DAILY CATHOLIC    WEDNESDAY     November 17, 1999     vol. 10, no. 218

from a CATHOLIC perspective

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        WASHINGTON, DC (CWNews.com) - The National Conference of Catholic Bishops continued its biennial meetings on Monday afternoon, debating guidelines for Catholic higher education, calling for an end to the economic embargo of Iraq, and calling for the US to confront Israel concerning a Muslim mosque in Nazareth.

        The main issue facing the US bishops this week is an effort to present guidelines to Catholic colleges and universities based on Pope John Paul II's 1990 letter "Ex Corde Ecclesia." The recommended guidelines call for theologians submitting themselves to the local bishop for a teaching mandate, preference for Catholics in hiring faculty and appointing board members, preserving a Catholic identity in official activities, such as choosing commencement speakers. Some educators say the rules will infringe on academic freedom, while supporters said the papal document recommends wider freedom than even recommended by US secular college groups.

        During a Monday presentation on the issue, Bishop Raymond Lucker of New Ulm, Minnesota, asked about the proper procedure for bishops who want to delay a decision this week in order to hold further talks with college leaders. A two-thirds vote is required for passage of the proposal and is scheduled for Wednesday.

        Meanwhile, a coalition of pro-homosexual groups met in a hotel across the street from the meeting, demanding the bishops ask the Vatican to reconsider an order to Sister Jeannine Gramick and Father Robert Nugent that they end their ministry to homosexuals because they violated Church teaching. Bishop Joseph Fiorenza of Galveston-Houston, president of the US bishops' conference, said that Father Nugent and Sister Gramick did not "fully reflect the constant teaching of the Church that homosexual activity is intrinsically disordered."

        The bishops also voted on Monday to call for the United Nations and the US to end the embargo against Iraq imposed after the 1990 Gulf War, and to ask Congress and the Clinton administration to ask Israel to halt construction of a controversial mosque in Nazareth.

Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

November 17, 1999       volume 10, no. 218


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