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"The Signs of the Times"

We are blessed to have Cardinal Burke as now part of the College of Cardinals and also the prefect of the Vatican's highest court. Aside from the Holy Father himself, we have a strong and aggressive pro-life voice. Now he has made a pronouncement about Catholic educational institutions that should stir some action.

Indeed, Catholic educational institutions, supposedly the formators (in assisting the parents) of the youth in solid Catholic values, have not been living up to the task. In fact, many, especially in the western world, have in effect moved over to the other side, that of the anti-life, anti-family, homosexualist forces. They have become the enemy within.

Such is the case already in the Philippines, though not yet quite as blatant as the west. Ateneo, La Salle and other Catholic schools have many dissidents, including professors and theologians. Many are pro-choice. Some have welcomed homosexualist groups in the campuses.

When will our own bishops speak out? When will the Church take back its Catholic schools? The pro-life fight depends a lot on how the young are educated. As it is, our fight is harder because of their long-term exposure to pro-choice, diversity, and even sexual permissiveness.

It is time for "a revival of Catholic orthodoxy in academia." The Pope shows the way, Cardinal Burke has fired a resounding salvo, now let the bishops follow their lead.

Catholic education should combat anti-life secularism, not succumb to it: Cardinal Burke

Hilary White | Tue Dec 21 18:11 EST | Faith

MERRIMACK, NH, December 21, 2010 ( – The ideal Catholic university, said Cardinal Raymond Burke last week, is one that creates a bulwark against the aggressive secularism of our times and its persistent attacks on human life, the dignity of the person and of natural marriage.

The former archbishop of St. Louis, and current head of the Vatican’s highest tribunal, laid out his blueprint for Catholic higher education in a lecture to students and faculty at St. Thomas More College December 13th. Thomas More is one of a handful of U.S. Catholic colleges that have deliberately aligned themselves with a revival of Catholic orthodoxy in academia.

In laying out his ideal, Cardinal Burke, who serves as the Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome, decried the fact that the same aggressive secularism that Catholic education should be ideally suited to combat has all but overwhelmed most of the world’s Catholic post-secondary institutions.

Catholic colleges and universities, he said, “which once gave pride of place to their Catholic identity and the Catholic life of the campus” are now “Catholic in name only.” Many have illustrated the Latin expression, “corruptio optimi pessima est … the corruption of the best is the worst.”

He called it a “tragedy” that Catholic educational institutions have fallen prey to the “prevalent and utterly destructive error of our time that somehow faith is contradicted by reason.”

“This error has hindered and even prevented the essential and irreplaceable contribution of the Church to the life of society … to the common good.”

The Catholic college that fits the description is one that resists “the secularist dictatorship which would exclude all religious discourse from the professions and from public life in general.”

Modern society is marked by “a virulent secularism which threatens the integrity of every aspect of human endeavor and service” that true Catholic education must counter.

The “manner of study” at a truly Catholic university, should show up the “bankruptcy of the abuse of human life and human sexuality, which has come to be standard on many university campuses.”

This includes the “bankruptcy of the violation of the inviolable dignity of human life, of the integrity of marriage, and of the right order of our relationship to one another and to the world, in general, which is the trademark of our culture, a culture of violence and death.”

Read the full text of the cardinal’s address here.

"For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." (Phil 1:21)

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