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  • 06/30/2022 12:44 PM | Caesar A. Montevecchio

    The Catholic Peacebuilding Network (CPN), with over two dozen co-sponsors, hosted the virtual conference Catholic Peacebuilding in Times of Crisis: Hope for a Wounded World from June 20-23. All sessions from the conference are available as recordings on the CPN YouTube channel. This includes a special message from Archbishop Gabriele Caccia, Permanent Observer of the Holy See Mission to the UN; a keynote address from Cardinal Charles Bo of Yangon, Myanmar; a plenary roundtable on the ethics of war and peace led by Boston College's Lisa Sowle Cahill; and a plenary panel on climate, development, and peace, which included Sr. Alessandra Smerilli, secretary of the Holy See Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Erin Lothes, from St. Elizabeth University and the Laudato Si' Movement, and Laurie Johnston, from Emmanuel College.

  • 06/29/2022 12:08 PM | Ma Christina A Astorga


    The overturning of Roe vs. Wade does not stop abortion or even reduce it, if that was the purpose of the conservative members of the Supreme Court. It was a draconian measure, part of the radical agenda of the right conservative, which only created chaos and deepened social fissures. Abortion is a social problem, and unless its social roots are addressed, draconian measures only instill fear and cause violence, but it does not solve the problem.

    Any extreme position regarding abortion results in extreme consequences. By criminalizing abortion, the government overextends itself by intruding into deeply personal moral choices of women as free and autonomous human beings. Criminalizing abortion removes the right of women to privacy as instituted in the Constitution. They can now be charged of felony when they take recourse in abortion.  It would only make abortion more dangerous, for criminalizing abortion would not stop women from seeking abortion, but seeking it now without the protection of the law. They would be easy targets of unscrupulous abortions under the cloak of the night.

    What is needed are more social amelioration programs that help reduce abortion, by providing women more access to child care, work benefits, employment opportunities, educational benefits. Adoption should be made a more attractive option, by facilitating the adoption process, and providing all the necessary assistance for women to bring their pregnancy to full term, and to ensure the care for their child until he or she is adopted. The goal is to protect the life of the fetus as well as to support women. When women are supported, fetal life is also protected.  When women are left to their devices, as their male partners take flight, or as social institutions neglect them, they are forced to take final recourse in abortion. Opponents of abortion sometimes talk as though the woman is out to “get” the fetus, hell-bent to kill the life in her womb. Only in extreme situations, at the steepest personal and familial cost, do most women opt for abortion as the lesser of two evils.  

    John Paul II views abortion as an instance of the domination of the weak by the strong. This, however, is true in a double sense.  Vulnerable life in the womb is attacked, but women are also victims of structural injustice. John Paul II recognizes the fact that some women as acting under duress and as lacking other options. Supporting the lives of the unborn is a special duty of parents, but they require structures of support in order to do that.  Addressing the social roots of abortion is also addressing a sexual culture that is promiscuous and irresponsible, where abortion is resorted to as an easy and ordinary means, and a patriarchal culture where abortion, as Stanley Hauerwas puts it, is the “coercive method men use to free themselves from responsibility to women.”

    Jolting the legal system, the overturning of Roe vs. Wade has created problems that would have long-term social consequences. A middle position should have been the re-examination of  Roe vs. Wade, so that it does not degenerate into abortion on demand, but allows abortion with restrictions and exceptions which are reasonable, ethical, and legal.

    Christina A. Astorga

  • 06/28/2022 4:34 PM | Daniel R. DiLeo

    National Catholic Reporter has published "Catholic Theological Society of America resolves to divest from fossil fuels" that outlines the resolutions passed at the Convention.

  • 06/28/2022 8:32 AM | Francis X Clooney, SJ (Administrator)

    Dear Colleagues,

    Good morning. Like all our fellow citizens, we all have been caught up in thinking about the Supreme Court’s recent judgments on aid to religiously-affiliated schools, on prayer, and on striking down NY restrictions on bearing arms — and most of all, we all have been thinking, discussing, and praying about Dobbs v. Jackson and the overturning of Roe v Wade and Planned Parenthood v Casey. In these eventful days, we need to reaffirm Cardinal Bernardin’s “seamless garment of life” ethic, respect for life from conception through every stage of life until death.

    As thinking Catholics, we know that this reaffirmed protection of life has many ramifications, creating new complications for pregnant women and the fathers of their unborn children, and disproportionately impacting economically marginalized communities and communities of color. Our commitment to the seamless garment ethic will ring hollow if we do not concretely and systemically care for one another in ways that promote real human flourishing. Nor should we overlook the politicization of our courts and the deep divisions and animosities in the United States today, even as we also acknowledge the deep religious and ethical diversity – and hence inevitable differences of opinion – among people of good faith.

