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March 30, 2007

Comments

the boy

I have to wonder why the Committee on Doctrine didn't have anything to say on the USCCB's catechism which maintains the Mosaic covenant is still valid for the Jews....

James

Marquette appears to believe in the right to express opinions. I thought all bloggers subscribed to that!

Sailorette/Foxfier

Hm... I wonder... if I start saying that, Dr. Sailorette, teach with medical authority that your skin tone is an acurate way of figuring out how good you are at math, will folks say that I've got the right to express my opinions?

Or will they correctly point out that, when speaking on an authority not my own, I *don't* have a right to my own contradicting opinion?

bill912

Red Herring, James. No one has said that Maguire, or anyone else, does not have the right to express an opinion. The bishops merely corrected Maguire's lies about Catholic moral teaching.

SDG

It's interesting how Maguire accuses the COD of being "obsessed with sex" when it was his writings on sexual issues that contained clear contradictions on Church teaching.

Dan Maguire has been complaining about Mother Church being "obsessed with pelvic issues" since at least like the 1970s. IIRC, Peter Kreeft says he's like a pot-smoking teenager who whines that his parents are "obsessed" with his habit for ragging on him once a month.

The bishops teach! Hooray!

A.Williams

"Maguire, a theology professor at the Jesuit-run university in Milwaukee since the early 1970s"... is only expressing an opinion? I would call it as it is, which is, 'promoting and teaching anti-Catholic Doctrine' at a Roman Catholic University.

Shame on the Jesuits to permit such an abomination!..and on any other Catholic institution that likewise permits such anti-Catholic teachings, in the name of Christ, whose Voice IS the Catholic Church!

Vince C

"Marquette's response is also interesting.

And disappointing."

And predictable.

BobCatholic

>Marquette appears to believe in the right to express opinions.

and the right to worship mirrors.

He is free to do so, but he can't call himself a Catholic at the same time. That is called L-Y-I-N-G.

BobCatholic

correction: Marquette has the right advocate mirror worship, but not at the same time as they are claiming to be a Catholic institution.

Rob in Maine

I just read Maguire’s pamphlet. As I read the following excerpt, it tells me he is arguing that since a number of people did not follow Church teaching, then the Church's teaching must not be authoritative. Thou shalt not kill, but there are plenty of murders. This does not mean murder is wrong.

"Christianity reacted against infanticide, but there is evidence that it continued to be practiced…

“However, during the middle ages infanticide was much less common than abandonment… This meant that children could be offered to the church to be raised in religious monasteries. Many of them eventually became celibate nuns and monks, thus leading to further containment of fertility.”

It's interesting how Maguire accuses the COD of being "obsessed with sex" when it was his writings on sexual issues that contained clear contradictions on Church teaching.

Maguire's complaint is the clearest case of psychological projection I've seen in years.

SDG

"Containment of fertility"??!! oh brother.

LJ

"Duty to dissent"? I've never heard of that one. He must think the Church is a parliament.

I for one am pleased with Marquette's statements, and would only consent to teach at a school that would so well protect the rights of its teachers. Though Maguire is absolutely wrong about two of the three issues (abortion and gay "marriage"), he should have the right to voice his opinion. In other disciplines, this right is given. There are political scientists who believe America is not really a democracy, biologists who deny evolution, physicists who believe in perpetual motion, and they should be protected by the tenure process, and are.

As for handing them out as pamphlets, it depends on who his target audience is, at least for the sake of his own respectability. But under no circumstances should his job be threatened because of these personal opinions.

There are other religious institutions, "universities" of a sort, that would subscribe to firing such dissenters. But these "universities" would certainly be devoid of any respectable professors.

Paul

I forgot to include my name in the last post.

'thann

Yet another university to cross off my son's potential college list.

At this point, considering the dearth of truly Catholic engineering schools, he'll apply to only secular universities (MIT and U of Michigan). At least that way he won't be fooled by "Catholic" theologians.

Life's confusing enough to have to deal with priests submitting their own warped, disobedient, heretical views of Catholicism.

'thann

I know they say better late than never, but I have heard of Maguire and the errors he was spreading as a "Catholic" theologian for at least the last 25 years. How did it take so long for the UCSSB to hear of him?

JoAnna

Paul, no one is arguing that Maguire cannot voice his opinion or that he does not have the right to do so.

He should NOT, however, pass off his opinions as fact; i.e., as official Catholic teaching. THAT is why he was censured by the USCCB; not because he expressed his opinion, but because he tried to pass off his PERSONAL opinion as the opinion of the Catholic Church.

Paul

JoAnna,

It is Maguire's opinion that the Catholic Church works in a different way than the Pope and others claim it works. So long as he's not teaching these views in class on Official Catholic Teaching or Catholic Theology or the like, he can write pamphlets.

He can even share his views (carefully clarifying that these views conflict with the current accepted views) within those classes, as a special day-topic. This, of course, provided that he spend the majority of time on the accepted theological perspective.

I had to go through the same nonsense when I took a biology class with a creationist teacher. He spent one day on Intelligent Design, clarifying that this is a minority view within the scientific community that he held. I lost respect for him because of the class, but I definitely hold that he should not be fired or repremanded in any way for using his class time in that manner.

materfamilias

Somebody help me here. Wasn't it John Paul II that issued a statement that Catholic Universities as a duty to their students were supposed to ensure that the professors, especially those that teach theology. were to be practicing, believing Catholics. Not that I saw any big changes made at the big Catholic Universities.

