Saint Mary’s College, an all-girls Catholic institution in Notre Dame, Indiana, has sparked controversy and criticism with its recent policy shift to admit men who identify as women.
This move, announced by College President Katie Conboy, has been met with disapproval from key figures in the Catholic community, including Indiana Bishop Kevin Rhoades of the Fort-Wayne South Bend Diocese.
Bishop Rhoades strongly opposes new policy on sex and gender
Bishop Rhoades vehemently opposes this new policy, which he views as conflicting with Catholic teachings on sex and gender.
In a statement on the Diocese website, he expressed his dissatisfaction, emphasizing that the policy contradicts the Catholic understanding of the human being.
Bishop criticizes college over admissions policy, email references to Pope Francis
He criticized the college for not consulting him and for deviating from the Church’s teachings in faith and morals, stating, “In this new admissions policy, Saint Mary’s departs from fundamental Catholic teaching on the nature of woman and thus compromises its very identity as a Catholic woman’s college.”
The Bishop also took issue with an email sent by Mrs. Conboy to students, parents, and faculty, in which she cited Pope Francis’s “revised non-discrimination clause” as a basis for the decision.
Controversy surrounds college president’s silence on admissions policy
Mrs. Conboy’s lack of response to inquiries from the media about the issue adds to the controversy.
This policy change aligns Saint Mary’s with other Catholic colleges that have adopted similar admissions policies, as listed by Campus Pride, a national organization advocating for “trans-inclusive” policies.
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Dissension surrounds Catholic College’s liberal shift on LGBT issues
However, this move has not been well-received by all, with some church officials condemning Catholic schools for yielding to LGBT pressures.
The college’s shift towards liberal ideologies is further evidenced by events like “God is PROUD of you: LGBTQ+ Catholicism” and the formation of a “President’s Task Force for Gender Identity and Expression” by Mrs. Conboy.
Alums react strongly to Catholic college’s liberal shift on LGBT policies
This liberal trajectory has provoked strong reactions from alums. Some, like Emily McNally, a 2015 graduate, labeled it “Absolute pandering,” questioning the practical implications of the policy.
Priscilla Pilon, a 1986 graduate, threatened to withhold donations and support unless the policy was reversed.
Saint Mary’s College faces divided reactions over LGBT policy change
In contrast, others like 2008 graduate Renee Powers and current senior Katie Hunter have expressed pride and support for the college’s decision, highlighting a divide in opinions among the college community.
Social media platforms are rife with posts condemning the college’s decision, with notable figures like Carla Sands, a former U.S. Ambassador to Denmark, criticizing academia for abandoning women.
Bishop criticizes Saint Mary’s college policy as contrary to Catholic teachings
Bishop Rhoades’s concluding remarks encapsulate the criticism, as he cautions against replacing the Creator’s design and separating love from truth.
He stresses the importance of not succumbing to ideologies that divide inseparable aspects of reality, highlighting a deep rift between the college’s policy and traditional Catholic teachings.