Saturday, May 8, 2010

Marquette and the Catholic Identity

A good friend of mine has directed me to this article.
Marquette University defended its decision to withdraw an offer to an openly lesbian faculty member to become a college dean after it became evident that the teacher's published writings opposed Church teachings on human sexuality.

The Jesuit university underscored the importance of finding a dean who is not only academically competent but represents “our Catholic identity.”

I took the liberty of checking out her CV, and it indicated she had written articles which had titles likely supporting the claim that her published writings opposed Church teachings.
Fr. Robert Wild, president of Marquette, commented on the situation during a faculty award dinner on Thursday, underscoring that the decision to withdraw the offer to O'Brien was not a discriminatory act.
“I want to say it strongly, clearly and directly,” the reason for rescinding the position was “not about sexual identity,” Fr. Wild said.
Right, the issue is Catholic identity. A Catholic university needs to seek out administrators and faculty who can build up and support that identity. Ex Corde Ecclesiae would agree, saying that those who are not part of the faith must nonetheless be aware of the University's Catholic identity and mission, and work toward that end.

Fr. Wild had to intercede on behalf of the Faith, which is is job. This episode indicates that there are probably some bigger issues that need to be dealt with on this campus. Any chance, though, to re-assert the Catholic identity on campus must be commended.

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