Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Kathleen Gilbert

3/20/2009 (6 years ago)

LifeSiteNews (

His appearance at the university would appear to violate the USCCB's policy against honoring pro-abortion politicians.

At Notre Dame, the administration there just made a choice. They took a giant step away from their identity as 'Catholic.'

At Notre Dame, the administration there just made a choice. They took a giant step away from their identity as 'Catholic.'


By Kathleen Gilbert

LifeSiteNews (

3/20/2009 (6 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

NOTRE DAME, Indiana ( - White House Secretary Robert Gibbs stated today that Obama will give the commencement address at Notre Dame University this year. The school confirmed the announcement, stating on its website that Obama will also receive an honorary doctor of laws degree at the University's 164th University Commencement Ceremony at 2 p.m. May 17 in the Joyce Center on campus.

In 2004, the United States of Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) approved a policy statement called "Catholics in Political Life," which says, with reference to pro-abortion politicians, "They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions."

President Obama has been called the "abortion president" by pro-life activists, and his appearance at the university would appear to violate the USCCB's policy against honoring pro-abortion politicians.

One alumnus from the university has already expressed his displeasure in an open letter sent today to the president of Notre Dame, Rev. John Jenkins.

William Newton, a D.C. area attorney, wrote, "As an alumnus of Notre Dame Law School, I am deeply offended that you would invite President Barack Obama to speak at Commencement this year."

Newton then lists the numerous pro-abortion decisions that Obama has made since assuming the office of the presidency. "This is the person that you feel is worthy to address the students and faculty of Notre Dame, in the shadow of Our Lady atop the Golden Dome, with the spires of the Basilica in the background?" writes Newton.

"Father Sorin must be wringing his hands in heaven, that his successor would approve this disgrace. Shame on Notre Dame for choosing to scandalize the faithful who continue to support the Catholic identity and mission of the University."

Conservative commentator Kathryn Jean Lopez said on The Corner that the arrangement was "shameful."

"Last week the president of the United States perpetrated an assault on human dignity. No statements or press releases will undo what Notre Dame's position in the eyes of the world is in response: 'Doesn't matter,'" wrote Lopez. "We've got THE ONE. So much for the One the school's namesake gave birth to."

"I've been optimistic that the radicalism of this administration on life could be a real catalyst for renewal in many churches. At Notre Dame, the administration there just made a choice. They took a giant step away from their identity as 'Catholic.' They [sic] rather be of this world than the one they supposedly exist to bring people toward."

Notre Dame is among the most prestigious Catholic universities in America. The school's Center for Ethics and Culture recently established a pro-life fund in an effort to bolster Notre Dame's pro-life identity.

To contact Notre Dame:
Phone: (574) 631-5000
email form:

Notre Dame Fellows:
Rev. E. William Beauchamp, C.S.C., President, U. of Portland
(503) 943-7101

Patrick F. McCartan, Senior partner, Jones Day
(216) 586-7272

William M. Goodyear, CEO, Navigant Consulting
main: (312) 583-5700

list of all Notre Dame Fellows:

To contact the USCCB:

Cardinal Francis George, President
Archdiocese of Chicago
phone: 312-751- 8200

Most Rev. Robert J. McManus, Chairman, Committee on Education
Diocese of Worcester
phone: 508-791-7171
committee email:

To contact Notre Dame's bishop:
Bishop John D'Arcy, Fort Wayne-South Bend Diocese
Fort Wayne Chancery
phone: (260) 422-4611

--- is a non-profit Internet service dedicated to issues of culture, life, and family. It was launched in September 1997. LifeSiteNews Daily News reports and information pages are used by numerous organizations and publications, educators, professionals and political, religious and life and family organization leaders and grassroots people across North America and internationally.


More Politics & Policy

Who's really dying? Tragic reports surface revealing Russia kills more civilians than ISIS militants Watch

Image of


Between meetings for the climate summit in Paris, U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin met for a thirty-minute talk concerning the Syrian crisis and Ukraine situation. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - One official reported President Obama ... continue reading

'We cannot succumb to fear': U.S. joins France in fight against ISIS Watch

Image of U.S. President Barack obama has decided to join forces with France in eliminating ISIS.


