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Theologian and Historian Timothy Matovina Discusses Electoral Effect of Latino Vote

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

According to University of Notre Dame theologian and historian Timothy Matovina, “bold proclamations about Latino voters determining presidential elections have become a regular feature of political commentary.” Matovina, professor of theology and director of Notre Dame’s Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism, is the author of a recent history titled Latino Catholicism: Transformation in America’s Largest Church. “In fact,” he says, “the electoral significance of Latinos is growing steadily, but not as exponentially as such commentaries suggest.”

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Notre Dame Professor Honored for Environmental-Justice Work

Author: Kevin Clarke

Categories: General News, Alumni, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

By now, most people are aware of the environmental effects of air or water pollution; University of Notre Dame philosopher and scientist Kristin Shrader-Frechette has devoted herself to bringing to light a less known concern, the inequitable distribution of pollution’s human toll. “Polluters ‘target’ poor and minority communities to locate noxious facilities because they know that residents often are unable to defend themselves,” she says. For her efforts, Shrader-Frechette was recently awarded the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award from Tufts University’s Institute for Global Leadership.

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Economist Daniel Hungerman Tests Assumptions About Faith

Author: Kevin Clarke

Categories: General News, Research, Catholicism, and Faculty News

By many different measures, people who take religion seriously are different from the rest of society, says University of Notre Dame economist Daniel Hungerman. And different in a good way. “In fact, religiosity is the best predictor of any number of positive social outcomes,” he says. “Religious people are generally healthier, they give more to charities, they are much more likely to be involved in civic life, and they are much less likely to suffer from depression or mental illness.”

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Theologian Timothy Matovina's Book Explores the Challenge and Blessing of Latino Catholicism

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Statisticians quibble, but it is widely agreed that most Americans identify themselves as Christians, and it is inarguable that the Catholic Church is the largest of the Christian churches in the nation. More than half of the Catholics in the United States who are under the age of 25 are Latinos, and, due to birthrates and immigration, a majority of American Catholics will be Latinos by the year 2050. A new book by Notre Dame theologian Timothy Matovina closely considers the five-century-long history of Latino Catholics in America and how that history has affected them and their Church.

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Scholars Explore Religion’s Role in International Relations

Author: Kevin Clarke

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

From Cairo to Kabul to New York City, the events shaping our world are informed by the deeply held religious beliefs of contemporary history’s major protagonists. So why is the dynamic role of religion in world affairs still such a hard academic sell in political science and international relations programs around the country? “I think if the field were to be proportioned according to what you see in headlines, religion would deserve a much larger place in the study of international relations,” says Daniel Philpott, who is associate professor of political science and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame and on the faculty of the Kroc Institute for Peace Studies.

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Alumna Reports From the Heart of the Vatican

Author: By Andrew Vanden Bossche

Categories: General News, Alumni, Internationalism, and Catholicism

Elizabeth Simari ’08, crosses Saint Peter’s Square on the way to and from work, shops at the Vatican’s grocery store, and has even had the Pope drop by her office. “It’s an amazing experience,” says Simari, who majored in Italian and English at Notre Dame and now works for the weekly English edition of the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano. “I feel blessed to have these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.”

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Music Historian and Liturgical Scholar Margot Fassler Wins International Book Prize

Author: Joanna Basile

Categories: General News, Research, Internationalism, Catholicism, Arts, and Faculty News

Margot Fassler, Keough-Hesburgh Professor of Music History and Liturgy and co-director of the Master of Sacred Music program at the University of Notre Dame, has won the biennial ACE/Mercers’ International Book Award. The award from Art and Christianity Enquiry (ACE) recognizes Fassler’s 2010 book The Virgin of Chartres: Making History Through Liturgy and the Arts as “an outstanding contribution to the dialogue between religious faith and the visual arts.”

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Notre Dame Survey of African American Catholics Offers Important Insights

Author: William G. Gilroy

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, and Catholicism

A new, unprecedented national survey of African American Catholics by University of Notre Dame researchers reveals several significant insights into individual religious engagement and identifies several notable demographic trends facing the church. Notre Dame social scientists Darren W. Davis and Donald B. Pope-Davis, who co-authored the report, set out to test the validity of anecdotal accounts that African American Catholics were becoming increasingly disengaged from their religion.

