After spending two days at Notre Dame listening to truly great minds striving to work out a solution to the University’s fall from grace during the past forty or so years, I have almost nothing to report except that there is enormous concern and much sadness over the present situation “in that little bit of Heaven that’s just outside of South Bend,” as the old song from “Clashmore Mike” goes.
Sadness The Key Theme
Clashmore Mike, incidentally, was a student produced musical on campus way back in the late 1940’s, and the full text of the hit song was “Golden days spent under the Dome, happy in our Indiana Home. Sad when we know our student years must end, in that little bit of Heaven that’s just outside of South Bend.”
Well, “sad” was the key word on campus at this year’s class reunion. I haven’t heard that word spoken so often since the last child’s funeral I attended. Everyone who loved Notre Dame feels as though a death has taken place, and while most still have hope for a resurrection, the means to breath life back into our alma mater has not been found.
There was talk of bringing in more Catholic intellectuals, easing out the atheists and Catholic bashers on the faculty, being more selective in liturgical functions, special courses in philosophy and theology with strong emphasis on Thomistic and Augustinian works, a return to the great Catholic writers, more church history, better sermons, retreats, you name it.
The most effective solution, to my thinking, never really came up, probably because of the unbelievable politics of a large university: My solution is to get rid of Jenkins and bring in a good, solid, traditional Catholic Holy Cross Father to run the ship. This is the Church, and the Church is not a democracy or a business, but a Monarchy: Good king, good government; bad king, bad government.
How would you do that? Probably you’d have to have someone in the Vatican who would get the Holy Father very interested in the whole issue and work it from there.
All other solutions seemed unrealistic and probably would take years and years to implement. It has taken Notre Dame about fifty years to fall as low as it is right now and it will take time to bring it back to some semblance of a Catholic University. I don’t know what will happen but unless something happens soon and effectively there will be more sadness than this alumnus can take.
Secular Media Being Very Reasonable
I’m going to leave it there for now because Wednesday is a Truth Tour day and I have a half a dozen trips coming up that I have to prepare for and you can read the papers and listen to the radio and look at blogs and read your e-mail and get the news some other way because I’m tired of reading negative stuff.
I do have to comment, however, that the secular media who in the past would have branded every pro-lifer in the world with George Tiller’s sudden and shocking death by a crazed assassin, are being almost reasonable about the whole thing. Some aren’t, but more are than aren’t and that is a change for the better.