Tom and Jerry: Defenders of All Things Right and Good

Monday, April 10, 2006

Blogging about V-Day

Many blogs have commented on Father Jenkins' decision not to ban the Vagina Monologues. Here are some that caught my eye. The Shrine of the Holy Whapping rightly claims the subject has been exhausted at Amy Wellborn's Open Book and therefore limit their commentary to quoting one interesting post by Phillip Bocock summarized as follows:

His conclusion, I think, can be summarized: "There is no such thing as a Catholic haven. Apart from its status as a Catholic University, Notre Dame can no longer be called a 'Catholic Haven'--is that bad, or realistic?" A question to which, again, I have no answer.

My answer: Notre Dame ceased being a Catholic haven a long time ago. When I was there, the Catholic character was strong, but it could hardly be considered an enclave like Steubenville, Ave Maria, or St. Thomas Aquinas. Those schools have their place and purpose, and a very good purpose. Notre Dame has chosen to engage the culture more directly and her esteem and notoriety make her uniquely positioned to do so.

First Things also commented on this subject. Steven Barr calls Father Jenkins' statement "a surrender." Many people share his opinion. Father Richard John Neuhaus does not go that far and admits to being "wishy washy" on the subject. He concludes however:

It was a judgment call, and I think Fr. Jenkins probably came down on the wrong side. But I resist the conclusion that this decision is the defining moment in his promising leadership of Notre Dame.

Once again, I agree with Father Neuhaus except for his opinion that Fr. Jenkins came down on the wrong side.

Readers interested in this subject should check out The Shrine of the Holy Whapping and First Things . There is much more there than I could summarize in this space.


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