Via Media

Via Media


Georgetown Again

posted by awelborn

Terry Mattingly’s latest column relates to the Georgetown and evangelical groups question – with some new info.

Ministry leaders from off-campus have, in recent years, been required to sign a covenant written by mainline Protestants in the official Georgetown campus-ministry office. In one clause, they pledged to "maintain respect for the various religious traditions" on campus, while avoiding actions that could be interpreted as "denigrating or ridiculing" others. Ministers were asked to help students of all faith traditions, yet the covenant specifically prohibited "proselytizing" among those who might be "vulnerable in their faith or personal lives." Another clause stressed: "I affirm the legitimacy of Roman Catholicism as a path to salvation."

There are some tensions between religious groups at Georgetown, especially in an era in which Muslim students and donors have played a big role in the growth of new programs and facilities. However, the strongest tensions on campus are caused by moral and cultural issues, not over-zealous Protestant evangelists, said Manuel Miranda, a conservative Catholic activist and Georgetown alum.

"There are far more Protestants who convert to Catholicism while at Georgetown than the other say around," he stressed. In his opinion, the key to the ban on independent Protestant ministries is "the fact that all of these groups take very orthodox positions on the crucial social issues, like gay rights and abortion. If anything, they’re more Catholic on these issues than lots of Catholics there."

The bottom line, said French, is that a private school can do what it wants to do as long as it keeps any written promises it has made to students. The Georgetown campus-ministry Web site says, "Welcome," "Shalom" and "Assalamu-Alaikum (Peace be upon you)." The university says it welcomes students of "every religious profession."

"The issue is whether Georgetown is doing a bait-and- switch routine," he said. "The school says it has a come one, come all approach to religion. But when evangelical students get there, they may discover that they don’t have the same rights when it comes to free speech, freedom of association

I’d like to know more on that bolded passage…would you?



Advertisement
Comments read comments(62)
post a comment
Clare Krishan

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:35 am


Last years Wahabbi Xmas pressie was a big one:
$20 million. I doubt if the Saudi King’s nephew signed any clause stating anything like “I affirm the legitimacy of Roman Catholicism as a path to salvation.” about the ‘American situation’ as he refers to us. The richest Arab, and 8th richest individual globally, Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal $10 million gift to NY after 9/11 was returned by Mayor Guiliani for certain insensitive statements he made at that time.



report abuse
 

Todd

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:42 am


I confess my surprise at the criticism of this from Catholic quarters. In my experience of both campus ministry and ministry associations inclusive of evangelicals, there is a weird dynamic in place. Namely, the distrust of a basic posture of faith from evangelicals toward other Christians. Young Catholic and mainline believers are recruiting targets of evangelicals.
I once asked an Assembly of God minister if he saw me as a brother in Christ, and he couldn’t answer. Another mainline minister in the conversation interjected, “He doesn’t think we’re saved. Of course you’re not his brother.” And the man had nothing to say. Which, of course, said it all.
Some Evangelicals maintain ties in ecumenical and interfaith groups for various reasons, including the convenience of participation in charitable works, and to maintain a stronger Christian presence in the face of secularism, liberal politics, Islam and other cultural aspects they trust less than their partners.
And some evangelicals do indeed respect the beliefs of other Christians. But college students are particularly vulnerable to religious outreach, and my suspicion is that IVCF and other groups don’t want to let go of that gold mine.
But here’s a test I’ve found very instructive: IVCF is very willing to lead prayer in mixed Christian groups, but gauge the reaction if a Catholic’s turn arose and somebody wanted to pray the rosary.



report abuse
 

Wilma Tyndale

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:56 am


Catholicism always joins with false cults and false religions. The reason these groups were asked to leave is because they were preaching the gospel and thusly they were no longer of the world and were a “threat”.
Those who teach and promote Islam and Hinduism are welcomed with open arms.
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-bloggers/1539993/posts
http://www.georgetown.edu/student-affairs/newsletter/nv3i2/nv3i2a4.html
from link above…
“Hindu Interest – Hindu Interest Housing has been able to openly discuss various aspects of Hinduism such as the roles of different Gods, yoga, and religious festivals. To date, the floor has taken part in events held by the Hindu Students Association such as Garba/Rass and Rangila. The floor has also held prayers and religious functions and sampled traditional Indian cuisine. This program has been able to reach out to many non-Hindus in the community and able to encourage dialogues regarding doctrines and beliefs.
Muslim Interest Living Community (MILC) – MILC is designed to create a strong support group for Muslims and non-Muslims who want to be steadfast in prayer and in their commitment to campus building and cooperation. Activities to date include a Fast-a-Thon, Open Iftar, weekend Suhoors, weekend Iftars, Friday Halaqas (discussion circles on contemporary issues), surprise birthday parties and movie nights, an open house, month get-togethers, and congregational prayers in our musalla.”

Where is the Evangelical Christian Living Community? Oh they don’t have one…
Any of you want to try and explain this one? I really want to see how creative you’ll get in trying to make a defense for it.
Just proves what I’ve been warning about, Catholicism supports the new one world universalist order which embraces all false religions and stands opposed to the true gospel of Jesus Christ.



report abuse
 

reluctant penitent

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:56 am


I’m not offended by Evangelicals who think that I’m not saved. They’re right. I don’t think they’re saved or in full communion with the Church, so we’re even. I’m much more concerned about whether they think some ghoul in surgical garb should have had the protection of the law when mutilating me in utero.



report abuse
 

Ted

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:58 am


The criticism is about the fact that the campus does not have a problem with ministries to other groups, even non-Christian groups, and the widespread sense that this move was instigated, not by Catholics, but by mainstream Protestant campus ministers who hate evangelicals.
If I were running a CAtholic university, I would have no Protestant campus ministry – sorry! But as along as they’re screeching “tolerance” and “many paths” – they might as well live by it.
Deal with those facts, Todd – why some but not others?