Following a meeting with French President Fran├žois Hollande, United States President Barack Obama has proclaimed "total solidarity" with France. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - President Obama believes the declaration of solidarity, alongside his trip to Paris for ... continue reading

U.S. throws doors open to Syrian refugees - despite identity of Paris terrorist suspect as disguised refugee Watch

Image of It's not yet known how many more additional refugees the U.S. may take in beyond the originally state 10,000. Two senior administration officials say they are seeking ways to take in even more.


Even after it was learned that a key terrorist in the recent attacks in Paris, 25-year-old Ahmed Almuhamed, snuck into France after he was rescued from a sinking shop off the coast of Greece posing as a Syrian refugee, the Obama administration continues to ... continue reading

Supreme Court to hear arguments over Texas abortion clinic ruling Watch

Image of Lawmakers have put major restrictions of abortion since 2010, but none as far-reaching and strict as Texas' HB2.


A measure passed in the State of Texas, HB2 in 2013 has led to the closure of half of that state's abortion clinics. Now, the Supreme Court will hear arguments over the Texas law that has been among the most crucial in the ongoing national dialogue regarding ... continue reading

PUT TERRORISTS IN COLORADO? Law enforcement officials question Guantanamo Bay closure Watch

Image of Obama's Defense Secretary recently said that around half of the remaining 112 prisoners at Gitmo must be locked up


United States President Barack Obama has long promised to close Guantanamo Bay, a holding facility for suspected terrorists at a U.S. naval facility in Cuba. The question, as posed by dozens of law enforcement officials in a letter to the president . where do ... continue reading

What has the United States Government done with $5.9 billion? Watch

Image of American taxpayers gave the United States government $5.9 billion in foreign military financing last how was it distributed?


Each year Americans complain about paying taxes, much of which is distributed to foreign military aid. So where have all the funds gone? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the United States government's Foreign Assistance report, $5.9 billion was directed ... continue reading

You won't believe how Trump and Carson have become a disrupting force in the Republican Party! Watch

Image of Donald Trump and Ben Carson's popularity has other Republican presidential candidates sweating.


Republican presidential hopefuls Ben Carson and Donald Trump have disrupted Republican politicians and have many questioning where the United States is headed should either become the next American President. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Members of the ... continue reading

Fourth Presidential debate asks the hard questions Watch

Image of The Fourth Republican Debate gave presidential candidates several opportunities to shine -but who took advantage of the spotlight?

By Kenya Sinclair (California Network)

The fourth Republican presidential debate took place at the Milwaukee Theater Tuesday night. Candidates were asked the big questions ranging from how they felt about protester demands for a $15 minimum wage to the deportation of 11 million illegal immigrants in the ... continue reading

Court halts Obama's executive orders with Obama's own words! What were they? Watch

Image of Obama's own words were used to stop him from changing the law as he pleased.

By David Drudge (California Network)

A federal appeals court has used Obama's own words to halt his growing use of executive orders that allow him to rule by edict. Their decision specifically halts his edict that shields 5 million illegal immigrants from imminent deportation and that he does not have the ... continue reading

Social Security administration hits unbelievably new record in spending - You won't believe the numbers! Watch

Image of This latest figure represents a substantial increase from the $910,394,720,000 the Social Security Administration spent in fiscal 2014.


Hitting a record $944,143,000,000 in fiscal 2015, the Social Security Administration reached an all-time in spending. The inclusive payments for this bureau include payments for Social Security and disability benefits in addition to Supplemental Security Income ... continue reading

All Politics & Policy News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

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

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Prayer For Faith HD Video
  • Christmas Presence vs. Presents
  • St. Eligius: Saint of the Day for Tuesday, December 01, 2015
  • Parents' Prayer For Their Children HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Tuesday, December 01, 2015
  • You won't believe what happened to this pair of infant twins!
  • Pope Francis orderes sweeping audit of the Vatican

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 11:1-10
1 A shoot will spring from the stock of Jesse, a new shoot will grow from ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 72:1, 7-8, 12-13, 17
1 [Of Solomon] God, endow the king with your own fair judgement, the son ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 10:21-24
21 Just at this time, filled with joy by the Holy Spirit, he said, 'I ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 1st, 2015 Image

St. Eligius
December 1: Eligius (also known as Eloi) was born around 590 ... Read More