Notre Dame University

The Catholic Church, Georgetown University, And Commencement Speaker Kathleen Sebelius

A controversy has arisen over the selection of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as commencement speaker at the prestigious Catholic institution of higher learning, Georgetown University.

Sebelius, who is Catholic, has come out for abortion rights and the health care mandate, which calls for contraception coverage even for religiously based institutions, which challenges the hierarchy of the Catholic Church in America.

The local Church bishops were outraged at her selection, and demanded that the University rescind their invitation, which was promptly rejected by the University leadership, who decided to go ahead with the commencement arrangements.

This is not the first time that Catholic hierarchy has interfered, as they objected when Notre Dame University invited President Obama to give the commencement address three years ago, and Boston College has ignored protests in inviting the widow of Senator Ted Kennedy to its commencement this year.

It is good to see major Catholic universities, such as the above examples, ignore dictates and censorship, and instead promote discussion, debate, and alternative ideas to the rigid views of the Catholic hierarchy, who insist on uniformity, while they cannot control the behavior of their own church leadership, and have been shown to be practicing hypocrisy in their teachings, when compared to their inability to control immoral behavior!

If a Catholic university allows itself to be dictated to in this manner, it loses respect as an institution of higher learning which should be open to diverse views and attitudes, so let us all applaud Georgetown, Notre Dame and Boston College for their open mindedness and tolerance, something not noticed in the Catholic Church’s teachings!