PopeWatch: Discernment

The perfect Catholic university for the Age of Francis is Notre Dame:

University of Notre Dame President Father John Jenkins justified the university’s decision last week to fund “simple contraceptives” through its insurance plan by appealing to Pope Francis and the Pope’s call for “discernment.”

“The situation is one that demands discernment—something to which Pope Francis has called the Church in his various writings and addresses,” wrote Jenkins in a February 7 letter to faculty and staff about the decision. 

“Discernment, which has a long history in the Catholic spiritual tradition, is, of course, a process of weighing thoughtfully considerations for and against various courses of action. Yet it also demands prayerful attention to God’s guidance through the prompting of the Holy Spirit,” he added. 

The university had announced in November that contraception would be available to those covered on its insurance plans through a third-party insurance administrator. The decision dismayed alumni, staff and others concerned for the university’s Catholic identity, and also came as a surprise because Notre Dame had been among a number of Catholic institutions to sue over the HHS Contraception Mandate in Obamacare.

Jenkins stated in his letter that third-party insurance also included the “provision of abortion-inducing drugs” which are “far more gravely objectionable in Catholic teaching.” Because of this, the university decided to “stop the government-funded provision of the range of drugs and services through our third party administrator.”

“Instead, the University will provide coverage in the University’s own insurance plans for simple contraceptives (i.e., drugs designed to prevent conception),” wrote Jenkins

The policy is scheduled to be enacted starting June 1, 2018.

The Catholic Church condemns contraception because it separates the unitive and procreative purposes of the marital act. Chemical contraception also has countless associated health risks. Further, when regular oral contraception fails to prevent conception, some experts say it can actually cause an abortion.

Notre Dame law professor Gerard V. Bradley condemned the university’s decision in an article titled Notre Dame Swallows the Pill published February 8 at the Public Discourse. 

“Now the University is to be sole funder and proprietor of a contraception giveaway, with only the logistics of it delegated by Notre Dame to its plan administrators. What it solemnly declared for years to be morally impossible is, suddenly, the substance of Notre Dame’s free choice,” he wrote. 

Go here to read the rest.  Poor Judas.  He committed suicide due to his betrayal of Christ.  If he were living today he could defend it as an act of “discernment” and probably get an honorary degree from Notre Dame.


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  1. Judas has been guiding said University for years.
    I’m certain that monies for removal of Our Lady off of the dome would flood in if Norte Dame would “come out of the closet.” Meaning remove it’s Catholic identity as a sign of being true to itself. I’m certain that there would be monies left over to erect a statue of Judas to replace the one of Our Blessed Mother.

    Pathetic times at South Bend. Shame and disgrace.

  2. Having discarded the act of sublimation to the will of Christ in the marital act and replaced it with an addiction to the vice of lust and the pursuit of temporal satisfaction or the relief of the temptation to sin for the sin itself , the person will find himself in meaninglessness or nothing.
    In sublimation to the will of Christ, a person knows a foretaste of the joy in heaven here on earth and the fascination of sharing the foretaste of heaven with another person. Now this is conversation and communication with a spouse.
    Having succumbed to the spirit of the world and perhaps the devil, Notre Dame University is no longer a university in the sense of being universal. The university has imprisoned itself in a very dark wormhole and can no longer lead souls into the light of Christ.
    Darkness anyone can find in a dark alley.
    This post is well written. Philip’s analogy to Judas is perfect.

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