Author Archives: Adam Wilson

Adam is Director of Communications at The Cardinal Newman Society.

Cardinal Newman Society Thanks USCCB for Standing Against the HHS Mandate

The Cardinal Newman Society today thanked Cardinal Timothy Dolan and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for pointing out the ways in which the Feb. 1, 2013, proposed rules from the Department of Health and Human Services still fail to address core concerns with the sterilization/contraception/abortion mandate of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Catholics are left no choice but to oppose the mandate and will be comforted and strengthened by the support and leadership of the nation’s Catholic bishops.

The current movement toward defining first-class religious institutions of Catholic education, Catholic health care, and Catholic charity as second-class institutions is unacceptable.  The Cardinal Newman Society stands at the ready to continue supporting the efforts of Catholic educational institutions to protect their God given Catholic identity and religious liberty.

The Cardinal Newman Society will continue encouraging its members to  pray for our bishops and all American citizens engaged in the struggle to uphold our constitutionally protected religious rights.

New CUA Business School Rooted in Catholic Teaching

The Catholic University of America announced today the creation of a new School of Business and Economics based on Catholic social doctrine and the natural law.

From the University:

“Business schools focus on teaching commercial skills and rules of ethics, but they neglect the importance of character. Our distinctive idea is to bring the rich resources of the Catholic intellectual tradition and the natural law to bear upon business and economics. This will integrate morality into commercial life and help form the character of our future business leaders,” says Andrew Abela, chair of the previous Department of Business and Economics.

“We are going to let our Catholic thinking penetrate our curriculum,” Abela says, adding that studies show companies are more competitive and sustainable in the long run if they respect the dignity of consumers and employees.

The Wall Street Journal notes that while many business schools have introduced ethics courses in recent years, some point out that these efforts have been cosmetic, lacking integration into the core curriculum.  CUA, on the other hand, plans to overhaul its core business courses over the next year.

For example, accounting classes will stress judgment calls about what revenue can be kept off the books, along with the math behind those revenue calculations.

The School of Business and Economics will be distinctive in three ways, according to CUA.  Every class will include an ethics and morality component.  Research efforts will be oriented to the common good in order to make business more humane and effective.  And students will receive formation in virtue and be given the opportunity to apply their skills practically.

CUA has a “unique responsibility to contribute to the national discussion about the economic challenges facing the country,” said University President John Garvey.  He further noted:

Finally, as a new school we can do something different, unlike other schools — Catholic and non-Catholic — that already have large faculties committed to existing conventional approaches to business and economics. Our school is small enough to pursue a new and original direction.

‘Year of Faith’ Celebrated at Faithful Catholic Colleges

Many Catholic colleges and universities are taking part in the “Year of Faith” proclaimed by Pope Benedict XVI, with spiritual and academic activities aimed at strengthening faith on campus, according to a new report published by The Cardinal Newman Society (CNS).

“It is wonderful to see Catholic colleges demonstrating their dedication to the Catholic faith in such tangible ways during this special year,” said Patrick J. Reilly, CNS president.  “It is my sincere hope that the Year of Faith will encourage all Catholic colleges to promote and defend the faith in every facet of campus life.”

Pope Benedict opened the Year of Faith on October 11, 2012, the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council and the twentieth anniversary of the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.  In his Apostolic Letter Porta fidei, issued the same day, the Holy Father placed great emphasis on the importance of the Catechism.  The Year of Faith will conclude on November 24, 2013, the feast of Christ the King.

new report prepared by CNS researcher Matt Archbold—titled “Catholic Colleges Celebrate ‘Year of Faith’: A Review of Plans at Faithful Colleges in The Newman Guide”—highlights many campus programs planned by the Catholic colleges and universities to mark the Year of Faith.

Archbold interviewed many officials from Catholic colleges for the report.  Campus representatives indicated that plans for the Year of Faith are scheduled, and in many cases already underway.  The colleges are hosting activities including special Masses, other opportunities for prayer, guest talks, lectures on various faith-related topics, viewings of inspirational films, and symposia about the faith.

The Catholic colleges included in the report are all recommended by CNS in The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College, newly updated and available as a free online resource at www.TheNewmanGuide.com.