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New Documentary Explores “Compassion in Global Health”

Author: Notre Dame News

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, and Catholicism

University of Notre Dame faculty and students recently joined colleagues at an inaugural symposium on Compassion in Global Health, which featured the premiere of a new documentary on the subject. Highlighting the experiences of notable participants as shared in a meeting last year at the Carter Center in Atlanta, the film includes perspectives from President Jimmy Carter, global health champion Paul Farmer, smallpox eradication hero Bill Forge, Earth Institute founder Jeffrey Sachs, former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, and Notre Dame theology professor Lawrence Sullivan, as well as other physicians, experts and patients from around the globe.

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New York Archbishop Dolan to Give Inaugural Lecture for the Project on Human Dignity

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York will inaugurate the University of Notre Dame’s Project on Human Dignity with a lecture titled “Modern Questions, Ancient Answers: Defining and Defending Human Dignity in Our Time” on Tuesday, December 6, at 7:30 p.m. in Notre Dame’s McKenna Hall auditorium. Ann Astell, professor of theology, and Gerald McKenny, Walter Professor of Theology at Notre Dame, will give responses to Archbishop Dolan’s lecture, which is free and open to the public.

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Rousseau Exhibit to Focus on Dignity of the Human Person

Author: Joanna Basile

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Julia Douthwaite, professor of French in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, is organizing a series of events to honor Swiss philosopher and writer Jean–Jacques Rousseau’s 300th birthday and stimulate a cross–disciplinary discussion on social justice and human dignity. The project, called Rousseau 2012: On the Road to DIGNITY, will be part of the curriculum for more than a dozen courses throughout the College of Arts and Letters and the Law School and will feature both guest lectures and an Amnesty International photography exhibit on poverty and human rights that includes portraits from Mexico, Egypt, Nigeria, India, and Macedonia.

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Common Good Initiative Unites Campus and Global Community

Author: Joanna Basile

Categories: General News, Internationalism, and Catholicism

Graduate students across the University will now be able to participate in an experiential learning course previously offered only to master’s in divinity students in Notre Dame’s Department of Theology. The Common Good Initiative program (CGI), formerly called the Pastoral Leadership Practicum, combines direct involvement in disenfranchised and impoverished communities with coursework in Catholic social teaching and multidimensional poverty analysis.

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Notre Dame Medievalist Kent Emery, Jr., Receives Major NEH Grant

Author: Kate Cohorst

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

University of Notre Dame Professor Kent Emery, Jr., and his team have been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant to produce the first critical edition of a key work by medieval theologian and philosopher John Duns Scotus. The 3-year, $300,000 grant was one of the largest awarded by the NEH this year, according to Emery, a professor in the College of Arts and Letters’ Program of Liberal Studies (PLS) and the Medieval Institute.

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Political Scientist David Campbell Researches Civics Education at Catholic and Public Schools

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Evaluating basic reading and math skills among American students is a common and expected way to expose deficiencies and highlight exemplary programs. But what about training students in democratic citizenship? Can the effectiveness of civic education be measured among schools? Are some schools better than others at teaching civics?

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Notre Dame Theologians Prepare for an Incoming Missal

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

The first Sunday of Advent is the first day of the Catholic liturgical calendar, which this year falls on Nov. 27. Throughout the English-speaking world, that Sunday Mass will begin, as usual, with the sign of the cross, and the priest’s customary greeting to his fellow worshipers, “the Lord be with you.” And then, not as usual, the congregation will be expected to reply, “and with your spirit.” That change of liturgical wording is only one of several in the third edition of the Roman Missal, whose new translations from the ancient Latin texts will, from this Advent on, be in standard use for all Masses in English.

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Catholic Sex-Abuse Crisis Boon for Baptists, Economist Dan Hungerman Shows

Categories: General News, Research, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Did the Catholic sex-abuse scandal benefit other faiths? New research by economist Dan Hungerman shows it did. The study by Hungerman, Stepan Family Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Notre Dame, shows a 2 million member drop in the Catholic population following the sex-abuse scandal and more than $3 billion in donations to non-Catholic faiths, with Baptist churches showing the most significant gains.