MissJean

Paul, your opinion is interesting because of your personal experience, but there's a flip side. It's unprofessional to use one's classroom to disseminate personal opinion. "Special topic day" is a crock, frankly. If a topic is introduced, the instructor has an obligation to approach it with the same amount of preparation and materials that are available to other topics in the syllabus; e.g. giving the students time to prepare, to discuss and possibly to debate the issues.

I liken Maguire's pamphlet-writing to an old codger in my parents' day who taught history but wrote a great many articles on HIS "special topic", the insuperiority of certain races and ethnicities. The right to one's opinion doesn't mean that one has a right not to be criticized or to take one's professional lumps.

If Catholic University's are not to discipline theology faculty for heterodoxy, there is absolutely no point to their existence. In fact, they are downright counterproductive. If Paul's POV is correct, Catholic institutions of higher learning should be dissolved, their resources diverted to care for the poor, and their students and faculty sent off to the local state university. At least then the students and parents will know what to expect and the faculty will be kept honest.

Paul

What is meant by "practicing, believing Catholics"? Complete submission to the magisterium? In that case, Catholics wouldn't really have universities. Instead there would be "sunday school colleges" and Seminaries.

For there to be academic life to a University, there must be academic freedom. Maguire isn't saying that Catholicism is the devil; he just has a bit of a different idea about how the Catholic heirarchy works. I think he's wrong. But he definitely should have the right to share his opinions in a university.

The minute Catholic universities fire faculty for diverse perspectives on what it means to be Catholic, the minute the Catholics will have no more universities. Just Seminaries and glorified sunday schools.

Paul

MissJean,

I know a philosophy professor who is outspoken on his views of racial superiority, even in some of his classes. The University keeps him around because he is a very fine logician.

I'm not saying what Catholics should do. I'm not Catholic, so I really shouldn't have a say.

Maybe Maguire should be reprimanded. Maybe Catholics shouldn't have universities.

A.Williams

Folks, Daniel Maguire is a THEOLOGY professor at a 'prestigious' CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY.

If he wanted to be an INSTITUTED LECTOR at the Chapel of the same University, an office substantially below that of a 'professor of Theology', he would NECESSARILY NEED TO BE REFUSED, according to the instructions in "Redemptionis Sacramentum":

46.] The lay Christian faithful called to give assistance at liturgical celebrations should be well instructed and must be those whose Christian life, morals and fidelity to the Church’s Magisterium recommend them. It is fitting that such a one should have received a liturgical formation in accordance with his or her age, condition, state of life, and religious culture.[117] No one should be selected whose designation could cause consternation for the faithful.[118]

Let's highlight .."should be well instructed and must be those whose Christian life, morals and fidelity to the Church’s Magisterium recommend them".

Therefore, Daniel Maguire wouldn't have a chance at passing this requirement needed to be a Lector at Mass.

What a great shame, and mystery also, that the spiritual requirements, including moral integrity, and 'fidelity to the Magisterium', are less for a professor of Theology at a Catholic University than for an instituted lector at any normal parish!

... doesn't make much sense, does it?

Paul

If Catholic University's are not to discipline theology faculty for heterodoxy, there is absolutely no point to their existence.

Why not exist for the sake of providing a diversity of viewpoints within what is commonly called "Catholic", including some of the fringes? University implies independent thought. "Catholic" implies from a certain overarching perspective. I think some Catholic universities, like Notre Dame, are quite good at this.

If Paul's POV is correct, Catholic institutions of higher learning should be dissolved, their resources diverted to care for the poor, and their students and faculty sent off to the local state university. At least then the students and parents will know what to expect and the faculty will be kept honest.

I think this sounds like a wonderful idea. Much better than calling religious institutions "universities" when they manifestly aren't.

Juli

Paul,

There are many areas for diversity of opinion in the Catholic Church (death penalty, for example). But these 3 areas he has chosen are not open for diversity of opinion as a believing Catholic.

David B.

" There are political scientists who believe America is not really a democracy...

and they're right. America is a representative republic. Unfettered 'Democracy' would be seemingly organized anarchy.

Paul

There are many areas for diversity of opinion in the Catholic Church (death penalty, for example). But these 3 areas he has chosen are not open for diversity of opinion as a believing Catholic.

Some would argue that accepting Intelligent Design would necessarily preclude someone from being a successful researcher in Biology. Yet there are a handful in the University system.

I do not find it said by any real authority that informed and believing Catholics couldn't have diversity of opinion in those three areas. Just that such diversity of opinion would constitute a mortal sin.

Should the requirement be that only Orthodox theologians who are not persisting in mortal sin be allowed to teach in a Catholic university? In that case, the institutions are seminaries and Sunday schools, with electives in the math and science areas. At best they could be seen as universities with an outside seminary. There would be no Theology Professors, in any real sense. What happens if a certain theologian in this debacle of higher education comes to a realization that gay "marriage" is possible? Should he keep his views hidden, or leave for a real university?

