Indiana University’s inspiring—and surprising—commencement speaker

Little wonder he got a standing ovation at the end. Parker Mantell has a disability: he stutters. But he courageously spoke before thousands on Sunday. You can read more here.  See the results for yourself below. [Read more...]

Students protest after Catholic school pulls yearbook picture of girl wearing tux

Details:  Hundreds of students at a San Francisco Catholic school wore ties to class Friday to protest an administrative decision to keep the graduation photo of a female student wearing a tuxedo out of the yearbook. The outcry became contagious as word spread across social media and support for Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory senior Jessica Urbina flowed in from around [Read More...]

Vatican responds to “Exorcist” author on Georgetown: “Your communications constitute a well-founded complaint”

From The Washington Post:  The author of the thriller “The Exorcist” says he has new hope he has put the fear of God in Georgetown University. William Peter Blatty, a Georgetown graduate, submitted to the Vatican last fall a petition with some 2,000 signatures calling for the school to be stripped of the labels Catholic [Read More...]

At prayer vigil, Harvard chaplain reminds those gathered of “the call of veritas”

Some details of last night’s prayer vigil from The Harvard Crimson:  Seats in St. Paul, which sits at the intersection of Bow and Arrow streets, were quickly filled as the crowd reached the church and the prayer service began. Among those in attendance were University President Drew G. Faust, Reverend Jonathan L. Walton, Pusey Minister [Read More...]

BREAKING: Harvard club moves Black Mass off campus

Frank Weathers has the scoop: The Harvard Extension School Cultural Studies Club said it will relocate its reenactment of a Satanic black mass ritual, scheduled for Monday night, to an off-campus site, citing in an email that “misinterpretations about the nature of the event were harming perceptions about Harvard and adversely impacting the student community.” The club [Read More...]

“This is not a witch hunt”: Oakland bishop to meet with teachers over controversial new contract

You may remember  that Oakland teachers are being required to sign a new contract similar to one in Hawaii and Cincinnati, requiring them to “model behavior in conformity with the teaching of the Roman Catholic faith.” That hasn’t gone over well with some in Oakland:  Tim Newman, who has taught science at Bishop O’Dowd High School in [Read More...]

The “Spirit of Inclusion” at Catholic schools

Make of this what you will. But this strikes me as something new on Catholic campuses: explicit and prominently publicized acceptance—or “inclusion”—of young people who are gay. First, this item about the University of Notre Dame popped up: The University of Notre Dame, an icon of American Catholicism, increasingly has been going against that current [Read More...]

Catholic chaplain at Harvard: Black Mass is “a matter of hatred, an affront to our Catholic sensibilities”

Details from Catholic News Agency:  Fr. Michael Drea, senior chaplain at the Harvard Catholic Student Association, told CNA on May 8 that he has seen “a huge groundswell from Catholics on campus, as well as alumni” protesting the black mass re-enactment, which the priest characterized as “absolutely ludicrous” and extremely offensive. …Fr. Drea said that [Read More...]

UPDATE: Students WILL be allowed to thank God during graduation speeches

Hot on the heels of the story that broke yesterday, a swift reversal:  Following the e-mail sent by Dr. Hvastkovs, ECU Provost Dr. Marilyn Sheerer sent an e-mail to chemistry majors who received the initial statement. Dr .Sheerer wrote, “Please disregard Dr. Hvastkovs’s previous email regarding your departmental graduation statement he sent to you on [Read More...]

What the hell is Harvard thinking?—UPDATED

Yes, it’s true. Elizabeth Scalia has confirmed it: the The Harvard Extension Cultural Studies Club is indeed hosting a Black Mass Monday night. And the group staging this event, The Satanic Temple, has announced plans to use a consecrated host. The Extension School issued a vague and rather passive aggressive statement about this “controversial event,” without [Read More...]