“Apologetics: I’m Not Really Sorry”: new online course for priests and deacons

FOB (Friend of the Bench) Patrick Madrid dropped me a line this morning and asked if I’d alert deacons and priests to his online course for continuing formation that’s about to get underway. It’s happening through the Sacred Heart Institute, a cooperative effort between the Archdiocese of New York and two neighboring dioceses, Rockville Centre [Read More...]

Boom: Enrollment strong at Long Island Catholic high schools

From the Just Down the Expressway Desk…some encouraging news from Newsday:  Bucking a national trend, enrollment at most of Long Island’s Catholic high schools is strong and holding steady, even as falling numbers of students in the diocese’s elementary schools forced closures and the region’s economy struggles to regain its pre-recession footing. Seven of the [Read More...]

Scholars call on Catholic schools to reject Common Core

Details, from The New York Times: A group of Roman Catholic scholars has called on Catholic schools to ignore the new educational standards known as the Common Core, a set of guidelines on what students should know and be able to do from kindergarten through 12th grade, opening a front with parallels to the fight over [Read More...]

Teen claims Catholic high school expelled her because she’s gay

 Details:  A prestigious Catholic high school booted a Bronx senior for being gay, the girl claims in a lawsuit. Amanda Acevedo, 17, says in court papers that a homophobic administrator at Preston HS in Throggs Neck took exception to her bringing a girl as a date to a school dance and embarked on a two-year [Read More...]

Catholic university votes to end insurance for some abortions

An update to yesterday’s story: After weeks of campus-wide debate, trustees at Loyola Marymount University voted late Monday to end university-paid insurance coverage for elective abortions for faculty and staff in 2014. But in a concession that could wind up making both sides unhappy, the university will offer a policy administrated by a third party — not [Read More...]

What does it mean to be a “Catholic” university?—UPDATED

A prominent school in Los Angeles is wrestling with that very question.  From the New York Times:  On the campus of Loyola Marymount University, overlooking this city’s west side, a fight over abortion now threatens to rip the school asunder. Trustees of the Jesuit university will decide on Monday whether to remove coverage for elective [Read More...]

Former all-girl Catholic academy now home to Long Island’s first Islamic school

  Photo: Newsday / Alejandra Villa Details from Newsday:  In classrooms where Catholic girls once studied the Bible and prayed the Our Father, young Muslims now study the Quran and pray in Arabic. The girls no longer wear uniforms of skirts and blazers, but traditional Muslim floor-length dresses called jilbabs, with hijabs covering their heads. [Read More...]

Catholic colleges rethinking views on gays

From the Twin Cities Pioneer Press:  Since taking over University of St. Thomas this summer, President Julie Sullivan has heard from gay faculty and students that they feel a need to “hide” on campus. In her recent convocation address, the first lay, female president at the Roman Catholic school in St. Paul vowed to change [Read More...]

Catholic college cancels speech by author who supports gay marriage

Details:  Providence College, a Roman Catholic institution in Rhode Island, has canceled an event in which a gay philosophy professor had been invited to speak in support of same-sex marriage, The New York Times reported. The speaker, John Corvino, is chairman of the philosophy department at Wayne State University and the author of the new book What’s Wrong [Read More...]

New Orleans archbishop orders school calendars changed to keep Sundays free

Details:  After months of nudging Catholics to reclaim Sunday as a day to attend Mass and spend time with family, New Orleans Archbishop Gregory Aymond is mandating that Catholic schools clear their calendars that day each week. Aymond began asking schools last year to tweak practice schedules and reschedule social events so harried families could [Read More...]


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