This is why, often, the more "Orthodox" a university is forced to be, the worse its science department is. And this is true across the board, for any denomination.

Paul

Sorry about the italics. My fault.

Esau

correction: Marquette has the right advocate mirror worship, but not at the same time as they are claiming to be a Catholic institution.

BobCatholic,

Right on!

As I mentioned previously, don't confuse actions taken by/in Catholic Universities as those of the Catholic Church!

In fact, below, you can see how Cardinal Ratzinger insisted that Catholic colleges adhere to magisterial teaching:

"...But it was the Catholicity of the nation’s Catholic colleges and theologians that arose as the first major issue at the news conference.

Ratzinger said that by insisting on adherence to magisterial teaching, Rome actually promotes academic freedom.

“As you see with a medical faculty, you have complete academic freedom, but the discipline is such that the obligation of what medicine is determines the exercise of this freedom. As a medical person, you cannot do what you will. You are in the service of life,” Ratzinger said.

“So theology also has its inner exigencies. Catholic theology is not individual reflection but thinking with the faith of the church. If you will do other things and have other ideas of what God could be or could not be, there is the freedom of the person to do it, clearly. But one should not say this is Catholic theology.” "

In rare U.S. visit, Ratzinger urges scholars to ‘think with the church’

Paul

Paul

Esau, I agree with you. Labels should be accurate.

Intelligent design isn't science. Contraception isn't Catholic Theology.

But does that mean that all those who support intelligent design aren't scientists?

Or that all those who support contraception aren't Catholic theologians?

A.Williams

"..."Catholic" implies from a certain overarching perspective".

Really? And then this 'certain overarching perspective' has nothing to do with the Gospel or teachings of Jesus Christ..or the Institution (ie. CATHOLIC CHURCH) that HE FOUNDED, on St. Peter and the Apostles?

That's a pretty broad interpretation of the meaning of "Catholic University"!..wherein the authority of the 'Universal' Church, established by The SON OF GOD, (who also said "one is your Teacher"..is nowhere to be recognized!

I would like to see another "Motu Propio" sent out...and this one taking away the title of "Catholic" from any Catholic School or institution actively permitting or teaching doctrines contrary to the Roman Catholic faith!

"Use it, or Lose it"...could be an appropriate title of this Motu Propio :)

Paul

David B,

Thank you for making my point.

Paul

A. Williams,

I would argue that it is being recognized. Just in a different way than you or I would likely recognize it.

And I am not entirely against such a "Motu Proprio" being sent out. It would at least show to the world that the Catholic Church does not want universities... real universities, anyway.

Esau

Or that all those who support contraception aren't Catholic theologians?

As Ratzinger points out:

”If you will do other things and have other ideas of what God could be or could not be, there is the freedom of the person to do it, clearly. But one should not say this is Catholic theology.”


This is what is the heart of the matter -- it was mis-represented as Catholic teaching, which it is not.

A.Williams

Sorry, Paul, but I don't agree with your definition of 'University', much less, "Catholic University".

Jack 2.0

Paul,

you're welcome. I like friendly comboxs!


;>I

Esau

Again, just in case Paul's Italics may have somehow distorted Ratzinger's point:


"...But it was the Catholicity of the nation’s Catholic colleges and theologians that arose as the first major issue at the news conference.

Ratzinger said that by insisting on adherence to magisterial teaching, Rome actually promotes academic freedom.

“As you see with a medical faculty, you have complete academic freedom, but the discipline is such that the obligation of what medicine is determines the exercise of this freedom. As a medical person, you cannot do what you will. You are in the service of life,” Ratzinger said.

“So theology also has its inner exigencies. Catholic theology is not individual reflection but thinking with the faith of the church. If you will do other things and have other ideas of what God could be or could not be, there is the freedom of the person to do it, clearly. But one should not say this is Catholic theology.” "


In rare U.S. visit, Ratzinger urges scholars to ‘think with the church’

Paul

Esau,

Great! So what they hold opinions to, and even present in their classes (taking up very little time), isn't Catholic theology. Does that mean that they are not Catholic theologians?

If they know well what Catholicism teaches, accept most of it, but reject one or two things, and if they consistently teach what Catholicism teaches the majority of the time (Maguire would be expected and required to teach the Pope's views on contraception, abortion, gay "marriage", etc.) would they or would they not be Catholic theologians?

Esau

I would like to see another "Motu Propio" sent out...


A. Williams,

I think that was the point of the Mandatum; however, it seems, for the most part, that the more popular Catholic Univeristies in America were even responsive to this.


As previously mentioned:

Wasn't this the whole point behind the 'Mandatum' and the Vatican’s Ex Corde Ecclesiae, to impose some kind of discipline?

Unfortunately, it almost seems that most American Catholic Univesities refuses to align themselves with Rome; at least, in terms of accurately representing the true teachings of the Catholic Faith. This can also be said of those in the American Catholic Church as well.

Ratzinger once pointed out in regards to those teaching in Catholic Universities:

"...the theologian is officially charged with the task of presenting and illustrating the doctrine of the faith in its integrity and with full accuracy" ([sections] 22, italics added).