Another Catholic College Sues to Block HHS Mandate

Aquinas College has joined the Nashville Diocese and six other Catholic organizations in Tennessee in filing suit to block the implementation of the HHS mandate.

The lawsuit–which was unanimously approved by the Aquinas College board of directors and the General Council of the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia–seeks a declaration that the HHS mandate is unconstitutional.  The lawsuit also seeks to prohibit the government from enforcing the mandate.

Sister Mary Sarah Galbraith, O.P., Aquinas College President, said in a statement:

The Health and Human Services Mandate, promulgated as a Final Rule on February 10, 2012, has placed Aquinas College, and many other institutions in our country, in a precarious position. The narrowness of the religious employer exemption clause within this mandate seriously compromises our freedom as an institution to act according to our conscience. We are now placed in the position of having little choice but to proceed with litigation. We do this in order to protect our most fundamental right to exercise our consciences and our religious beliefs freely. We do so, as well, in an effort to secure for those who will come after us a way of life that protects and defends the dignity and freedom of every person, and of those institutions that are, by charter, pledged to serve all peoples for the building up of the common good.

The Constitution of this great nation established “of the people, by the people, for the people”1, clearly states the will of the Founding Fathers in the Preamble: to “establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.”2 Yet, within the constrictive measures of the HHS Mandate lies a double contempt for the common good, general welfare, and the blessings of tranquility for all peoples. …

A penalty that assigns to a certain sector of society the ‘un-use’ of its free, rightful expression of conscience is a burden that has never, from the foundation of this country, been imposed on individuals or institutions at the Executive level.

For this reason, the Board of Directors of Aquinas College has chosen, after considerable deliberation, to join those lawsuits already filed in federal courts which seek to overturn the narrow and restrictive HHS Mandate, a directive which compromises our First Amendment freedoms.

You can access Sister Galbraith’s entire statement here.

Aquinas College joins these other Catholic colleges in filing suit against the Obama administration’s HHS mandate: Belmont Abbey College, Ave Maria University, The Catholic University of America, Franciscan University of Steubenville, University of Notre Dame, and University of St. Francis.

Aquinas College is promoted in The Newman Guide by The Cardinal Newman Society for its strong Catholic identity.

College with History of Miracles Is Praying for Religious Freedom

Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, has a history of miracles.  So we’re glad that a prayer movement started on campus, now spreading around the world, has its figurative sights set on preserving religious freedom.

The College announced today that Immaculée Ilibagiza, acclaimed Catholic speaker and survivor of the 1994 Rwandan Genocide, has joined the Benedictine College Memorare Army for Religious Liberty.  The prayer campaign was started by College president Stephen D. Minnis at the behest of Kansas City Archbishop Joseph Naumann in light of current threats to religious freedom, such as the HHS mandate.  Since its inception the Memorare Army has been a resounding success with millions of memorares prayed across the world.

Ilibagiza spent September 11-12 at the Atchison campus and was awarded by Benedictine College the Cross of the Order of St. Benedict, which “recognizes charitable acts of distinction.”

Here’s more from the College:

[Immaculée] shared the remarkable story of how praying the rosary allowed her to grow in faith while she and seven other women hid in a tiny bathroom during the Rwandan Genocide. …

In conversations with Benedictine College President Minnis in between presentations, she became fascinated by the stories of Mary’s miracles at Benedictine College.

– In 1856, our Abbey’s founder, Benedictine Father Henry Lemke, prayed to Our Lady as he collapsed in exhaustion in the Kansas wilderness. A little girl put a candle in her window because “A lady dressed in white” told her to. Father Lemke saw the light and was saved.

– Benedictine College was founded in 1858, the year that “Lady Dressed in White” visited another small town little girl: St. Bernadette of Lourdes, France.

– President Minnis credits previous Memorare Army prayer campaigns on campus for delivering on their intentions for:  enrollment growth, the completion of Mary’s Grotto, and the completion of our new Academic Building.

– Archbishop Naumann tells the story of “How Prayer Stopped a Kansas Storm.”

Today, the Memorare Army for Religious Freedom is a worldwide phenomenon, with “prayer warriors” in 6 countries, and all 50 U.S, states, praying 2.8 million memorares.

