Thursday, April 07, 2011

Attacking Catholic Teaching About Sex at “Catholic” Marquette University

From a notice sent around to faculty:
Discussion on human sexuality to take place

A discussion on “The Sexual Person: Toward a Renewed Catholic Sexuality” will take place Monday, April 11, from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Marquette Hall 200.

The discussion will be presented by Dr. Todd Salzman, professor and chair of theology at Creighton University, and Dr. Michael Lawler, professor emeritus of theology at Creighton University. Respondents will be Dr. Susan Ross, professor and chair of theology at Loyola University Chicago, and Rev. Bryan Massingale, associate professor of theology at Marquette.

For more information, contact Dr. Amelia Zurcher, associate professor of English and coordinator of the Women’s Studies Program.

This event is sponsored by the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences, the departments of English, History, Philosophy and Psychology, and the Social and Cultural Sciences McGee Lecture Series.
What’s the problem with this? The fact that the most secular and politically correct parts of the university are the sponsors is the giveaway.

In September of Last year the U.S. bishops highlighted major defects in Salzman and Lawler’s co-authored book (The Sexual Person: Toward a Renewed Catholic Anthropology). It seems the authors approve homosexual behavior, premarital sex, contraception, and artificial insemination.

In fact, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops saw fit to critique the book at length.

How do Salzman and Lawler deal with scriptural statements about sexual behavior? They simply assert that such were merely reflections of the cultural biases of the particular time in history when the texts were written, and are not normative for us today.

That’s terribly convenient. It relieves one of ever having to confront current cultural norms and take unpopular stands.

The sort of people who take this position never have an inkling that today’s cultural norms may be arbitrary fashions with no fundamental moral grounding.

In principle, there is nothing wrong with discussion of Catholic teaching about sexuality at a Catholic university, including the voicing of opinions contrary to Church teaching.

Unfortunately, as is typical at Marquette, no opinions supportive of Catholic teaching are likely to be voiced. Marquette’s own Fr. Massingale is both a political and a theological liberal, and Dr. Susan Ross seems to subordinate any respect for Catholic teaching to her feminist views.

If discourse at Marquette is going to be one-sided, it should come down on the side of Catholic teaching. But balanced discourse is always to be sought in a university.

But how does one rationalize one program after another trashing Catholic teaching?

Marquette is not, in any serious sense, a Catholic university. That claim is just a marketing gimmick.

Labels: , , ,

6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You said: "Marquette is not, in any serious sense, a Catholic university. That claim is just a marketing gimmick."

Here is my question, is it just a gimmick, OR do the powers that be really believe that they actually are being Catholic by doing these things? Maybe they really do see the Church as a big tent, or see themseles as a sort of prophetic voice that would provide an "alternative" to that old-reactionary German dude in Rome?

Now of course, any objective and faithful Catholic would be dismayed at what has been going on at MU in recent years (and gone into over-drive in recent weeks) but I think that they believe their own "gimmicks" at this point. Frankly, there has been such a failure to teach Catholics the basics of their faith since the 1960s that this just seems like the logical result.

12:02 AM  
Blogger PatO said...

Catholic priests have sex with children. Thousands and thousands of times in the U.S. alone. Then they lie about it and cover it up?

Who is still listening to what the Catholic church has to say about anything? We're talking about child rape here.

8:37 AM  
Blogger John McAdams said...

Here is my question, is it just a gimmick, OR do the powers that be really believe that they actually are being Catholic by doing these things?

That's an excellent question.

I think it varies. A lot of politically correct faculty in places like the English Department and the Psychology Department are simply secular. They will tolerate a "Catholic mission" if it's pretty much just nominal.

Then there are people who doubtless think of themselves as deeply Catholic. They just define "Catholic" in ways consistent with the zeitgeist, which of course is terribly convenient. Doing that, you don't have to really dissent from the culture, and you especially don't have to dissent from the elite culture of academia.

3:44 PM  
Blogger John McAdams said...

Who is still listening to what the Catholic church has to say about anything? We're talking about child rape here.

Well who should listen to Al Gore about global warming, given his massive carbon footprint. You know: jetting around the world, and having a huge house in Tennessee.

3:46 PM  
OpenID mrs0308 said...

Dear Professor McAdams,
The name of your blog is appropriate, as you are obviously a brave warrior. Outstanding blog. I'm so glad I found you. I teach in a public middle school and admire your courage and tenacity.

6:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I vote gimmick. 12% of the Catholic kids entering a Catholic college leave after four years having lost the faith. In addition, the ranks of the Pro-choice Catholics will have grown dramtically in those four years as well as those who see gay marriage as an acceptable lifestyle. If parents knew the facts, far fewer would send their children to Catholic colleges.

5:44 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home