report abuse
 

stuart chessman

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:59 am

Bill H

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:00 am


Georgetown has had a lot of relationships with Arab countries and donors going back a number of years. (And by a number of years, I mean long before a lot of Catholic universities started downplaying the whole religion thing during the 60s.) Remember that the crown jewel of Georgetown’s academic programs is the School of Foreign Service, and they’ve had a big emphasis on Middle Eastern studies for a long time. Hence, this has meant that there have been a fair number of contacts between Arab governments and the university over the years. King Abdullah of Jordan is a Georgetown alum, and Adel al-Jubeir’s daughter was a classmate of mine when I was a student there.
Because of its Middle Eastern programs, Georgetown attracts a fair number of Arab students, most of whom are obviously Muslim. And along with that, you have more alumni and parents and other interested parties who are Arab and Muslim too, and who donate money to the school.
Now, religion can’t help but play a bit of a role in this state of affairs. A few years back, a few of the “Georgetown can do no right” Catholics threw a big stink when the university hired its first full-time Muslim chaplain. What everyone left out of their criticism was that, by hiring the chaplain themselves, the university could screen for candidates that would affirm the school’s Catholic roots and not preach against Catholicism. The alternative would be Muslim students looking for mosques off-campus, which would almost invariably be run by radical Wahabis who ultimately get their paychecks from Saudi Arabia.
Hence, the Campus Ministry’s policy on Evangelical Protestants operating off-campus, isn’t all that different than the university’s policy on Muslims (or Jews for that matter). What they really prefer is for these groups to operate on-campus (or at least under guidelines approved of on-campus) that ensure that the most “Catholic-friendly” version of their respective faiths are presented.



report abuse
 

reluctant penitent

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:01 am


Wilma’s a perfect example. She’s a fool who does not know better than to be duped by the hermeneutical voodoo of semi-literate self-appointed backwater pontiffs, but she’s perfectly inoffensive.



report abuse
 

Patrick Rothwell

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:04 am


Todd,
Read the covenant that the early mainline Protestant made the evangelicals groups sign. If the evangelicals abided by the covenant, there is no reasonable basis to shoo them off campus. Rev. Wheeler has not alleged that the evangelicals failed to abide by the covenant, so it is a fair presumption that they didn’t.
And your strange criticism of the evangelicals unwillingness to pray the rosary is misplaced. They (wrongly) believe that the invocation of saints is idolatrous, so it is rude – to say the least – to pressure them to do so. Since when, Todd, did you turn into a latter day Counter-Reformation Warrior who dreams of forcing the nasty French Huguenots to say “Holy Mary” at bayonet point on St. Bartholomew’s Day?



report abuse
 

Wilma Tyndale

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:09 am


” the most “Catholic-friendly” version of their respective faiths are presented.”
But of course… anyone who is on the all religions lead to God–{all religions are a path to “god”} page, are certainly welcome!
Those who hold to an exclusive viewpoint as Jesus Christ being the only way to heaven are not. It is simple as that.

{Actually I dont think any Christians should be attending a Catholic university whatsoever but I think this definitely proves what Catholicism “interfaithism” is really all about}
It is sad that Penitent has to resort to name-calling, because this news items definitely exposes the universalistic agendas of Catholic interreligious “dialogue”.



report abuse
 

Clare Krishan

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:10 am


A cached Haaretz article quotes Prof. Yossi Shein, seeking matching donotions for the school’s Program for Jewish Civilization
      “It’s important to do it specifically in Georgetown for a few reasons,” said Shein. “Because it’s a Jesuit school, because it’s in Washington, because it’s in the foreign service school.”
Re: a tentative gift from Sheldon Adelson – the richest Jew in the world, Georgetown’s Rabbi Harold White also seems concerned about the politics of faith:
      “Indeed, one of the key goals of Adelson and other advocates of the Jewish center is to moderate the Arab presence at the university, which is strong and getting stronger. This is particularly important because, as White said, many Georgetown graduates end up at the State Department.”
Also questionable if the “salvation” clause is required of our Jewish brothers and sisters.



report abuse
 

Jay Anderson

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:20 am


I’m not going to repeat my defense of evangelicals from the other day, but I will echo Patrick’s question:
If the evangelical groups signed and have abided by the covenant that Georgetown requires (a legitimate requirement, in my view), then what’s the problem?
If they’re not utilizing their “trained theological hitmen” to pick off vulnerable Catholics, and they acknowledge Catholicism as legitimately Christian, what exactly is the justification for banning them?



report abuse
 

Clare Krishan

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:27 am


Oops! Broken link. Here’s the Haaretz cache again:
Now considering the Saudi gift is the school’s second largest, where’s Monahan when you need him?



report abuse
 

TheLeague

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:45 am


Amy,
Here’s a list of links regarding the relationship between Gulf-state donors to Georgetown (and other universities that train the next generation of DC foreign policy wonks):
Saudi funding for Harvard and Georgetown to promote Wahhabism
http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/1741
The New Push for Middle East Studies
http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/200301/the.new.push.for.middle.east.studies.htm
Harvard Returns $2.5-Million Gift to Persian Gulf Leader After a Year’s Criticism
http://www.campus-watch.org/article/id/1226
Tainted Money For Columbia
http://www.campus-watch.org/article/id/1134
Behind the Battles Over US Middle East Studies
http://www.campus-watch.org/article/id/952
Several years ago my then-employer sent me to counterterrorism “training.” It consisted of a couple of days of people telling us that it’s not about Islam, and to remember not to offend Muslims.
Then there was this Georgetown professor (and former foreign service officer) who yammered on for half a day about evil Israel, and how they’re responsible for everything wrong in the Middle East. Five of us revolted and walked out. It was awful, but that’s what Saudi money will buy you.



