Georgetown University Finds a New Low

Thursday, March 10, AD 2016

Just when you thought the dissident “Catholic” university couldn’t find a new low, it manages to surpass even our lowest expectations.

The Lecture Fund at Georgetown University is planning to host Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) President Cecile Richards on campus this April, The Cardinal Newman Society has learned.

“This is the latest in a long history of scandal at Georgetown University,” said Cardinal Newman Society President Patrick Reilly. “Disguised as an academic event, this is nothing more than a platform for abortion advocacy at a Catholic university and under the nose of the Catholic bishops, featuring a wicked woman who defends the sale of baby body parts and is responsible for the deaths of millions of aborted children.”

It would be one thing to invite Richards to a debate, but here she is given the floor to spew her pro-abortion propaganda. And with Ms. Richards, we’re not talking about someone who happens to favor abortion but who is discussing a different topic. No, she is the head of an organization that is responsible for the murder of over 300,000 unborn children per year, not to mention the selling of body parts. Planned Parenthood is just about the most anti-Catholic institution on the face of the Earth, and the head of this organization is being given a platform by an institution that deems itself to be Catholic.

How outrageous is this decision? The Archdiocese of Washington even spoke out against the decision.

In any case, this is not our issue here. What we lament and find sadly lacking in this choice by the student group is any reflection of what should be an environment of morality, ethics and human decency that one expects on a campus that asserts its Jesuit and Catholic history and identity.

One would prefer to see some recognition by this student group of the lives and ministry, focus and values of people like Blessed Óscar Romero, Blessed Teresa of Calcutta and Pope Francis in place of that group’s seemingly constant preoccupation with sexual activity, contraception and abortion. The Archdiocese of Washington is always open and ready to dialogue with the students, faculty and administration of the University on issues of such significance.

The apparent unawareness of those pushing the violence of abortion and the denigration of human dignity that there are other human values and issues being challenged in the world lends credence to the perception of the “ivory tower” life of some on campus. This unfortunately does not speak well for the future. One would hope to see this generation of Georgetown graduates have a far less self-absorbed attitude when facing neighbors and those in need, especially the most vulnerable among us.

When even this Archdiocese condemns an action, you know you’ve gone too far.

I do not normally encourage vocally protesting a speaker, as I generally find it obnoxious. This is a case where I can make an exception.

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11 Responses to Georgetown University Finds a New Low

Georgetown: the Anti-Catholic Catholic University

Monday, May 21, AD 2012

William Peter Blatty, well-known novelist, author of the Exorcist, a Georgetown graduate, class of 1950, is spearheading an effort to force Georgetown to reform, or to cease to call itself Catholic.  Here is his letter:

Dear Friends,

I invite you today to join me in The Father King Society to Make Georgetown Honest, Catholic, and Better by signing on to a very special effort here. I ask you also to curtail your donations to Georgetown University for one year.

The late Jesuit Father Thomas M. King was a good friend. I had the privilege of lecturing his theology class, which started the rumor that he had inspired my priestly character in The Exorcist. Father King inspired many other things; and our effort now.

On May 5, 2012, in a speech to American bishops, Pope Benedict XVI called on America’s Catholic universities to reaffirm their Catholic identity. The Pope noted the failure of many Catholic universities to comply with Blessed John Paul II’s apostolic constitution Ex corde Ecclesiae. The Pope said that preservation of a university’s Catholic identity “entails much more than the teaching of religion or the mere presence of a chaplaincy on campus.”

For 21 years now. Georgetown University has refused to comply with Ex corde Ecclesiaie (“From The Heart of the Church”), and, therefore, with canon law. And, it seems as if every month GU gives another scandal to the faithful! The most recent is Georgetown’s obtuse invitation to Secretary Sebelius to be a commencement speaker.

Each of these scandals is proof of Georgetown’s non-compliance with Ex corde Ecclesiae and canon law. They are each inconsistent with a Catholic identity, and we all know it. A university in solidarity with the Church would not do these prideful things that do so much harm to our communion. (You can pen a heartfelt letter to the Cardinal Archbishop of Washington and the Holy Father offering your own experience here.)

In the months to come, The Father King Society will ask Georgetown and the Church for explanations and decisions. In 1991, in an effort led by courageous Georgetown students, my dearly missed classmate, GU Law Center Prof. Richard Alan Gordon, took the awesome step of submitting a canon law petition asking the Church to remove Georgetown’s right to call itself Catholic. Then Dean of Students John J. DeGioia had authorized the funding of a pro-abortion student advocacy group. A contemporaneous secret memorandum from the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities to the presidents of all Jesuit institutions showed us that Dr. DeGioia’s decision was part of a larger scheme: GU was to be the dissident leader for others to follow. Dean Gordon’s effort was provocative and drastic, but within months of the filing, Rome required Georgetown to reverse itself, and Georgetown did.

Father Tom King was actively involved and submitted an essay to be used in support of the canon law action. (We post it here.) Soon after the 1991 “GU Choice” funding, a meeting took place on campus that collected the students, teachers, alumni and parents who had reacted to the University’s scandal in diverse ways. Fr. King listened intently, and then the mild-speaking priest told us of a call the night before from his brother, also a priest. His brother had said, “Tom, you have to choose sometimes — either you fish or cut bait.” Father King told us that he had decided to fish. And now, at long last, so have I. I ask you to join us!

For almost two decades, The Cardinal Newman Society has pursued with true inspiration and devotion its unique ministry to strengthen Catholic higher education in America. CNS has agreed to help us. Likewise, the St. Joseph’s Foundation, a Texas charity that focuses on canon law, has been a source of valuable information. We appreciate the help of both apostolates.

We may choose to file a canon action again, one much larger in scale and seeking alternative forms of relief that will include, among others, that Georgetown’s right to call itself Catholic and Jesuit be revoked or suspended for a time. We will ask for lesser relief as well. Of course, what we truly seek is for Georgetown to have the vision and courage to be Catholic but clearly the slow pastoral approach has not worked. I invite you to sign the “Mandate of Procurator” on this website so that I, and other alumni, parents, teachers and students, may represent you in this special and historic Church petition.

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3 Responses to Georgetown: the Anti-Catholic Catholic University

  • This is a sad article for me. I didn’t realize that Father King had passed away. He was a good priest. He was one of those old people who can relate to the young in a natural way. He had a taste for Teilhard that I never understood, but he was as orthodox as the day is long.

    I remember one day when I and three other guys were the only attendees at a Mass of his. There was a point in the text where he was supposed to make a reference to “brothers and sisters”. He said “brothers”. I got such a kick out of that.

    For so long it’s been a truism that most Jesuits are unimpressive, but the good ones are fantastic. I hope the order has seen an influx of new, devout priests the way some other institutions have. It’d be a tremendous loss if the last pillars of Jesuit greatness disappear and go unreplaced.

  • It is sad how at a so called catholic university you get kicked out of a room for calling out a tyrant murderer. It is a lot more like the fake catholic church in China which is in accord with the government and calls itself catholic but is not in accordance with the Vicar of Christ. Liars need to be pointed out and cleared from the ranks.

  • As a member of the class of ’62 I just skipped my 50th Reunion for all of the reasons stated by Mr. Blatty. I believed that I would have been a hypocrite to attend and appear by my presence to be tacitly condoning Georgetown’s steady march to the ‘dark side’. My only comment to my friends is that “Georgetown has lost its soul”

Archdiocese of Washington Speaks Out Against Georgetown

Sunday, May 13, AD 2012

Msgr. Pope linked to this editorial from the Catholic Standard.  It condemns Georgetown’s decision to invite Kathleen Sebelius to speak at a commencement, and does so in unequivocal terms.  Here’s one key graph:

Founded in 1789 by John Carroll, a Jesuit priest, Georgetown University has, historically speaking, religious roots. So, too, do Harvard, Princeton and Brown. Over time, though, as has happened with these Ivy League institutions, Georgetown has undergone a secularization, due in no small part to the fact that much of its leadership and faculty find their inspiration in sources other than the Gospel and Catholic teaching. Many are quite clear that they reflect the values of the secular culture of our age. Thus the selection of Secretary Sebelius for special recognition, while disappointing, is not surprising.

And then this:

With all of the people struggling so hard to preserve freedom of religion, and with all that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has said in defense of this important value, Georgetown’s choice of the architect of the radical challenge of such freedom for special recognition can only be seen as a statement of where the university stands – certainly not with the Catholic bishops.

The editorial is not mincing words.  It is plainly stating that Georgetown is, for all intents and purposes, no longer a Catholic university.  As Msgr. Pope notes, these words come from the Archdiocese’s official newspaper, and therefore had to be signed off on by the Cardinal’s senior staff.

There’s much more, and Msgr. Pope also adds his own take on the editorial.

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47 Responses to Archdiocese of Washington Speaks Out Against Georgetown

  • This is good news, Paul Z. Thanks!

  • I think it was a wise conclusion made by the pope it is still none the less such a shame that Goergetown is filled with such dissent. Please take a look at the comments I posted on the article called “Hard Truths for Grads”.

  • *growls about it being DC, not Washington*

  • The story doesn’t make something clear. Is the Secretary being given an honorary doctorate or similar honor as well as being invited to deliver the Commencement address? If not, then is she not the exact type of person you would want to speak before the best and the brightest at a time when these State/Church debates about such fundamental issues have come to the fore?

    Absolutely, Georgetown should not honor her with an award. But if the fruits of 4+ years of Catholic education is insufficient to sustain graduates from losing their Catholic convictions after hearing one speech ‘straight from the horse’s mouth’ so to speak, God help our Catholic faith in North America north of the Rio Grande.

    If Kissinger, at the time of the Vietnam War, were to give such a commencement address, would have been wrong to listen to him lest he corrupt Catholic teaching obliging us to be artisans of peace? Or would be seen as a Catholic institution of learning’s role to facilitate a full and frank exchange debate of such fundamental issues as confront the American Church head-on, with confidence in our hearts of the rightness of our cause.

    As a Canadian, I’m not entirely sure regarding the nuances and customs as to how such commencements are organized in colleges south of the 49th and it is required to bestow such an honor to any invited speakers. If so, that would be a shame for Mme. Secretary should never have been invited. But as Catholic I have sufficient confidence that if Georgetown graduates, armed with faith and knowledge to able to benefit from the exchange, believe she most certainly should be allowed to speak. After all, were we not told to be as wise as the children of this world? How can we do so if we only hear from the one voice? Preaching to the choir exclusively is a poor preparation for life. Mature Catholics need to hear all voices if they intend to live out their faith through a long life, successfully defending the faith in the Public Square.

    Fr. Tim Moyle

  • Fr. Moyle, I disagree with you for several reasons. Secretary Sebelius is, in fact
    being given an honor by Georgetown– the honor of addressing the graduates of one
    of its schools at their commencement. That is very different from being invited to be
    one of several persons participating in a symposium or a debate. She is, in effect,
    being presented by Georgetown to the students as someone who embodies what the
    university seeks to instill in its graduates.

    This won’t be an academic exercise where Madame Secretary’s views will be examined
    and discussed. She will not be taking questions from the assembly. While that would
    be a true exercise of academic freedom, I don’t imagine such a symposium holds much
    interest for her.

    If, as you say, mature Catholics need to hear all voices, would you then have any
    objection if next year Georgetown invited a Klansman or the president of NAMBLA
    to give a commencement address? If so, please explain how theirs are voices that
    should not be given a pulpit at a Catholic college, yet Sebelius’ is.

  • Clinton: All good points. However there is a difference between inviting Mme. Sebelius and the KKK or NAMBLA representative is that the former is someone who is shepherding a revolutionary change in your society whereas the latter two are criminals and/or thugs. One leads your government. The others are dedicated to overthrowing your inclusive government and replacing it with a white-only body (KKK) or proposing the wholesale sexual abuse of children by adults. There is clearly a qualitative difference between them.

    Please do not misunderstand me. I am not au courant as to academic traditions in your country, nor am I up to speed as to all the nuances of your struggles in the health care debate. It only seemed to me that given her role at the center of this debate, she seemed an ideal candidate to address a convocation.

    Fr. Tim

  • Clinton: Sorry for the typo. The 2nd sentence should read: “Mme. Sebelius and the KKK or NAMBLA representative IN that the former is someone…” I guess I shouldn’t start typing away before I’ve had my morning coffee…especially on a Monday morning. I miss my own spelling and grammar errors.

    Fr. Tim

  • “Georgetown’s choice of the architect of the radical challenge of such freedom for special recognition can only be seen as a statement of where the university stands – certainly not with the Catholic bishops” …and certainly not for FREEDOM.

  • Father Tim: ‘she seemed an ideal candidate to address a convocation.’ Isn’t a convocation a prayer for the Holy Spirit?

  • Fr. Moyle, I appreciate your thoughtful response. I brought up the hypothetical
    Klansman/NAMBLA characters to demonstrate that there are in fact voices that
    mature Catholics don’t need to hear– at least, not in the capacity of commencement
    speakers, an honor which implies the endorsement of the hosting college.

    It would be entirely reasonable to invite the woman to Georgetown to participate in
    a public discussion of the HHS mandate. That would be a legitimate exercise of
    academic freedom, and I would agree that sensible Catholics would be interested to
    hear Secretary Sebelius defending her position in a civil discussion with her critics.

