Manassas, VA, February 25, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The University of St. Thomas, Houston, has canceled a faculty and staff invitation for Dolores Huerta, a pro-abortion advocate, who was scheduled to speak on campus.
Huerta, a well-known civil rights advocate and leader in the Latino community, had been invited to help launch the Latin American and Latino Studies program. She is also, however, a member of the board of the pro-abortion Feminist Majority Foundation and worked aggressively to kill a California ballot proposition requiring parental notification for abortions in 2006.
Despite support for her by some faculty members, who emphasized her prominence on Latino issues, University of St. Thomas president Dr. Bob Ivany was quoted in The Houston Chronicle as saying UST was “saddened by her prominent and outspoken advocacy of abortion as an option.” Huerta learned of the cancellation while stumping with pro-abortion presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in Texas.
Patrick J. Reilly, president of the Cardinal Newman Society (CNS), which works to restore the Catholic identity to U.S. Catholic colleges, said, “We applaud Dr. Ivany for his strong witness in support of Catholic principles. He clearly understands that no Catholic university should give an abortion advocate a public platform or special position of honor. Once again, the University of St. Thomas has shown itself to be an admirable Catholic institution.”
The university is one of 21 recommended Catholic colleges in The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College: What to Look for and Where to Find it, published by CNS in November 2008. It was one of only eight colleges identified as “Joyfully Catholic,” representing the most orthodox institutions.
Joseph A. Esposito, editor of The Newman Guide and director of CNS’s new Center for the Study of Catholic Higher Education, said, “It’s vitally important that Catholic colleges make no exceptions regarding pro-abortion speakers. Although Dolores Huerta was expected to speak on social activism, her appearance could at least implicitly raise questions about Catholic Church teaching on abortion.”
The University of St. Thomas was founded by the Congregation of St. Basil (Basilian Fathers) in 1947. Although primarily a liberal arts college, it offers more than 10 graduate degrees on its campus in the Museum District of Houston, the nation’s fourth-largest city.
To contact the University:
University of St. Thomas
Houston, Texas 77006-4626