Tag Archives: education

Flawed Gay Policy — Archdiocese of Boston to Announce Catholic School Admission Policy for Children of Gay Parents (via Bryan Hehir Exposed)


There’s nothing pretty about sin… Especially when it’s flaunted about as normal adult behavior when children are present.

Found this in my e-mail this morning…

Very shortly, the Archdiocese of Boston plans to unveil their new Catholic Schools Admission policy expressly requested by Cardinal Sean O’Malley so as to direct that children of gay and lesbian parents be admitted to Catholic Schools. Rumor has it that the policy might be released publicly as early as Thursday, January 6 at the annual convocation of Catholic school principals and pastors. The policy, if implemented even remotely as it appeared i … Read More

via Bryan Hehir Exposed

Sick — Notre Dame, The Pope, and Gays

Recent American polling would suggest Christian ignorance concerning, well… Christianity. The poll may not be an accurate appraisal on faith and knowledge, but we do know there are serious problems. Especially, within so-called Catholic colleges. The following article was sent to me by e-mail with this comment concerning the “Catholic ethos” at the University of Notre Dame:  


And parents spend how much per year to send their children to Notre Dame to become heretics and apostates?  

Here’s your example from the Guardian of the Grotto:  

SOUTH BEND, IN – Notre Dame administration denounces allegedly anti-gay cartoon but yawns at cartoon brutally lampooning the Pope as evidence surfaces of anti-Catholic pro-gay bias in faculty hiring.  

In a recent bulletin we displayed this vicious caricature of the Pope that was reproduced recently in the University-approved school paper, The Observer:  

click to enlarge  


Our purpose was to illustrate the difference between The Observer and The Irish Rover, the independent student publication dedicated to the preservation of the Catholic identity of the University.  

But the cartoon episode has broader significance. The reaction of the Administration, especially when compared to its reaction to a recent Observer cartoon about violence to homosexuals, is revealing.  

  The available image of that three-panel cartoon is poor but adequate.  The figure in the first panel, a saw with human appendages, asks: “What is the easiest way to turn a fruit into a vegetable?” The man in the second panel responds, “No idea.” In the last panel, the saw says “With a baseball bat.”

When signs of trouble quickly appeared, the student cartoonists tried to explain that they were aiming at anti-gay thugs, not at gays, but to no avail.  The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Violence (GLADD) charged the Observer with “advocacy of violence,” and there ensued a tsunami of protests in letters to the Observer and particularly from homosexual groups and publications (for example, see Gaynz.com, Metro Weekly, Towleroad, Gladd Blog).  

Notre Dame’s remorseful response was immediate and broad.  

After a “tearful apology” by phone by The Observer’s editor-in-chief to GLAAD, the Observer published an apology for “this low point in its 50-year history” and dismissed the offending cartoonists.  

The editor who neglected to review the cartoon before publication resigned.  

Father Jenkins denounced the cartoon and declared that in the future “Notre Dame administrators will work with the Observer staff.”  

Given this striking response, one might have expected a similar reaction to a caricature of the Pope as a dissembling protector of sexual abusers, a fascist, and even a sexual abuser himself. (And what, one wonders, happened to that assigned administrator?)  

But there was nothing of the sort. Rather, the University responded to our protests to both the University’s principal spokesman and the President’s office with a benign absolution of the cartoon and the editors.  

While the University spokesman acknowledged that “some people have understandably misinterpreted” the cartoon, he expressed no regret. It was enough that the University was satisfied that the students meant no harm.  

The students, he said, shared the innocent “true intent” of the creator of the reproduced cartoon. The cartoonist, the spokesman claimed, had explained on his website that the cartoon “was not an attack on the pope” but rather “an attempt to satirize his own profession by mocking the cheap shots directed at the pope by cartoonists who are lacking in originality.”  

But that is demonstrably wrong.  There is not a word in the cartoonist’s explanation suggesting solicitude for the Pope. His sole purpose was to ridicule a “lack of originality” in anti-Papal cartoons.  His own more “original” cartoon is just as malevolent as the others:  

click to enlarge  



To say that the students shared the cartoonist’s purpose, then, is to condemn, not to exculpate.  

