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Yahoo Watch: Inside Catholic

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Ya know, one of the things they should teach in Blogging 101 is never, ever make analogies to Nazi Germany, because they say more about the intellectual desperation of the person making the analogy than they do about the situation being described.

I knew there would be something histrionic in store when I went to InsideCatholic.com, saw a picture of two hands intertwined, each with a rainbow ring on it, and the caption, “This Just In: Civilization Ends.” But, even I was surprised to see a reference to Weimar in the opening graph.

To be sure, I, like many, was disappointed in the scope and logic of the California court decision regarding gay marriage. But, Weimar?

Q & A: Barbara McCrabb from the USCCB

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All this week, we will be asking Catholic educators about the implementation of Ex Corde Ecclesiae. Today, we hear from Barbara McCrabb, assistant director for higher education of the Secretariat of Catholic Education of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The question: What have we learned from the implementation of Ex Corde Ecclesiae?

Barbara McCrabb: When Pope John Paul II launched a conversation on the nature and purpose of the Catholic university in 1990, he said each stakeholder played an integral part in the conversation. He looked to faculty, students, administrators, trustees, sponsoring religious congregations, the bishop, and his collaborators in the local Church to examine four essential characteristics of Catholic universities:


  1. Christian inspiration;

  2. On-going reflection, in the light of faith, upon human knowledge and the contribution to that knowledge through research;

  3. Fidelity to the Christian message, and;
  4. Institutional commitment to the service of others.

He affirmed Catholic higher education’s irreplaceable task and indispensable mission.

Tea Party in Connecticut

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Greetings from Tea Party country. Most people think of Connecticut and they think of the wealthy suburbs of New York City, where David Letterman and Joanne Woodward live. Or they think of the old shore towns, Old Saybrook, Old Lyme, Groton, Mystic and Stonington, where “old money” homes are elegant and understated, a far cry from the mansions of the Hamptons on Long Island.

Ex Corde Ecclesiae Turns Twenty

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Next Sunday, the Feast of the Assumption, will mark the 20th anniversary of Pope John Paul II’s encyclical letter on Catholic colleges and universities, Ex Corde Ecclesiae. The document is most remembered, and was most controversial, on account of its emphasis on Catholic identity, a subject we will consider at greater length tomorrow. Today, I want to look at a separate issue that Ex Corde deals with, namely, the role of theology in modern intellectual life. Additionally, all this week, in our Q & A segment, we will be discussing Ex Corde and its implementation with a host of prominent Catholic educators.

More on the Gay Marriage Ruling

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Thanks to Cathy Grossman at USAToday for working her way through the court decision on gay marriage in California and pulling out the parts that are most relevant to the religious conversation.

Grossman notes that Judge Vaughn Walker’s decision at one point spells out in all CAPs what is the essential rationale for his decision. He writes, “A PRIVATE MORAL VIEW THAT SAME-SEX COUPLES ARE INFERIOR TO OPPOSITE-SEX COUPLES IS NOT A PROPER BASIS FOR LEGISLATION.” Judge Walker is absolutely correct. No “private” moral view should be the basis of any legislation, on same-sex couples or otherwise. But, there is nothing “private” about Catholic moral views.

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August 29-September 11, 2014

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