Three fundamental concerns are driving the formation of the new citizens organization:
I. The negative impact of special rights initiatives on all businesses and property owners, with a particularly negative impact on faith- based and faith-inspired businesses and property owners.
II. The negative impact of special rights initiatives on every citizen's constitutionally protected rights to freedom of expression, freedom of religion and freedom of assembly.
III. The negative impact of the practice of homosexuality on the individuals who practice it and on the rest of the society.
The main multifaceted emphasis of the group is to defend Traditional Marriage as 'between one man and one woman', to respond to the controversy at the University of Notre Dame regarding homosexual activism at several levels, to respond to 'special rights for homosexuals' ordinances as they come forward in the Region and to facilitate help and ministry for those suffering from the ill effects of the homosexual lifestyle.
Notre Dame's leader should know and love the faithNovember 01. 2006 6:59AM
SOUTHBENDTRIBUNE.com: MICHIANA POINT OF VIEW
Winning football games does not make the University of Notre Dame Catholic.
The success earlier this year of a powerful group of Notre Dame faculty that is disrespectful and contemptuous of the Roman Catholic faith shows the real character of the university. One observer characterized many in the faculty who supported "The Vagina Monologues" and The Queer Film Festival as possessing a "visceral anti-Catholicism."
Ex Corde Ecclesiae (ECE) is church law -- it must be followed. This law states that "Catholic members of the university community are ... called to a personal fidelity to the church with all that this implies. Non-Catholic members are required to respect the Catholic character of the university while the university in turn respects their religious liberty." (ECE, I, 29) It is clear this law is neither being obeyed nor enforced at Notre Dame.
The consequence of this failure is to threaten the proper development of young men and women during very formative years of their lives. To paraphrase an alumnus, how do we cultivate, and strengthen, the faith of the students so that they may lead good lives on this earth and so that their souls may be saved?
Notre Dame needs a leader who knows, and loves, the faith. The current president, John Jenkins, CSC, is not the one, and here's why:
Though a priest, Jenkins does not have the Catholic understanding of the concept of academic freedom. His definition of academic freedom was announced in January when he said: "Academic freedom ... ensures that faculty have the ability to research, create, teach, and express themselves in accord with their own best judgment." This means faculty can do whatever they want, and he is wrong.
The church's definition of academic freedom, a definition Catholics, especially priests, are bound to accept, is set forth in ECE I, A, 3, 29: "The church, accepting the legitimate autonomy of human culture and especially of the sciences, recognizes the academic freedom of scholars in each discipline in accordance with its own principles and proper methods, and within the confines of the truth and the common good." Teaching, and research, can only occur within the confines of the Roman Catholic faith -- not whatever the professor wants to do. Jenkins' gross misunderstanding of Roman Catholic teaching calls into question his knowledge of, and commitment to, advancing the faith.
Second, as other alums have pointed out, there is a strong homosexual subculture at the university. This subculture is encouraged by people high up in the administration. The Catechism of the Catholic Church speaks directly against the glorification and acceptance of the homosexual "identity/orientation." Section 2333 of the Catechism clearly states:
"Everyone, man and woman, should acknowledge and accept his sexual identity. Physical, moral, and spiritual difference and complementarity are oriented toward the goods of marriage and the flourishing of family life. The harmony of the couple and of society depends in part on the way in which the complementarity, needs and mutual support between the sexes are lived out."
Add to this the provision of Section 2358 which states "This [homosexual] inclination...is objectively disordered...."
Third, the university has failed to advance Catholic values in this very community. Indeed, judging by the actions of certain faculty members in supporting an equal rights ordinance for homosexuals, and the university's public stance against Opus Dei, it can be said that Notre Dame has become a force of moral subversion threatening the well-being of decent people and families.
Fourth, as you review Jenkins' closing statement issued earlier this year, as well as in his opening address, you will see that "issues of social concern" weighed in his decision to allow the two productions to continue. This implies that he is allowing, and will allow, the classroom to be used to indoctrinate, and not to educate, students. He has admitted that the "right" social message will be a guiding principle in the education of our young. And who determines what the "right" social message is? Well, it appears he will let an anti-Catholic faculty do just that.
Finally, even if Jenkins were to reverse himself, or he were to be reversed by the trustees, he would become a lame duck. He would be viewed as weak and would not be able to enforce the church's policies, or any policy, for that matter. We know the reality of such a turn of events from our own experiences in life.
So, Jenkins has to go. After him, we must demand that the administration fully accept what it means to be a Roman Catholic university. The loyal sons and daughters of Notre Dame must take back Notre Dame for the church and the faith.
David A. Wemhoff is a 1979 graduate of the University of Notre Dame. He lives in South Bend.
< Back >
CREATIVE SERVICES PROVIDED BY CREEKSIDE DESIGN