report abuse
 

mulopwepaul

posted August 30, 2006 at 12:09 pm


“[W]here’s Monahan when you need him?”
Spending his money elsewhere, where it won’t be nuanced into an accomodation with the culture indistinguishable from the Episcopal Church.
PVO



report abuse
 

athelstane

posted August 30, 2006 at 12:40 pm


“Now considering the Saudi gift is the school’s second largest, where’s Monahan when you need him?”
My understanding is that he’s close to tapped out – at least of money he has left with which he’s willing to be philanthropic.



report abuse
 

Todd

posted August 30, 2006 at 12:49 pm


” … mainstream Protestant campus ministers who hate evangelicals … ”
Can you back this up with something other than a “sense?”
“If the evangelical groups signed and have abided by the covenant that Georgetown requires (a legitimate requirement, in my view), then what’s the problem?”
No problem for me. There’s something behind the scenes and out of public knowledge. We can raise questions, certainly. But the first step wouldn’t be to attribute ill motives.



report abuse
 

M.Z. Forrest

posted August 30, 2006 at 12:59 pm


So we have an a “Catholic activist” making the allegation that is is b/c the Evangelical groups are too pro-life and anti-homosexual marriage. People are forcing this issue through a paradigm that just can’t be substanciated. And arguing that having Muslim groups on campus is wrong therefore having Evangelical groups on campus is right is plain old bad logic.
By all indications, having Muslims on campus has been a benefit to Georgetown. From the temporal, having one of the finest foreign service schools in the world, to the spirtual, having Muslims learn and experience life with Catholics, the program can be called a success. One could certainly argue that success is mitigated. One could certainly argue the benefits haven’t been worth the costs, but that is a question of prudence.
It is a whole different question then why numerous evangelical groups could not get along with the Protestants on campus.



report abuse
 

John Henry

posted August 30, 2006 at 1:02 pm


this news items definitely exposes the universalistic agendas of Catholic interreligious “dialogue”
To conclude anything regarding Catholicism based on what happens at GU is grave error. I will attribute it to ignorance. The other option is that Wilma has an axe to grind. But surely you don’t, Wilma, do you?



report abuse
 

Clare Krishan

posted August 30, 2006 at 1:06 pm


A couple of bon mots for reflection from Amy’s earlier posting on the apostle the Pope spoke on today :
      “Matthew, in fact, not only handled money held to be impure because of its provenance from people foreign to the people of God, but he also collaborated with a foreign authority that was hatefully greedy, whose taxes could be determined in an arbitrary way.”
      “Evidently Matthew understood that closeness with Jesus did not allow him to persevere in activities disapproved by God. The application to the present is easily intuited: even today, attachment to things that are incompatible with following Jesus – like dishonestly acquired wealth – is not admissible.”
Does canon law govern accepting funds from those who unabashedly deny Christ, and suhject his follower to dhimmitide?
If so, are Jesuit establishments bound by them?
If not, by what reasoning is it “admissible”?



report abuse
 

athelstane

posted August 30, 2006 at 1:26 pm


Hello M.Z.,
Maybe it’s half dozen of one, six of the other: Liberal Protestants don’t get the axe because they generally don’t evangelize/proselytize anyway. Whether the university’s Protestant chaplains nonetheless feel they’re killing two birds with one stone by getting rid of icky pro-lifers, anti-homosexual agenda sorts, is perhaps a harder question to answer. That such sentiments exist in spades on G-Town’s campus – just among the Catholics alone – is easier to affirm, given incidents such as Cardinal Arinze’s hot reception recently.



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 2:16 pm


This issue has been blown out of proportion by individuals who have only bad things to say about Georgetown. The Arab money taken to fund the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding is completely unrelated to the issue of Evangelicals and the Protestant Chaplain.
Regarding Hindu Interest and MILC, Wilma is simply wrong. The former intends to foster dialogue between Hindus and non-Hindus and the latter provides the special environment that Muslims need to maintain their prayer-life. Evangelicals do not need special circumstances. They have met in a variety of settings to read the Bible together and pray on campus because they can in fact do that anywhere. Frequently they can be found in the quadrangle outside of Dahlgren Chapel. They were in no way discriminated against. Despite agreeing to the covenant some of them continued to proselytize.
The main issue, however, is that they are led and controlled by adults off campus who have no official affiliation with Georgetown. They refused to participate in the programming provided by the Protestant Chaplains working in Campus Ministry. Instead they preferred to be ministered to by these off campus adults. They will continue to receive services from these individuals. They simply will not be gathering on campus.
The Protestant Chaplain is responsible for ministry to Protestants. The Evangelicals were invited to participate in what was offered through Campus Ministry for Protestants, and they refused. To this extent they chose not to be part of Georgetown’s religious life for Protestants. They wanted to be independent, and now they officially are.
There is absolutely no truth to the allegation that it is because Evangelicals hold to a different morality regarding abortion and homosexuality that this decision was taken. In fact, the claim is not entirely true, since there are pro-choice and gay Evangelicals at Georgetown. This claim is part of the anti-Georgetown rhetoric that people have been spouting for years. It shows a profound ignorance of what is going on at Georgetown. Most likely many of the people who make this claim have never set foot on campus. Georgetown has a very strong and vocal pro-life group and the University Faculty for Life was established there.
What might clear the air on these issues is if people gave specific examples of how “such sentiments exist in spades on G-Town’s campus.” That of course would require some actual knowledge of the place and backing off from the rhetorical screed.



report abuse
 

Susan S.

posted August 30, 2006 at 2:27 pm


It appears that Terry, who is on the payroll of a Christian colleges trade group, called up people who would agree with his conspiracy theory about Islam and abortion and just jotted off a story. No comments from Georgetown, no comments from Cathlolics, no comments from people who agree with the decision. I realize he’s a columnist who is able to pursue his own agenda, but anyone who has read his stuff knows that Terry has beating this drum for years and years.
Georgetown should be able to prevent prostyletizing by Evangelicals and as a private institution can demand they sign a code of conduct. Conservative religious universities–like the ones who pay Mattingly’s salary–do it every day.