...For Ratzinger, the mandatum has more specificity, more gravity, than it does in the American bishops' interpretation. There is nothing in the bishops' version that speaks of accepting an office, or making the profession of faith, or taking an oath of fidelity, or being officially charged with a task of presenting doctrine. And more remarkably, later in the same document, the cardinal writes: "the theologian who is not disposed to think with the church ("sentire cum ecclesia") contradicts the commitment he [or she?] freely and knowingly accepted to teach in the name of the church" ([sections] 37, italics added). Yet the American bishops have written that those who have received a mandatum "teach in their own name in virtue of their baptism and their academic and professional competence." This suggests that the mandatum may mean something quite different in the United States than it does in Rome or perhaps elsewhere.

THE 'MANDATUM': NOW WHAT? What does conscience require?(theology teachers at Catholic universities must obtain a mandatum)

Posted by: Esau | Oct 13, 2006 12:15:35 PM

I know they say better late than never, but I have heard of Maguire and the errors he was spreading as a "Catholic" theologian for at least the last 25 years. How did it take so long for the UCSSB to hear of him?

That's the best part of this whole episode. The Bishops only said something because Maguire made a big spectacle of sending his manifesto to each and every one of them! It's like the kid who throws a tantrum when his parents ignore him.

You all know the scene I'm talking about:

1. Rotten kid does something rotten in public
2. Mousy parents pretend not to notice
3. Kid throws loud tantrum they can't ignore
4. Mousy parents issue firm rebuke in weak, calm voices
5. Kid ignores them and continues in his rotteness

It's always a pathetic display and you feel sorry for the parents' in that situation. But you know that if they put any effort into laying a "foundation of discipline" at home, the kid might think twice before being rotten in public.

Esau

Esau,

Great! So what they hold opinions to, and even present in their classes (taking up very little time), isn't Catholic theology. Does that mean that they are not Catholic theologians?

If they know well what Catholicism teaches, accept most of it, but reject one or two things, and if they consistently teach what Catholicism teaches the majority of the time (Maguire would be expected and required to teach the Pope's views on contraception, abortion, gay "marriage", etc.) would they or would they not be Catholic theologians?

Paul,

Again, you're missing the point:


As Ratzinger points out:

”If you will do other things and have other ideas of what God could be or could not be, there is the freedom of the person to do it, clearly. But one should not say this is Catholic theology.”


As I mentioned, this is what is the heart of the matter -- it was mis-represented as Catholic teaching, which it is not.


A Catholic Theologian CANNOT claim the title "Catholic" if they do not teach faithfully what is the Catholic Faith and, furthermore, do not teach it in its entirety.


For example, would you still consider 'Judas' as an Apostle of Jesus Christ after the betrayal?

Would you still consider 'Benedict Arnold' as an American after his?

caine

That was me about the mousy parents.

Esau

Paul,

Kindly consider first what I just mentioned first prior to any subsequent post:


A Catholic Theologian CANNOT claim the title "Catholic" if they DO NOT teach faithfully what is the Catholic Faith and, furthermore, do not teach it in its entirety.


For example, would you still consider 'Judas' as an Apostle of Jesus Christ after the betrayal?

Would you still consider 'Benedict Arnold' as an American after his?

Paul

Esau,

You will have to forgive me. My mind is fairly slow about certain things.

Maguire doesn't think that the Pope alone determines Catholic theology. He thinks that his views are part of Catholic theology. So he should be allowed to present such.

However, since he needs to be connected to reality, we must ask another question: does he present his opinion as the majority view? Does he present his opinion as fact (as the only possible interpretation)? Would it be logically impossible for him to be correct?

If the answer is yes to any of these, then he is in the wrong, and should be expected to write a retraction and clarification. If the answer is no to all of these, then he should be allowed the freedom to write his pamphlets.

Esau

Paul,

You must forgive me as well but your very statement here:

Maguire doesn't think that the Pope alone determines Catholic theology.

would suggest that perhaps you, yourself, might be ignorant of just what is Catholic Theology.


Allow me to make this plain and simple:

For a Catholic Theologian to even be considered (and rightfully deserve the title) "Catholic" in the first place, the theology he teaches must, in fact, be "Catholic".


I think I may have hit on what maybe your stumbling point and that is that you might not very well be aware of what Catholic Theology is in the first place.

That's not an insult at all, mind you, since I doubt any nominal Catholic these days would as well.

GB

"It is Maguire's opinion that the Catholic Church works in a different way than the Pope and others claim it works. "
Earth to Paul: Maguire (& you) cannot define the RC Church. Jesus did that &, hate to tell you, you're not God. I so don't care what you or Maguire or Joe Blow at the church down the road thinks is church. There are about a million different versions but, since Jesus gave the RC Church to Peter's safe keeping, I think I'll stand by His version.

Veriitas

Paul says (presumably before his ride to Damascus):

"Maguire doesn't think that the Pope alone determines Catholic theology. He thinks that his views are part of Catholic theology. So he should be allowed to present such."

However, not at a Catholic university. The local Bishop should exercise his authority over Marquette, and force Marquette to decide whether it is Catholic or not.

The real issue is what is the end of education, truth or relative ideas? True Catholic universities have a preference for truth, and secular Unoversities (such as Marquette) are hotbeds of relativism. I would bet that many Catholics lose their faith there.