In any case, as we wrote in reply, whatever the students’ intent, the cartoon was bound to be as deeply offensive to many Catholics as would be “comparably vile portrayals of Mohammed or Gandhi or Martin Luther King or Mother Theresa” to Muslims or Indians or blacks or Catholics. Or the earlier cartoon to gays.   

The Administration’s indifference, especially in contrast to the eruption of disclaimers and apologies during the gay cartoon commotion, is scarcely what one would expect from a vibrantly Catholic institution. It stands alongside others that we have described in recent bulletins: The University’s silence, for example, in the face of the Observer’s refusal to publish Dr. Rice’s explanation of Catholic teaching on homosexuality, and its favoring of pro-gay and anti-military demonstrators over the ND88 pro-life demonstrators.   

Finally, there has been a related recent disclosure that is especially worrisome because it relates to the composition of the faculty.  

In an interesting article describing the pro-homosexual intimidation prevalent on American campuses, R.R. Reno, a noted biblical scholar and professor, reported, “Graduate students have told me that being labeled as ‘anti-gay’ means getting blackballed when entering the job market.”  

He continued:  

And not just at secular schools. A whisper campaign (‘he’s anti-gay’) against a recent candidate for a job in the Notre Dame philosophy department apparently succeeded.  

A former chair of the department, Dr. Paul Weithman, assailed the statement as “innuendo” lacking substantiation, though he did not explicitly deny that the episode occurred.  

Another highly respected and long-time member of the department, Dr. Alfred Freddoso,  thereupon replied that he knew “exactly the case [Reno] is talking about” and outlined what had happened. He concluded:  

The incident has, rightly or wrongly, led a few of us in the department to warn other Catholic philosophers – i.e., the sort who assent to everything the Church teaches – to be, at the very least, extremely careful if they wish to apply for a job in our department.  

As we have repeatedly emphasized and as the University acknowledges in its Mission Statement, the Catholic identity of the university “depends upon” a faculty in which Catholics “predominate.” As we have shown, they no longer do. This incident both supports this conclusion and illustrates the daunting obstacles to restoration of Catholic faculty predominance.  

University contacts:
Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C
The Observer
Board and Fellows


New Blog: Teacher Not Teaching

From time to time I spotlight blogs I like or find helpful. Teacher Not Teaching is a new blog that I already know I’ll like, but am sure also that it will be a helpful place to visit for any teacher suffering from current budget cuts, especially in California. Here’s the first post from:

Teacher Not Teaching (Thoughts on teaching in tough economic times and who we are in the classroom and out.)

Thirty-nine months. That’s how long I have until my district, the one I’ve devoted myself to for the past eight years, formally ends my layoff package and wishes me a sad farewell. That’s a long time, but it’s perhaps not long enough to recapture the students lost to the competing charter school (read: we’ll give your kids a laptop and not require that they read anything, so come on down!), not long enough to generate jobs in a local economy of fast food, retail, and…what the heck do people do for a living here? People certainly don’t open new businesses in the 65% of retail space currently unoccupied in our small town.

Therefore, those thirty-nine months may not be enough time for my superintendent to call me one fateful morning with those words I long to hear, “I have good news. We’d like to invite you back.” However, thirty-nine months is plenty long enough to watch Bank of America politely take back my house, and to see my family migrate like modern-day Joads in the opposite direction, in search of work and a new home. Ah, California schools. Livin’ the dream.

It’s probably obvious this is my first blog, but I have time on my hands, so I thought I’d give it a try. If you are an unemployed teacher, join in! Commiserate! If you are still holding onto your job, this blog will make you appreciate your sick leave and prep period, and envy the fact that I’m blogging and not grading poorly written essays about the symbolic significance of card games in Of Mice and Men. Yes, high school English teacher; you got me. You may be surprised to find that this California teacher has just as much frustration for my union as for my administration. The “Public School Question”, like “The Woman Question” in 19th Century England is complicated, and the answers won’t be simple. But, if you’re reading this, you already knew that.

I’m currently subbing in my own district, so after fourteen years of teaching, an M.A. in Education and endless hours of meaningful curriculum development and assessment, I am reduced to taking roll, pushing “Play” on the DVD, and passing out worksheets. You know we can’t be trusted. I understand. I was once you, but now I’m just a…

Teacher Not Teaching.


