Washington Archdiocese Slams Georgetown for Honoring Sebelius

Kathleen SebeliusThe Archdiocese of Washington has sharply criticized Georgetown University’s decision to invite HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to address its School of Public Policy’s upcoming diploma ceremony.

A recent the editorial in Catholic Standard, the Archdiocese of Washington’s official newspaper, notes:

Founded in 1789 by John Carroll, a Jesuit priest, Georgetown University has, historically speaking, religious roots. So, too, do Harvard, Princeton and Brown. Over time, though, as has happened with these Ivy League institutions, Georgetown has undergone a secularization, due in no small part to the fact that much of its leadership and faculty find their inspiration in sources other than the Gospel and Catholic teaching. Many are quite clear that they reflect the values of the secular culture of our age. Thus the selection of Secretary Sebelius for special recognition, while disappointing, is not surprising.

Monsignor Charles Pope, a priest of the Archdiocese of Washington, comments thusly on the importance of the preceding paragraph:

Pay close attention to this paragraph. The editorial, while not using canonical language, in effect sets forth the view that Georgetown has largely become a secular University, along the line of Harvard, Yale et al. It goes even further, stating that the primary source of inspiration at Georgetown is not the Gospel or Catholic teaching, but instead, is other unnamed sources.

Monsignor Pope goes on to say:

…I wonder if Georgetown and others who think like this, have any idea where intrusive government will end? It does not take a prophet to see that if the Federal Government can intrude on a matter like this (Catholic sexual and life teachings) which many at Georgetown sniff at, that the same Government will be back with more demands.

… [W]ake up Georgetown! You celebrate a woman who is helping to gut religious liberty. But your religious liberty is just as much on the line as any one else’s. Uncle Sam will be back, and you might not be so pleased the next time.

The editorial and Monsignor Pope’s commentary thereof are available here.

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