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Debate over university’s Catholicism continues

Letter to the Editor | Monday, September 24, 2007

Lately there has been a lot of talk about just how Catholic Notre Dame is and what constitutes being OK in the realms of the mission of Notre Dame (i.e. the debates over the CIA and Raytheon, and Greg Yatarola’s article [“ND’s Catholic – don’t be surprised,” Sept. 18]). I think that it’s good to have differing opinions about different things, but I also think that it’s pretty clear what Notre Dame stands for.

Notre Dame always has been and will be Catholic. From our founders to the recent goals of our current president, you can easily see that the Catholic tradition will always be a part of Notre Dame. Notre Dame has grown from its days in 1842, and is now a great university filled with students from varying religious and cultural backgrounds.

Notre Dame isn’t just Catholic. If you didn’t catch the word “varying” when I talked about the students here, let me reiterate: The religious and cultural diversity here is essential for the university’s growth. It helps open all our eyes to different ideas and perspectives. Therefore, you will find people who will be for and against many different issues facing the University.

From Mr. Angulo to Mr. Ponzio and Mr. Clary about the CIA and Raytheon debate, there are pints of merit which each of them brings up. Then, between Mr. Yatarola and Miss Williams there are valid points about Catholicism at the University. But I don’t think any singular idea is completely right. What they all do is bring more to the table of these debates, and if the University pays attention to these Viewpoint articles and letters, I think they would have to at least rethink some of the things that each person points out as there are many people passionate about these ideas.

However, I think that the character here at Notre Dame goes beyond all of these extreme ideas. Yes, it is Catholic, but it’s about being more than just Catholic or just conservative – it’s about being a family and opening our eyes and arms to the different ideas each of us has and are a part of who each of us are.

Amanda Bell


McGlinn Hall

Sept. 23