    Such a discussion is not what Georgetown is proposing. Secretary Sebelius is being
    given the honor (and implied endorsement) of an invitation to give a commencement
    address. She will not be fielding questions, there will be no opportunity for rebuttal.
    This is nothing less than a deliberate thumb in the eye of the bishops by the admin-
    istration of Georgetown.

  • “However there is a difference between inviting Mme. Sebelius and the KKK or NAMBLA representative in that the former is someone who is shepherding a revolutionary change in your society whereas the latter two are criminals and/or thugs.”

    With all respect, Father, I see no difference between the criminal activity of Mme. Sebelius in supporting and advocating the murder of the unborn, and the criminal activity of the KKK in its murderous racism, or the criminal activity of NAMBLA in paedophilia. That the immoral “laws” in the United States make Mme. Sebelius position of infanticide “legal” is no different than immoral laws in Germany which made the genocide of Jews before and during WW II not only legal but a matter of government policy.

    Mme. Sebelius, her boss (President Barack Hussein Obama), and the members of the current Administration are criminals, thugs and gangsters. Again, while the details are not relevant to the discussion of this post, the behavior of the Chairman of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission is a case in point:

    Therefore, not only should Mme. Sebelius be barred from speaking at any Catholic institution, but the example of St. Paul in dealing with both Hymenaeus and Alexander in 1st Timothy 1:19-20, and the man living with his father’s mother in 1st Corinthians chapter 5 should and must be emulated by our Bishops. These people are as utterly evil as King Ahab and his wife Jezebel, and they must therefore be (in St. Paul’s own words in 1st Corinthians 5:5) delivered “to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that [their] spirit[s] may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.”

  • There is no doubt that, as an institution, Georgetown is no longer Catholic (and probably as not been for a long time). While the strongly worded editorial is welcome, is there something more official that can be done? Is there a way to revoke the ability of Georgetown to officially present itself as a Catholic institution?

  • Mary: Clearly Mme. Sebeluis would be in inappropriate choice to give the benediction at the event. Is that not the time in the service when God’s Holy Spirit is called down upon the gathered assembly? Does that necessarily invalidate her in addressing the convocation assembly with an address?

    Please understand: I am not saying that she is the best choice for the event. I can think of dozens of others who would do a better job. I’d vote for George Weigel for he is probably the preeminent American voice addressing these same important issues. Even Cardinal Dolan would have been an inspired choice. If I had the opportunity to attend, I’d much rather listen to them than Mme. Sebelius. I am only asking whether it’s actually inappropriate for a Catholic university to prove an opportunity for students/graduates to hear from a voice advocating a different position than is taught by the Church.

    Perhaps an organized debate or symposium would be a better forum than a convocation, but I suspect there would be as much concern about anyone from the current administration speaking on a Catholic campus. It would be a tragedy if I am correct, for it seems to demonstrate a belief that Catholic teaching cannot stand against counter opinions. Clearly, this is NOT the case. I guess I just see this as a question of confidence in the Church and not in the stark political terms that grips your nation these days.

    Do we as Catholics see the ‘other side’ in these debates as enemies instead of opponents? Could it be that the passion of the times is overwhelming the reason of our faith leading to closing ourselves off against voices we see as hostile? I fear this is the case. It does not seem to me that such a position can be squared with the example that Jesus, Paul, and the early Church Fathers offered. They actively engaged the world to argue for the proposition of the new covenant of salvation through the ‘folly of the cross’. Yes, if the audience could not accept the message they moved on to others who would and did not waste time debating with those closed to the salvific truth of the cross. But they tried. They listened, thought, prayed and responded. They engaged. They were not afraid to do so. We shouldn’t be afraid either.

    It is unbecoming for a people called to be evangelists of the gospel to the world for them to shy away from doing the same as those who passed on the faith to us. To quote Fr. RJN, it’s the ‘challenge of embracing orthodoxy and bringing to the world.’ We can’t do that if we don’t interact with the world in the first place.

    Hope this helps to put my earlier comments into a fuller perspective for you. As I’ve said, I suffer from not being directly involved in current American issues and speak as an outsider. I hope I’m humble enough to be open to correction by you and others who are living through these events. It’s just that there is truth in the maxim: ‘When you’re up to your ass in alligators, it’s hard to remember that your objective is to drain the swamp.’ Perhaps an outside voice can offer a different perspective. I thank you for the chance to offer such a perspective.

    Fr. Tim

  • “Do we as Catholics see the ‘other side’ in these debates as enemies instead of opponents?”

    Yes, especially when they mandate that Christian institutions must pay for abortifacients and contraceptives contrary to religious conscience. Kathleen Sebelius, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, John Kerry, Dennis Kucinich, Patrick Kennedy, Andrew Cuomo, et al., are self-professed Roman Catholics who publicly support the infanticide of the unborn, the sanctification of the filth of homosexual sodomy, the distribution and use of contraceptives, and the cohabitative life style of adultery and fornication. “By their fruits ye shall know them.”

    “It does not seem to me that such a position can be squared with the example that Jesus, Paul, and the early Church Fathers offered. They actively engaged the world…”

    Jesus was beaten and whipped half to death when He stood before and engaged Pontius Pilate. St. Paul was in chains when he stood before and engaged Felix, Festus and Herod Agrippa. St. Ignatius of Antioch engaged the Roman tyrants by willingly going to the lions. These testimonies are in stark contrast to the elevation of apostasy and heresy being given to Kathleen Sebelius. That elevation isn’t a witness to the world. It’s the same kind of disgrace that Jesus identified when He said to Simon Peter, “Get thee behind me, Satan.”

    “It is unbecoming for a people called to be evangelists of the gospel to the world for them to shy away from doing the same as those who passed on the faith to us.”

    I agree. jesus whipped the money changers out of the Temple. Jesus told the woman caught in adultery, “Go and sin no more.” Jesus told the crippled man he cured who was carrying around his mat, “Stop sinning lest worse happen to you.” Jesus put the Pharisees and Sadducees in their place on multiple occasions. St. Peter confronted Anannias and Sapphira for lying and the Holy Spirit dropped them dead where they stood. We’ve already discussed how St. Paul dealt with the sex pervert in 1st Corinthians 5 and with the blasphemers in 1st Timothy 1:19-20. St. John wrote sternly about that Jezebel in Revelation 2:20-23, how Jesus was going to put her onto a sick bed and strike her children of adultery dead.

    The only dialogue to be given Sebelius, and the heretics and apostates like her, is what is written in verse 9 of the Epistle of St. Jude:

    “But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, disputed about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a reviling judgment upon him, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you.'”

    A Christian doesn’t dialogue with the devil or his minions.

  • While the strongly worded editorial is welcome, is there something more official that can be done? Is there a way to revoke the ability of Georgetown to officially present itself as a Catholic institution?

    I’m unaware of how the process plays out exactly, but Msgr. Pope suggests that it is a rather complicated procedure that would certainly entail something more involved than the Cardinal making a simple declaration. So while many of us would like to see Georgetown rebuked in a much sterner fashion, it is not as easy as we would like.

  • As was so tremendously posited in a previous post, if a Catholic institution wishes to offer a perspective for fair consideration other than the Church’s own teachings, why settle for half-measures?

    Just have Satan himself give the commencement speech. It’s one thing to “interact” with the world, but something else entirely to give it voice so that we then become corrupted.

    “In the world but not of it,” I believe is the phrase that pays. Slicing Ms. Sibelius to bits in an honest, open and fairly-moderated debate would be perfectly acceptable. Legitimizing her views at an ostensibly Catholic institution, in contradiction to Church teaching and without rebuttal or deliberation, is slow suicide.

  • WK, Paul: I bow to your assessment of your own situation. Again, as a Canadian I do not understand your concerns about what you call ‘socialized medicine’. It’s something that we proudest of as a mark of our civilization as a society. I do not presume to claim that I know for certain that the Mme. Secretary is an appropriate speaker at such an event.

    However, as a believer I cannot reconcile labeling other people in such demonic contexts. It implies a judgment of character and soul that I am incapable of making, blinded as I am by the plank in my own eye. I will defend and debate as forcefully and vociferously as I can for the propositions of the Church. Injecting such confusion between one’s opinions and the character and standing of others before God will serve to do no more than impede the chances of having our propositions being heard or accepted by those who we need as allies if we hope to change the course of our respective societies and nations.

    PLEASE… do not take what I offer as a rebuke or refutation of what you state regarding the immorality of what Mme. Secretary supports and promotes. I simply believe that minds formed with Catholic values would only benefit from hearing directly from the person tasked by government to make and implement public policy. I admit that perhaps a graduation ceremony may not be the appropriate forum for such an exchange and apologize if I’ve offended anyone who believes that I think them wrong for believing and expressing a different opinion. No offense or insult was never my intention, nor do I wish to walk where it is not my place to be.

    Thank you for your understanding.

    Fr. Tim

  • New campaign slogan: “Obama/Biden 2012. We got your back.”

  • “It implies a judgment of character and soul that I am incapable of making, blinded as I am by the plank in my own eye.”

    Jesus told us to take the plank out of our own eyes, not leave it in. I am NOT suggesting, Father, that YOU are leaving the plank in your own eye. Rather, I am suggesting that we take Jesus at his word: let us remove the plank from our own eyes so that we can see clearly enough to remove the offending splinter from another’s eye. Regardless of plank or splinter, to fail to take Jesus at His word leaves everyone blinded.

    Ezekiel 34:1-10 places an even greater responsibility on the cleric (for which reason I am grateful to God that I do not have your job, Father). You have to fight the wolves, and one of the them is Kathleen Sebelius.

    As for national health care, it is NOT the job of Caesar Augustus to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, care for the sick, clothe the naked, etc. That is our job as members of the Body of Christ, and everytime we abdicate our responsibility and evade our accountability to do that, then we sacrifice on the altar of political expediency our freedom as citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven and our adoption as children of that great King. Why is it that so many of us want government to take care of the needy instead of ourselves? Since when has Caesar ever been more capable than God’s own children? Are we afraid to get our own hands dirty, as it were? Yet under the threat of having to provide abortifacients and contraceptives, even that avenue of serving the least and lowliest will be cut off from Catholic medical institutions in these United States. The same is true in your own Canada, Father. A government that mandates that abortion of the unborn and euthaniasia of the aged and infirm are health care is a government which cannot be entrusted with health care under any circumstances. A people too busy to help the least and lowliest – so busy that they have to shove the responsibility onto nanny government – is a people that deserves neither health care nor good government. Since when are politicians to be trusted?

    Lastly, the example of John chapter 6 rings loudly and clearly. Jesus fed the 5000 with the loaves and fishes, and then with His disciples went to Capernaum on the other side of the lake. The “peepul” awoke the next day and finding him missing, went themselves to the other side of the lake. They asked Jesus why he left. Jesus responded that they sought him not because of the signs and miracles, or because of the preaching, but because their bellies were filled. Jesus told them not to seek the bread that perishes, but the Bread of Eternal Life. Many left Him that day.

    The Gospel isn’t one of social justice and the common good (yes, those are important, but the goal is Heaven). Rather, the Gospel is one of conversion and repentance. Do we want health, safety, and prosperity? Then we need to stop coddling demonic women like Nancy Pelosi and Kathleen Sebelius (and yes, they are demonic – but their fruits ye shall know them). We need to start repenting and right now. 2nd Chronicles 7:14 speaks to us:

    “…if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

    All the machinations of government sponsored health care plans cannot save us when we murder over 1 million unborn babies every single year. As a priest of the living God, you, dear Father, have the awesome and frightening responsibility to preach this.

  • “I am only asking whether it’s actually inappropriate for a Catholic university to provide an opportunity for students/graduates to hear from a voice advocating a different position than is taught by the Church. ” HELL, YES.

  • Some of us opine: it isn’t charity if you do it with someone else’s money.

    Ted Kennedy, Joe Biden, Mme. Sibelius, et al are among a long (not unbroken) line of social justice Christians beginning in the days when Jesus was with us.

    I think (I could be wring!) I discovered the first social justice fanatic in St. John’s Gospel. See John 12: 1 – 8.

    Like their forebear, these people do not care about the poor and sick. They do it because they crave power and they are pure evil.

  • Paul: On your points regarding the essential task of defending the Church’s teaching on life, we are in 100% lockstep and agreement. I joined with others from my and surrounding parishes who last week boarded buses and traveled for 6 hours on the highway so we could participate in our annual National March for Life in Ottawa. I regularly preach on the subject of promoting the culture of life over the current aegis of the culture of death. I write letters to editor, politicians, and hospital administrators and health care professional to make the case for life. I write about the issue regularly on my own blog. Catholics, irrespective of their convictions imperil their souls if they ignore the Church’s teaching on life. This is BLUE LETTER LAW and we have no right to violate the right to life and still.

    If having a member of the Obama administration is a clear and present threat to the belief of the graduates, then she should not be allowed to speak. I would hope, that as Peggy Noonan (another excellent choice that Georgetown could have made) did in a similar situation of controversy when Obama was previously honored by Notre Dame and graciously decline the invitation so as to quell any troubles for those who invited her in the first place. But that too is perhaps too Canadian an attitude to become caché in your country. Up here we have no need to cast opponents in such deadly terms. We don’t see each other as a threat. Given your nation’s belief that God intended you to have free access to guns, you’ve formed a societal reality where one would certainly tend to nurture a more reticent view of an opponent I suspect this comes from our different revolution/evolution paths to statehood: your being born of blood… ours being born by compromise and accommodation.

