I first sent the link to some Jebbie friends of mine-- who are solid. So they were pissed. They sent word to other Jebbies, who sent word to others. It is flying all over the assistancy now, so I hear, and so now there is going to be an internal fight in the S.J. Soon, they hope, Neuhaus will get word of it, and so it might go into the Public Square of "First Things". At any rate, recently a good Jesuit at Saint Louis University -- another Jesuit school--learned that SLU had Planned Parenthood links on their website and he raised hell. The links are gone now... What we need is bad publicity pressure from without and S.J. pressure from within. Then maybe...
Catholic universities and "reproductive health"
The Saint Louis Post Dispatch proclaimed approvingly that Saint Louis University "does well in reproductive health survey". The story appeared August 14, 2002, after Catholics For a Free Choice announced the results of a survey of all 191 of the nation's four-year Catholic schools commissioned by CFFC in 2000 - with 165 responding.
Post-Dispatch reporter Susan C. Thomson's story, " Saint Louis University provides more sex-related health services than most other Catholic colleges and universities in the United States, a new study reports", said that the survey, called "Student Bodies: Reproductive Health Care at Catholic Universities" reports that SLU's student health center offered services including sexuality education, pregnancy counseling and screening for HIV and sexually transmitted diseases.
Saint Louis University is a Jesuit institution, founded in 1818.
"Like the vast majority of its peers, SLU did not offer students contraception, which is forbidden by traditional Catholic teaching. But unlike most of them, according to the survey, SLU refers students elsewhere for contraceptive services", Thomson wrote.
"SLU was among the 117 of the schools reporting that they did not make contraception available to students for birth control. Of the 16 schools that did, only two offered a full range of contraceptive drugs and devices.
"Twenty-seven schools, SLU included, responded that they referred students to outside sources such as Planned Parenthood for contraceptive advice".
The CFFC study says: "Clearly, the provision of contraception is a contentious issue on Catholic university campuses, with health care providers torn between responsibility to the students' health and well-being and Catholic doctrine". According to CFFC, Catholic colleges in general endanger students by failing "to integrate sexuality education and treatment into their general health program".
SLU officials could not be reached for comment, Thomson reported. (Susan C. Thomson:/e-mail: email@example.com/Phone: 314-209-1315)
A story by David Crary for Associated Press, published August 10, "Catholic Colleges Debate Sex Policy", reported on other Catholic schools who participated in the CFFC Survey.
Crary wrote, "With sexually active students on their campuses and the Vatican unswervingly opposed to premarital sex, America's Roman Catholic colleges face difficult choices on such sensitive matters as condom use and unwanted pregnancies".
Following are some responses from Catholic university officials Crary interviewed:
"Our doctors understand they're working on the campus of a Catholic college - we don't fill prescriptions for birth control," said Linda Timm, vice president of student affairs at the all-women's St. Mary's College in South Bend, Ind. "But if a student inquires, we'll sit down and discuss the choices involved in being sexually active. Ultimately it's going to be a student's choice what she decides to do off campus regarding birth control."
Of 133 Catholic colleges responding to a survey about health services, only 16 reported making contraceptives available to students, the group said. When contacted by The Associated Press, three of the 16 denied providing contraceptives.
Officials at others among the 16 didn't dispute the survey listing but said there was no formal policy for providing contraceptives. Instead, campus medical professionals had the option of helping students obtain birth control, they said.
"We protect the integrity of the doctor-patient relationship", said Brad Winkler, dean of student development at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. "In the context of that relationship, a physician can prescribe contraception if requested, through the medical plan".
Winkler said the Catholic school believes unmarried students should be chaste, but noted 40 percent of Aquinas's 2,100 students are not Catholic.
"We want to make sure students are aware of the position of the college and Church", he said. "We also want students to have accurate information, and let them make their own decisions".
Several college officials said medical personnel might help individual students obtain contraceptives without the explicit approval of administrators.
"If there are schools that do provide contraceptives, there would be a problem if it became public knowledge", said the Reverend Robert Friday, a religion professor and former vice president of student life at Catholic University in Washington, DC.
Rosanne Zudekoff, communications director at Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, Connecticut, agreed: "No school is going to want to see headlines saying, 'Catholic college gives out condoms'".
Michael James, assistant director of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, suggested any variance with Vatican doctrine was being initiated discreetly by health professionals.
"I'm not aware of any school taking this on with some kind of bravado", he said. Most students at Catholic colleges expect policies that conform with Catholic teaching, he added. "I don't think any student comes to a Catholic campus thinking this is their forum to change the Church".
However, Catholic and non-Catholic students at Georgetown University have formed Hoyas for Choice, which is pressing the school to distribute condoms and be more open about sexual issues.
"The biggest problem is that sex isn't talked about", said Marlo Huang, 21, of Los Angeles, who will be a senior this fall. "It's ridiculous to pretend that college students don't have sex".
Sources: St. Louis Post-Dispatch; Associated Press.
Thanks for the alert... I've e-mailed the parties you mention.