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Notre Dame Scholars Participate in Vatican Conference on Adult Stem Cell Research

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Historian and philosopher Philip Sloan, professor emeritus in Notre Dame’s Program of Liberal Studies and biologist David Hyde, the Rev. Howard J. Kenna, C.S.C., Memorial Director of Notre Dame’s Center for Zebrafish Research, are among the scientists, religious leaders, policymakers, academics and medical patients attending a Vatican conference titled Adult Stem Cells: Science and the Future of Man and Culture.

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Carter Snead Appointed Director of Notre Dame’s Center for Ethics and Culture

Author: Dennis Brown

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

O. Carter Snead, professor of law at the University of Notre Dame, has been appointed the W.P. and H.B. White Director of the University’s Center for Ethics and Culture (CEC) by John McGreevy, I.A. O’Shaughnessy Dean of the College of Arts and Letters. A member of the Notre Dame Law School faculty since 2005, Snead will succeed W. David Solomon, associate professor of philosophy, effective July 1.

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Scholars to Discuss Global Health and Liberation Theology

Author: Elizabeth Rankin

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Rev. Gustavo Gutiérrez, O.P., the John Cardinal O’Hara Professor of Theology at Notre Dame and a Kellogg Institute Faculty Fellow, is known around the world as the founder of liberation theology. Among the many people he inspired is Paul Farmer, a medical anthropologist, physician, chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and a founding director of Partners in Health. Their dialogue, “Re-imagining Accompaniment: Global Health and Liberation Theology,” will take place on Monday, October 24 at 7 p.m. in Room 101 of DeBartolo Hall. Part of the Discussions on Development series, the event is free and open to the public.

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Alumnus Helps Vatican into New Media

Author: Rachel Hamilton

Categories: General News, Alumni, Internationalism, and Catholicism

At 6 p.m. on the eve of the feast day of Saints Peter and Paul, Pope Benedict XVI picked up his iPad and, with Thaddeus “TJ” Jones ’89 by his side, revolutionized Vatican media with the launch of News.va and the first Papal tweet. Jones, who majored in American Studies and Italian, is the project coordinator for News.va and worked with all of the various media sources, as well as the company that developed the portal, in order to create the site as it exists today.

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What We’ve Learned About Generosity

Author: Kate Garry

Categories: General News, Research, Centers and Institutes, Catholicism, and Faculty News

In 2009 the University of Notre Dame launched the Science of Generosity, an initiative funded by a $5 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation, to support and conduct research into the origins, manifestations, and consequences of generosity. Directed by Christian Smith, the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Sociology, the initiative has awarded nearly $3 million to 13 research projects conducted by scholars around the world, and it is in the second year of conducting its own research on the causal mechanisms that encourage and inhibit generosity.

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Strong Bodies Fight Builds Winning Record at Film Festivals

Author: Chris Milazzo

Categories: General News, Alumni, Internationalism, Catholicism, and Faculty News

Strong Bodies Fight, a film which chronicles the University of Notre Dame’s Bengal Bouts charity boxing tournament, was recently named Best Sports Documentary at the 2011 Action on Film International Film Festival in Pasadena, Calif., and won the Audience Choice Award from the Chicago United Film Festival. Produced by writer Mark Weber ’09 and director William Donaruma ’89, a professor in the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, the film has been building a winning record at film festivals.

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Theologian John Cavadini: Painting an Evangelical Icon

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: General News, Centers and Institutes, and Catholicism

Theologian John C. Cavadini, McGrath-Cavadini Director of the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Church Life (ICL), was recently in Washington speaking to a symposium of young Catholic theologians about how to teach the faith. The meeting, Intellectual Tasks of the New Evangelization, was sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and intended to deepen and strengthen their relationship with a new generation of America’s Catholic teachers, and most of the 54 as-yet untenured theologians in attendance had received their doctoral degrees within the last five years.

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Exhibit Highlights Notre Dame's Investment in Italian Studies

Author: Kevin Clarke

Categories: General News, Internationalism, and Catholicism

The phrase “All Roads Lead to Rome” connotes the cosmopolitan culture that has long been present in the Eternal City. It’s also the title of a Notre Dame exhibit running through the fall 2011 semester to highlight spectacular acquisitions by the University’s Department of Rare Books and Special Collections in conjunction with the new interdisciplinary Italian Studies at Notre Dame program.

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