What is wrong with our Catholic universities?
According to an article from NBC Washington that was on the internet when President Obama made his speech on the economy last Wednesday, it seems that the White House asked the university to cover a symbol of Jesus. The gold "IHS" monogram inscribed on a pediment was covered over by a piece of black painted plywood. The university said that they had been asked to cover all university signage and symbols behind the stage in Gaston Hall. If the president didn't want a sign of religion visible, he should not have spoken at a Catholic, private university.
There has been a lot of controversy over Notre Dame's inviting the president to speak at the commencement this year. I have conflicting thoughts on this. You have to separate the office from the man. Having the President speak is a good thing, however, giving him an honorary degree is another. His views and actions are quite different from Catholic teaching. His allowing federal funding for embryonic stem cell research is wrong, as is his desire to rescind the Freedom of Conscience Act. There are enough doctors and nurses who are willing to perform abortions, no doctor or nurse should be forced to perform these procedures that are contrary to their beliefs.
Along the same lines, have you heard about the College of Alameda. It seems that a student met a teacher who was feeling ill. The student asked the teacher if she would like the student to pray for/with her. Evidently the teacher consented. Another teacher came into the room and told the student that praying was not allowed. This student was suspended, but the administration backed away from the suspension with the warning that the student cannot engage in disruptive behavior. This prayer was between two consenting people.
The school may revise the district's policy so that prayers would not be prohibited as long as they are not disruptive. This student occasionally makes quiet, nondisruptive personal prayers during class, such as saying, "Lord, Jesus, help me".
How many of us are guilty of the same statement, or something similar. We'd better be careful where we speak, it may be considered disruptive or offensive in the mall, subway, etc.