    Fr. Tim

  • Thank you Fr. Tim. We mostly agree. With respect to the Second Amendment to the US Constitution (i.e., “Given your nation’s belief that God intended you to have free access to guns…”), Luke 22:36-38 does say:

    36* He [ Jesus ] said to them [the disciples ], “But now, let him who has a purse take it, and likewise a bag. And let him who has no sword sell his mantle and buy one. 37* For I tell you that this scripture must be fulfilled in me, ‘And he was reckoned with transgressors’; for what is written about me has its fulfilment.” 38 And they said, “Look, Lord, here are two swords.” And he said to them, “It is enough.”

    I fully agree, however, that those who live by the sword (or the gun) will perish by the sword (or the gun). Nevertheless, in these terrible times as the US Government emulates the freedom-restricting policies of the German government of the 1930s (just look at what Sebelius is doing in requiring Catholic institutions to pay for abortifacients and contraceptives – soon we’ll be force to officiate homosexual weddings!), Jesus’ admonition to buy a sword applies as well to buying a gun. Indeed, one of the first things that dictators like Hitler and Stalin outlaw are individual possession of firearms. Thus, the lesson of 1st Maccabees chapter 2, or better yet, 2nd Maccabees chapters 6 and 7, cannot be forgotten. That said, I do NOT advocate the initiation of force. But just as Democracy is two wolves and one sheep voting on what’s for dinner, so also is freedom (or liberty) a well armed sheep contesting the vote.

    I shall pray for your ministry, Father, and that God may send us more holy priests who do what you do.

  • Paul: Thank you for your gracious words. The conversation with you enjoys the benefit of having been educational and pleasurable. I look forward to talking with you again.

    Fr. Tim

  • – these people do not care about the poor and sick. They do it because they crave power and they are pure evil. –

    & accolades of the graduates and parents who will be cemented in confusion of power and glamor where the ‘good’ jobs are.
    & money from donors who need their nods
    & protection from the edge of the cliff where supporters are partying
    & exemptions galore from the jokes and those they incite …
    What’s worse is that these self-righteous exemplaries don’t even understand what Judas the Iscariot did – the value of the money in the bag which he held.
    12:5 “why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?”
    12:6 “He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief and held the money bag and used to steal the contributions.”

    This not so sober administration has No Budget yet; only demoralizing distractions, promises to world leaders, drones, and fund-raisers.

  • PM I don’t think they can be pure evil since any evil is evil because it is lacking good and so if they were pure evil we would not have to worry about them. They are simply twisted and tempted by the devil.

  • My family has several graduates of Georgetown University. Thank heavens they have gone to their eternal reward and not see how far the school has fallen.

    I am ashamed that Georgetown University chooses unwisely in its choice of speakers, programs that attack the beliefs of our Roman Catholic faith.

    Where are the Jesuits? What are they doing? Who is running the school? Has everyone taken leave of their senses?

    There are fine Catholic men and ladies who are of substance and thought, who keep the Church teachings that are qualified to speak to a graduating class. Choose one of them.

    I always admired Georgetown University. I was heartbroken to be rejected for under graduate work and for the law school. I always respected the school as the best of Roman Catholic education. I went to another Catholic institution for undergraduate work and a secular law school. My rejection by Georgetown may have been a blessing.

  • “I am only asking whether it’s actually inappropriate for a Catholic university to provide an opportunity for students/graduates to hear from a voice advocating a different position than is taught by the Church. ” HELL, YES.
    To rephrase my response. Since the Bishops in America have instructed Catholics (all) to refuse platforms to evildoers, Georgetown is in direct violation of the bishops’ authority, unless you Father Tim, judge Sebelius’ advocation of abortion, violation of conscience and enslavement of America’s soul as a good. The Honorable Mary Ann Glendon, law professor at Harvard, former U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, and pro-life advocate did indeed turn down an honorary degree from Georgetown, but I had not heard of Peggy Noonan. I had heard that Peggy Noonan had slipped below the waves of the pro-life movement and i was grieved as she was a product of Ronald Reagan’s generation.
    Again, the graduating students at the Political Policy Center of Georgetown are not equiped, nor ar they commissioned by their Sacrament of Confirmation to go forth to do exorcisms, as only the bishops can commission exorcists, in the first place, and Georgetown has already dumped the Bishops and their decree to avoid abortion advocates and those who would deny us our God-given freedom of conscience. Sebelius, Obama, Georgetown and the like need exorcism…and all your kind words in their defense cannot save them. Better to pray unceasingly Father Tim, as you have promised at ordination, and always the ROSARY.

  • Let’s see. Judas Iscariot: “Would have been better had he not been born” Jesus “Throwing money changers out of the temple”, Mary Magdelene, ” Go and sin no more” Sebilius has been been asked “not to present” for Holy Communion. I was taught, The Holy Father is infallible in matter of “faith and morals”. KKK killing innocent blacks, SS killing millions of innocent Jews and anyone who got in their way. U.S. Supreme Court Jan 22, 1973 abortion on demand has killed 4,000 unborn a day all day long every day since. We have had no guidance, no leadership, no direction. Just a lot of warm fuzzy gobbledegook. Infantacide and euthansia, and suicide rampant. I go to Mass for the Sacraments. I will never leave this Church but I do feel the Church left me. If I would have raised kids the way the Church has so called passed on the faith, I doubt that there would be one of them left in it. I feel like I am in a really bad dream that I can’t wake up from. We have been infiltrated and now what’s right is wrong and what’s wrong is right.

  • Mary & Jeanne: My apologies if my comments have led you to despair but I can assure you it is without reason.

    1) I freely admit that I have a 2nd hand understanding of the American political system. As a Canadian I see events from a different perspective – that as a from a neighbor, not from within the family as it were. There are details of your health care and government systems seem arcane (or at least not very comprehensible) from one who has lived his entire life benefiting from womb to tomb medical coverage without cost thanks to what you might describe as ‘socialized medicine’. For us, if a hospital owner/board doesn’t want to provide a particular procedure, it doesn’t have to as their will always be a public hospital or clinic where a patient could access the desired service. Catholic hospitals do not need to pay or provide abortions or procedures that contravene their beliefs.

    2) I as a solid a pro-life priest as you can know. I’m one of the first members of Priests for Life Canada. I participate in every pro-life initiative I can from Life Chains to letter campaigns. I preach on our Catholic obligation to promote the Culture of Life every chance I get. I post and write about the subject on my own blog and in national newspapers.

    3) I have been a regularly pray-er of the rosary and other forms of prayer all my life. I was ordained on 13 May 1989. I revel in having Mary as my spiritual mother as I was taught to do at my mother’s knee as a child.

    PLEASE do not despair for the state of the Church or the priesthood because of what I write here. I promote no agenda other than the Catholic proposition of faith as an answer to the world’s issues and am not fighting for the forces that oppose her. I framed this entire discussion in the form of an inquiry, a question. I would feel terrible if what I have asked or raised leads you in any way to lessen your faith in the Church or her priests.

    Know this: I am not unusual in any way among the majority of priests. Most of us do our best to faithfully fulfill all of our obligations as both Christians and priests. There are a few among us who have scattered the flock with their predations. There are others who lack the courage to embrace what RJN called the ‘wonderful challenge of orthodoxy’. But almost all of us are trying to the best of our abilities. We are wounded all the further when we realize that our human failings to meet the standard set by the eternal priest has wounded the faith in others.

    PLEASE pray for us. Don’t use the internet to calumniate or wound us. Far more of us than you may believe deserve the benefit of your doubt. Pray for holy priests. We need the support and grace prayer brings to us when we face well intentioned dragons who unnecessarily slag us when we poke out heads out in the public square.

    It may be quintessentially Canadian, but I believe that we will win more souls for God with encouragement, not condemnation. The Kingdom of God will be all the more present when we strive to win the hearts of others, not close their mind to what we have to offer by packaging it with insult and accusations. I sincerely believe that you may be doing more harm than good for the communion of believers if you are unwilling to appreciate the good in others simply because they don’t match the purity of your convictions.

    Fr. Tim

  • Sorry for the typo’s. I don’t have the needed time to do your thoughts justice. I pray it’s clear enough for you to appreciate the points I am respectfully offering.

    Fr. Tim

  • While I may not agree with Fr. Tim regarding the virtues of socialized medicine, I am united with him when he writes, “Pray for holy priests. We need the support and grace prayer brings to us when we face well intentioned dragons who unnecessarily slag us when we poke out heads out in the public square.” Regardless of our differences with respect to Caesar providing social services, we all face the roaring lion of rampant secularism, atheistic humanism, sexual immorality and the infanticide of the unborn gone wild. We can differ on what’s the best means to provide social justice and serve the common good; but we cannot differ when it comes to the Gospel of conversion and repentance, righteousness and holiness.

    OK, now that that rare moment of mental lucidity and sanity has passed, I shall return to being the incorrigible reactionary conservative to the right of Attila the Hun. 😉

  • The US health care system has its problems. But so does the Canadian health care system:

    No system, private or govt. will completely solve the problems of health care. Having worked in the largest US public health system (the US military) and currently having 85% of my patients in govt. insurance (Medicaid) I prefer a private system.

  • Father – I understand that you’re just asking a question, not defending the choice of commencement speaker or the positions that she’s taken. And I agree with you that overheated rhetoric doesn’t help anyone.

    I think you need to make a stronger distinction between having someone participate in a debate and having someone speak at a graduation. The former involves intellectual engagement. The latter implies an endorsement. No institution would have a Bernie Madoff or a Joe Shmoe speak at a graduation. To choose a person as a speaker implies that he has something of value to say, that he’s a person to be looked up to. The person in this case has been forbidden from receiving Communion due to her public defiance of Church teaching; the main thing she’s known for is her public defiance of Church teaching.

    The first thing every commencement speaker says is “it’s an honor to be here” – and it is. The speaker is chosen to receive the honor of addressing the graduates. The speaker gives the final words that a student hears as a student. The role is that of a keystone. There’s simply no way that a person who would be asked to give a commencement address would look upon it as anything other than a sign of respect.

  • Father Tim Moyle: If you are who you say you are, please repeat in writing this prayer: “Jesus Christ, true God and true man, Lord of all.”

  • Paul W. Primavera: ““Pray for holy priests. We need the support and grace prayer brings to us when we face well intentioned dragons who unnecessarily slag us when we poke out heads out in the public square.” “well intentioned dragons who unnecessarily slag(y) us when we poke out heads out in the public square.” are us, the defenders of the Faith, apologists and the bloggers on this blog.

  • Mary De Voe,

    I have no evidence that Fr. Tim Moyle is anything other than what he says he is:

  • PS, I agree that you are a most eloquent defender of the Faith once delivered unto the Saints, Mary.

  • Mary: 1) Just click on my name. I’ve linked to my own blog (which contains a short biography ) when I registered on this site. If the link doesn’t work, the URL is You can also read articles published by the National Post in the online edition’s religion blog, The Holy Post. You can find out all you want about me via those sites.

    2) The version of the Jesus prayer that I usually find being chanted in my head and heart is: Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. I believe that this daily focus of occupying my mind with this prayer suffices to achieve what you suggest with yours.

    3) Why are you so angry? Even as a child I knew that a faith that makes you feel sad or mad… definitely NOT glad… was bad. Jesus wants that his joy should fill you. What did you do with yours? I have offered no insult or injury yet you feel the need to attack, chastise and belittle me? Why are you so mad and sad? That’s not how a disciple of Jesus is to live and act.

    Fr. Tim

  • Dear Father, The thing is I do not despair of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church for I know that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against Her”. I too am an original member of the Wi Right to Life before there was a National. For fourty years I have taken six kids with me to meetings and rallies all over this country. I have taught religious education for eighteen years and been horrified at the “lessons” we were presented with to “educate our children in the faith”. They don’t know the truths of the faith. They don’t know their commandmants, and they are confirmed without the slightest knowledge of what this committment means. I have watched as countless numbers of them have never stepped foot in a Catholic Church again. I took it upon myself with the Catechism to do the best I could with every class I was given responsibilty for. When speaking about the “sins of the flesh” they were taught what the church teaches. I always told them, “This is what the Church teaches. You can never say when you are standing before the Lord on judgement day that you never heard or knew any of this.” You will see my face and remember my words”. My teachers in Catholic as well as public school were tough. Did I like hearing the truth? heck no! But I wouldn’t trade my soul for eternal damnation. My students also learned that “the sins of the flesh” were not the most damning of sins, but those of greed. When we will pass laws and rules and regulations putting money before all forms of human life destined for the Kingdom we have to be ready to die for our faith. Also what about the latest DePaul speaking scandal? Don’t the monies that are collected here in the states at various times of the year go for our colleges and universities. I would like to know that.

  • Mary: Have you ever read the book “Well Intentioned Dragons”? It’s a standard among evangelical pastors and has great resonance for Catholic clergy as well. It was not an insult. It was a reference that I hoped might act as a nexus with others who are familiar with the book… kind of a short-hand metric to place my comment in its proper perspective. Clearly you have never read the book or you would not have taken such offense. My apologies if you thought I was insulting you. If there’s one thing that you should know about me is that if I intend to insult you – you will know it. I think of myself as being a patient person who strives to always find the best way to interpret what is hurled at me but I am after all born of Ottawa Valley Irish and Northern Ontario French stock – two of the most tenacious peoples in the land. A enclave of English refusing to learn to speak the majority French of the rest of Quebec and a group of francophones who refuse to give up their language in the midst of English Ontario. I’ve learned well the lessons of my ancestors and can acquaint myself well everywhere from the bar room to the board room and from pulpits large or small. I can dish it out as well as I can take it, although I always leave it to others to set the tone of the conversation.

