Friday, May 15, 2009


O-merica comes to Notre Dame this weekend as the President is slated to speak at the Catholic university's commencement ceremony. Understandably, some Catholics have expressed concern that the President's radical support for abortion is not consistent with the goals of a Catholic university.

In light of the President's recent appearance at Georgetown University, which eagerly covered up religious symbols in an effort to appease the President's sensibilities, it seems that Catholic critics are correct that the Catholic universities are in crisis. At least, that is, if one imagines that their purpose is to be dedicated to training Catholics to be faithful in a hostile world. However, the Notre Dame mission statement makes no mention of Jesus, God or even the church. It does mention developing "an appreciation for the great achievements of human beings", however.

But what this really brings to light is that religious institutions outside of the local church eventually act just like 'temporary' government programs--interested only in their own existence, prestige and continuation. From Harvard and Yale (remember that they were once religious, and very conservatively so) to the YMCA and now to Notre Dame and Georgetown, the lure of worldy prestige and wisdom eventually overshadows their founding mission, no matter how well-intentioned.

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