Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

5/11/2009 (5 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The other University named for Our Lady honors only those who recognize and embrace the truth concerning the dignity of every human life at every age and stage.

The graduates of Ave Maria University engage in this traditional celebrative act in front of the Oratory on the main Campus in Southwestern Florida.

The graduates of Ave Maria University engage in this traditional celebrative act in front of the Oratory on the main Campus in Southwestern Florida.

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/11/2009 (5 years ago)

Published in College & University


AVE MARIA, Fl (Catholic Online) – The eyes of the faithful watch the unfolding events at the University of Notre Dame with deep concern as commencement exercises draw near in South Bend. Many are praying earnestly that the leadership of that University will change its mind at the last moment and not bestow an honorary Doctor of Law Degree on our President because of his strong opposition to the fundamental Human Right to Life.

The entire incident has revealed a serious deficiency in the state of the Catholic Academy in the United States and beyond. It has also galvanized Catholics, other Christians, other people of faith and many other people of good will. It has birthed a massive response of prayer and Catholic Action which will have repercussions for years to come.

Meanwhile, there is another smaller and newer University named for Our Lady in Southwestern Florida. It proudly proclaims the words of the Angel “Ave Maria” without any compromise. Ave Maria University held its commencement exercises this past weekend. The Baccalaureate Mass was celebrated on Friday, May 8 at 2:00 p.m. by Fr. Frank Pavone, Pro-Life hero and National Director of Priests for Life. He was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate precisely because of his heroic leadership in the great human rights movement of our age, the struggle to recognize the right to life of every human life at every age and stage. This new University named for Our Lady is very clear concerning its commitment to living out its Catholic identity as is seen in this clear summary of its mission:

“Founded in fidelity to Christ and His Church in response to the call of Vatican II for greater lay witness in contemporary society, Ave Maria University exists to further teaching, research, and learning at the undergraduate and graduate levels in the abiding tradition of Catholic thought in both national and international settings. The University takes as its mission the sponsorship of a liberal arts education curriculum dedicated, as articulated in the apostolic constitution Ex Corde Ecclesiae, to the advancement of human culture, the promotion of dialogue between faith and reason, the formation of men and women in the intellectual and moral virtues of the Catholic faith, and to the development of professional and pre-professional programs in response to local and societal needs. As an institution committed to Catholic principles, the University recognizes the importance of creating and maintaining an environment in which faith informs the life of the community and takes expression in all its programs.”

Then there is the issue of who was invited to give the commencement address at this other University. Dr. Thomas Hilgers spoke to the AMU graduates. He founded the Nebraska-based Pope Paul VI Institute in 1985. The Institute is fully committed to the truths taught by the Natural Law, affirmed by Revelation and expounded upon by the Church. Those truths inform the Institute in fulfilling its mission of studying women’s reproductive health. In 1994, Pope John Paul II appointed Dr. Hilgers to full membership in the Pontifical Academy for Life and, with his wife; he served for five years on the Pontifical Council for the Family. In 1997, the Nebraska Family Council named Hilgers Physician of the Year. In 2001, he was presented with the John Cardinal Wright Award by the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars. In 2004 he was the recipient of the Linacre Award, one of the highest awards given by the Catholic Medical Association

In the context of an uplifting and stirring speech, Dr. Hilgers referred to President Obama as “viciously pro-abortion” in his policies. He acknowledged that the Obama administration has “made available embryonic stem cell research funds,” and noted that “as an obstetrician, I am in the cross-hairs of Obama’s administration.” He called the graduates of AMU to be missionaries who were dedicated to building a new culture of life and civilization of love, “…You’re going to be in the group of people – praise the Lord – who will have the opportunity to be a part of the culture of life…. Pope John Paul II has called us all to (build) a culture of life within a civilization of love.” He charged them with this commission “God calls all of us to do something special, and with prayer and perseverance, you will find your calling.”

The study in contrasts between these two Universities could not be clearer. One University named for Our Lady has lost its soul, evidenced by its awarding a Law Degree to a man who fails to recognize the fundamental human right to Life, the very foundation of the Natural Law. In so doing it is acting in contradiction to this clear instruction of the US Bishops in their 2004 document entitled “Catholics in Political Life”: “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”

The other University named for Our Lady honors only those who recognize and embrace the truth concerning the dignity of every human life at every age and stage. That little University is unafraid to stand as fully Catholic, in fidelity to the Magisterium of the Church. Later in his address Dr. Hilgers challenged the Ave Maria graduates to take their place in fulfilling the plan of God for the Third Millennium through their participation in the mission of the Church with these words: “When God wants something done, He doesn’t dispatch a legion of avenging angels … He sends a baby – and then He waits… You are this generation’s babies … and God has been waiting for you to be a part of the culture of life.”