    Fr. Tim

  • Father Thomas Mannion, a dear friend of mine from County Cork Ireland, used to tell the kids this story. “How many airliners take off througout the world every day? Hundreds! The only time they are reported on is when one crashes. So it is with the priesthood. There are thousands of good and holy priests but you don’t hear about them only the ones who bring shame and scandal to our dear Church”. We know that, and pray daily for our priests and for vocations. I also have had the priviledge of serving under Raymond Burke who has been harrassed as no other for his strong and firm stand. Will not Our Father be firm with us? even though He is all merciful and all loving? That’s all I am getting at. If we are lukewarm He would just as soon vomit us our of His mouth. Peace

  • Paul W. Primavera: Thank you for your kind words. One Hail Mary, said in Latin as I have been and I am trying to learn Greek. Thanks again.

  • To the teflon don: Tim Moyle: Why do you profess to be a Catholic Priest and agitate for Georgetown to disobey their bishops directives to avoid giving a platform to scandalous abortion advocates? Why did you not say the small exorcism prayer you were asked to say in humility? Sugar does not melt in your mouth as you go about sowing seeds of doubt, despair, disobedience and outright heresy against the Catholic Church. If you love Sebelius so much you ought to quietly pray for her soul and not campaign for her canonization as the heroine of Georgetown and martyr of political correctness, as you have for you own soul with academic credentials. Do not tell me that you are wonderful Catholic priest and then applaud Sebelius and Georgetown for their heretical dissent from Church teaching. It does not wash.
    “I am only asking whether it’s actually inappropriate for a Catholic university to provide an opportunity for students/graduates to hear from a voice advocating a different position than is taught by the Church. ” HELL, YES. The serpentine tongue asked Eve “I am only asking whether its actually inappropriate for you to disobey the teaching Magisterium of the Catholic Church.”
    “Suffer the little children to come to ME” Sebelius will not follow Jesus Christ and Tim Moyle follows Sebelius.

  • Alright, this back and forth between Mary De Voe and Father Tim Moyle is getting tiresome and way too personal. I am shutting comments down on this thread, and reminding all commenters to stick to commenting on the posts here at TAC.

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Sandra Fluke and Walmart

Thursday, March 22, AD 2012


Sandra Fluke professes not to have known that birth control pills  for $9.00 for  a month’s supply are available within easy walking distance of Georgetown.  I believe her.  I doubt if Sandra Fluke would ever do anything as declasse as shop at a Walmart.  That is for the hoi polloi.  Sandra’s life as a struggling law student includes trips to Europe, presumably paid for by her mega-rich boy friend.

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22 Responses to Sandra Fluke and Walmart

  • Although you come off as agreeable with Ms Fluke, it does not take long to show your intentions. Way to totally miss the point of this conversation. At least you could have called her a slut! Jesus Christ!

  • “Although you come off as agreeable with Ms Fluke, it does not take long to show your intentions.”

    How perceptive you are Bryan. My intention was to show that she is a completely out of touch limousine Leftist. Thanks for picking up on that.

    “Way to totally miss the point of this conversation.”

    That Sandra Fluke is a spoiled brat Leftist who wishes to trample on religious liberties is, I think, the point of the conversation.

    “At least you could have called her a slut!”

    Nah, she isn’t that harmless, or honest.

    “Jesus Christ!”

    Ah, casual blasphemy, always the way to end a well-argued contribution to com box debate.

  • Birth control drugs can potentially have some negative side effects. Working with a doctor to try to find what is right for you, getting the appropriate prescription, and having follow-up appointments can be an expensive proposition, regardless of the cost of generics at Walmart.

  • Please Michael, give it up. Sandra Fluke was simply lying for political effect. She has given zero details as to how she came up with the $3,000.00 figure and she clearly had no intention of discussing how cheap contraception is for the average woman, or that contraception is available for free to poor women under Title X.

    Ace of Spades asked her how she arrived at the figure she cited. The response, a refusal to comment:

    “By asserting, with no citation to any source, that she’s “informed” that some people with a conveniently-unnamed “genetic” disease can’t take those particular pills (which ones? there are a lot of different types available at that price) but must take pills costing “$1500 per year.”

    Look, as a blogger, sometimes I, well, I don’t make things up, but I pass things along without verification.

    If I started telling Jake Tapper or anyone in the media things I’d been “informed of” by unnamed people in my comments, would they take it seriously?

    No. They’d ignore it. People tell stories. People’s stories tend to be those that push their agenda. Absent verification, they’re just stories.

    Has Jake Tapper or anyone else in the media checked Fluke’s main claim — that many insurance policies won’t cover hormonal therapy when prescribed for medical reasons?

    Because that’s her big claim — that while birth control per se might be cheap, some women have rare “genetic” diseases requiring birth control hormones for medical purposes, but insurers won’t cover these costs. (These are the only conceivable truly high costs of “birth control.”)

    And yet, has she named a single policy or provider which maintains this bizarre scheme?


    And I asked her on Twitter
    She refused comment.”

  • “Birth control drugs can potentially have some negative side effects. Working with a doctor to try to find what is right for you, getting the appropriate prescription, and having follow-up appointments can be an expensive proposition, regardless of the cost of generics at Walmart.”

    This. Exactly. Birth Control isn’t something you screw around with. It can have serious side effects if you take it without seeing a doctor. Not all prescriptions are the same and not all women can take the same kind of birth control.

  • “Birth Control isn’t something you screw around with.”

    No comment.

    “Not all prescriptions are the same and not all women can take the same kind of birth control.”

    And for the vast majority of women contraception is dirt cheap or free. Next red herring.

  • No comment.

    LOL – really!

    Even if they are more expensive for some, it’s still not likely to cost $3000. Regardless, that’s missing the point. It is unjust to force other people to pay for your expensive recreational activities – especially if they view those activities as immoral.

  • Birth control pills DO have serious side effects…breast cancer for one. The best method yet to prevent unplanned pregnancy is abstinence.

  • Birth Control isn’t something you screw around with.

    Dr. Pepper on monitor… almost. HAHAHAHAHAHA

    But then again, side effects are real. They include such wonderful things as weight gain, moodiness, and loss of libido. Really, sounds like the ideal spouse… not.

    On the unattractive side, they can contribute to cardiac issues and increased risk of cancer.

  • Birth control is also known to cause abortion. OK, maybe “lead to” more than “cause”, but the ends are the same.

    And I didn’t know that you needed a prescription for condoms.

  • Birth control pills have poisoned our ground water with estrogen. Obama wants us to pay to pollute our ground water, then pay to clean it up.

  • At the houston anti hhs rally. About 400 people so far.

  • Let us know how the rally went c matt. We need to have such rallies up and down the nation.

  • but must take pills costing “$1500 per year.”

    Taking her at her word, that’s $125 a month.

    A latte (tall) costs about $3.50 each. One latte a day would just about cover it. That is not even factoring in her use of a health savings account which would lower the after tax cost even more. Maybe if the HHS mandated coverage for one latte a day, that would free up her coin for the pills?

  • Went very well – beautiful day, inspiring speakers. One young female speaker in particular who recognized the despicable tactic of the media and HHS supporters to change the narrative from religious freedom to banning contraceptives. She was not fooled, but unfortunately too many others are.

    Tough to estimate the crowd, several hundred at least. And very well behaved – vocal with cheers for the speakers, but no disruptive conduct at all. Lots of kids present too, mostly babies and elementary school age. An Orthodox priest, several Catholic nuns, Catholic priest and Protestant Minister (…walk into a rally…sounds like the intro of a joke).

    Four or five cops on hand, and essentially just sat in the shade, chatted with each other, and watched – not much for them to do.

  • One thing I never quite understood. The same people who go out of their way to eat only organic fruit, vegetables and meats (when they do eat meat) and decry the use of hormones in food products, have no problem directly ingesting a synthetic hormone on a daily basis. Go figure.

  • c matt, that observation fits Seattle to a T.

  • Suzanne Sommers books reveal her investigation into the ways big pharma has fooled women into thinking that they have the answers when the reality is that it is all about making money and they don’t care how they tamper with nature or the consequences. Men and women from both sides of this issue should look at what she has written and investigate for yourselves. The bottom line for me is that if you are following church teaching you don’t have to worry, if you are not and thinking you are going to get away with it, think again. It can have lifelong effects and affects everyone around you, from our having to deal with family illness to the water it pollutes and environmental harm from the hormones in the water.

  • I get that Ms. Fluke’s friend could have bought birth control pills cheaply at Wal-Mart. However, she needed to take them for an ovarian problem (which, because she did not have birth control pills, she died from, I believe). My thought is that she perhaps needed a certain type of BC pill, a type that might have been very expensive. So we have a situation in which the Catholic Church doesn’t want to pay for medication that could save lives…In any case, it all goes back to intent. If BC pills can be an abortificient (sp?), a question that is highly suspect, well, so can booze, and that is beyond question, but Catholic church’s happily give out booze at parties and so forth.

  • God knows Walter where you got the lie that Fluke testified that her friend died. Here is a link to Fluke’s meretricious testimony and she never said that:

    Of course this has absolutely nothing to do with the rare cases, already covered, where birth control pills are used to treat a medical condition and not for contraceptive purposes. It has everything to do with running rough shod over religious liberty in order for Obama to score points with pro-abort feminists and to conjure up an imaginary “Republican war on women”, so he can overcome his miserable record and get another four year lease on the White House.

  • Mac,

    The evil, hateful sacs of excrement at MSNBC,, et al twist the facts to make massive traps for imbecile liberals.

Jesuitical 13: Rush and Georgetown

Monday, March 5, AD 2012

Part 13 of my ongoing survey of the follies of many modern day Jesuits.  Georgetown University, founded in 1789, is the oldest Jesuit college in the United States.  Last week it found itself at the center of the debate over the HHS Mandate.  How the powers that be at Georgetown reacted to all of this is instructive.

On February 16, 2012 Representative Darrell Issa (R. CA), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing on the ramifications of the HHS Mandate in regard to religious freedom.  Democrats had the opportunity to present witnesses.  Initially they were going to have Barry Lynn, a Methodist minister and Leftist political activist, and head of the Americans United for Separation of Church and State, but for some reason that fell through for the Democrats.  They then proposed Sandra Fluke, identified as a third year law student at Georgetown.  Issa refused to allow her to testify on the grounds that she wasn’t testifying about the religious liberty issue but rather about a perceived need for contraception.  The Democrats, who realized that they were in trouble on the religious liberty issue, used this as an argument against the hearings, arguing that women were banned from the hearings as speakers.  This was a lie, as there were two panels which testified in opposition to the Mandate at the hearing.  The second panel included Dr. Allison Garrett and Dr.  Laura Champion who testified as to the dangers that the HHS Mandate poses to religious liberty.

On February 23, 2012, Nancy Pelosi (D.CA), minority leader, organized a Democrats only “hearing” at which Sandra Fluke gave her testimony.  Go here to read that testimony.  Among other statements she said that in three years contraceptives could cost a law student three grand.

The idea that someone at Georgetown Law School, an elite school that costs over 50k a year to attend, was crying poverty over the alleged cost of $1,000.00 a year, a sum about $800-$900 too high in relationship to the actual cost, to make illicit whoopee has its comedic possibilities, and this was  seized upon by Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday February 29:

What does it say about the college co-ed Sandra Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex, what does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She’s having so much sex she can’t afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We’re the pimps. (interruption) The johns? We would be the johns? No! We’re not the johns. (interruption) Yeah, that’s right. Pimp’s not the right word. Okay, so she’s not a slut. She’s “round heeled.” I take it back.

This caused an uproar and on Thursday March 1, John J. DeGioia, the first lay President of Georgetown, released this statement:

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45 Responses to Jesuitical 13: Rush and Georgetown

  • Something for nothing/free lunch: the liberal prime directive: She merely wants sex and she wants GU to pay for it. That is not a new concept.

    Let’s try to save America from disparate treatment.

    To be fair and equitable, malicious Maher needs to apologize for calling Governor Palin “Slut!”, or we DEMAND Obama return the $1,000,000 malign Maher gave him.

    History lesson for liberals: Money for sex is the “oldest profession.”

    The new concept is Liberty.

  • Disparate Treatment Command:

    You are justified when you viciously slander (add laurel for foul words) a woman because you truly hate her and she’s Republican, e.g., Governor Palin.

  • Slut or slattern is a term applied to an individual who is considered to have loose sexual morals or who is sexually promiscuous. The term is generally pejorative and often applied to women as an insult or offensive term of disparagement, meaning “dirty or slovenly.”However some women have demonstrated saying they’re proud of being “sluts”, and have given it a positive connotation.
    By either definition, Fluke would seem to fit the bill.

  • I don’t begrudge the Georgetown president’s full-throated defense of one of his students without his adding the caveat that he disagrees with her on the issue that made her famous. Such a defense generally needs to be done in a manner that is not watered down by “Howevers” and “Buts”.

    There is just something in the psyche of civilized people that reacts with horror to the thought of a man commenting upon a woman in a manner that calls into question her chastity. Now, maybe her testimony left little doubt in that regard, but still, to hear a man publicly comment upon a woman in such terms brings a visceral reaction that a line has been crossed in terms of genteel behavior.

    One thing I was always taught growing up is that a gentleman does not make comments about a woman that imputes unchastity to her. And gentlemanly behavior dictates defending a woman in such a situation, which is what Georgetown’s president was primarily concerned with doing in this instance..

  • I suspect that the sole pupose of the President’s letter Jay was to pick up some quick praise for himself from the powers that be at Georgetown, in Washington DC and in the Mainstream Media. As for Ms. Fluke, I think in other circumstances she would be the first to reject the traditional codes that have guided gentlemen and ladies in our civilization. Of course all of this misses the actual significance of Ms. Fluke’s testimony, which I think was rather the point of this whole media created tempest.

  • I find it ludicrous that this young woman who is apparently attending Georgetown with a scholarship is making this argument. First, if it was THAT important to her why did she attend a Catholic University. If I attended a Muslim University and then whined that I had to dress modestly then it would show me to be intolerant and maybe not the smartest cookie (I lived in Saudi Arabia for 3 years as a military wife and always covered when I went off compound. It was the correct and respectful thing to do).

    Second, can she NOT either abstain or ask her partner to participate in the costs of birth control?

    Third, I had to wonder about the other student she said was embarrassed and humiliated when she discovered birth control was not covered at the cash register when she picked up her birth control. Isn’t this woman a LAW student? Can’t she read her insurance policy? I only have a B.A. in Psychology but I read my policy to see what is covered BEFORE I see a doctor.

    They may not be sluts but this woman is definitely prostituting herself for the liberal democrats.

  • I listened live when he made his remarks, and even I forgot that he actually took the slut comment back almost as soon as he made it. Considering that what he said certainly crossed my mind, I can’t fault Rush for his comments.

  • “They may not be sluts but this woman is definitely prostituting herself for the liberal democrats.”

    It isn’t prostitution if it is done for love Lee anne, and I know that Ms. Fluke loves the far left of the Democrat Party unless she finds it too moderate for her tastes, which may wll be the case.

  • “She’s having so much sex she can’t afford the contraception.”

    Rush misspoke here in that when it comes to the Pill, you have to take it every day whether or not you have sex frequently. Ms. Fluke might very well be a slut, but that should not be the focus of the arguments against her. Gingrich summed them up perfectly – there is no contraceptive shortage in the US, nobody wants to take birth control away from Ms. Fluke, and the issue is who pays for it.

    It is mind-boggling to me how this issue has gotten away from us. The Dems are successfully painting this as “The GOP/Catholic War on Women” and millions of idiots appear to be falling for a completely non-existant issue. In the meantime, Iran becomes more frightening by the day and I nearly had to take out a bank loan when I filled up my tank last night. But let’s keep on talking about the sex life of a 30 year old Dem activist. It’s unreal.

    And as for the reaction of Georgetown U- well, absolutely no surprise there. I tell people my entire education up until college was Catholic – and then I went to a Jesuit university.

  • Paul, it’s one thing for it to cross your mind; it is another thing altogether to publicly give voice to those thoughts. In more genteel times, such comments (regardless of their veracity) were considered to be slander per se.

  • “As a student at Cornell and treasurer of a pro-choice organization at the school, Sandra
    Fluke helped shut down a pro-life speech on Cornell’s campus by counter-protesting.”

    Miss Fluke made no secret of her activities as an undergrad. I am astonished that of all
    the thousands of applicants for the few openings at Georgetown Law, the Admissions
    Board would give a place at a Catholic university to someone with her history.

    I suppose it can be argued that all sorts of views should be represented at a university.
    However, I’ve got to wonder if Admissions would be so complaisant if she had been an
    enthusiastic member and treasurer for a racist or anti-semitic student organization.

    It would appear that, by granting one of their few places in the law school program to
    someone like Miss Fluke, “… the teachings of the Church are of small concern to the
    powers that be at Georgetown…”.

  • Jay, I agree with your posts but would add that I do not believe for a second that Ms. Fluke was hurt or insulted by Limbaugh’s remarks. My guess is she snickered as she thought about how they would be used to her advantage.

  • I agree, Mike. No doubt she wears any insult by Limbaugh as a badge of honor.

    My objections to Rush have less to do with any imagined “damage” that might have been done to the particular woman’s reputation as they are to the damage that is done to the notion of gentility whenever a man comments in such a manner upon a woman’s chastity or lack thereof. Such comments about a woman used to merit one a punch in the nose (50-60 years ago) or a fight to the death on the field of honor (200 years ago and back to the middle ages).

  • Clinton,
    I wish I was surprised, but I’m not. As you point out the advantage of welcoming competing ideas has its limits. Think Wafen SS. A Catholic law school should be concerned with how to use law to protect our most innocent fellow human beings from intentional killing, but it appears that Georgetown has other priorities.

  • Oh I understand, Jay, and agree. Perhaps I am wrong, but I did not understand Limbaugh’s rant as asserting a genuine charge; I took it as parody, especially his comparison to a prostitute one who must be provided financial assistance as a condition to having sex. While this comparison has turned out rather poorly for Limbaugh, I don’t think any listener seriously thought Limbaugh was challenging the chastity of Ms. Fluke — for a whole bunch of reasons.

  • “…I don’t think any listener seriously thought Limbaugh was challenging the chastity of Ms. Fluke…”

    Especially since Ms. Fluke herself has answered that question.

  • Why would any man would want to talk with Ms. Fluke if she were chaste?

    Does her father own a liquor store?

  • In the classic movie “Ben-Hur”, there is a scene early in the movie in which the outgoing Tribune, Sextus, asks his replacement. Messala, “How do you fight an idea?” After a brief interruption, Messala answers him: “With another idea.” That is exactly what Obama and his cohorts are doing. They can’t win if the idea is that the federal government is violating the first amendment, so they invent their own idea, which is that Republicans are trying to take away women’s access to contraceptives. This is, of course, absurd, but to quote a line from another biblical movie, “But they (the Roman people) are believing it!” (Petronius, “Quo Vadis”). It is absolutely imperative that whoever wins the Republican nomination (looks like Romney at this point, but time will tell) press this issue. This is not a fight for contraceptive rights, but for religious rights. To paraphrase James Carville, “It’s freedom of religion, stupid!”

  • Unfortunaly Obama is framing this argument with might I say….. diabolical cunninngness…….

    Just the other day my son’s piano teacher said in passing with much gusto “I wish our parish would stay out of politics”. She was reffering to the letter our Bishop had read at all masses last week. During the reading of that letter I noticed at least on person get up and walk out.

    My mother said the same thing happened at her church all the way across the country.

  • I think Joseph’s analogy with Rome is very appropriate.

  • “During the reading of that letter I noticed at least on person get up and walk out. ”

    Frankly, those who prefer Obama to the Church probably should get up, walk out, and keep on walking.

  • You are all morons if you think in today’s society calling a 30 year old woman who advocates “free” contraception a slut is insulting? Do you all live under a rock? Do you not go to the movies? Do you not listen to music? Do you not listen to people between the ages of 14 and 30 conversations? “Slut” is the mildest of words that is bantered about in today’s society. This “scandal” is a joke…brought to you by people who truly hate those that disagree with them. And Fluke is one of them.

  • Somebody with more time than me needs to research… did she go to one of those “slutwalks” that were all the rage half a year or so back?

  • I read Ms. Fluker’s statement, and what it was, was the usual liberal use of “hard cases” to make us feel sorry for someone, then to drastically change policy based on the hard cases. She speaks of women needed the Pill for control of polycystic ovaries. First of all, as a woman, I know that doctors are extremely quick to prescribe the pill for just about anything, not just as an “antidote” to fertility. If a doctor recommended the Pill, I would do a great deal of research before accepting his or her recommendation, to know what my other options are. But what the liberals are trying to do is say, “Look at these poor women who are discriminated against because they need the Pill and are insured by a Catholic institution! In order to solve this problem, we must ALL be given free birth control!” Huh? If you need insurers to cover the Pill based on certain diagnoses, then you have the insurers cover the Pill for those diagnoses. It is extremely simple. It makes no sense to argue that the reason the Pill should be covered for all is because a few people are using it for recognized medical conditions.

  • AFAIK, using the pill for an actual medical condition is treated the same as any other drug with any other off-label use– policies differ on if they’ll accept it, usually along the lines of if the medication is known to be useful for that purpose. (Like Viagra for women, especially those on anti-depressants– similar use as for men.)

    So, again, standard: they use a hard case that isn’t even accurate….

  • From the comments, I have to gather that liberal, Leftist People’s Democratic Party members and supporters will lie, obfuscate, spin and generally dissemble whatever, whenever and wherever it fits their political ends. I am (yawn) shocked.

    From “Power to the People” to Machiavelli in two generations.

  • Has Ms. Fluke been expelled from Georgetown yet? She’s bringing ill fame to the institution.

    By the way, there was a SlutWalk just last year in Georgetown. Did Ms. Fluke participate? Or did she condemn it? She does call herself an “activist,” I hear.

  • Good question. Here is a celebratory post by a participant:

    Ah, yes, protesting sexism and a “rape culture” by dressing like a slut. Makes as much sense as stating that one is deprived of contraceptives if someone else is not picking up the tab.

  • The St. Augustine quote about Onan is HILARIOUS. A sperm is NOT a human being. An ovum is NOT a human being. Life begins at conception-so Onan wasn’t engaging in abortion. Sperm aren’t human. Embryos are. He needed to learn some basic biology. The Bible condemns adultery and fornication, NOT sexual techniques within marriage. He overrated Onan’s importance. I guess Augustine was of the “every sperm is sacred” ilk. Too bad Monty Python didn’t exist yet.

    For married couples, any form of sex is OK as long as it doesn’t involve artificial contraception, especially the kind that can destroy unborn life (as it says in the Didache). The Song of Songs praises sex of all kinds WITHIN marriage. When the Bridegroom speaks of tasting the Bride’s fruit, one can tell what he’s talking about… and the Bride sats something similar. Oral sex belongs within marriage.

  • No Susan you are incorrect. The sin of Onan referred to by Saint Augustine was that he “spilled his seed upon the ground” as an act of contraception. The Church has always been against contraception as the quote indicates.

    A nice article to read for people ignorant of the history of the Church prohibition in regard to contraception:

  • Fallacy: Appeal to Ridicule

    Also Known as: Appeal to Mockery, The Horse Laugh.

    Description of Appeal to Ridicule

    The Appeal to Ridicule is a fallacy in which ridicule or mockery is substituted for evidence in an “argument.” This line of “reasoning” has the following form:

    X, which is some form of ridicule is presented (typically directed at the claim).
    Therefore claim C is false.
    This sort of “reasoning” is fallacious because mocking a claim does not show that it is false. This is especially clear in the following example: “1+1=2! That’s the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard!”

    It should be noted that showing that a claim is ridiculous through the use of legitimate methods (such as a non fallacious argument) can make it reasonable to reject the claim. One form of this line of reasoning is known as a “reductio ad absurdum” (“reducing to absurdity”). In this sort of argument, the idea is to show that a contradiction (a statement that must be false) or an absurd result follows from a claim. For example: “Bill claims that a member of a minority group cannot be a racist. However, this is absurd. Think about this: white males are a minority in the world. Given Bill’s claim, it would follow that no white males could be racists. Hence, the Klan, Nazis, and white supremists are not racist organizations.”

    Since the claim that the Klan, Nazis, and white supremists are not racist organizations is clearly absurd, it can be concluded that the claim that a member of a minority cannot be a racist is false.

    Examples of Appeal to Ridicule

    “Sure my worthy opponent claims that we should lower tuition, but that is just laughable.”
    “Support the ERA? Sure, when the women start paying for the drinks! Hah! Hah!”
    “Those wacky conservatives! They think a strong military is the key to peace!”

  • Also begging the question in that the statement that sperm and ovum aren’t people implies that killing someone is the only yardstick the Church uses in terms of sexual practices inside a marriage.

  • If Onan’s sin was so egregious, why isn’t it in the Levitical Holiness Code? It’s pretty exhaustive. Don’t sleep with a parent, don’t sleep with a sibling, etc. When the Levitical Code was given, it went into DETAIL about sexual do’s and don’ts. Onan gets only one appearance in the whole Bible-he isn’t that important. Not even St. Paul brought him up in his writings on marriage.

    Sperm and ovum aren’t human. If you say “life begins at conception”,BELIEVE it… instead of what Bill Maher said about Santorum recently.

    The Song of Songs praises oral sex within marriage-Clinton should’ve understood that.

    The Didache forbade artificial contraceptives as well as “poisons that induce abortion”,adultery, promiscuity, fornication. It didn’t describe sexual practices within marriage because it was NONE of its business.

    The Bible condemns adultery. A LOT. Jesus condemned divorce&remarriage. Where does the Bible give ANY prescriptions on sexual acts within marriage? Not many.

    “Thou shalt not commit adultery”-save sex for marriage.

    Got problems with that?

  • “If Onan’s sin was so egregious, why isn’t it in the Levitical Holiness Code?”

    Beats me. Of course there are a whole host of very serious sins not included in that Code. The Church is of course not limited by the strictures set forth in the Old Testament.

    “Onan gets only one appearance in the whole Bible-he isn’t that important.”

    Melchizedek gets only a brief appearance in the Old Testament, yet he is very important in the New. Traditionally Jewish rabbis opposed male contraception on the basis of Onan. That brief passage in the Old Testament has been very important in traditional views of contraception for both Jews and Christians until the day before yesterday in historical terms.

    “Sperm and ovum aren’t human.”

    No one has said that they are. That is not the point of the ban on contraception.

    “The Song of Songs praises oral sex within marriage”

    A debatable proposition. Sodomy has always been condemned by the Church. The Old Testament of course is not controlling over what the Church approves and what the Church condemns.

    “It didn’t describe sexual practices within marriage because it was NONE of its business.”
    Untrue. This from the Epistleof Barnabas ( circa 74 AD) ” Moreover, he [Moses] has rightly detested the weasel [Lev. 11:29]. For he means, ‘Thou shall not be like to those whom we hear of as committing wickedness with the mouth with the body through uncleanness [orally consummated sex]; nor shall thou be joined to those impure women who commit iniquity with the mouth with the body through uncleanness’”

    The Church has legislated in this area since the time of the Crucifixion. You are very much mistaken.

  • Back in my college days, I once knew a guy who made a conclusion from the Robert DeNiro/Billy Crystal film “Analyze this.” DeNiro’s mobster says he has a mistress because he can’t imagine his wife kissing their children after practicing oral sex on him. Basically, rationalizing adultery.

    If one thinks oral sex is somehow wrong within marriage,it paves the way for mistresses&adultery. Police sexual practices unreasonably within marriage-and people will DEFINITELY commit adultery.

    It’s normal, natural&human for lovers to kiss each other, even down there (especially if down there) It’s natural for a wife to want to please her husband–no wonder the Epistle of Barnabas isn’t canonical. It’s also natural for a husband to go down&please his wife. If he’s scared for her lady parts, he’s got issues. It’s not done out of malice, but for love.

    I know a pastor (non-Catholic) who’d be appalled that you condemn oral intimacy within marriage… considering he backed Prop.8 in California AND managed to stop Planned Parenthood from opening up shop in his town. He’d be headdesking.

    That passage from Barnabas is condemning oral sex OUTSIDE of marriage. Besides, it would be a buzzkill for some men if their wives wouldn’t do it. It depends on the couple.As well as consent. If done for the wrong reasons, oral sex is wrong within marriage, but if it’s consensual&loving, who are we to condemn it?

    And weasels are cute creatures.

  • If you wish to argue for approval of what the Church has condemned throughout her history Susan, you are at the wrong blog.

  • I don’t know Donald, are you really prepared to simply cede to two millenia of the teachings of Popes, Bishops, and Church Doctors when you have the brilliant philosophic insight of “Analyze This” staring you right in the face?

  • From an article by Pete Vere JCL (once available on Cathoic Exchange, 7-10-07, but I can’t find it anymore. All I hard is hard copy. The article was called “Abortion and Contraception: Old Lies”

    [The book Eve’s Herbs] answered a question that had long troubled me; I had often wonderded why Holy Scripture appeared to say so little about the grave evils of abortion and contraception….Eve’s Herbs provided me with a startling realization: in ancient and medieval times, contraception and abortion were often considered a form of sorcery and witchcraft, rather than a form of medicine. Thus, Holy Scripture may never use the words abortion and contracpetion, but the Bible is not silent on the issue. It simply condemns these practices under a different name.”

  • Just thought of something else: when I was a kid, “gay” meant “happy” (or something like that). When I got to college, it meant “homosexual.” Now my kids use the word “gay” but it isn’t always being used to mean “a homosexual.” It means something more like “stupid.” Words change over time. Our understanding of things change over time, so that gives credance to Pete Vere’s thoughts on the matter.

  • DJ-
    Here you go! (Bless TFR and their habit of having copies of all sorts of things.)

  • DeNiro’s mobster says he has a mistress because he can’t imagine his wife kissing their children after practicing oral sex on him. Basically, rationalizing adultery.

    If one thinks oral sex is somehow wrong within marriage,it paves the way for mistresses&adultery.

    No… it was DeNiro’s character thinking that oral sex is something he’s got to have that paved the way to adultery.

    Oral sex good + mouth that’s performed oral sex on him touching his children= get mouth that won’t touch his children for oral sex.

    His initial assumption was wrong, so of course his conclusion was wrong. It would be shocking if his conclusion wasn’t wrong!

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A “Call Out” and “Two Thumbs Up” to Professor Patrick Deneen

Sunday, January 29, AD 2012

What’s a tenured associate professor of government teaching at a Catholic university to do when he believes the institution isn’t really Catholic?

It’s pretty easy to say “Give up your tenure and go where you will find what you are looking for.”  Sometimes, witness to one’s faith entails suffering.

Agreed.  But, making that decision isn’t so simple when other considerations—like those of family, financial obligations (a mortgage, for example), and the like—must also be factored into the equation.

The situation presents an authentic ethical dilemma, one that confronted a former Associate Professor of Government at Georgetown University, Patrick Deneen.

In a letter published at Front Porch Republic, Deneen said with regard to Georgetown University:

…Georgetown increasingly and inevitably remakes itself in the image of its secular peers, ones that have no internal standard of what a university is for other than the aspiration of prestige for the sake of prestige, its ranking rather than its commitment to Truth. Its Catholic identity, which should inform every activity of the community, from curriculum to dorm life to faculty hiring, has increasingly been cordoned off to optional activities of Campus Ministry.

Describing his experience, Deneen wrote:

In the seven years since I joined the faculty at Georgetown, I have found myself often at odds with the trajectory and many decisions of the university.  In 2006 I founded The Tocqueville Forum as a campus organization that would offer a different perspective, one centered on the moral underpinnings of liberal learning that are a precondition for the continued existence of liberal democracy, and one that would draw upon the deep wisdom contained in the Catholic humanistic tradition.  I have been heartened and overjoyed to witness the great enthusiasm among a myriad of students for the programming and activities of the Forum.  However, the program was not supported or recognized by the institution, and that seemed unlikely to change.  While I did not seek that approval, I had hoped over the years that the program would be attractive to colleagues across disciplines on the faculty, and would be a rallying-point for those interested in reviving and defending classical liberal learning on campus.  The Tocqueville Forum fostered a strong community of inquiry among a sizeable number of students, but I did not find that there was any such community formed around its mission, nor the likely prospect of one, among the more permanent members of the university. I have felt isolated and often lonely at the institution where I have devoted so many of my hours and my passion.

So, where is Professor Deneen headed?

The University of Notre Dame (UND).

However, Deneen appears not to be headed to South Bend blinded by all of the UND hype.  He wrote:

I don’t doubt that there will be many battles at Our Lady’s University.  But, there are at least some comrades-in-arms to share in the effort.

UND hired Deneen, he wrote, because they regard him as “someone who can be a significant contributor to its mission and identity, particularly the Catholic identity of the institution.”

Although considerations like these are not typically a criterion for hiring at Georgetown as Deneen noted, The Motley Monk would humbly suggest that even in those institutions where they are, there’s quite a distance between espousing those ideals and translating them to pedagogical lessons in every classroom, dorm, and student activity.

For Professor Deneen’s willingness to witness to the importance of an institution’s Catholic identity in name and in fact, The Motley Monk offers a “call out” and “both thumb up.”

To read Professor Deneen’s letter, click on the following link:

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9 Responses to A “Call Out” and “Two Thumbs Up” to Professor Patrick Deneen

  • Two old sayings come to mind. “Never say die.” and “Out of the fire, into the frying pan.”

  • My impression — and it is only that — is that Notre Dame accepts its Catholic identity and is genuinely proud of it, even if it all too often misunderstands it; while Georgetown cannot quite decide if it should accept its Catholicity or be embarrassed by it. I could be wrong.

  • The rise of the gay pride organisation at Georgetown with its lavender graduation was coerced by the Supreme Court in view of a D.C. law and presages the recent arising health insurance dilemna facing the Church:

    from their history of their rise….

    “GPGU petitions GU for recognition again and is denied for the third time; GPGU and the Gay Rights Coalition (GU Law Center) sue GU for recognition under the DC Human Rights Act. In Gay Rights Coalition v. Georgetown University, the Supreme Court rules that Georgetown University has violated the D.C. Human Rights Law by refusing to recognize its LGBTQ organization.”

    see their history with their frequent infiltrations of campus tours for new students:

    In a 1988 settlement, GU ends up indirectly funding them:
    “After 8 years of litigation and 199 years after its founding, GU settles with GPGU , agreeing to fund the group through a secondary body as to not violate Catholic teaching regarding homosexuality. This led to the creation of the Student Activities Commission (SAC). ”

    So the question is….would Christ fund a sodomy group through a secondary body. No…I think He would close the school and move it to another area. My cousin is gay and I’ve prayed for her for decades and will pray until her death as I prayed for her partner who died and was a divorced Catholic who turned gay after divorce. She, when alive and thinking I would agree, denounced to me certain relatives who objected but then was fiercely mad at me for agreeing with them and saying to her face that
    Scripture is crystal clear in Romans 1 that it is deadly sin for both genders.

  • I have a couple of questions regarding this and maybe it is because I am in search of, on a conquest for my own authentic masculinity. Do we stay and fight in a situation like this…or is the can kicked so far down the road that return to Catholic University status at G’Town is slim to none? Can more of an effective fight be waged at ND which needs to be more authentically Catholic (at least what I can see from the news the last few years).

  • As an ND alum, I cannot speak for Georgetown, but I say without reservation that there is hope for Notre Dame, and the last thing that the oft-beleaguered faithful among the students and faculty at ND need is to be written off as a lost cause by the rest of the Church. Here is a good place to start:

  • Michael,
    I think that folks should fight the good fight from whereever they sit. I see no reason, or really any practical ability, to engage in our unfortunate culture war on just certain fronts or battlegrounds. Catholics who care about Georgetown or who are in a position to be influential there should direct their energies there, just as Catholics with ND relationships should fight the good fight there. That is just my 2 cents.

  • In case it was not clear, my last comment was in response to MJP’s.
    I agree completely with MB’s post.

  • “conquest”







    I love it when you guys comment thusly.

    Let them also “admonish”, “counsel”, “instruct”, and “pray for.”

Are Great Books Not The Answer?

Monday, April 12, AD 2010

Patrick Deneen of Georgetown University has an essay on Minding The Campus in which he argues that cultural and intellectual conservatives should be more cautious about championing Great Books type programs in colleges and universities as an antidote to the rootlessness and relativism of the modern curriculum, because the Great Books format itself is often essentially relativistic:

Most curricula in the Great Books offer the various philosophies as inherently coherent and valid systems, suggesting to each student that there is finally no basis on which to decide which philosophy to adopt other than mere preference. One must simply decide. This Nietzschean (or Schmittian) lesson is reinforced by the typical organization of such curricula (where they persist), which is typically chronological. Given that most students today have deeply ingrained progressive worldviews (that is, the view that history has been the slow but steady advance of enlightenment in all forms, culminating in equal rights for all races, all genders, and all sexual preferences), a curriculum that begins with the Bible and Greek philosophy and ends with Nietzsche subtly suggests that Nietzsche is the culmination of Enlightenment’s trajectory. The fact that his philosophy is reinforced by the message that an education in the Great Books consists in exposure to equally compelling philosophies between which there is no objective basis to prefer only serves to deepen the most fundamental lesson of a course in the Great Books, which is a basic form of relativism. The choice of a personal philosophy is relative, and the basis on which one makes any such choice is finally arbitrary, the result of personal preference or attraction.

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31 Responses to Are Great Books Not The Answer?

  • I have been reading this Book:

    Called the ten books that screwed up the world and five others that didn’t help. By Benjamine Wiker.

    Helpful for me to read as I have been through philosphy in college but this cut through the garbage and broke up the idiocy of the logic.

  • If a Great Books program is run by relativists,

    That’s the caveat.

    Orthodox College’s like Thomas Aquinas College should not fall into this unless of course they begin wanting “worldly” respect such as Georgetown or Notre Shame, then yes, I can see his point.

  • Robert,

    For the record, while I think it’s pretty uncontroversial that many of the works Wiker highlights in his book have serious moral and/or intellectual problems (when you’ve got targets like Mein Kampf and Communist Manifesto, it’s not exactly hard to point to major world problems that resulted from the works) I’ve got to say I’m not crazy about Wiker as a writer or thinker. A lot of what he writes is heavily influenced by his rejection of evolution. And he’s a fairly binary thinker overall.

    I was glad to see that he wasn’t entrusted with any of the sections of the Great Books honors program during my time at Steubie, though I don’t know if he since managed to make his way in to teaching some of those.

  • I was exposed to some pretty average books, and one or two of the Great Books, by average teachers in college. I would have rather had excellent teachers instruct me about all the classics. But long after the teachers are forgotten, two things stay with you: the knowledge from the books (however poorly transmitted and received), and the awareness that there are people who’ve wrestled with the imporant things and written out their conclusions. I think that Deneen underestimates the importance of that awareness.

    Like a lot of people, I read The Closing of the American Mind and recognized the educational problems Bloom was describing. I got frustrated with the book at times, because I wanted Bloom to point to a specific tree and say “that’s the one you want to bark up”. I realize now that he was offering an overview of the thinkers that an educated person should know.

    One side note: Deneen makes a big mistake in his chronology. The Great Books programs weren’t teaching a new canon to replace Scripture. They were a continuation of the classical education under a new name.

  • I seem to recall from reading Mortimer Adler’s biography that one of the problems the U Chicago great books program faced early on was that people suspected it of having some sort of cryptic agenda: a disproportionate number of students were going through the program and then converting to Catholicism.

