The Disgrace of Georgetown

There’s a very fine Jesuit priest who is a professor at Georgetown University, Fr. James Schall. In a recent column, he said this: “Tell me who you honor and I will tell you what you are.”

The reason for the question is the appalling decision by Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute to have HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as the speaker at their commencement. The president of Georgetown has stated that this platform is being given to the Secretary because of her “long and distinguished record of public service”.

Yes, you read that right.  An allegedly Catholic university, giving a platform of honor to the current Administration’s point person to advance its anti-life agenda.

Let’s review some of the highlights of Secretary Sebelius’ “long and distinguished record”, for those at Georgetown who don’t have access to the Internet:

  • She has spearheaded the recent attacks on human life and religious liberty by promulgating the infamous HHS contraceptive and abortion mandates.
  • She notoriously declared at a pro-abortion rally that “we are in a war” to defend the right to kill children in the womb.
  • She has associated with, and embraced the support of, the infamous late-term abortionist George Tiller — she even hosted an event at her governor’s mansion in honor of him and posed smiling for pictures with him.
  • As Governor of Kansas, she consistently opposed pro-life legislation, and has repeatedly vetoed bills like a ban on partial birth abortion.
  • Her record was so bad in Kansas that her own bishop, after trying privately to convert her, had to publicly admonish her not to present herself for Communion until she publicly repudiates her pro-abortion positions.
  • Georgetown loves to boast about how it is a university “in the Jesuit tradition”. At the heart of the Jesuit charism is the Spiritual Exercises of their founder, St. Ignatius Loyola. During the second week of the Exercises, those who are on the retreat receive a meditation on the Two Standards. This is a powerful expression of the very meaning of Christian discipleship.

    The meditation asks bluntly — whose standard or flag will we follow, Christ’s or Satan’s?

    Satan’s standard, of course, is the one that the world finds most attractive, because it superficially appeals to our fallen human nature. It offers us the desire for worldly possessions, power, honor, and a false view of freedom that is a disguise for immorality. In the end, though, it leads only to destruction.

    Christ’s standard, on the other hand, is the one that the world finds unattractive, because it appeals to values that are exemplified by Our Lord himself, whom the world rejected. It offers us humility, poverty, sacrifice, and authentic freedom that involves willing adherence to God’s will. And in the end it leads to glory.

    So here’s the question for the Georgetown administration — which standard have you chosen? As Fr. Schall said, “Tell me who you honor and I will tell you what you are.”

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    12 Responses to “The Disgrace of Georgetown”

    1. James Leach, MD says:

      Kudos to Georgetown! Secretary Sebelius has worked for medical coverage for all Americans, something the bishops tried to sabotage. These same prelates condoned the Iraq war and acquiesced in the Vatican reprimand of good American nuns. They have no claim to pontificate on morality!! This diatribe against Sebelius by you is repulsive and smacks of the worst hyperbole!
      Misereratur tui omnipotens Deus, et, dimissis peccatis tuis, perducat te ad vitam aerternam. Amen.
      Post scriptum:
      I doubt that any Jesuit could have written “Tell me who you honor…” A real Jesuit would have written “Tell me whom you honor…”

    2. Ed Mechmann says:

      Res ipsa loquitur, since we’re speaking Latin :)

      As for Fr. Schall, here’s the link. You can contact him directly to correct his grammar, or to express doubts about the validity of his religious vows or his erudition.

    3. James Leach, MD says:

      Roma locuta est, causa finita est! Maybe! I certainly don’t mean to call in question anyone’s vocation, but grammar is up for grabs! As for the Jesuits, Fordham has benefited from my generosity in establishing a collection of facsimile medieval manuscripts. But I will not allow a harangue against Secretary Sebelius to go unanswered. If the catholic hierarchy wants to play politics, then let the games begin! Remember the line from “A Man for All Seasons!”: Qui tacet consentire (videtur).

    4. Chris says:

      How profoundly sad to read a doctor who defends an advocate of killing babies in the womb — and more sadly yet, refers to it as a “game.”

    5. MaryG says:

      You’re right Chris. Sounds like Dr. Leach has read one too many medieval manuscripts. Such quixotic gallantry (I will not allow a harangue against Secretary Sebelius to go unanswered) as if Lady Sebelius is a damsel in distress who needs rescuing. What will he rise to next? A duel with pistols on the Fordham green?

    6. Ed Mechmann says:

      I am an excellent shot, and pretty good with a sword, too. Alas, dueling is a sin, so the “field of honor” will remain empty before Keating Hall. :)

    7. James Leach, MD says:

      I will certainly defend a woman’s right to make her own decision whether to have an abortion or not. As a pediatrician, I spent many sleepless nights caring for newborns
      in busy academic neonatology centers. My commitment to children is a matter of public record. Most of my professional career was in a municipal hospital for those without the money or insurance to cover private care. You would do well to read some medieval
      manuscripts such as the Lorsch Gospels. Who knows…you might find true religion!
      I would be happy to meet anyone on the Fordham campus, but alas, I think you are all

    8. Let’s not confuse things and slide down the slippery slope of a women’s right to choose. Please……

      It should be deafening to hear 60% of all pregenacies in the Bronx are killed. Are we happy about this??? Where is moral outrage….I’m sick over this. You forty, fifity and sixty year olds are directly responsible for this as am I for sitting by thus far. Its on our watch and you sit there like this is something acceptable? Give me a break! What if 60% of anything was murdered?? Don’t justify something like this and call it rational sound public policy.

      Georgetown is or is not a Catholic University is at question. St John’s University is a Catholic University or not? Don’t justify bad behavior with other bad behavior. Who are you is exactly what the question is???? Catholic University’s hmm….not 100% convinced.

      Catholics the world over are paying close attention and so should each of you. There is nothing to celebrate here.

    9. James Leach, MD says:

      If you are really interested in decreasing the number of abortions, you would be in favor of contraception for all women in childbearing age who want it! This preventive health measure was recommeded by the the Institute of Medicine and incorporated into the HHS mandate which the Archdiocese of New York would like to flout! Humanae Vitae was promulgated by Paul VI over against the recommendations of medical experts and contravening the sensus fidelium! Where was Catholic moral outrage when Bush invaded Iraq on trumped up evidence of weapons of mass destruction? Cardinal O’Brien who was military vicar at the time was silent. He’s a Bronx boy WHOM I remember as a young curate at Incarnation parish in Manhattan when I was a resident physician. So much for
      Catholic morality! Georgetown is a Jesuit institution. Deo gratias!

    10. Ed Mechmann says:

      New York City’s government hands out over 40 million free condoms every year. Yet 40% of all pregnancies in New York City end in abortion. So that approach has been tried and failed. Perhaps it’s time for something new, like virtue and abstinence?

    11. John Logiudice says:

      This person is a doctor?

      He sounds more like Dicken’s Scrooge, before his conversion. Something to do with deceasing the excess population.

      Or, is this person in quest of Hilter’s master race?

    12. John Logiudice says:

      You would compare Iraq to the over 50,000,000 innocent babies destroyed, oh yes because the mothers were in danger of losing their lives. And you have the gall to talk about morality?