Evangelizing Jesus…

The subject around here this week was children, and especially today:

–On the phone with my mother on her birthday, I noted, “ I’m appalled at the low-level of Catholic faith formation…” Her reply, “Well, the parents don’t know anything either…”

–On the Internet I read the story of a young woman describing her Catholic upbringing, saying, “I had grown up surrounded by the faith of my parents — studied it in school, practiced it at home and at church, and accepted it at face value. I never questioned it — it wasn’t a faith that was my own…”

–This same young girl is now a teacher and youth minister at a prominent all girls Catholic High School who describes her faith today:

“I will be the first to admit, and sometimes quite vocally, that there are many teachings, practices, and attitudes within the Catholic tradition that I don’t agree with. There are times when I’m not just disappointed by this Church, but I’m angered and wounded, and find myself pondering the questions I’m so often asked by others: “Why do you stay?” or, “How can you teach this?”

And the circle perpetuates.

On the drive to my confirmation class this afternoon I realized I was tired. Exhausted, really… Thoughts on our need for true evangelization soon turned into realizations of my own ineffectiveness this year teaching the faith at home and religious ed. at church. There was a contradiction between the Joyful mysteries and my heart as I drove along praying my rosary.

Before class began I noticed a young Asian boy sitting across the table from me. His family is new to the parish, and I didn’t know much about him, In fact, I thought he was a new student, or visitor. I observed him as he talked with the DRE next to me. There was something special about him. The way he talked reminded me of one of my sons. “You seem to be very intelligent to me.” I said. He just looked at me. “What’s your name?” I asked. (I’ll call him Jesus here…) “Jesus”, I said, “how well do you know the faith?” “Faith?” He replied. There was some silence for a bit, and looking back up at me we launched into this conversation:

Jesus: “My mother is dead.”

Jesus: “My father shot my mother and killed her, and he’s in jail.

Me: “That must have really hurt your little heart Jesus, huh?”

Jesus: “Yea.”

Me: “I know how you feel, I lost my father when I was young. That hurt my heart too.”

Jesus: “My mother told me that I shouldn’t cry for her.”

Me: “Oh, no, Jesus, it’s okay to cry. You loved her right? It’s a good thing to cry.”

Jesus: “I did.”

Me: “Did your mother have faith?”

Jesus: “What?”

Me: “Did your mother believe in God?”

Jesus: “Oh yes, she told me that her spirit would be looking over me.”

Me: “Do you pray for your mother, Jesus?”

Me: “You know, that’s why it’s good to know your faith.” To know God exists.” “Before I had faith I didn’t believe, to me my father was just, well, gone, that was that, the end; I wasn’t aware that we have souls. That my father had a soul which was with God, and at the end of time God will reunite–as with each of us–our souls to our bodies.” “And we shall be like Jesus.” “You know Jesus rose from the dead, and His body is glorified.” “We shall be like that.”

Me: “But you can help your mother through your prayers, now.” “We don’t know the state of our parents souls, she may be in heaven already, or in purgatory, which is why it’s always good to pray for our parents.”

Jesus: “What’s purgatory?”

Me: “Jesus, it’s like a cleansing fire of God’s love.” God is a pure spirit, and He cleanses us before entering into heaven.”

Jesus: “I hurt my ankle playing basketball at school today!”

Me: “You like to play basketball, Jesus?” “Me too!” And I showed him a knot on my ankle from twisting it playing.

Jesus: “I played baseball too!”

Me: “You’re kidding me, right?” “I played baseball as a kid too.”

Me: “What team?”

Jesus: “The Astros.”

Me: “Astros, huh? I played on the Angels.”

Jesus: “Sometimes I get real angry.”

Me: “Really?”

Jesus: “Yea.” “Really angry.”

Me: “That’s when you need to pray hard Jesus.”

Me: “Hey, we should get together and play some basketball together.”

Jesus: “Can you shoot 3’s still?”

Me: “Yea, I still can.” “Well… at least for the time being.”

These are the children we’ve heard about…