EDITOR: As I read Thursday's article "Diocese requires teachers to follow church doctrine," I could hear the uproar from liberal Santa Rosa. This may be an infringement upon the teachers' freedom of belief, but the freedom to make rules is important to religious (and other) organizations. If I were a teacher, I would have difficulty signing the agreement, as I am just a young adult still trying to separate all the shades of gray into blacks and whites. However, the schools are founded on Catholicism and all its values, so expecting teachers to adhere is completely reasonable.

I commend Bishop Robert Vasa for striving for consistency in the body of Catholic schoolteachers, as consistency is one of the most difficult standards for humankind to meet. The troubling human vice of hypocrisy damages society wherever it is manifest. Vasa has taken an honorable stand in ensuring biblical views are both lived out and upheld, thus setting an invariable example for the students.


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Crisis Care: The new mental institutions

Sonoma County has a chronic shortage of psychiatric hospital beds. As as a result, a growing number of mentally ill residents are ending up in local emergency rooms and in the jail system. A four-part series, run on four consecutive Sundays, examines the causes and ramifications of the current state of the county’s mental health system, and the people who are impacted the most.

Aug. 6 — Hospitals: The closure of two psychiatric hospitals in Sonoma County has left a gaping hole.

Aug. 13 — Jail: The Sonoma County Jail has become the largest psychiatric treatment facility in the county.

Today — Solutions: Sonoma County explores ways to improve services to people suffering from severe mental illness.

Aug. 27 — Your response: Readers share their stories about Sonoma County's mental health system.

Ongoing coverage: www.pressdemocrat.com/crisiscare

Share your story

We want to hear about your experience with local psychiatric emergency services. What do you do when you or a loved one faces a mental health crisis? Have you or a loved one sat in a hospital bed waiting to be transferred to an out-of-county psychiatric hospital or other mental health facility? Have you or a loved one received psychiatric services in the Sonoma County Jail’s mental health unit? Please send a brief account of your experience to Martin Espinoza at martin.espinoza@pressdemocrat.com.