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Opposition stalls faith resolution

Justin Tardiff | Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Firm resistance stalled a resolution meant to increase awareness of faith resources for non-Catholic students at Monday’s Campus Life Council (CLC) meeting.

The two-fold resolution called for a rectors’ workshop in the spring of 2006 and an additional training session for Resident Assistants during their All Hall Staff summer training workshops – both meant to increase awareness of non-Catholic resources.

But the resolution was sent back to the Social Concerns task force after several rectors said the spring requirement was unnecessary and excessive.

“These needs are already addressed [by Campus Ministry],” said Welsh Family Hall rector Candace Carson. “If a rector feels they are unaware of the non-Catholic resources, then they just need to contact Campus Ministry. To sit and hear something I’m already aware of and with the amount if things we are required to do for graduation, it just wouldn’t serve us well.”

But Badin Hall rector and Social Concerns task force member Ann Napoli said she doubted rectors would actively seek out the information on non-Catholic resources if they weren’t already provided for them in a workshop.

“We have to work harder because this is such a Catholic place and we need to reach students who aren’t Catholic,” Napoli said. “I don’t know if we’re doing that right now.

Napoli said she felt the campus had seen “something of a reduction” in activities geared to non-Catholic students.

“ISI [Iron Sharpens Iron] seem to be the only group that meets regularly for non-Catholic students,” she said. “These are the types of things that started the conversation [to create the resolution] and a desire to address the issue sooner than next August.”

Pasquerilla West Hall senator Christina Lee supported both aspects of the resolution, insisting that rectors as well as RAs need a deeper understanding of how non-Catholic students can find faith outlets outside Notre Dame.

“Being non-Catholic and trying to find opportunities that were available was difficult. While my rectress was informative, she was limited in terms of specifics,” Lee said. “If this is a burden on the rectors, then we can work on it, but we wanted to get it started as soon as possible instead of waiting until the next academic year begins.”

Student Union Board manager Jimmy Flaherty motioned to have the resolution amended by deleting the clause requiring a spring workshop for rectors, but the motion was not approved.

The resolution was sent back to the Social Concerns task force for revision.

In other CLC news:

u Student body president Dave Baron presented two letters to the Council from Vice President of Student Affairs Father Mark Poorman.

The first letter updated the Council on the progress of the student activities fee increase resolution. The resolution has faced both the University Budgetary Working Group and the University Officers Budgetary Group and both times has been met with positive feedback. It will be considered by the Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees and later by the full Board of Trustees in February.

In his second letter, Poorman praised a resolution passed by the CLC last week that recommended revisions to the dorm dance commissioner’s manual.

“Father Poorman responded favorably and came up to me personally to say that some rectors had come up to him saying they were pleased that students and faculty were taking up this issue on their own,” Baron said.

The resolution is meant to stress the importance of having appropriate themes, dress codes and advertising for dorm dances. The resolution was also sent to Assistant Director of Student Activities Peggy Hnatusko, who is currently in talks with members of the Social Concerns task force – the committee that crafted the proposal.

u Hall Presidents Council co-chair Dan Zenker said he will be meeting with Joyce Center officials in January to discuss the procedures for next fall’s football pep rallies.

“We plan to meet after Christmas break to see if the ticket system will be in place again next fall and try to make sure things are more consistent next year in terms of times [when students can arrive], gates [for entering] and ticket implementation,” Zenker said.

u In another effort to ease the burden for non-Catholic students, Social Concerns task force chair Jacques Nguyen said his group is currently examining the objectives of University required theology courses.

“Deans of the theology department are going to visit our task force meeting to clarify the expectations the University has of its 101 theology courses and the goals and concerns with the religious curricula,” Nguyen said.