September 16, 2017

(Washington, D.C.) — Yesterday, Theological College, the seminary under the auspices of The Catholic University of America, announced a decision made independently of the University to rescind an invitation to Fr. James Martin, S.J., editor-at- large of America and consultor to the Vatican Secretariat for Communications to speak at their Alumni Days celebration. This decision does not reflect the University’s policy on inviting speakers to campus, nor does it reflect the specific counsel received from the University and leadership. Last year, the University welcomed Fr. Martin to speak to students about friendship with Jesus. We regret the implication that Catholic University supported yesterday’s decision.

“The campaigns by various groups to paint Fr. Martin’s talk as controversial reflect the same pressure being applied by the left for universities to withdraw speaker invitations,” said John Garvey, President of The Catholic University of America. “Universities and their related entities should be places for the free, civil exchange of ideas. Our culture is increasingly hostile to this idea. It is problematic that individuals and groups within our Church demonstrate this same inability to make distinctions and to exercise charity.”