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 30, 2006 at 3:59 pm


The Protestant Chaplain is responsible for ministry to Protestants. The Evangelicals were invited to participate in what was offered through Campus Ministry for Protestants, and they refused. To this extent they chose not to be part of Georgetown’s religious life for Protestants. They wanted to be independent, and now they officially are.
it’s not like “protestants” are some homogeneous block. there are thousands of denominations, and many have significant doctrinal differences. why should Baptist or Pentecostal students be forced to attend an AME service? and why should we, as Catholics, be making such demands? isnt that just religious coercion of another form?
In fact, the claim is not entirely true, since there are pro-choice and gay Evangelicals at Georgetown.
this is just a smoke screen. it’s clear that the official positions / teachings of evangelical groups are strongly opposed to abortion and homosexuality, and that the majority of evangelicals support those positions, some quite vocally. pointing out that there are a few pro-abortion evangelicals on campus does not disprove the suspicions of previous comments.
… the latter provides the special environment that Muslims need to maintain their prayer-life. Evangelicals do not need special circumstances.
The main issue, however, is that they are led and controlled by adults off campus who have no official affiliation with Georgetown. … Instead they preferred to be ministered to by these off campus adults.
so what exactly are the “special circumstances” that make it okay for Muslims to have off campus ministers, but absolutely prohibit Protestants from receiving the same privilege? on the face of it, it does appear that some students are being treated very unequally.



report abuse
 

yvonne

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:05 pm


This from a University that continues to use embryonic cell lines in research..??
Academic freedom? Religious Freedom?
Bah-hum-bug



report abuse
 

Susan S.

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:20 pm


MJ, if you are so concerned about religious coercion, take a look at CUA which has no non-Catholic ministries at all. Same for many Evangelical universities, which don’t allow the Catholics on campus.



report abuse
 

Kathleen Lundquist

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:27 pm


Wilma, if you’re still around, I’d love for you to visit me at my blog for more discussion of whether Catholics are Christians. Scroll down to “More on My Summer Vacation” for a dialogue I had recently with a fellow who I believe is one of your fellow travelers.
Re: the Georgetown dustup – being a convert from evangelicalism, I should underline for you all that evangelicals and Protestants are by no means a monolithic block – “there’s all kinds of them just like there’s all kinds of us”, as Flannery O’Connor said. Whether or not it’s actually the case here, from my experience of the Protestant chaplaincy on the campus of Wellesley College in the ’80s (the head of which performed a lesbian “wedding” in the college chapel the year after I graduated), I can totally see the prolife, anti-homosex folks being booted off campus for being difficult and embarrassing, and I wouldn’t put it past Protestant mainliners for taking advantage of the largesse of Catholic ideas of ecumenism to accomplish their own goals.
Just my $0.02.



report abuse
 

M.Z. Forrest

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:36 pm


No one claims that evangelicals are a monolithic block, let alone Protestants. What is being claimed is that Evangelical organizations were dissociated because they refused to work within the Protestant department at Georgetown. What is explicitly being denied is that this action was some vast left wing conspiracy.
There is no evidence to support the assertion that these groups were thrown off because they were anti-abortion and anti-homosexuality. A reasonable and plausible explanation has been offerred. Responsible parties should retract such claims.



report abuse
 

Fr. J

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:49 pm


I have set foot on both CUA and Georgetown. Anyone who thinks this is not aimed at conservative forms of religion in general has not been paying attention. Of course that is what it is aimed at. Few campuses are more pc then Georgetown. Remember when they removed the crucifixes so they wouldn’t “offend” anyone? Any religion is fine at Georgetown unless it is orthodox forms of Christianity. Booing a Cardinal, allowing anti-Semitic and violent forms of Islam to protest on campus, constant attempts to forward a pro-homosexual and pro-abortion agenda…Parents take note, that is what you are buying with your tuition. It is sad, but it isn’t news.
CUA is 86% Catholic and attempts to start Protestant ministries failed consistantly. There would be no problem if the Protestants there wanted one. In fact CUA is more welcoming towards religion then is Georgetown. I expect if an anti-Catholic group came on campus there would be problems. Even if they did they might find the students trying to convert them!



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 30, 2006 at 4:59 pm


What is being claimed is that Evangelical organizations were dissociated because they refused to work within the Protestant department at Georgetown.
If they all signed and abide by the covenant agreement, and I haven’t seen any claims that these groups violated it, then what does it mean that they “refused to work within the Protestant department”? Could it mean that want to have services conducted by ministers of their own denominations, rather than ministers from liberal mainline denominations? Could it mean that they voiced ‘conservative’ positions on hot button culture-wars topics? Should Georgetwon be punishing them for answering “yes” to either question?



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:03 pm


MJ, if you are so concerned about religious coercion, take a look at CUA which has no non-Catholic ministries at all. Same for many Evangelical universities, which don’t allow the Catholics on campus.
so, by taking the “two wrongs make a right” approach, you are saying that you think it is fine for Georgetown to tell all Protestant students that they have to accept ministers from ‘acceptable’ (i.e., decaying leftist) denominations? is that correct?



report abuse
 

Susan S.

