NEW: Providence College Cancels Lecture on Same-Sex Marriage
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Corvino, an author, lecturer and professor at Wayne State University in Detroit, was supposed to speak at the school on Thursday, but his invitation was rescinded on Saturday.
Providence College’s Argument
Providence College provost and senior vice president Dr. Hugh F. Lena announced the cancelation on Saturday naming the 2004 American Bishops document, Catholics in Political Life, to back his decision.
“The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions”
“Provost Lena’s invocation of Catholics in Political Life strikes me as misplaced," wrote Corvino in a response letter posted on his website on Monday. “That statement arose in response to controversies surrounding the denial of Holy Communion to pro-choice Catholic politicians. The reference to ‘awards, honors, or platforms which would suggest support for their actions’ applies, for example, to allowing such politicians to present commencement addresses or to receive honorary degrees.
“By contrast, I am an academic speaker. Both the person introducing me and I would state clearly that my views were not those of the Catholic Church; moreover, a respondent from the Providence College theology department, Dr. Dana Dillon, would follow immediately to explain the Church’s position on marriage. Far from suggesting 'support' for my views, the College would have ample opportunity to express precisely the opposite.”
Interestingly, the cancelation came just one day after Pope Francis called for the church to cease from continuously condemning issues like abortion, same-sex marriage, and birth control.
“Pope Francis, the Catholic Church’s new leader, has been justly celebrated for his welcoming tone toward gays and lesbians. Notwithstanding my abrupt dis-invitation, I remain hopeful that Providence College may soon better reflect that tone,” wrote Corvino.
Corvino’s lecture—entitled The Meaning of (Gay) Marriage—was approved by various department heads at the school and was co-sponsored by nine departments-including the Black Studies Department, the Development of Western Civilization Program, The Feinstein Institute, the Global Studies program, the Philosophy Department, the Pre-Law Program, the Public and Community Service Department, the Sociology Department, and the Women’s Studies Program.
Visit JohnCorvino.com to read his response in its entirety.
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