I believe that Paul has the secular, perhaps even American-Enlightenment idea of freedom, where it means license, rather than an adherence to reason or acting in accordance with reason. How many students at conventional universities gain a modern education at the expense of their immortal souls? Now, that is one costly education, isn't it??

I think Easu can agree with me on that.

Esau

Paul:

Here, allow me to offer another example.

If I were a Medical Doctor and I started practicing 'quack' methods in place of Medicine -- such as instead of prescribing the proper medication and treatment for an illness, I started handing out henceforth some sort of voodoo fix in order to treat the patient; could I still be considered a Medical Doctor if I had been practicing such quackery in place of proper Medicine?

Paul

Esau,

I am not a nominal Catholic. I am not a Catholic at all. I think papal authority is a bunch of hogwash.

But Maguire is Catholic, and Maguire thinks his position is as well (though he would say it is not popularly recognized as such). So he meets the requirements. Tenure protects him.

Tenure protects academic opinions (even off the wall ones), and should not be violated.

Esau

Veritas:

Frightening as though it may seem, I actually agree with many elements in your post, in fact! ;^)

Paul

Esau,

Your analogy does not work. Medicine is not academics.

Maybe theology is like medicine, in which case it is not like academics. In which case there should be no Catholic universities. I am okay with that.

Doctors don't operate based on mere "opinions". They operate based on opinions that have a basis in fact, and are approved by others in special process. Academics does not and cannot work that way. Results in academics are determined by that process, as is standard operation, but much of academic work does not fit into any approved method.

Universities are places for experimentation. Hospitals are not.

Esau

I am not a nominal Catholic. I am not a Catholic at all. I think papal authority is a bunch of hogwash.

I thought as much by the very comment I cited from you.

But Maguire is Catholic, and Maguire thinks his position is as well (though he would say it is not popularly recognized as such). So he meets the requirements.


So, let's see, if I say that quackery such as voodoo is actually Medicine, does that, in fact, make me a Medical Doctor?

Also, if a Christian subscribes to pagan gods, would that still make him/her a Christian?

JoAnna

[i]I believe that Paul has the secular, perhaps even American-Enlightenment idea of freedom, where it means license, rather than an adherence to reason or acting in accordance with reason. [/i]

I agree.

To quote someone smarter than I,

"To have a right to do a thing is not at all the same as to be right in doing it." -- G.K. Chesterton

Esau

Your analogy does not work. Medicine is not academics.

I was speaking of Medicine in its overall context, which includes its proper training in academia.


Doctors don't operate based on mere "opinions". They operate based on opinions that have a basis in fact, and are approved by others in special process.


This is EXACTLY the same thing for the Catholic Theologian (but, since you think that Catholicism is a bunch of bull, I doubt I can expound on this topic further with you).


Just like you mentioned here, Catholic Theologians aren't supposed to operate based on mere "opinions". They should operate based on opinions that have a basis in fact, and are approved by others (e.g., the Magesterium) in special process.

Paul

Veritas,

I do hold that secular ideal, because that is how Truth (both big and small t) is achieved in many areas. It doesn't mean all professors will accept what is true. And it doesn't mean that secular universities adopt relativism, or that I do.

Every question should be entertained, even if it seems silly, and answers should be developed. If someone wants to ask "what if quantum mechanics is wrong?", the question should be explored, a range of answers should be attained, and then they should be judged based on consistancy and reality. Same thing with "is abortion okay?" or "should we eat babies?" Consistancy and reality should be the measure.

But if a member of a Catholic institute isn't allowed to give his own answer to "Is contraception wrong?" then the institute is far from a university. It is sunday school. Advanced confirmation class, maybe.

Paul

Esau,

But you are missing a very important distinction.

There is medical training, and then there is medical research. In medical research, many ideas are thrown around, results are developed through testing, and there are a whole variety of views.

In medical training, only the well-established results should be taught and paid attention to. Anything else should not be presented.

In theological research, questions should be open for any answers, and the answers should be challenged and discussed openly by students, and especially other faculty.

In theological training (the priesthood/seminary) only well established results should be taught and paid attention to. Anything else should not be presented.

Maguire is a theologian in a University, not a Priest teaching seminary.

JoAnna

But if a member of a Catholic institute isn't allowed to give his own answer to "Is contraception wrong?" then the institute is far from a university. It is sunday school. Advanced confirmation class, maybe.

But here's the thing you're not getting, Paul.

Maguire is well within his rights to posit his own "answer" -- BUT HE SHOULD NOT BE PASSING HIS OWN ANSWERS OFF AS OFFICIAL CATHOLIC TEACHING, OR EVEN APPROVED CATHOLIC TEACHING!

Catholics believe that the Holy Spirit inspires the Pope and the Magisterium's teachings on faith and morals. That is why Catholics do not adhere to sola scriptura -- all you have to do is look at the thousands and thousands of Protestant denominations to realize that that doctrine is inherently flawed. 100 people + 100 individual interpretations of Scripture do NOT = 1 Truth, but 100 Truths! Well, which "truth" is correct?

Maguire claims he knows better than the Pope and the Magisterium, the latter of which has taught the same about contraception for 2,000 years. He has nothing to back him up but his own opinions whereas the Church has 2,000 years of teachings AND the inspiration of the Holy Spirit!

As for me, I tend to believe the 2,000 years of teaching.

As Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) said in Salt of the Earth, "Where no standard exists beyond our own opinions of the moment, arbitrary caprice increasingly reigns, and man degenerates."

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Paul,

To assess your analogy: should the variety of views considered in medical research be presented to students? Or should those views be debated among medical researchers only?

It may be one thing for Catholic theologians to debate "fringe" views among themselves in a search for authentic truth, but quite a different matter to teach those views to students.

Veritas

Paul:

"In which case there should be no Catholic universities." and "Universities are places for experimentation."

How does it follow that there should be no Catholic universities? From what principles or what definition of a university? How do you know that your definition of a university is true? I propose an expirement - to have a university which believes in truth. Since it is an expirement, then it must be valid by your principles.

How do you propose to enforce that Catholic universities aren't such? - by some sort of law or discriminatory accreditation process? Sounds like the road to totalitarianism, and I venture to say that you are not alone in your "opinion." And universities are places for expirementation? Is this not another way of saying that there is no truth, or, better yet, all truth is relative. I would say that rather there are some things at least that are known, that it is unnecessary to question certain things. That nature does not equal power. And in the words of Christopher Derrick, "Pigs are pigs." That is something a secular university cannot deny. Christ said that "The Truth shall make you free." That means, of course, that the truth of certain things is knowable. And really, you cannot truthfully deny it. When one says, as I once heard in a college logic course, that all truth is relative, the proper question is whether that statement is true or not. Students need to stop expirementing and need to learn the truth sooner or later, for one day, they may find themselves standing in front of the Ultimate Truth.

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Paul writes:

However, since he needs to be connected to reality, we must ask another question: does he present his opinion as the majority view? ...
If the answer is yes to any of these, then he is in the wrong

Substitute "majority view" with "Catholic teaching" and then you agree with most of the posters here.

Esau

In theological research, questions should be open for any answers, and the answers should be challenged and discussed openly by students, and especially other faculty.


Again, Paul, you are not paying heed to the fact that it must be CATHOLIC THEOLOGY.


Perhaps this from Ratzinger might shed some light:


Recognizing this, Ratzinger employed the word “crisis” to describe the situation. The basic crisis, as he interpreted it, is a crisis of trust in dogma as proposed by the Magisterium, a crisis precipitated in part by theologians who have challenged the received.

As he put it: "Broad circles in theology seem to have forgotten that the subject who pursues theology is not the individual scholar but the Catholic community as a whole, the entire Church. From this forgetfulness of theological work as ecclesiastical service derives a theological pluralism that in reality is often a subjectivism and individualism that has little to do with the bases of common tradition. Every theologian now wants to be ‘creative.’ But his proper task is to deepen the common Deposit of the Faith as well as to help in understanding and proclaiming it. In recent years theology has energetically dedicated itself to make faith and the signs of the times accord with each other in order to find new ways for the transmission of Christianity."


I believe, yet again, that it is your ignorance of Catholicism and actual Catholic Theology that is behind your inability to understand all this.

Again, that is no insult but fact.

Esquire

But Maguire is Catholic, and Maguire thinks his position is as well...

Maguire is not the final arbiter of whether his position is Catholic or not.

...(though he would say it is not popularly recognized as such).

Popular recognition does not matter. Recognition of the Magisterium matters.

So he meets the requirements.

Misplaced "so." You haven't made your case.

Tenure protects him.

Tenure does not protect someone from teaching as Catholic theology items that are opposed to Catholic theology.

Tenure protects academic opinions (even off the wall ones), and should not be violated.

Tenure does not protect someone from teaching "off the wall opinions" as Catholic theology at a Catholic university.

Students at a Catholic university have a right to the truth about what Catholic theology is and what it is not, and Catholic universities have an obligation to teach the truth in this regard as the truth.

In other words, if the Magisterium (the final arbiter of what is or is not Catholic doctrine) has said, Catholic doctrine is "X", a theology professor at a Catholic university is not "free" to teach that Catholic doctrine is "not X" or that "X" is not Catholic doctrine. They have an immense amount of freedom, as I understand it, to teach "not X," but not as Catholic doctrine.

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Esau writes:

I believe, yet again, that it is your ignorance of Catholicism and actual Catholic Theology that is behind your inability to understand all this.

Paul had written earlier:
Maybe theology is like medicine, in which case it is not like academics. In which case there should be no Catholic universities. I am okay with that.

Esau,

I think you and Paul disagree less than you think: Paul is willing to accept that Theology is like Medicine -- that is, Theology has certain tenets which cannot be ignored or discarded based upon mere opinion due to what is at stake (the physical life of a person in the case of Medicine and the soul of a person in the case of Theology).

The real disagreement here is probably "what is a University"?

Esau

The real disagreement here is probably "what is a University"?


Smoky,

That's wrong --

The real disagreement here is: "what is a Catholic University"?

Esquire

But if a member of a Catholic institute isn't allowed to give his own answer to "Is contraception wrong?" then the institute is far from a university. It is sunday school. Advanced confirmation class, maybe.

I believe that he is allowed to give his own answer, as his own answer, and not as the Catholic answer. This has nothing to do with academic freedom, Sunday school, or advanced confirmation class.

