mr. Beyer and his aids realize that billing WJU as a source of Jesuit values is no longer true? The card that made the school unique and worthy of parental sacrifice is non-existent.  The "Jesuit charted and values" were wiped out with the departure of its last Jesuit president.
The tuition at the college is very high in a region that is financially damaged.  Why would financially strapped families send children to an expensive school that has lost its soul?  West Liberty University, here we come!

There is more. According to local business sources, Mr. Beyer has been using needed depreciation funds to plug a deep and wide red hole in his budget.  What will he do the next time?  What is left to pilfer?

The mediums of false advertizing and financial plugs are at the brink.

Larry Catraro


  1. Bishop Schmitt's Last Will and Testament is available for public inspection at the office of the Clerk of the County Commission, Ohio County Courthouse, Wheeling, WV.

    The Bishop's will was executed by him the 27th day of April, 2006, and thus was written well before the termination of Fr. Guilietti and the closing of Mount de Chantel.

    The fact that WJU and the Sisters of the Visitation were not beneficiaries thereof bears no relationship whatsoever to Mr. Catraro's allegations. In fact, it is impossible to know whether the Bishop ever "changed" his will at all, as only he knew the contents of any prior wills which he may or may not have had.

  2. Mike Fahy, Pro BonoOctober 13, 2011 at 11:58 AM

    This 9/17/11 prolix article unequivocally states that the bishop’s friendship with our fired president “led Bishop Schmitt to include WJU in his will.” Then, “after Fr. Julio was foolishly fired, [the bishop] changed his will” to disinherit WJU, and this was common knowledge “to those close to” the bishop.

    Comment #1 (9/23/11) proffers the twin red herrings of “prior wills” and “termination” date, neither of which is relevant because the filed 2006 will could not have been influenced by a WJU president hired 18 months after the will was signed.

    We can reasonably understand that the bishop would have bequeathed wealth to WJU either in a new will or in a codicil to the 2006 will prior to the 8/5/9 firing of our president by the clandestine troika of Gleeson, O’Donnell, and Stockhausen. After the firing of his friend, the bishop obviously would have ripped apart the bequest to WJU and placed it in the bishop’s circular file. That is a commonplace procedure among wealthy bishops as well as wealthy non-bishops.