When Benedictine College President Stephen D. Minnis started the Memorare Army for Religious Liberty, we hoped that in a few weeks we would attract enough members to say 1 million Memorares for religious freedom. We got there in a few days.

The Memorare is one of the prayers for Catholics recommended in the Holy See’s official Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Read more from the College and learn how to join the Memorare Army for Religious Liberty here.

Benedictine College is included in The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College by The Cardinal Newman Society for its strong Catholic identity.

Notre Dame’s Inaugural Sacred Music Conference Includes World Premiere Performance

The University of Notre Dame is holding its inaugural Sacred Music Conference this week in South Bend from September 13 to 15.

This Thursday, the conference will commence at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart with Vespers.  The South Bend Chamber Singers will provide the sacred music for the liturgy, which will include James MacMillan’s “Magnificat.”

Later in the week, conference attendees will have the opportunity to be the first in the world to hear MacMillan’s “Cum Vidisset Jesus” as the Notre Dame Festival Chorus and Orchestra takes part in the world premiere performance.

From the Notre Dame press release:

The conference will feature sacred music from the Renaissance to the present day and will bring together composers, scholars and conductors of sacred music to discuss, share and perform their work.

Several concert events are open to the public and free of charge. …

A Sacred Chamber Recital, with Notre Dame music faculty organists Craig Cramer and Paul Walker and baritone Stephen Lancaster, will be held at 4 p.m. Friday (Sept. 14) in the Reyes Organ and Choral Hall of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center.

Pomerium, the a cappella ensemble directed by Alexander Blachly, will perform Renaissance music on the feast of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary Friday (Sept. 14) beginning with a pre-concert talk by musical scholar Emily Snow at 7 p.m. in the Leighton Concert Hall of the performing arts center.

You can read more about the anticipated schedule of events and learn how to attend the conference here.

FOCUS Sends Missionaries to 15 New Campuses, Including Franciscan University

The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS) has added 15 new college campuses to its outreach program for the 2012-13 school year, including Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio.

FOCUS, according to its mission, “is a national outreach that invites college students into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ and His Church, inspiring and equipping them for a lifetime of Christ-centered evangelization, discipleship and friendships in which they lead others to do the same.”

The group reports that it now has a presence on campuses in 31 states, including the District of Columbia.  The recently announced addition of 15 new universities brings the total of served campuses to 74, with 361 full-time missionaries.

Here’s the list of new campuses that will see FOCUS this semester:

  • Baylor University, Waco, TX
  • Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Farleigh Dickinson University and Drew University, Madison, NJ will be served by the same missionary team
  • Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, OH
  • Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
  • University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
  • Northwestern University, Chicago, IL
  • University of North Texas, Denton, TX
  • Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
  • University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
  • University of Tulsa, Tulsa, OK
  • University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
  • University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, La Crosse, WI
  • U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, CT
  • Digital Campus, FOCUS National Office, Genesee, CO

Read more from FOCUS here.

Franciscan University of Steubenville is included in The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College for its strong Catholic identity.

Jesuit Provincial Seeks ‘Return to Dialogue’ Between Church, Peruvian University

Andrea Tornielli is reporting at Vatican Insider that the Jesuit Provincial of Peru has sent a letter to the President of the Peruvian Episcopal Conference proposing a return to dialogue between the Church and the University of Peru, which the Vatican recently stripped of the titles “Pontifical” and “Catholic.”

The Church took action in July to revoke the titles from the University after several years of the institution’s failure to bring its statutes into line with the apostolic constitution on Catholic education, Ex corde Ecclesiae.

After the announcement of the Vatican’s decision, the University director Marcial Rubio said the institution intended to keep intact its full title as long as it “considers it relevant.”  And further, “Any decision on the matter is under the authority of the university’s governing bodies.”

Now, the Jesuit Provincial Fr. Miguel Gabriel Cruzado Silveri is asking that “every possible effort be made to ensure a return to dialogue,” according to Vatican Insider.

The letter, reports Tornielli, was addressed to Archbishop Salvador Pineiro, President of the Peruvian Episcopal Conferece, and was also copied to Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education Cardinal Zenon Grocolewski, and Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Archbishop Gerhard Muller.

