PopeWatch: Notre Dame
Pope Francis had some interesting words for the Trustees of the University of Notre Dame:
Essential in this regard is the uncompromising witness of Catholic universities to the Church’s moral teaching, and the defense of her freedom, precisely in and through her institutions, to uphold that teaching as authoritatively proclaimed by the magisterium of her pastors. It is my hope that the University of Notre Dame will continue to offer unambiguous testimony to this aspect of its foundational Catholic identity, especially in the face of efforts, from whatever quarter, to dilute that indispensable witness. And this is important: its identity, as it was intended from the beginning. To defend it, to preserve it and to advance it!
Go here to read the rest. This is the same week This is the same week that Gary Gutting a Professor of Philosophy at Notre Dame, and someone in the past I have written about here, has an opinion piece in The New York Times calling on Pope Francis to reconsider the opposition of the Church to abortion:
There is, then, a strong case for thinking that abortions always bring about some bad results — at a minimum the loss of potential human life — and that for most pregnancies abortion would be morally wrong. But this conclusion is limited in two ways: A woman’s right to control her reproductive life can, as in the case of rape, offset even a person’s right to life; and at least at the earlier stages of pregnancy, the embryo has only the moral standing of potential, not actual, human life, which may be overridden by harm to humans with full moral standing.
These limitations, I suggest, correspond to the “very difficult situations” (such as “rape” and “extreme poverty”) in which the pope, in “Evangelii Gaudium,” admitted the church has “done little to adequately accompany women.” Allowing for exceptions to the moral condemnation of abortion in some of these painful situations would not contradict the pope’s overall commitment to the “value of the human person.” Rather, it would admit what reason shows: There are morally difficult issues about abortion that should be decided by conscience, not legislation. The result would be a church acting according to the pope’s own stated standard: preaching not “certain doctrinal or moral points based on specific ideological options” but rather the gospel of love.
Could we have a show of hands from those who believe that Professor Gutting will suffer any consequences from the powers that be at Notre Dame over this article?