University of St. Thomas Professor Presents to Vatican

At the annual International Study Seminar on “Women and Work” earlier this month organized by the Pontifical Council for the Laity, a law professor at the University of St. Thomas had the honor of presenting her work.

Elizabeth Schiltz, law professor, Thomas J. Abood Research Scholar, and Co-Director of the Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law and Public Policy, presented her essay “Motherhood: Benefit or Burden to Business?” to an audience of 100 experts on “issues such as gender stereotypes and reality, penalization of motherhood, and pay inequity, among others.”

In her essay, Shiltz makes an adept argument for having more mothers in the workforce. She notes:

  1. Businesses want women workers, and most women workers want to be mothers.
  2. Businesses benefit long term from the care-giving work of mothers, and should thus shoulder some of its cost.
  3. Accommodating motherhood is not, in fact, as much of a burden on businesses as is commonly though.
  4. Mothers offer some unique and valuable skills to the workplace.

For all of these reasons, Schiltz posits that creating a world order where women and mothers can more easily access and enjoy the workforce would be beneficial to all. Lucky for University of St. Thomas, Schiltz has made this an area of focus at the Murphy Institute!

How does your campus advocate for working mothers? Let us know! 

Commencement Speakers focus on Social Justice

As ACCU member colleges and universities prepare for graduation, commencement speakers prepare inspiring addresses. This year, Catholic colleges and universities have invited a diverse range of commencement speakers, from craft brewers to the first lady of the Republic of Ghana. Below you’ll find a list of colleges and universities that invited speakers engaged in social justice issues.

Cabrini College: The Rev. Daniel Groody, immigration advocate and professor at the University of Notre Dame

College of the Holy Cross: Bryan A. Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative,  nonprofit organization providing legal representation to indigent defendants and prisoners denied fair and just treatment in the legal system

Emmanuel College and Seton Hall University: Cardinal Sean O’Malley, archbishop of Boston and pro-life advocate

Gonzaga University and University of San Diego: The Rev. Greg Boyle, Jesuit priest and founder of Homeboy Industries, which provides hope, training, and support to formerly gang-involved and previously incarcerated men and women

Marquette University: Sister Margaret O’Neill, founder of El Centro Arte Para la Paz, which develops and promotes a culture of peace through the arts, creativity, imagination and cultural exchange

Misericordia University: Sister Eileen M. Campbell, former head of the Mercy Volunteer Corps, which invites women and men to service with people who are economically poor or marginalized

Rosemont College of the Holy Child Jesus: Sister Ann M. Durst, founder of Casa Cornelia Law Center, a public interest law firm providing quality pro bono legal services to victims of human and civil rights violations

Saint Mary’s College: Sister Rosemary Connelly, executive director of Misericordia Home in Chicago, which provides a home for  600 children and adults with developmental and physical disabilities

Saint Michael’s College: Bernard Lafayette, civil rights activist

Saint Vincent College: Carolyn Woo, president of Catholic Relief Services

Trocaire College: Myron Glick, founder of Jericho Road Community Health Center, a culturally sensitive medical home, especially for refugee and low-income community members

University of Saint Thomas: Mark Crea, president of Feed My Starving Children, a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit

Walsh University: The Rev. Walter S. Moss, project director for the Community Initiative to Reduce Violence, a partnership of law enforcement, social service agencies, and the community to reduce gun violence in the City of Youngstown, Ohio

Xavier University: Kevin Fleming, Liberia Peace Corps director

For a more comprehensive list of commencement speakers at Catholic colleges and universities, see what Crux has compiled.

“Each of Us is a Masterpiece of God’s Creation”

Since October is Respect Life Month, the USCCB’s Respect Life Program begins each year on Respect Life Sunday, the first Sunday in October. The USCCB Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities publishes materials each year calling attention to a range of life issues. The program is highlighted in liturgies and marked by special events, and you can join in advocating for the voiceless and most vulnerable among us by hosting events on your own campus. Find prayers focused on promoting life and human dignity here, and read Cardinal O’Malley’s statement kicking-off the 2014-15 Respect Life Program!

Celebrate Respect Life Month

October is Respect Life month! Mini posters, a one-page flyer, and six articles on various topics (such as adoption, miscarriage, and the link between poverty and abortion) are available from the USCCB to help you mark Respect Life Month on campus and promote the sanctity and dignity of each human life throughout the year. This year’s theme is, “Each of us is a masterpiece of God’s creation.” Printable versions of materials, a statement from Cardinal O’Malley, liturgical resources, and ordering information are available here. Additional materials will continue to be added.

Respect Life Month Resources

This October, the Catholic Church throughout the United States will observe Respect Life Month, a commemoration that is now in its 43rd year. Beginning October 5, Respect Life Sunday, our nation’s Catholics will be called to renew their personal commitment to defend all human life. Our resources can help your campus community consider the sanctity of all life:

The Catholic Mobilizing Network’s booklet – “Renewing the Culture of Life: The Death Penalty, Restorative Justice and Catholic Social Teaching” – shares Church teaching against the death penalty referencing recent papal statements and the Scriptures. It is a great resource for distributing after Mass or at pro-life exhibit tables and is available in English and Spanish. You may order these via our mail/fax form here. Additionally, you can learn about CMN’s poster initiative focusing on the death penalty here.

Interested in gathering with others to learn about Church teaching on the death penalty? The Catholic Mobilizing Network offers a workshop on Church teaching and the death penalty, as well as lesson plans and other resources for college students.