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:19 pm


No, MJ, I am saying Georgetown has specific values about prostyletizing which these Evangalical groups–who have a poor track record nationwide when it comes to playing within university rules–violated. By turning it into a “we are pro-life than them” contest–which Terry appears to aid and abet–they are merely trying to change the subject from their failure to be good university citizens.
Conservative colleges make politically motivated decisions all the time about what groups they allow on campus and who they don’t. That’s the right of a university. So why is Baylor allowed to have its values reflected, but Georgetown is not?



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:19 pm


Again, none of the criticisms presented here are substantiated. No one was making the Evangelicals attend Protestant services they were not comfortable with. No religious coercion. Where was that ever claimed? In the press itself the Evangelicals admitted that they didn’t want to participate in the Campus Minsitry sponsored programs.
MJ: The Muslim have an imam,their own Chaplain, and they have their own prayer room. Where did you get the idea that they had off campus ministers? Again unsubstantiated. You don’t know what you are talking about but you still like to talk about it.
What evidence do you have, yvonne, for the use of embryonic stem cells at Georgetown?
The smoke screen is the unwarranted conclusion that this action was taken because Evangelicals are not pc enough. Fr. J. how do you get the feel of a place and then jump to the wrong conclusion? If anything it shows you didn’t get the feel for anything except yourself. and your own biases.
The issue has absolutley nothing to do with the liberal/conservative divide that many posters here are beholden to. Why not try to think outside of your confortable categories?
Can it just be that the constant critics will not accept any explanation other than the one they want?
M. Z. : thanks for trying to be a voice of reason in this matter, but the blind would rather lead the blind on this one.



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:26 pm


Susan:
I meant to include you in the last part of my post as well. Thank you.



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:46 pm


MJ: The Muslim have an imam,their own Chaplain, and they have their own prayer room. Where did you get the idea that they had off campus ministers?
I got the idea from your first comment:
…the latter provides the special environment that Muslims need to maintain their prayer-life. Evangelicals do not need special circumstances.
aren’t you saying that the Muslims get some form of special accomodation that is not offered to evangelicals?



report abuse
 

Susan S.

posted August 30, 2006 at 5:55 pm


EVANGELICALS DON’T HAVE SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS FOR DAILY PRAYERS. Why is that such a confusing thing to grasp, mj?
Muslim students (and employees and professors) have specific needs for having daily prayers. Most large employers are making these kind of accommodations. Unlike Evangelicals who can pray anywhere at anytime, Muslims have very specific requirements. Accommodating that is not some sort of sign of solidarity with Muslims, it is a basic, non-coercive accommodation made every day by private employers who have no poltiical or religious agenda.
Sure, they could accommodate the Evengelical need to prostyletize and convert, but thats much more intrusive and coercive inside the institution and undermines the Catholic values.



report abuse
 

Bill Walsh

posted August 30, 2006 at 6:04 pm


Some detail on Georgetown from The Brussels Journal, a controversial site whose perspective not all will share.

Harvard University and Georgetown University received $20 million donations from Prince bin Talal to finance Islamic studies. “For a university with global aspirations, it is critical that Harvard have a strong program on Islam that is worldwide and interdisciplinary in scope,” said Steven E. Hyman, Harvard’s provost. Georgetown said it would use the gift – the second-largest it has ever received – to expand its Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding. Martin Kramer, the author of Ivory Towers on Sand: The Failure of Middle Eastern Studies in America, said: “Prince Alwaleed knows that if you want to have an impact, places like Harvard or Georgetown, which is inside the Beltway, will make a difference.”
Georgetown professor John Esposito, founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, has, probably more than any other academic, contributed to downplaying the Jihadist threat to the West. Kramer states that during his early days in the 1970s, Esposito had prepared his thesis under his Muslim mentor Ismail R. Faruqi, a Palestinian pan-Islamist and theorist of the “Islamization of knowledge.” During the first part of his career, John L. Esposito never studied or taught at a major Middle East center. In the 80s, he published books such as Islam: The Straight Path, the first of a series of favorable books on Islam. In 1993, Esposito arrived at Georgetown University, and has later claimed the status of “authority” in the field.
In 2003, officials from the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) recognized Esposito as the current “Abu Taleb of Islam” and the Muslim community, not only in North America but also worldwide. In appreciation of his “countless effort towards dispelling myths about Muslim societies and cultures,” Dr. Sayyid Syeed, Secretary General of the ISNA compared the role of Esposito to that of Abu Taleb, Muhammad’s non-Muslim uncle who gave unconditional support to the Muslim community in Mecca at a time when it was still weak and vulnerable.
The rise to prominence of Esposito symbolizes the failure of critical studies of Islam – some would argue critical studies of just about anything non-Western – in Western Universities in the 1980s and 90s. Frenchman Olivier Roy as early as 1994 published a book entitled The Failure of Political Islam and wrote of the Middle East as having entered the stage of “post-Islamism.” As Martin Kramer puts it, “the academics were so preoccupied with “Muslim Martin Luthers” that they never got around to producing a single serious analysis of bin Laden and his indictment of America. Bin Laden’s actions, statements, and videos were an embarrassment to academics who had assured Americans that “political Islam” was retreating from confrontation.

Pax vobiscum, ?????? ?????



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 30, 2006 at 6:08 pm


thats much more intrusive and coercive inside the institution and undermines the Catholic values.
because taking down the crucifixes and giving planned abortionhood free run of the campus is doing so much to protect their Catholic values???