Esau

Maybe theology is like medicine, in which case it is not like academics. In which case there should be no Catholic universities.


Smoky,

I hope you're well aware that in his statement here, his conclusion didn't necessarily follow the premise.

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Esau writes:

Smoky,

That's wrong --

The real disagreement here is: "what is a Catholic University"?

And later:
Maybe theology is like medicine, in which case it is not like academics. In which case there should be no Catholic universities.


Smoky,

I hope you're well aware that in his statement here, his conclusion didn't necessarily follow the premise.

But you're making my point about Paul's point: he objects to the label "University" in a context that does not allow complete freedom to question and experiment and teach the resulting opinions to students.

Thus, I think Paul would hold that doctors do not go to Medical Universities, but to Medical Training Schools or some such.

Monica

'thann, University of Dallas is a catholic school that has an arrangement with a nearby TX state college for an engineering program. This allows the student to get some good Catholic liberal arts as well as an engineering degree. UD offers degrees in physics, math and sciences as well. There is also a Cistercian abbey across the hwy from the university that has the Latin Mass. There is also the diocesan seminary on campus, a house for retired Dominican priests, as well as the campus chapel, so there are probably 6 daily masses available for the students. Just so's you know!

Does UD have a Latin Mass on campus? If not, it isn't in accord with Vatican II.

Josiah

"if I start saying that, Dr. Sailorette, teach with medical authority that your skin tone is an acurate way of figuring out how good you are at math, will folks say that I've got the right to express my opinions?"

If you're talking about whites and blacks with partial white ancestry, then it may not be a great way to gauge mathematical ability, but it might be useful. Blacks in the United States score an average of one full standard deviation below whites on IQ tests and the evidence strongly suggests that there is a large genetic component to this disparity.

Esquire

Does UD have a Latin Mass on campus? If not, it isn't in accord with Vatican II.

Explain?

BobCatholic

>Maguire doesn't think that the Pope alone determines Catholic theology.

he thinks the mirror alone determines Catholic theology.

>Does UD have a Latin Mass on campus? If not, it isn't in accord with Vatican II.

http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19631204_sacrosanctum-concilium_en.html

Nevertheless steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able to say or to sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them.

bill912

Pau, does a professor of mathematics have the right to teach that 2+2+5?

Paul

To answer a whole bunch of questions:

1) I think that most Medical programs are part of universities, and that the better ones incorporate both research programmes and the standard MD programmes.

2) Students should be shown new research presented as such: as new research. Not as the next thing to try on unsuspecting patients. Very little of medical school concentrates on new research or unsubstantiated claims. But much of medical research (within Biophysics, or Biochemistry) concentrates on these sorts of claims, with the goal of substantiating them.

3) I do think I disagree with Esau very little (in terms of this discussion). I do think theology has much more to do with medical practice than with medical research. So I don't think there should be academic theologians. They should be called what they are: philosophers.

4) As an Orthodox Christian, I am very much in support of good seminaries. But I wouldn't send my children to a seminary to learn pure science (except, of course, the science of theology). I would send them to a secular university, where science is done best. That is why I work at a secular university.

5) I define "university" in three ways. (A) A gathering of students and faculty at a university. (B) A diverse establishment, composed of different departments, that engages in serious education and research. (C) The physical structure/structures that houses/house (A) and (B).

Theological programmes are part of a university only if they engage in some sort of research, in which case questions can't be closed off (otherwise, the programme is only nominally part of a university, or the university is only nominally a university).

Is this definition "true"? No. No definition is true. Definitions either work, or they don't. And this definition works well because it is accepted by most people within universities, and it does not contradict itself (though the first definition is somewhat self-referencing, so it isn't the best definition).

6) To the person who said I got one thing wrong, I will be very happy if I have only one thing wrong, about this or anything else.

7) Smokey Mountain Hiker: I agree. Most medical students go through medical training schools.

bill912

Should be 2+2=5

Paul

bill,

Professors of mathematics should not teach that 2+2=5. This was addressed well when I listed those questions about what qualifies as a defensible academic opinion. The three basic requirements are: how many people accept it or reject it (you just need to be honest about this), what data/arguments support your view, and self-consistency.

If a view is supported by three people, and you claim that it is supported by everyone or by most people, then your claim is indefensible because it is dishonest.

If your view has no evidence, but you claim that it has lots of evidence, then your view is also indefensible because of dishonesty.

If your view is self-inconsistent, then there is no possible way it could be the case.

2+2=5 is believed (though it cannot be proved to be) self-inconsistent. It is taught in logic courses that the matter of "2+2=4" is unproved and unprovable from any set finite set of axioms that hope to span all of arithmetic.

Paul

Another quick point:

If Maguire is claiming that his views are official Catholic teaching as commonly understood by Catholic Hierarchy, then he is being dishonest.

But I have not seen him claim such.

His claim is that official Catholic teaching is different from what the Hierarchy understands it to be.

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Paul,

I think your comment that views can be indefensible due to dishonesty is exactly what most people on this forum are saying: that Professor Maguire can say whatever he wants, but he must not present whatever he wants as "Catholic Teaching".

bill912

Paul, did you mean to say that 2+2=5 should not be taught because it is not true?