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More College & University

Franciscan nun becomes first woman head of a pontifical university Watch

Image of Sister Melone is an alumnus of the university set up in 1890 in honor of St Anthony, a 13th century saint from Spain known for his forceful preaching and expert knowledge of the Bible.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education made history last week when it nominated a Franciscan nun as the first woman head of a pontifical university. In a position held usually by priests, Sister Mary Melone will become the rector of the Pontifical ... continue reading


University of St. Thomas Graduates First Nursing Cohort in 25 Years

Image of University of St. Thomas Nursing Graduate, Elizabeth Ciocco

By Darnell Miller - University of St. Thomas

This May 27 nursing students, including Elizabeth Ciocco, will be the first nursing students to graduate from the University of St. Thomas in nearly 25 years.  Ciocco joins 298 undergraduates and 739 graduates at the University's 64th Commencement ... continue reading


University of St. Thomas Honors Research Goes 6 Feet Under

Image of Honors Program students consider the issues of death and mortality in the Contemporary Seminar research presented at UST's Research symposium.

By Brenda Cooper, University of St. Thomas

A few hundred people have undergone cryopreservation procedures since 1962, having their bodies cooled to sub-zero temperatures, with the hope that one day they may be brought back to life using highly advanced technology. It's the kind of issue-along with assisted ... continue reading


What the devil?! Bill Gates wants your college info so he can tell you what classes to take Watch

Image of Bill Gates could do so much more if only he had your privacy.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It might be easier to compose a short list of people and agencies that don't want to spy on you. Adding his name to the long list, Bill Gates has proposed tracking the lives and careers of college graduates as an ongoing means to assess college value. Of course, they'd ... continue reading


Two Cardinals, a Theologian and a Historian to Lecture at the University of St. Thomas

Image of N.T. Wright, one of the world's leading Bible scholar.

By Darnell Miller, University of St. Thomas

The University of St. Thomas is fortunate to have four outstanding speakers giving lectures on campus in the month of March. These speakers include N.T. Wright, one of the world's leading Bible scholars; Thomas Cardinal Collins, the Archbishop of Toronto; Dr. Andrew ... continue reading


Women Succeed in UST Engineering, CUA is New Partner

Image of Kendall Niemann is a UST cooperative engineering student studying at the University of Notre Dame.

By Brenda Cooper, University of St. Thomas

In the male-dominated field of engineering, it can be difficult for women to succeed, but last year, all four graduates of the University of St. Thomas cooperative engineering program were women, and three of them were Hispanic. Dr. Sheila Waggoner said she is proud of ... continue reading


Mardi Gras King, Queen Exemplify UST Mission

Image of University of St. Thomas Mardi Gras King and Queen, C.J. Miller and Meredith Smith.

By Vivian Cabrera - University of St. Thomas

The ideal Mardi Gras king and queen should embody the University's mission to educate leaders of faith and character. With the crowning of C.J. Miller and Meredith Smith The ideal Mardi Gras king and queen should embody the University's mission to educate leaders of ... continue reading


40 Celts March for Life in Washington

Image of Students from the University of St. Thomas - Houston, brave the cold weather as they march with nearly half a million others from across the country, declaring their pro-life stance.

By Brenda Cooper, University of St. Thomas

It didn't matter that when 40 college students boarded a bus in Washington, D.C., the temperature was in the teens. It also didn't matter that they had spent the night on blankets and in sleeping bags in cold elementary school classrooms, sans showers, at a parish ... continue reading


GRACE Goes International With Irish Teachers

Image of Pictured from L to R: Colm Supple, Mary Buckley and Sarah Tighe.

By Darnell Miller

In May 2013, merely two weeks after completing final exams, Mary Buckley, Colm Supple and Sarah Tighe, graduates from Mary Immaculate College in Limerick, Ireland, packed their bags and said goodbye to their friends, family and homeland as they journeyed 4,479 miles to ... continue reading


Seven in 10 college students graduate with loan debt Watch

Image of An independent analysis of federal data has revealed that more than 70 percent of college graduates in 2012 had student loans.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There was a time in America when graduating from college meant freedom and unlimited vistas. A sheepskin in the hand was the ticket to new challenges and rewarding careers. That's not true for seven out of 10 college students, who now are burdened with student ... continue reading


All College & University News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Judges 13:2-7, 24-25
2 There was a man of Zorah of the tribe of Dan, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 71:3-4, 5-6, 16-17
3 Be a sheltering rock for me, always accessible; you ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:5-25
5 In the days of King Herod of Judaea there lived a ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 19th, 2014 Image

St. Nemesius
December 19: Martyr of Egypt. He was burned alive in Alexandria, Egypt, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter