During the present debacle at my beloved university, I have said to some of you, "During my thirty years on the faculty of the University of Notre Dame, the university as an institution has never been unambiguously pro-life." The piece below by Fr. Raymond de Souza, from the National Catholic Register, does a really good job of explaining the details and putting them into context. (The only significant event that is left out is the "debate" about abortion between Fr. Jim Burtchaell and the infamous Daniel Maguire in 1987. The very giving of a platform to Maguire, the worst -- morally and intellectually -- of the pro-abortion Catholic theologians, was in my opinion an abomination. Janet Smith and I wrote a long Observer piece at the time making that very point. We were, of course, laughed at and berated as enemies of free speech.)
I hold out little hope that Notre Dame will change course after all these years. But if you're into faint hopes, I want to go on public record as saying that if there is any hope at all for Notre Dame surviving as a genuinely Catholic university, that hope has an Australian accent. Fr. Wilson Miscamble, CSC, is, in my estimation, the only possible replacement for Fr. Jenkins who would have even a fighting chance of righting this ship. Accept no substitutes. Any other name you might hear floated around is a snare and a delusion and merely a continuation of the weak and/or unfaithful leadership Notre Dame has had for so long. The chances of Miscamble actually acceding to the presidency of Notre Dame are as minuscule as can be. He is just too intelligent, too academically distinguished, too Catholic, and too courageous. This is an intolerably scary combination for those who want to stay the corrupt course we have been on for so long.
This is my last hurrah on this particular point. But I owe at leas t this much to all the ordinary faithful Catholics in the pews who have been scandalized by the university time and again even as they have been quietly building a deep and lasting culture of life right under the noses of those who have led the university astray.
Please feel free to send this email and accompanying article on to anyone you please.
Best wishes on the memorial of St. Catherine of Siena,