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 6:21 pm


Bill:
That is a fair assessment of Esposito. But Esposito does not equal Islam at Georgetown. The College Dean, Jane McAuliffe, just completed the five volume Encyclopedia of Islam. Also the theology department has Paul Heck an up and coming islamicist. Georgetown a;so has a campus in Qatar. More importantly, this issue has nothing to do with the Evangelicals.
MJ: there is nothing in my original post that vaguely suggests that Muslims werre being ministered to by off-campus individuals. That was your willful misreading. Susan got it right.



report abuse
 

Fr. J

posted August 30, 2006 at 6:48 pm


Tom,
You should note I gave solid examples of things that have happened at Georgetown to back up what I said. They are matters of public record if you don’t believe me.



report abuse
 

Todd

posted August 30, 2006 at 6:56 pm


Since you asked …
“Since when, Todd, did you turn into a latter day Counter-Reformation Warrior who dreams of forcing the nasty French Huguenots to say ‘Holy Mary’ at bayonet point on St. Bartholomew’s Day?”
Actually, my dreams are not quite so grandiose. Today, I’m satisfied pointing out the problems of evangelicals going to universities to proselytize Catholics and other Christians, and why a university administration might not like that happening.
What I see is conservative Catholics (with the emphasis being solidly on “conservative”) yipping about a perceived injustice based on “senses” and other keen insights. What I don’t have a problem with is pointing out that you’re defending the rights of “heretics” (that’s the St Blog’s term, people) who might have a bigger problem if they went out into the big bad world and tried something tougher … say evangelizing the unchurched.
Those who were quick to criticize Georgetown today might wonder why they stand so close to their post-Reformation political allies in a matter that impacts faith more than anything else.
True colors, folks.



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 7:07 pm


Fr. J. The crucifixes are back in the classrooms (and they have been for some time now), so your point it mute. If you will remember correctly, in the mid-80′s Georgetown was engaged in a drawn out legal battle about homosexual rights on campus and a DC judge ruled agiainst Georgetown because of the DC Human Rights Ammendement. The University was forced to comply. So you are disingenuous on that point.
There is no pro-abortionist agenda at Geprgetown. You are a liar on this point.
mj:where does planned abortionhood have free reign of the campus? Your ignorance is astounding. Just stop it.
Lies and more lies against the oldest Catholic University in the country.
Where is the integrity here? You all have no shame. Extremeism is a Catholic form of Jihadism.



report abuse
 

Wilma Tyndale

posted August 30, 2006 at 7:16 pm


“Sure, they could accommodate the Evengelical need to prostyletize and convert, but thats much more intrusive and coercive inside the institution and undermines the Catholic values.”
Yeah because having classes on Krishna and Shiva with required TEMPLE visit, are so much more SUPPORTIVE of CATHOLIC VALUES.
http://theology.georgetown.edu/faculty/syllabi/05a/syllabi/glucklich057.htm
There’s even a class for your self-avowed Hindu-Catholic/Buddhist Catholic hybrid.
“101. Multiple Religious Belonging (3)
Professor Phan
The course deals with three issues: (1) Can a person be “spiritual but not religious”? Is belonging to religious institution necessary or helpful to spiritual growth? (2) Can a person belong to more than one religious tradition? Can a person be, let’s say, both Christian and Buddhist? (3) In the case of multiple religious belonging, what can a Christian learn from other religious traditions? The course will focus on Buddhism and Hinduism.”

Ah the realities about Catholicism, accepting and embracing of every false religion on the planet and standing in the way of those who preach the true Christian gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ.
It is interesting to me that with Assisi #3 coming up…{one world religion pow-wow} that some here think that what is going on at Georgetown is something different from the Vatican supports.
Proselytization is NOT allowed there either.

I am sure any “pesky” Bible Christians who actually preached the gospel to anyone would be tossed out same as what happened at Georgetown.
Direct from the Vatican: {last Assisi}
http://www.vatican.va/news_services/press/servizio/documents/viaggi/1141assi/viaggi_santo_padre_1141assi_programma_en.html
Short exhortation by the Holy Father:
Violence never again!
War never again!
Terrorism never again!
In God’s name,
may all religions bring upon earth
justice and peace,
forgiveness, life and love!

All religions but Christianity, and the gospel.
TRUE CHRISTIANITY stands alone.



report abuse
 

tmatt

posted August 30, 2006 at 8:55 pm


Georgetown should be able to prevent prostyletizing by Evangelicals and as a private institution can demand they sign a code of conduct. Conservative religious universities–like the ones who pay Mattingly’s salary–do it every day.
****
Precisely the main point of my column, of course.
I also wish that Georgetown would allow its reps to address the questions that the conservative critics are asking over and over, instead of simply repeating the statement that this was a mere reorganization of the Prot office.
My own hunch is that the Universalism issue is bigger than the social issues point, although that was mentioned by every single Georgetown critic with whom I talked.
I do hope Georgetown people will openly discuss this event. Lots of people — me included — would love to quote them.



report abuse
 

Susan

posted August 30, 2006 at 9:21 pm


If that’s the point, Terry, it sure isn’t clear in the way you presented it. You quoted only critics, allowing them free reign to grind their axes with your cooperation. You couldn’t find anyone to defend Gtown?
Also, don’t you have a responsibility to disclose–even as a columnist–that your primary job is working for an Evangelical group of colleges who potentially gain from the negative publicity you’ve given Gtown?



report abuse
 

tmatt

posted August 30, 2006 at 9:22 pm


I would urge many of those commenting to actually read my column. It might help the discussion.
Georgetown is acting within its rights. All of the critics agree on that. The issue is whether Protestant students entering the university will be told that they have different freedom of speech, association and religious liberty rights than other students on campus.



report abuse
 

Susan S.

posted August 30, 2006 at 9:42 pm


I have read the column, thanks. No need to be pedantic.
Again, why didn’t you talk to anyone who supported Gtown’s position and didn’t have an axe to grind as a critic. Private unversity’s aren’t free speech zones–you know that, of course–and as you also know, religious institutions are free to discriminate on the basis of religion so I’m baffled by why you think “freedon of speech” is an issue at all. Many of the colleges in your association don’t offer those rights, so why is Gtown different?
In fact, many of the schools in your association are criticized because they don’t give notice about what can get students disciplined, which allows for indiscriminate application of vague policies depending on whether you are in favor with the school.
,



report abuse
 

athelstane

posted August 30, 2006 at 9:50 pm


Hello Tom,
What might clear the air on these issues is if people gave specific examples of how “such sentiments exist in spades on G-Town’s campus.”
Actually I gave one very concrete and well known such example – the vociferous heckling and protests (and a protest letter signed afterwards by some seventy faculty) which greeted Cardinal Arinze when he came to give a commencement speech at Georgetown in 2003 and happened to include some remarks reaffirming the Church’s moral teachings. Yet you ignored it.
No one should question that there is still a contingent on the G-Town campus which upholds the Church’s moral teachings and makes an effort (such as that to restore the crucifixes) to ensure that the university retains its Catholic identity. And bully for them – may they thrive and grow. But that’s not incompatible with the reality that a great deal of the of university’s culture (particularly in regard to its faculty) does in fact seem to be hostile in considerable degree to these teachings – even by the standards of established Catholic schools.
Ultimately, absent a smoking gun it is impossible to know all the motives which animated the university chaplains in making this move. Certainly they had the authority to act. And certainly the rationale you and others have advanced is a valid one. But I think it is also fair to examine how consistently these policies are applied, and also what the attitudes on various sexual and life teachings are in these same quarters. Perhaps as someone more intimately acqainted with Georgetown, you might be able to cast some light on these questions.



report abuse
 

Tom

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:24 pm


atheistane:
Arinze was asked to speak on religious pluralism, given his position at rhe Vaticasn. He took a completely diffeent tack. The audience was a commencement audience made up of Catholics and non-Catholics. He chose to offend non-Catholics and they booed him. What is so hard to grasp about that? How you can conclude as you do from that instance is mind boggling. The incident has nothing to do with Georgetown’s Catholic identity and all to do with the Cardinal’s unfortunate choice to offend non-Catholics. It is as simple as that. Now why do you make it such a litmus test if not becasue you have nothbing else to rely on?



report abuse
 

RP Burke

posted August 30, 2006 at 10:45 pm


“Wilma Tyndale” is a troll with a false e-mail address: “Noemail” indeed. The choice of nom de plume is revealing, as William Tyndale was one of the early leaders of the English reformation.



report abuse
 

Fr. J

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:28 pm


Tom,
There is a recent article that backs up my claim:http://www.cardinalnewmansociety.org/pdfs/CWR_Georgetown.pdf



report abuse
 

Fr. J

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:32 pm


If Georgetown showed that these people were anti-Catholics who were intent on subverting our faith then I would understand the decision. However, if they followed the policy then I don’t see why they were singled out. Maybe they could extend the current campaign to include radical Muslims and dissenting Catholics. I can make some suggestions of groups that should be banned.



report abuse
 

M.Z. Forrest

posted August 30, 2006 at 11:45 pm


Innuendo and ad hominem do not make an argument. Provide any evidence whatsoever that these groups were thrown off campus because they were pro-life and anti-homosexuality, or retract the claim. These do not even rise to serious allegations, because the rationale has been made up out of whole cloth.



report abuse
 

reluctant penitent

posted August 31, 2006 at 12:10 am


M.Z. Forrest says:
‘Innuendo and ad hominem do not make an argument. Provide any evidence whatsoever that these groups were thrown off campus because they were pro-life and anti-homosexuality, or retract the claim.’
From tmatt’s article:
‘However, the strongest tensions on campus are caused by moral and cultural issues, not over-zealous Protestant evangelists, said Manuel Miranda, a conservative Catholic activist and Georgetown alum. “There are far more Protestants who convert to Catholicism while at Georgetown than the other say around,” he stressed. In his opinion, the key to the ban on independent Protestant ministries is “the fact that all of these groups take very orthodox positions on the crucial social issues, like gay rights and abortion. If anything, they’re more Catholic on these issues than lots of Catholics there.”‘
tmatt is just reporting the words of Manuel Miranda, a ‘conservative Catholic activist.’
It’s an interesting story and Mr. Miranda’s diagnosis of the problem seems plausible.



report abuse
 

Jay Anderson

posted August 31, 2006 at 8:50 am


I’m still waiting for that proof that these groups were booted because “Georgetown has specific values about prostyletizing which these Evangalical groups–who have a poor track record nationwide when it comes to playing within university rules–violated”.
I’ve seen no evidence of this.
As Patrick Rothwell posted yesterday:
“Read the covenant that the early mainline Protestant made the evangelicals groups sign. If the evangelicals abided by the covenant, there is no reasonable basis to shoo them off campus. Rev. Wheeler has not alleged that the evangelicals failed to abide by the covenant, so it is a fair presumption that they didn’t.”
(my emphasis added)
Which I echoed:
“If the evangelical groups signed and have abided by the covenant that Georgetown requires (a legitimate requirement, in my view), then what’s the problem?
If they’re not utilizing their “trained theological hitmen” to pick off vulnerable Catholics, and they acknowledge Catholicism as legitimately Christian, what exactly is the justification for banning them?”

