Ex Corde Ecclesiae

Head in Sand

The Sexual Revolution and the Do-Nothing Church

“Abandonment of Christian sexual morality is the core of the Church’s self-secularization.”  ∼ Gabriele Kuby, The Global Sexual Revolution From time to time, the church finds itself with egg on its face because of its failure to speak out in the face of grievous injustices. The Nazi episode, the Civil Rights movement in the United [...]

How Catholic Schools Lose Their Identity

Faced with a declining population, decreasing tax revenues, underfunded schools, and no money to clean up a toxic environmental hazard, the town of Black Hawk, Colorado, voted to legalize gambling. As Newsweek reported back in 1994, the citizens of Black Hawk thought the legalization of gambling would solve their problems. Alderman Herb Bowle, for example, [...]

New Dorm Visitation Study Reveals Need for Reform

In a hyper-sexual society, once-traditional morals have eroded even in our Catholic institutions—and especially on many Catholic college campuses. Research shows that the pervasive “hook up” culture on the typical American campus is found even at many Catholic colleges, a fact that will not surprise most Crisis readers. Given the documented consequences of the Sexual [...]

Challenges and Ambiguities at the World Congress on Education

I write this on a plane somewhere over the Atlantic flying home from the Church’s World Congress on Catholic Education held November 18-21 at the Vatican and Castel Gandolfo. More than 2,000 educators from Catholic schools and universities gathered in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Vatican II’s Gravissimum Educationis and the 25th anniversary of Pope Saint [...]

A Debate Over the Religious Identity of Ukrainian Catholic University

We at the Ukrainian Catholic University were surprised and disappointed by Dr. Alexander Sich’s recent article in Crisis Magazine. The Ukrainian Catholic University proudly teaches and promotes Church doctrine on the integrity of the family and the theology of the body, including its teachings on abortion, marital fidelity, birth control, and the sacred nature of [...]

The Untapped Potential of Catholic Schools Week

In case you haven’t noticed, it’s the 41st annual National Catholic Schools Week. Sponsored by the National Catholic Education Association, Catholic Schools Week typically consists of open houses, themed logos, regional “all schools” Masses, and a host of other activities for families and parishes involved with Catholic schools. Harmless enough, right? Fun for students, good for [...]

Diversity is Not a Catholic Value

Diversity is a modern shibboleth. It has long become the secular creed of the United States, and in no area is it celebrated as religiously as in academia, mostly as a substitute for true religion. It has now finally invaded universities that by name are still Catholic. Under the pretext of diversity, proponents engage in [...]

The Orwellian World of Catholic Higher Education

In 1990, Pope John Paul II released Ex Corde Ecclesiae, the papal document defining the centrality of Catholic higher education. Its title translated as “from the heart of the Church,” the document called for Catholic colleges to be faithful to their Catholic mission and accountable to their local bishops. Fiercely resisted by many Catholic college [...]

The Upside-Down World of Catholic Higher Education

In an ideal Catholic world, if a Catholic theologian promoted a woman’s right to choose abortion and encouraged access to same-sex marriage, while also comparing the sacrifice of the Mass to an act of homosexual intercourse, the work of that theologian would be marginalized. But, in the upside-down world of Catholic higher education in 2012, [...]

Blatty v Georgetown – DOA

The Exorcist author, William Blatty, is spearheading a drive to canonically remove the designation “Catholic” from Georgetown University.  His effort is both noble and correct.  Unfortunately, the petition will be dead on arrival (DOA). Blatty and other orthodox Catholics are incensed that Kathleen Sibilius, Health and Human Services Secretary, a pro-abortion politician and a supporter [...]

Apostate Catholic Universities?

In a recent piece (to which this one is a sequel) I quoted the mission statement of the Cardinal Newman Society of Virginia, founded in 1993, with the intention “to help renew and strengthen Catholic identity in Catholic higher education… by assisting and supporting education that is faithful to the teaching and tradition of the Catholic Church.” [...]

Victory for Rights of Catholic Organizations

Only a week after Catholics nationwide completed a campaign protesting the Obama administration’s violation of the religious liberty of Catholic institutions, the Supreme Court let stand a key federal ruling that upholds the rights of religious employers. The national protest, encouraged by parish bulletin inserts from the U.S. bishops' conference and appeals from at least [...]

Bishops Betrayed on Assisted Suicide

Even as the nation's bishops react with alarm to a recent Montana Supreme Court ruling allowing physician-assisted suicide, their efforts are being undermined by ethics and law professors at several Jesuit universities. Last week, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops approved a statement describing assisted suicide as "a terrible tragedy, one that a compassionate society [...]

How Universities Fool Their Donors

In my 15 years with Crisis Magazine, the Morley Institute, and now InsideCatholic, the conversation that most often reoccurs is the one about the fate of the Catholic university and college. It begins inevitably with alumni complaining about the latest anti-Catholic outbreak on the hallowed grounds of their former college campus and ends with their [...]

The Unfinished Reform of Catholic Colleges

Twenty years ago, the opposition of certain Catholic college leaders and professors to Pope John Paul II's Ex Corde Ecclesiae was strident. They claimed the Vatican's guidelines for Catholic colleges would encourage dictator-bishops to violate academic freedom. Non-Catholic faculty members would sue bishops and colleges for discrimination. Colleges would become second-rate catechetical programs. Many others [...]

Academic Freedom and the Catholic University

Academic freedom is a great good that should be cherished and honored by every university community. This precious heritage of freedom originated in the Christian West and rose initially in the great universities of Europe, which themselves sprang from the cathedral schools of the early Middle Ages. Great universities such as Padua, Bologna, Louvain, Paris, [...]

Ten Ways To Renew Catholic Colleges

Most alumni of Catholic colleges and universities in the United States are blind to what is troubling Catholic higher education today. Despite increased public awareness of scandals at many Catholic colleges, including pro-abortion commencement speakers, campus performances of The Vagina Monologues, and dissident and heretical theology professors, alumni publications rarely hint at the controversies on [...]

The State of Catholic Higher Education

The Notre Dame commencement scandal was of such crucial significance to the Church and the renewal of Catholic higher education that it dominated much of the summer. But as students complete their first full month of studies and my colleagues at the Cardinal Newman Society wrap up the second edition of our Catholic college guide, [...]

Reconciling Judas: Evangelizing the Theologians

In this Crisis Magazine classic, Edward T. Oakes, S.J. looks at the troubling tendency of theologians to abandon the historic faith.     In 1968, a professor of theology at the University of Regensburg wrote a modestly sized treatise on the Apostles' Creed called Introduction to Christianity. Its impact, however, was anything but modest, for [...]

Institutionalized Dissent Greets the Holy Father

Pope Benedict XVI will arrive in the United States next week. It's predictable that various Catholic groups will use the occasion to gain visibility for their cause. Such is the case with Voice of the Faithful, whose full-page ad in the April 8 New York Times begins with "On behalf of all Catholics who share [...]

Jesuit University President Attacks George Weigel

The February 20 issue of the Denver Catholic Register published a column on the Jesuits titled "Some Questions for Father General" by George Weigel. In response, the president of the University of San Francisco, Rev. Stephen A. Privett, S.J., published "Attack on Jesuits Out of Place" in Catholic San Francisco, the archdiocesan newspaper.   Father [...]

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