Tornielli reports that Fr. Cruzado noted the importance played by Jesuits in the University’s history and wrote:

No agreement … would mean that the Church would risk losing an academic institution of the highest quality and excellence and could cause stances to become even more polarised and feelings of bitterness and opposition to the Catholic Church to grow.

Read more about the letter at Vatican Insider.

Some American Catholics are hoping for a similar action from the Vatican in the case of Georgetown University, a Jesuit Catholic university in Washington, D.C.  A canonical petition will be filed in the fall against Georgetown by a group of alumni, led by The Exorcist author William Peter Blatty, in hopes that the University will either return to faithful Catholic identity or cease to call itself Catholic.

Bishops in Philippines Threaten to Remove “Catholic” Title From Schools Promoting Dissent

Catholic World News is reporting that the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines issued a notice that the Church may revoke the title “Catholic” from educational institutions “that promote dissent from Church teachings.”

Here’s more from the report:

Archbishop Jose Palma, the president of the CBCP, complained that some Catholic schools have thrown their support behind a family-planning bill that the bishops have strongly opposed. That conflict has sharpened tensions between some schools and their bishops.

A Catholic school “should not teach anything contrary to the official teaching of the Church,” Archbishop Palma said.

This move in support of strong Catholic identity from the bishops of the Philippines follows a July statement from the Vatican withdrawing the Catholic University of Peru’s right to use the titles “Pontifical” and “Catholic”.

Prayers Requested for Cardinal George After Cancer Diagnosis

Today on his blog “The Gospel in the Digital Age,” New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan asked for prayers for Cardinal Francis George of the Chicago Archdiocese, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

The Archdiocese of Chicago posted the following statement online:

As announced on Friday, August 17, Cardinal George learned from his doctors that test results from a procedure earlier in the week showed there were cancerous cells in his kidney and in a nodule that was removed from his liver.

The Cardinal rested at home this weekend and was actively engaged in a number of his administrative responsibilities.  This week he will continue additional testing, participate in his annual retreat and maintain his previously scheduled public commitments.

After the Cardinal meets with his doctors regarding a plan for a course of treatment, further information about his upcoming public schedule will be announced.

Until further information is available, Cardinal George has asked for continued prayers for all affected by cancer and the doctors and medical staff that work with patients and their families, as well as for himself.

Here’s more from Cardinal Dolan:

I would like to ask you to please keep Francis Cardinal George, the Archbishop of Chicago, in your prayers in a special way these days.  …

Cardinal George is a hero of mine.  He is an outstanding Archbishop, and has been a great help and inspiration to me as my immediate predecessor as president of the USCCB.

I know that the Cardinal will face this latest challenge as he faces all challenges: with great strength and great peace, born of a deep love of God and trust in His divine will.

The Cardinal Newman Society joins Cardinal Dolan in prayer for Cardinal George and asks its members to do the same.

Several Benedictine College Grads Took Final Religious Vows Together

Last week on the Feast of the Assumption, several Benedictine College alumna together professed their final vows as Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George.

Out of the 13 sisters making their professions, seven were  graduates of Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas.

Bishop Thomas Paprocki of the Springfield, Illinois, Diocese presided over the ceremony.

From the Benedictine press release:

According to Dr. Frank Kessler, a Benedictine College professor who attended the service, the group sang the Raven fight song after the ceremony. …

“It was a beautiful way to share the consecration and covenant with my family and friends present and to show them how much it means to me.  It was a day overwhelmed with grace that was indescribable,” Sister Mary George Brown, Class of 2005. “I turned my heart over to the One Who created it forever.” …

This is the final step in a long process. The sisters have been in the convent  for 8-10 years: Three years of initial formation and the rest in temporary profession.

“Through Final Profession of Vows, the young Sister hands over her life to God ‘forever’ within our Community,” the sisters’ website explains. “She receives a ring as the sign of her commitment to Jesus.”

Read more about the sisters here.

Benedictine College is included in The Newman Guide by The Cardinal Newman Society for its strong Catholic identity.

Pro-Life Leader Nellie Gray Dies, Hailed as ‘Champion for Life’

Patrick J. Reilly, President of The Cardinal Newman Society, issued the following statement upon learning of the death of March for Life founder Nellie Gray, who passed away over the weekend.

I am deeply saddened to learn of Nellie’s passing.  Having worked with her over the past twenty years, I have been inspired and motivated by her dedication to the Gospel of Life.

Pro-life Americans have lost a strong and devoted ally, a true champion for life.  Without a doubt, the recent successes of the pro-life movement can be traced back to Nellie’s dogged advocacy in the early dark days of our cause.

She has been a true role model for the countless thousands of high school and college students who have attended the March for Life.  Indeed, the recent surge in the pro-life movement among young people can in large part be attributed to Nellie’s influence.

My family and the members of The Cardinal Newman Society will surely pray for the repose of her soul.  We are so thankful to God for her life.

20th Anniversary Society of Catholic Social Scientists Conference Announced

Franciscan University of Steubenville has announced that the Society of Catholic Social Scientists 20th annual national conference will be held this October in New York and feature nearly 200 presentations by Catholic scholars and social science practitioners.

The Society of Catholic Social Scientists is located at Franciscan University.  Catholic scholars in the Society aim to “promote awareness of the social teachings of the Church” and compile “a body of distinctively Catholic social science scholarship,” according to the press release announcing the conference.

Here’s more from Franciscan University:

 “This conference marks a milestone. It is not just 20 years for an organization, but 20 years of a determined, devoted, ongoing effort to resume the work of ‘building up a true Catholic social science’ that Pope Pius XI called for and which was sadly abandoned by most Catholic social scientists in the confusion in the Church, in the U.S., and the Western world following Vatican II,” said Dr. Stephen Krason, Franciscan University professor and SCSS president.

Featured speakers include Dr. Paul Vitz, professor of psychology at New York University and the Institute for the Psychological Sciences in Arlington, Virginia; Dr. Robert George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University and director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions; Dr. William Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights; and Edward Cardinal Egan, archbishop emeritus of the archdiocese of New York.

At the conference, Krason will present the Blessed Ozanam Award for Catholic Social Action to Frank J. Russo, president of the New York affiliate of the American Family Association, and to Mother Agnes Mary Donovan, SV, of the Sisters of Life.

Registration information for the conference is available here.

The Cardinal Newman Society promotes Franciscan University of Steubenville in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.

Vatican Appointed St. Thomas Board Member to New Evangelization Synod

University of St. Thomas in Houston announced that Board of Directors member Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB, was appointed by the Vatican as English Language Media Attacé for the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization set for October 2012.

The University reports:

In his new additional capacity, Fr. Rosica will take part in all sessions of the Synod of Bishops and moderate the daily press briefings and media conferences for the English language in the Pope John Paul II Press Hall of the Holy See Press Centre in Vatican City.

Fr. Rosica is the president of Assumption University in Windsor, Ontario, and CEO of Salt and Light Catholic Media Foundation.

Read the rest of the University of St. Thomas press release here.

The Cardinal Newman Society promotes University of St. Thomas in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.

Catholic College Profs to Immerse in Catholic Intellectual Tradition

The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts is hosting the Faith and Reason Institute’s Fides et Ratio Seminars this summer.

Titled, “Introduction to the Catholic Intellectual Tradition,” the series of one-week seminars brings together several faculty members from Catholic colleges, universities, and seminaries and reacquaints (or acquaints) them with important works from the Catholic intellectual and artistic traditions.

From the Thomas More College press release:

Authors whose works are covered in the summer Seminars range widely, from the Bible and the works of St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas and Dante, up through modern contributors to the Catholic intellectual tradition such as Walker Percy, Graham Greene, Czeslaw Milosz, G. K. Chesterton, Josef Pieper, Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI, Dorothy Day and George Weigel, among others. The seminars have also covered works of art, including presentations on Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling and the symphonies of Gustav Mahler. …

Walter J. Thompson, the Dean of Students at Thomas More College and one of the participants of this summer’s seminar, said, “The seminars provide a precious opportunity for faculty from across the country and across the disciplines to return to what unites them as Catholic educators—their common intellectual patrimony and their common vocation to hand it on, in charity. Through a week’s intense reading and discussion, in a setting both convivial and contemplative, faculty are challenged and encouraged to become faithful stewards of the riches of the Church’s intellectual tradition.”

Read more about the seminars here.

The Cardinal Newman Society promotes The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.