Kenneth Howell was booted from his job at the University of Illinois for teaching Catholicism. His job at the University of Illinois, as it happens, was teaching Catholicism.
After over two months of controversy over a firing that should have never have happened, he has been offered his job back. The incident exemplifies the scandals that continue at core institutions of our Western culture. It exposes, once again, the lie that is the popular conception of “tolerance,” so widely in vogue and by no coincidence a tenet of left-wing ideology.
But the reinstatement is temporary. It does not affect an ongoing faculty review, which has been investigating whether Howell’s immediate removal violated his academic freedom or right to due process.
Another faculty committee appointed to examine the circumstances of Howell’s compensation concluded that the university’s relationship with St. John’s Catholic Newman Center, the Catholic ministry on campus, was improper.
Though Howell taught Introduction to Catholicism and Modern Catholic Thought in university classrooms, he served on the payroll of the Newman Center funded by the Diocese of Peoria — an agreement that remained in place despite scholars’ objections when a religious studies program was established in 1971.
Howell now will earn $10,000 from the university for teaching Introduction to Catholicism in the religious studies department this fall.