Paul

Smoky Mountain Hiker,

But Maguire has a different understanding of what Catholic Teaching is. I think it's a very bad understanding. But I don't think it's academically indefensible. He deserves a voice.

Paul

Bill.

No, that is not what I meant.

bill912

Maguire is teaching falsity as truth. He is either deliberately lying, is incredibly ignorant, or is mentally ill. There is no fourth possibility.

Paul

Bill,

Can you show, by logic alone, that Maguire's position is definitely false?

Esau

Smoky,

Did you even read what I previously wrote in response to Paul?

Doctors don't operate based on mere "opinions". They operate based on opinions that have a basis in fact, and are approved by others in special process.


This is EXACTLY the same thing for the Catholic Theologian (but, since you think that Catholicism is a bunch of bull, I doubt I can expound on this topic further with you).


Just like you mentioned here, Catholic Theologians aren't supposed to operate based on mere "opinions". They should operate based on opinions that have a basis in fact, and are approved by others (e.g., the Magesterium) in special process.

Esquire

His claim is that official Catholic teaching is different from what the Hierarchy understands it to be.

Your response and Maguire's claim are self-inconsistent. Catholic teaching is what the Magisterium declares it to be, by definition. Maguire's "claim" could only be true if the Magisterium does not have the ability to make such declarations. But the ability to make such declarations, and the binding nature of them, are Catholic teachings.

Stated another way, there is no such thing as an "official" Catholic teaching that differs from the Magisterium.

bill912

Yes. It's been done above. Catholic teaching is what it is. There are no Catholic positions on abortion, contraception, and "gay marriage" except that they are grave evils. To teach, as Maguire does, that there are alternative teachings on these subjects that are also the "Catholic position" is not true. Just as 2+2=5 is not true because 2+2=4. There is no other correct answer to that arithmetic problem.

Bill's right. Catholic theology simply does not work the way, say, political science does. Authority is inherently part of it. If completely unrestrained academic freedom is required by a university, then Catholic theology has no place as a university course. If we were to exclude Church authority in defining what is and is not legitimate, then commenter Realist's theology, which is probably further from the Pope's than Zen Buddhism is, would be a legitimate view at Marquette. 2+2 is 231289074655.

That said, I don't think that a university model that must exclude Catholic theology is the only valid one. It is certainly the norm in the last 150 years, but it has not always been so. And if a Catholic university cannot teach theology, it really ought not exist.

Esquire

Can you show, by logic alone, that Maguire's position is definitely false?

Yes.

bill912

In the same way, a mathematics professor who taught that 2+2=5 would either be deliberately lying, incredibly ignorant, or mentally ill.

Smoky Mountain Hiker

Yes, Esau, I read what you wrote, and I agree with you. I'm also trying to show you that you have some common ground with Paul on the similarity of Theology to Medicine.

Please don't create a disagreement with me when there is none. :)

Paul

Bill,

The argument "Catholic teaching is what it is" is a tautology, and it does not prove anything about Maguire.

Your argument also fails to establish a 1 to 1 correlation between Maguire's statements and 2+2=5.

You have failed to establish inconsistency.

To establish inconsitency, you would have to start with Maguire's definitions and suppositions and attain the opposite of his result as well as his result.

bill912

Oh, baloney, Paul! I started with the truth and showed the falsity of maguires claims, just as I showed the falsity of the claim that 2+2=5.

Paul

[[That said, I don't think that a university model that must exclude Catholic theology is the only valid one.]]

Since there can be no true research in Catholic Theology (with your view this must be so), then Catholic Theology has no place in a university. This may not be a model you like, and it is certainly not the only valid model. But it is the model we have today, and I think it works very well.

[[And if a Catholic university cannot teach theology, it really ought not exist.]]

We agree on this last point.

Esau

Therefore, Smoky, I hope you see the absurdity in your statement below:

Thus, I think Paul would hold that doctors do not go to Medical Universities, but to Medical Training Schools or some such.

My cousin, who is a Doctor, went to Medical School to become a Medical Doctor.

Similarly, somebody seeking to become a Catholic Theologian may go to a Catholic University in order to become one.

Thus, what is being taught there better be CATHOLIC Theology.


Besides, I find it a riscible notion that there shouldn't be Catholic Universities yet the fact that there are actually Protestant ones is rather conveniently glossed over.

Although, I betcha that what is being taught there in a Protestant university better be in accordance to Protestant teaching.

For anybody who actually know and can recall -- Scott Hahn anyone?

Paul

Bill,

Your argument really does fail. You don't need to believe me, and you don't need to listen to me.

The real question is... since your argument fails, should you be banned from communicating here? Absolutely not!

Should your argument be banned from a University? Also, no.

But it's still wrong.

Thankfully, we live in a world with secular universities that would welcome both your position, and Maguire's, for open yet critical consideration.

Esau

Paul,

Do you even know what Theology is, for that matter?

Do you even realize that Theology was actually borne out of the Catholic Church?

Also, the fact that you are ignorant about not only Catholic Theology but also Theology as well would beg the question why anybody would take their precious time engaging in such discussions with you.

Don't you even realize that much of the dogmatic beliefs held in the Christian Faith concerning Christology and what not in ecclesial history issued forth due to Catholic Theology?

This is not the opinion of mere Catholics, mind you, but also certain Protestant scholars as well.

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