Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Catholics Blast Notre Dame for Honoring Obama

President Obama, as the commencement speaker at the University of Notre Dame, has been declared "an outrage and a scandal . . . that directly contradict fundamental Catholic teachings on life and marriage."

UPDATE 5/28/09: Obama at Notre Dame Spotlights Catholic Apostasy Issues

UPDATE 4/01/09: Cardinal George says ‘Notre Dame Didn't Understand What It Means to Be Catholic’
UPDATE 3/30/09: Cardinal Daniel DiNardo joins updated chorus denouncing the Obama invitation
UPDATE 3/27/09: Phoenix Bishop Blasts Notre Dame

-- From "Notre Dame sticking with Obama for commencement" Associated Press 3/23/09

The University of Notre Dame is sticking with its invitation to President Obama to speak at its May 17 commencement despite criticism from some Roman Catholics that his views on abortion and stem cell research run counter to Catholic teachings.

"I don't foresee a circumstance in which we would rescind the invitation," Notre Dame spokesman Dennis Brown told The Associated Press in an e-mail message Monday.

The Rev. John Jenkins, Notre Dame's president, issued a statement Monday saying the invitation did not mean the university supports all of Obama's positions.

The nation's bishops have warned Catholic colleges and universities against honoring lawmakers who dissent from church teaching on major moral concerns such as abortion. It's a thorny issue for the schools, which have long struggled to balance their Catholic identity with academic freedom and a desire to place themselves at the center of American life.

Asked about the volume of complaints to the university, Brown said it was "nothing beyond what we anticipated."

Obama will be the ninth U.S. president to receive an honorary degree from Notre Dame.

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.

Below are excerpts from the petition being circulated by the Cardinal Newman Society

This nation has many thousands of accomplished leaders in the Catholic Church, in business, in law, in education, in politics, in medicine, in social services, and in many other fields who would be far more appropriate choices to receive such an honor from the University of Notre Dame [than Barack Obama.]

Instead Notre Dame has chosen prestige over principles, popularity over morality. Whatever may be President Obama’s admirable qualities, this honor comes on the heels of some of the most anti-life actions of any American president, including expanding federal funding for abortions and inviting taxpayer-funded research on stem cells from human embryos.

The honor also comes amid great concern among Catholics nationwide about President Obama’s future impact on American society, the family, and the Catholic Church on issues such as traditional marriage, conscience protections for Catholic doctors and nurses, and expansion of abortion “rights.”

This honor is clearly a direct violation of the U.S. bishops’ 2004 mandate in “Catholics in Political Life”: “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”