From: []
Sent: Wednesday, February 18, 2004 12:38 PM
Subject: Message from Nathan O. Hatch

Thank you for your message regarding the “Queer Film Festival” that took place at the University of Notre Dame on February 11-14. The event was sponsored by the Department of Film, Television and Theatre, the Department of English, the Department of Anthropology, and the Gender Studies Program, along with the Gay and Lesbian Alumni/ae of the University of Notre Dame and St. Mary’s College.

In keeping with the ideal of free and open exploration of ideas, even controversial ones, the University administration does not attempt to censor events or other offerings that are sponsored by academic departments. We value open and self-critical discussion of ideas and issues within the context of our educational mission. We also are fully aware that this ideal may and sometimes does come into conflict with our Catholic identity and mission, and the values that we hold as central to our faith. This is a tension, and one that we make every attempt to handle with respect, responsibility and concern for differing points of view. We attempt, as well, to use such events as an opportunity to demonstrate that one can have an informed discussion about controversial topics without embracing the culture or viewpoints that might be espoused.

The “Queer Film Festival” represents controversial subject matter and some believe that such presentations do not belong on the campus of a Catholic university. On the other hand, we feel that it is precisely in such an environment that controversial topics can be discussed responsibly, that dialogue can be fostered between opposing viewpoints, and that opportunities can be found to communicate the distinctive moral and religious beliefs of the Catholic faith.

I respect your views in opposition to the presentation of these films at Notre Dame and I am grateful for your bringing your concerns and views to my attention.


Is anyone teaching the students to think?

Dear Fr. Malloy,

I noticed the Notre Dame student newspaper had an editorial endorsing the Queer Film Fest. It contained this comment:

"Catholicism is the most identifying characteristic of the University, but that same religious commitment should be used to justify full inclusion. A main tenet of the Catholic faith is that all people are equal and love should be universal..."

Is anyone teaching the students to think? By the above logic they will soon be demanding "full inclusion" for pedophiles, cannibals, white supremacists, even Republicans and conservative Christians! Well, maybe they would not go that far.

And what was the faculty thinking in allowing a Queer Film Fest?

Sincerely in Christ,

Fr. Phil Bloom



"But in order to keep the Gospel forever whole and alive within the Church, the Apostles left bishops as their successors, "handing over" to them "the authority to teach in their own place" [3]. This sacred tradition, therefore, and Sacred Scripture of both the Old and New Testaments are like a mirror in which the pilgrim Church on earth looks at God, from whom she has received everything, until she is brought finally to see Him as He is, face to face (see 1 John 3:2)." (DOGMATIC CONSTITUTION ON DIVINE REVELATION - Dei Verbum, 7)

Other articles on why this authority is necessary:

By What Authority?

Flawed Expectations (the Reception of the Cathechism).
Dissent: An attempt to have your cake and eat it too?
Does Dogma Divide?
The crisis in Catholic Universities.

Other Recommended Books.