    People can mess nearly anything up, but I do think there’s a validity to thinking that if you get students to sit down and really read Plato, Aristotle, Augustine and Aquinas and then Marx and Nietze, most will come to the right set of conclusions.

  • Darwin,

    A few years back a fine history professor at Kansas University was using the Socratic method I believe in teaching medieval history. An unusual amount of students began converting to Catholicism because of this and the university received numerous complaints from family members since many of these converts also joined monastic orders such as Clear Creek Monastery in Oklahoma.

    It’s interesting to see how many universities got away from this method of teaching. I wonder if there was some sort of reasoning for doing so?

  • “I seem to recall from reading Mortimer Adler’s biography that one of the problems the U Chicago great books program faced early on was that people suspected it of having some sort of cryptic agenda: a disproportionate number of students were going through the program and then converting to Catholicism.”

    That amused Adler to no end since he was a self-styled pagan at the time. He converted to the Episcopalian faith in 1984 and in 2000, just a year before his death, he became a Catholic at age 97. As long as there is breath there is hope!

  • Darwin I was unaeare of that aspect of his motives. Thanks for the information.

  • *unaware*

    Sheesh my keybord is broken 🙂

  • Great information on Adler Don – Amazes me 🙂

  • Chicago used to be described thus:

    A Baptist University where atheist professors teach Catholic philosophy to Jewish students.

    Also: The problem with a Great Books curriculum is partly, but not wholly, explicable by reference to the particular beliefs of the instructor. The whole notion of a Great Books curriculum is that there’s this “long conversation,” conducted across history, by vastly diverse thinkers, about some given set of issues. You are instructed to read these texts as responding to one another on some transcendental level, and not as deeply embedded within a particular historical set of problems to which they are trying to give a response. Consequently it encourages a kind of “abstract” view of the person, who him or herself sits outside of any particular tradition and is free to read and think about these Great Books from no vantage point whatsoever. Unfortunately this is not true.

    Also: Wiker is a hack.

  • You know, maybe those books “screwed up the world”, maybe they didn’t – maybe they’re just expressions of the times and not causes of them. I’m of the mind that someone would have thought of most of these ideas regardless, so its not “books” that screw up the world, it’s people.

    As a student of political philosophy I never liked the idea behind Wiker’s book. And as much as I respect Thomas Woods these days, after I read his review of the book I couldn’t bring myself to read it. Woods said, and I paraphrase, that Wiker had read and analyzed these books “so you don’t have to.”

    In other words, this man did the reading and the critical thinking for you.

    I’ll be blunt: I HATE secondary and tertiary sources most of the time (there are some good ones) because they are almost always tainted. If you don’t want to read Plato and Aristotle, don’t even bother with some guys’ interpretation of them.

  • Joe,

    Kind of how I feel about the USCCB.


  • WJ,

    “You are instructed to read these texts as responding to one another on some transcendental level, and not as deeply embedded within a particular historical set of problems to which they are trying to give a response. Consequently it encourages a kind of “abstract” view of the person, who him or herself sits outside of any particular tradition and is free to read and think about these Great Books from no vantage point whatsoever. Unfortunately this is not true.”

    I think it is true to some extent. We have to understand that even if the great philosophers or political thinkers were addressing contemporary problems, they were also almost always attempting to draw broad generalizations based on a commonly shared human experience.

    I think the Great Books approach is a healthy antidote to the sort of extreme historicism one still sees at universities, as well as the “post-modern” interpretations, which usually boil down to deliberately incomprehensible gibberish. This is where we get relativistic ideas from.

    If we have a curriculum that points to what is unchanging in man, and what is objectively true regardless of the historical epoch (like, for instance, rules of logical argument), then we combat both relativism and fatalism.

    As always a healthy balance is needed. Some historicism is good. Some abstraction is good. The best introductions to great works I’ve read are able to both a) establish the historical context and b) lay out the idea with as little taint as possible. Then it is up for the readers to decide how much of a work is an unconscious reflection of history, and how much of it is an original work of a unique mind. It’s up for them to decide how much of the book is nothing but a technical manual of inherent value only for the people of that generation, and how much of it contains a message that is timeless and re-applicable in almost any society.

    A book is hardly “great” if it does not offer BOTH.

  • And as much as I respect Thomas Woods these days, after I read his review of the book I couldn’t bring myself to read it. Woods said, and I paraphrase, that Wiker had read and analyzed these books “so you don’t have to.”

    Heh. Yeah, that kind of thing rubs me massively the wrong way.

    Needless to say, I’m glad that the Church got beyond the Index Of Forbidden Books phase.

  • Well, I go back and forth on this, but to play devil’s advocate…

    The opposition you propose in your response to my comment is a false one. It is not that Plato’s Republic is partly “an unconscious reflection of history” and is partly “an original work of a unique mind.” It is clearly an original work, and Plato’s mind was clearly unique, but both its originality and uniqueness emerge as such only when they are understood in the context of the debates and upheavals of 5th and 4th century Athens. In other words, historicism properly understood is not *opposed* to the values you (rightly) identify, but is their precondition.

    Here I will put my cards on the table and say that much of my current skepticism regarding Great Books Curricula is heavily indebted to MacIntyre’s critique of the anthropology subtending this curricula, which he argues is a liberal, or Enlightenment, anthropology.

    Buying this argument from MacIntyre involves a bigger issue: whether there is in fact any neutral standpoint from which one can approach the Great Conversation. If there is one, then something like your account is plausible, if there is not, then it is not. But this is a big issue and, as I said, one that I’m unsure about myself.

  • WJ,

    I don’t think I gave you a false opposition. In my view, “historicism properly understood” is the same as historicism in the right amount. Maybe its not a good use of language to try and quantify such a thing, I can grant that.

    Let me put it this way: I think historicism is misused. I think it is valid when you want to ask “why did thinker x hold the opinions he did”, and to be honest, the way I approach history, the “whys” are not that important. Historicism is also good for discovering why two works from two different epochs with similar premises and reasoning will differ in the details and the implementation. So its a good tool of comparative analysis.

    Its invalid if we want to ask, “is this a logically valid argument? Do the conclusions follow from the premises? Are any of these premises still valid today?” I believe in reading, studying, thinking and writing with a purpose. Historicism can help us sort out the inessential from the essential aspects of a philosophical argument but it cannot itself serve as any kind of guide for understanding those essential aspects.

    I’m writing a commentary on the Book of Wisdom right now, for instance, that answers these questions in the affirmative. The historical context of the author really is a secondary matter next to the perennial issues he was dealing with – atheism, existentialism, hedonism, injustice, and the persecution of Christ.

    I believe that the “wisdom of Wisdom”, in other words, is timeless, applicable to all human societies in its essence. I think wisdom is what we can gain from the untainted study of philosophy, and I think the further we get away from historicist scaffolding, however necessary it might be, as you say, as a “precondition”, the closer we come to wisdom.

    And that’s what I seek to get out of philosophy – wisdom. Not a history lesson or a biography, but wisdom that men and women can use to make their lives better, to better serve God and neighbor, to achieve better justice, etc.

  • That said, let me address your last point as well:

    “Buying this argument from MacIntyre involves a bigger issue: whether there is in fact any neutral standpoint from which one can approach the Great Conversation. If there is one, then something like your account is plausible, if there is not, then it is not. But this is a big issue and, as I said, one that I’m unsure about myself.”

    The answer, strictly speaking, is no – no one is completely neutral. But then, consider the debates we have had here on this blog about the relationship between freedom and sin.

    We’ve said, many times, that although a life free of sin through the use of free will is possible in theory, it is almost impossible in practice – some say it is absolutely impossible, I will not go that far.

    But this limitation on our freedom is not an excuse not to strive to live a sinless life. We will stumble, fall, and rise many times on our path to righteousness and salvation.

    In the same way, our inability to become completely objective (which, as in the case of being completely sinless, would make us like God, or at least an angel) is no excuse for us not to try. I believe in a rational universe. There are objective truths in this universe, and that they are accessible, if not entirely comprehensible, to the human mind.

    Just as I have a moral duty to avoid sin even if I succumb to it now and then, I believe I also have a moral duty to come as close to objective truth as possible, even if I succumb to subjectivism now and then.

    So am I entirely neutral? No. But can I struggle against subjective limitations and strive for objective clarity? Yes. Will I reach total objective clarity? Most likely not. But can I move towards it? Yes.

    That’s how I see it, anyway.

  • I don’t recall hearing about UChicago’s propensity to make converts. KU’s program was run along more classical, with heavy Latin use. One of its graduates, a convert to Catholicism, is Bishop James Conley, auxiliary of Denver.

    “Great Books” are a poor substitute for mastering an ancient and modern language. It was once realistic for colleges to expect graduates to have near-fluency. Can that be the case any longer? I felt my language classes could have proceeded much more quickly.

    If you want to feel really inadequate, look up the multi-lingual Barrett’s Grammar, a bestseller in the 19th century.

    There are more comments on Deneen’s essay at

  • Kevin, you’re right that the classics used to be taught in their original tongues. That ties in to my problem with Deneen’s argument. It wasn’t like the Great Books programs appeared out of nowhere and made a generation stupid. In reality, they were part of a long decline in the educational system. They were along the bottom half of the ladder, and they led to our current bottom rung. But the way up is with the next rung. Maybe we can get back to a liberal education over the next several decades; if we do, it’ll begin by reading the classics in English.

    Joe, I recognize the potential problems with secondary sources, but there can also be benefits. I always think of Malthus, who couldn’t write out a recipe for popcorn in under 100 pages. I also have some concern about the Great Books of math and science.

  • ““Great Books” are a poor substitute for mastering an ancient and modern language. ”

    Really? I didn’t learn one and I think I’m doing alright.

    I think nothing at all is worse than something. And I think studying the canon of books that have shaped Western civilization and hence, the world, gives you access to all of the wisdom and knowledge you will ever need.

  • I’d love to read Kant in the original language. Better yet, I’d love to read Kant in the original without having to learn German. Or, the best case scenario would be that Kant never wrote anything.

  • Hey hey! I don’t know if I mentioned this but I left my advertising job to join the Great Books program at St. John’s College in Annapolis.

    I’m almost done with the Philosophy/Theology Segment and I’m loving it.

    YES it is relativistic, but thats to be expected given the age we live in and the structure of the program. If you’re looking for a program where all the books will be seen in terms of a ‘Catholic’ response then this program is not for you.

    BUT if you are a Catholic and you put your brain on it can be a TON OF FUN to enter into dialogue with all the atheists, agnostics, etc. Every Monday and Thursday night I end up having really wonderful conversations with people, and I’m glad I made the decision despite the financial hit. Its only four semesters, which is a small price to pay for a body of learning that will shift the course of your life.

    Right now we’re on Kant after just leaving behind guys like Aquinas and Hume. Today I’ve gotta work on a Hume paper and then the rest of the month its a major paper on Confessions I’ll be slaving on.

  • Wow, now that’s a change. Glad you’re enjoying it, Anthony.

    Four semesters, is that a concentrated course for those who already have an undergrad degree?

  • Even after law school, I can’t recall a more painful reading experience than Kant as an undergrad (and does any famous philosopher have a name that invites more cheap puns than Kant)?

  • Darwin,

    Yeah for the graduate students here it essentially is a compressed version of what the undergrads here do. The program is intended for teachers, lawyers, retirees or people like myself who really needed a break from the corporate grind.

    Although my bachelors degree was in design my minor was in history, so I’ve had a hankering to return to that academic spirit. Plus, I’m completely convinced that the majority of Americans are completely clueless as to what is going on around them thanks to their mediocre education. We’re just not taught these guys anymore and we really should be. Trying to write and converse about the great questions that face mankind ought not to be something limited to an exclusive few.

    The program here is divided in to five ‘segments’ that focus on specific areas. You must complete four to earn the degree. Each segment is comprised of a tutorial, a seminar and a preceptorial. In the tutorial and precept you must do some substantive writing and in seminar there is an oral exam.

    The five segments are Philosophy/Theology, Natural Science/Mathematics, Literature, Politics/Society and History.

    Right now I’m in Philosophy/Theology and in the fall I’m probably going to take Natural Science/Mathematics. We only are using primary texts. There are no ‘textbooks’ or lectures or secondary sources. Its just you and Plato, you and Euclid, you and Augustine.

    So yeah, its fun. I have no idea what I’ll do with ‘the degree’ and I do want to get back to advertising (been looking for a job since January!), but hey— 4 semesters is a small price to pay for a lifetime’s worth of learning.

  • That’s hilarious, Donald. Yes, I remember encountering Kant in a “History of Western Philosophy” course and nearly pounding my head against my desk in frustration.

    But in grad school, I was introduced to the trendy post-modernists and deconstructionists, who were even worse in my book. (And utterly cuckoo radical feminists, who are the worst of the worst.) Read a bit of Lacan and Derrida and you’ll feel nostalgic for Kant. Read more than a few pages of someone like Andrea (“all intercourse is rape”) Dworkin and you risk ending up in the asylum.

  • The really sad thing Donna is when one considers the price one paid at college and grad school to read what one often considers in later life to be congealed nonsense.

  • I’ve got a question for the crowd: does anyone know of a Great Books blog? I love talking about this stuff, and learning from other people’s observations.