We’ve at least seen the quote from Mr. Miranda – whether you choose to believe him or not. We’ve seen nothing to substantiate the claim that these groups were violating the covenants that they signed.



report abuse
 

Ed the Roman

posted August 31, 2006 at 12:22 pm


Tom,
Your standard for faculty and students at a Catholic university being justified in booing a Prince of the Church is lower than mine.



report abuse
 

Mike Petrik

posted August 31, 2006 at 12:27 pm


But Ed, he was not *germane*!



report abuse
 

Ken

posted August 31, 2006 at 1:08 pm


“Wilma Tyndale” is a troll with a false e-mail address: “Noemail” indeed.
She’s obviously a rabid anti-Catholic; from her postings she obviously identifies the Church as the Antichrist’s “One World Enigma Faith” whatever. Waiting for her to start quoting “Mystery Babylon” Hislop chapter-and-verse.



report abuse
 

mj

posted August 31, 2006 at 1:19 pm


He chose to offend non-Catholics and they booed him.
So you know for a fact that every single person that booed Cdl Arinze was a non-Catholic? Not a single one of them was a cafeteria Catholic who rejects Church teaching on sexual morality? I’d love to see the evidence for that statement.
Arinze was asked to speak on religious pluralism, given his position at rhe Vaticasn.
I believe the booing incident was in May 2003, and Cdl Arinze was appointed prefect of the CDW in 2002. Given his position in the Vatican, marriage seems to be an entirely appropriate topic for him to touch on. Also, why should some two bit dissident college administrator get to tell the Cardinal what he can and can’t talk about??



report abuse
 

Puzzled

posted August 31, 2006 at 2:50 pm


The analogy would be an Evangelical college which required that Catholics be led by Matthew Fox and Hans Kung, or be banned from meeting on campus. How would it feel to have the shoe on the other foot?
Modernist-heretic, Deist priestesses are not appropriate leaders for Evangelicals, who are the separated brethren spoken of in Ut Unam Sint and the concilliar documents of Vatican II.
Where have these neo-Feenyites come from?
This supporting pagan religions, a college which rejects Ex Corde Ecclesia, which promotes sexual immorality, abominations and abortion, just as long as they can hate the separated brethren who are in real, genuine, if imperfect, communion with Rome; That is not the behavior of a faithful Catholic.
It would be a far closer fit in theology for the Evangelicals to be under Catholic leadership, than that of the Deists and Wiccans that took over the ‘mainline’ denominational apparatus back in the 1930s.
A truly Catholic college like Steubenville, which adheres to Ex Corde Ecclesia, if it were to ban all ministries not faithful to the magesterium, would be being consistant, and understandable. Georgetown is nothing of the kind, as I understand it.
Evangelicals have a special requirement that they not be led by priestesses like the “Rev.” Constance. I think Catholics have this same rule, yes? Or would you be content with a Protestant college requiring Catholic students to attend “mass” led by one of those priestesses ordained on boat in the river who claim to be Catholic, or not be allowed to meet?
Susan, which Catholic values, exactly, does Georgetown maintain, believe and teach?



report abuse
 

AnglicanPeggy

posted August 31, 2006 at 5:03 pm


And yet there is no prohibition against muslims takign advantage of Christian students at a vulnerable time in their lives. I would bet that after jailhouse and cupid conversions the next most conversions to islam come during college.
The usual one way street. Any minority faith can scream unfair play an bloody murder if anyone tries to proselitize their students and in the next breath claim that there is nothing at all wrong or unfair with encouraging and accepting college conversions to their faith.
In that case they say the conversion had nothing to do with taking advantage of a vulnerable student. In that case they say that the student was not at all vulnerable ans merely recognized the truth.
When will the hyposcrisy ever end?



report abuse
 

TURBO RACING LEAGUE HACK

posted March 13, 2014 at 3:41 pm


This will change the car’s behavior under braking, around corners
and during acceleration. (Reefer, Snotnose, Booger, A$$hole, Retard, are a few I nixed.

It’s filled will all the bells and whistles that
make driving a state-of-the-art luxury car fun (and safe).



report abuse
 

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the beliefnet.com terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to beliefnet.com and may be used by beliefnet.com in accordance with the agreements.



Previous Posts

There is nothing I shall want
A couple of weeks ago, a memorial Mass for Michael was held here in Birmingham at the Cathedral. The bishop presided and offered a very nice, even charming homily in which he first focused on the Scripture readings of the day, and then turned to Michael, whom he remembered, among other things, as on

posted 9:24:16am Mar. 05, 2009 | read full post »

Revolutionary Road - Is it just me?
Why am I the only person I know..or even "know" in the Internet sense of "knowing"  - who didn't hate it? I didn't love it, either. There was a lot wrong with it. Weak characterization. Miscasting. Anvil-wielding mentally ill prophets.But here's the thing.Whether or not Yates' original novel in

posted 9:45:04pm Mar. 04, 2009 | read full post »

Books for Lent
No, I'm not going to ask you about your Lenten reading lists...although I might.Not today, though. This post is about giving books to others. For Lent, and a long time after that. You know how it goes during Lent: Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving, right?Well, here's a worthy recipient for your hard-

posted 9:22:07pm Mar. 04, 2009 | read full post »

Why Via Media
How about....because I'm lame and hate thinking up titles to things? No?Okay...how about...St. Benedict? Yes, yes, I know the association with Anglicanism. That wasn't invovled in my purpose in naming the joint, but if draws some Googling Episcopalians, all the better.To tell the truth, you can bl

posted 8:54:17pm Mar. 04, 2009 | read full post »

Brave Heart?
I don't know about you, but one of effects of childbirth on me was a compulsion to spill the details. All of them.The whole thing was fascinating to me, so of course I assumed everyone else should be fascinated as well in the recounting of every minute of labor, describing the intensity of discomfor

posted 10:19:45pm Mar. 03, 2009 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.