    As a Board, we decided that the issues following upon Dobbs v. Jackson are too complex for us to be able to craft an adequate Board statement on behalf of the Society without a long consultation with you, our colleagues in the Society. But I do encourage us all, on our campuses, in our seminaries and parishes, to pursue the needed expert conversations among ourselves and our colleagues in every place we do our work and live our Catholic lives, that we may continue to be of service as best we can to the Church and outside it too. Kristin Heyer, our President-Elect, has indicated to me that she will be including an invited session on the topic at next year's convention. Perhaps we should host a Zoomed conversation in the fall, to hear reports on what is happening locally, in our teaching, lecturing, writing, in the post Dobbs v. Jackson era. Please feel free, of course, to use this Newsfeed to post your own thoughtful reflections on the issues facing us.

    We are a learned society at the service of the Church amid our complex cultures. Let us pray that we have the wisdom to use our professional skills to clarify and accentuate the truths and values essential to being Catholic today.

    Francis X. Clooney, SJ, CTSA President

  • 06/23/2022 12:09 PM | Anonymous

    James F. Keenan, S.J.A History of Catholic Theological Ethics, Paulist Press, June 2022.

    Brigham, Erin M. and M. Johnson (eds.), Women Engaging the Catholic Social Tradition: Solidarity Toward the Common Good, Paulist Press, June 2022.

  • 06/21/2022 3:59 PM | Maria-Pilar Aquino


    Mexico City, June 21, 2022 – It is with great dismay that we, the Jesuits of Mexico, denounce the murder of our brothers Javier Campos Morales, S.J. and Joaquín César Mora Salazar, S.J., which occurred yesterday inside the church of the community of Cerocahui, Chihuahua.

     We condemn these violent acts; we demand justice and the recovery of the bodies of our brothers who were taken from the church by armed individuals.

     We also demand the immediate adoption of all protective measures to safeguard the lives of our Jesuit brothers, nuns, lay people, as well as the entire community of Cerocahui.

     These incidents are not to be seen isolated. The Sierra Tarahumara, like many other regions of the country, is facing a situation of violence and neglect that has not been reversed. Every day, men and women are arbitrarily deprived of their lives, just as our brothers were killed today.

     The Jesuits of Mexico will not remain silent in the face of a reality that destroys society as a whole. We will continue to raise our voices and we will work for the mission of justice, reconciliation, and peace, through our pastoral, educational, and social works.

     In denouncing what happened, we also stress the pain our people are experiencing due to the prevailing violence, and we stand in solidarity with so many people who suffer from this same situation, and whose suffering does not arouse public empathy and attention.

     We trust that the testimonies of the Christian life of our dear Javier and Joaquín will continue to inspire men and women to give themselves in the service of the most vulnerable.

    May they rest in peace.
  • 06/20/2022 11:55 AM | Jens Mueller

    The Catholic Social Thought Topic Session is looking for a new administrative team member! 

    If you are interested or need more information, don't hesitate to contact Jens Mueller (

    We look forward to working with you!


  • 06/19/2022 11:51 AM | Anonymous

    The CTSA mourns the loss of Sister Loretta Devoy, O.P., who died yesterday morning. 

    May Sr. Loretta rest in peace.

    Member Patrick Flanagan reflects,

    How grateful our students, department, and university were to have had her as a professor.  Frank Connolly-Weinert once remarked, "Loretta always proved well-informed, a courteous, conscientious, and diligent colleague, whose advice was always sound, attentive to detail, gracious, and unfailingly professional." 

    I knew Loretta for my first ten years and was stunned when she announced she was retiring in 2013.  She was a committed teacher and wonderful colleague in the department and our larger academy.   Later when I met her at the Dominican Sisters Motherhouse in Amityville where she lived, I asked her why she left.  Always a woman of deep faith and profound self-awareness, she said “I knew it was time” and then when onto encourage me “may you know when God is moving you on and may you be attentive to the divine plan."

  • 06/18/2022 1:50 PM | Julia Feder

    The Women's Consultation is seeking nominations for the Ann O'Hara Graff Award. 

    Each year we honor one senior woman member of the CTSA who exemplifies Dr. Graff’s commitment to the integration of faith and scholarship, and to advocacy for women in the academy.  We aim to acknowledge women scholars who mentor and support of women in the broadest sense of church and to value women who are contributing to the renewal of theology by their constructive work.

    You can access and submit the nomination form here:

    Ann O'Hara Graff Nomination Form

    or, simply email the name of your nominee and your reasons for nominating her to

  • 06/17/2022 7:50 PM | Anonymous

    Submit Your Convention Photos!

    Submission of photos taken at the 76th annual convention are requested.  Scan the QR code to upload photos (a Google account is required).  Paul Schutz will collect and edit the photos for the CTSA's website and archives!

     For the less tech savvy:      

    Upload Photos Here

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