The Claremont Reviews Advent Interview with Fr. James V. Schall

Tuesday, December 15, AD 2009

Since 2002 Ken Masugi, a senior fellow of the Claremont Institute and lecturer in Government at Johns Hopkins University, Washington DC, has conducted Advent interviews with James V. Schall, S.J., author of over thirty books on political theory and theology. Fr. Schall teaches in the Government Department of Georgetown University.

The interviews themselves are a delight to read and span a variety of topics from current events to the pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI to issues in philosophy, theology and ethics — and sometimes, in addition, what books Fr. Schall himself is reading at that particular moment in time.

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4 Responses to The Claremont Reviews Advent Interview with Fr. James V. Schall

Jesuitical 5: Obama as "the Spirit of Vatican II" President

Thursday, June 4, AD 2009

John O'Malley

The fifth installment of my series pointing out the follies of some Jesuits in this country.  Father John O’Malley, SJ, of  the theology department of Georgetown has a piece in America, where else?, in which he hails Obama as a President who embodies something called “the Spirit of Vatican II”.  Actually I think Obama really embodies “the Spirit of Jesuits Trapped in ’68”.    Father Z does the necessary fisking of the article here.  Carl Olsen has some pointed comments on the same subject here.  Rich Leonardi of Ten Reasons points us to thoughts about the meaning of Vatican II by the late, and very great, Avery Cardinal Dulles, SJ, which appeared in America in 2003.

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12 Responses to Jesuitical 5: Obama as "the Spirit of Vatican II" President

  • This is amusing, while the article is based on “style” as substance in which there are legitimate comparisons between the Council language Obama’s rhetoric at times, it wholly ignores Obama’s rhetoric at other times which is entirely different.

    While Obama gives some speeches that are “civil” he gives many others in which he demonizes the opposition in sometimes insidious but often openly contempt fashion. That is not civility. To speak one way about pro-lifers in a Catholic college, but in an opposite way at a DNC rally, or even to the mainstream media, that is the height of contempt, not only for the opposition, but for everyone, treating us as the proles of Communist countries were.

  • No institution is doing a better job of spreading the post-Christian virus than GTown. No Catholic religious order is more zealous in this mission than our Society of Jesus. Thus the Theology Dept. of this once fine institution is a host body. As I value my daily time only the fisking from Mr. Olsen was worth my view and a worthy one it is. Confirms my belief that when folks unhinge themselves to One True God, they hook up with other gods, the most popular one being Gummint. As O’Malley chooses to make a strange god of Dear Leader, he only expresses what many of his D.C.-based libs believe in their heart of hearts. But perhaps his words of worship are already stale. This past weekend, read something from noted lib Ted Rall already calling for Dear Leader to step down from the throne. Gitmo Angst and other stuff made him unhinged. Perhaps Theology Professor O’Malley should read this essay and update his theories. False gods often have limited shelf-lives.

  • Today the Commonweal blog is casting Obama as St. Francis of Assisi. Better than making him Jesus, I guess. But these people have a sad awakening coming.

  • This article was the most silly thing I have read ever in America magazine. WHich is saying a lot

    These line floored me

    “Is it not ironic that not a bishop but the President of the United States should today be the most effective spokesperson for that spirit”

    Breathtaking just Breathraking. Can one imagine the yelling and wailing if a conservative journal implied that Bush was a better spokeman for American Catholic than the U.S. Bishops

  • “But these people have a sad awakening coming.”

    Quite true Ron. No politician could possibly live up to the type of adulation that has been bestowed on Obama.

  • Isn’t “The Spirit of Vatican II” that anti-orthodox priest in Japan?

  • Yes, foxfier, that would be Fr. O’Leary. (An “O'” usually denotes the bearer of a fine Irish name, but I’m beginning to be wary of “O’s” with an S. J. after their Celtic monikers.)The last I saw of O’Leary, aka “The Spirit of VII,” he was telling the VN posters that abortion, including late-term abortion, is justifiable in some circumstances. He got that pearl of wisdom from Andrew Sullivan’s blog. O’Leary, like O’Malley, delights in telling us we should really forget all that stodgy old Vatican stuff and just get cool with the progressive program.

  • In August 2004 I saw first hand modern Jesuit thinking and its hideous anti Catholicism. Taking my daughter to freshman orientation at the University of San Francisco, the openning convocation was full of self (false) praise of the value of Jesuit education. What it lacked was single prayer for hope, encouragement, or thanks to our Lord. As I told the assistant Dean of Students while leaving, that I a lay person and the product of a good Marian education would have gladly offered one if the Jesuits were too embarassed to offer even one. But the next days Mass for students and family was even more hurtfull by these non-catholic humanists. During the homily, a young woman just graduated actually gave a speech on how she lost her faith and possibly her eternal happiness with Jesus as she was inspired by her Jesuitg education to convert from Catholicism to Islam. I am not afraid of the truth, those are facts and that is what is tolerated in the Jesuit community under the guise of being secular and seeking justice.
    I always thought that seeking Jesus, the way, the truth, and the light was what we humans were about.

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Catholic Democrats Come to the Defense of Notre Dame

Friday, April 17, AD 2009


Catholic Democrats come to the defense of their leader in regard to Georgetown and Notre Dame and run into a buzzsaw named Father Z here.

Update:  Good analysis of why Catholic Democrats and other Obama-philes are so concerned about the fallout from Notre Dame is given here by the always readable Damian Thompson across the pond at his blog Holy Smoke.

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10 Responses to Catholic Democrats Come to the Defense of Notre Dame

  • Isn’t Fr. Z the man whose writing verges on pornography, whenever he muses lyrically on his intense love for certain U.S battleships?

  • Obviously Mr. DeFrancisis you know nothing about Father Z. Enjoy the fisk. I know I am!

  • Isn’t Fr. Z the man whose writing verges on pornography, whenever he muses lyrically on his intense love for certain U.S battleships?

    Only in the perverted imagination of a couple rather odd bloggers. He just likes naval architecture. Many people have worse hobbies.

  • Mark,

    And you wonder why I call you a dissident Catholic.

  • He just last year salivated in writing over the armored appendages of one US battleship, one that he pointed out delivered missiles in the (unjust)U.S military aggression on Iraq of the early 90s.

  • Mr. DeFrancisis, doesn’t it get tiring dragging red herrings across the screen? Deal with the substance of Father Z’s fisk and stop babbling about battleships.

  • Tito – Opposing war makes one a “dissident” Catholic? Someone better notify the Pope.

    If find it outrageously funny that you people did the same thing to Bush and yet you’re criticizing Obama’s folks when they rush to defend him. Are you surprised? I’m not.

  • Tito,

    Fr. Z is a phenon in an obscure corner of the Catholic blogosphere. His pronouncements have no authority over me, as he is neither a bishop nor a priset in my diocese. Additionally, despite all of his clains to Catholicity, his views on the liturgy and other matters are mostly the predilictions of an ideologue and an aesthete, not ones which mirror the necessary pronouncements of Mother Church. I wish him all the cyber-success he seeks out, but, otherwise, we have nothing to do with each other.

  • We should pray for Fr. Z. He will surely lose a lot of sleep over Mr DeFrancisis’ poor opinion of him…

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Where's Jesus?

Thursday, April 16, AD 2009


When Obama gave an economics speech at Georgetown, the monogram IHS in the background was covered over at the request of the White House.  I approve!  Whenever this President speaks at a Catholic college, anything related to Christ should be covered over!  I will leave to others to debate whether Georgetown is a Catholic college!

Update I: Father Z unleashes one of his unforgettable fiskings on this story here.

Udate II: Excellent commentary here.

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6 Responses to Where's Jesus?

  • I had to read this a few times before I got it,
    “I approve! Whenever this President speaks at a Catholic college, anything related to Christ should be covered over!”

    I still think we should be praying for him, even as we disagree with his polices and viewpoints. Work within the legal bounds to curtail, slow or block some of the actions his administration wish to implement, but we all ought to be begging the intersession of our Patroness, Mary of the Immaculate Conception, the intervention of the Holy Spirit and the compassion of Our Risen Lord.

  • Well said Sandra.

  • This is the university which removed crucifixes from the classrooms.

    It is also the university, like Fordham, which was first financed by the sale of slaves.

  • I agree. In fairness to Obama, it is possible that the Notre Dame controversy has sensitized his handlers such that they did not want to make it look like Obama’s speech had some type of Church imprimatur, or more specifically, give ammo to those who would accuse him of making it look so. For this pro-abort President to give a speech in front of explicitly Catholic symbols runs the risk of being inflammatory in a way that is not helpful to his presidency. It was a good political move, I think. In a way, the question is which is worse, Obama giving a speech in front of Catholic imagery or Obama asking that the imagery be removed before he gives his speech? I agree with Don that the first is worse, and I suspect that Obama’s handlers worried that enough Catholics would feel that way that they understood where the better part of valor rests

  • O think that the Catholic Church should withdraw the status of “Catholic” to Universities like Georgetown or Notre Dame

  • Mike- you are too clever by half. Please do not employ nuance where knuckleheadedness is more applicable. Of course, Georgetown is Catholic to the same extent that say Terrell Owens is a team player. Only when useful. Then the image comes down. As yet another DC Establishment Player, it was more than willing to cooperate with the White House’s wishes. Thus earning derisive scorn in this Obama To Notre Dame period. If Dear Leader was scheduled to address students virtually in this section of his backyard, yawn and double yawn. A few years back, took the dedicated K of C chapter on campus to put crucifixes back in classrooms. Mere covering of IHS is just more of the same. 30 pieces of silver and all.

Res & Explicatio for A.D. 3-6-2009

Friday, March 6, AD 2009

Salvete AC readers!

Here are today’s Top Picks in the Catholic world:

1. Unlike many bishops in America, Coadjutor Archbishop Dennis Schnurr of  the Archdiocese of Cincinnati prayed the Rosary with other protesters outside an abortion mill on Wednesday, March 4.  Archbishop Schnurr will replace Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk upon his retirement.  Among the protesters came this comment referring to Archbishop Schnurr’s presence:

“It’s tremendous,” Ferraro said of Schnurr’s presence. “He’s the head of the flock. It certainly affirms (the church leadership’s) commitment.”

For the link click on Archbishop Schnurr’s name above or here.

Updated: Archbishop Pilarczk actively leads Rosary prayer vigils in front of abortion mills as well!

2. Doctors who performed and directly assisted in the abortion of twins to a nine year old rape/incest victim have been declared excommunicated by Archbishop Jose Sobrinho of the Archdiocese of Olinda e Recife in Brazil.  The nine year old girl was not excommunicated for many reasons, most likely due to her age.  Where are these bishops in America?  Probably hiding behind the USCCB Faithful Citizenship document thus failing to lead their flocks.

Dr. Ed Peters volunteered his sentiments on this case, “as for the perpetrator of the rape, there isn’t a mine shaft deep enough on this earth for him.”

For the link click on excommunicated above or here.

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8 Responses to Res & Explicatio for A.D. 3-6-2009

  • Got another fave on this Lenten Friday- posted on both Drudge and Lucianne. From St. Lou Post Dispatch. Handwringing about Catholic hospitals and how their administrators- hint, their local bishops- may close facilities rather than assist Dear Leader’s plans for abortions more common than Happy Meals, in event of FOCA becoming law. Poor thing. Libs always overreach when in power. Often in ways that bite them in the schnozz. But fun to read as in one corner of MSM trying to counsel Dear Leader in more discreet judgment on the matter. Oh- like approaching Kathy Silbelius- Friend of Tiller The Killer- as HHS Secretary.

  • It should be noted that Archbishop Pilarczyk has prayed at the same abortion mill, and celebrates Mass for the Cincinnati branch of the Helpers of God’s Precious Infants on somewhat regular occasions.

  • Fr. Schnippel,

    That is wonderful news!

    Deo gratias!

    I pray and hope that my good bishop joins us in prayer as well, to lead his flock to victory.

  • It is also worth noting that Bishop Jackels of the Wichita diocese also leads the rosary at least once per year at George Tiller’s abortion facility. We also have a regular first Saturday rosary with priests from various parishes assigned to lead. I believe that three or four parishes are assigned per first Saturday–there are always priests present as well as parishioners. Anyone know of any other diocese with this sort of program?

  • You people really need help. You’re seriously praising Sobrinho for his vicious heavy-handed excommunication? You make me feel ashamed to be a Catholic – isn’t it time you left the Church to take your poison elsewhere?! If you think adopting a brown-nosing attitude to everything many idiot bishops do and say is following the mesage of Christ then you are wrong. Problem is that your in america – you smell the incense and see the ritual and it affects your mind and reason.

  • “You make me feel ashamed to be a Catholic – isn’t it time you left the Church to take your poison elsewhere?!”

    Who can argue with that blinding logic? The Archbishop was absolutely correct. The nine year girl had been through hell, and it was a terrible situation. The doctors killing the twins she was carrying changed none of the evil that was done to her, but merely added two more names to the innocents put to death by abortion.

    The vatican backs the excommunication.,23739,25155346-954,00.html

    Maybe you think the Pope should leave the Church?

  • You’re seriously praising Sobrinho for his vicious heavy-handed excommunication?

    And why not? These doctors looked at this unspeakable crime, and proceeded to kill two of the three victims.

    If someone is to be killed as a result of this crime, it should be the rapist-father-grandfather — not the innocent children who resulted from his crime.

  • it’s not really even the bishop who acted here, it was the doctors and parents themselves who excommunicated themselves by virtue of their actions. The bishop simply declared what the universal law of the Church is… those who procure abortion are automatically excommunicated.