The following is an excerpt from The Catholic Thing website, written by Robert Royal, head of the Faith & Reason Institute. Faith & Reason since 2006 has been sponsoring seminars for college and university teaching staff.

From Saturday, June 16 through Saturday, June 23 a “total immersion” seminar for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on “The Catholic Intellectual Tradition and America,” will be hosted by St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, CA – and co-hosted by Thomas Aquinas College. We did a similar seminar last year in Denver.

Participants, including seminary professors and people working for the archdiocese, read texts from Bunyan and Hawthorne, Aquinas and Dante, Newman and Tocqueville, Allan Bloom and Archbishop Charles Chaput, as well as novels like Willa Cather’s Death Comes for the Archbishop, Graham Greene’s The Power and the Glory, and Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer. After all that, you get a wide appreciation of the challenges to Catholicism in modern America.

In a typical year there are six events, and this year is no different: an advance sequence – in two sessions – on the Fathers, etc. at Thomas More College; one at Wyoming Catholic College on the Catholic tradition in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries; and the fourth at St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo CA. In addition, for the first time, there are two “retreats” for headmasters and deans, also at Thomas More, in which participants read Cardinal Newman together to get a clearer idea of their responsibilities.

So the next time you hear about yet another Catholic professor or university caving in to pressures that threaten both Catholicity and the long tradition of the liberal arts, don’t despair. Yes, the big picture is troubling, and shouldn’t be taken lightly. But there are serious energies of renewal afoot, at several levels, and they will come to fruition, in the next generation – and many more generations to come.

To read entire posting, Click here.



Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 1:31 AM By Matthew
I don’t think the LA Archdiocese ever knocked down the structures that comprise the small 4 year college campus located just above the seminary to build condos in conjunction with a developer before the market went to heck. I sure wish Archbishop Gomez would re-open the college or allow it to be operated by nearby Thomas Aquinas College or perhaps Loyola University? The college accepted outside students before it was closed. Given the number of Catholics that live in the area it should be fairly simple to FILL it to the brim for maybe a single classics curriculum. I think such an effort would foster many vocations.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 4:34 AM By MIKE
The author is missing the point! Until the “CATECHISM of the CATHOLIC CHURCH, Second Edition” is used as one of the REQUIRED texts at all Seminaries, for Nuns, and all Catholic Colleges and Universities, and for juniors and seniors in high school – accidental and/or purposeful errors will continue to be taught. The CCC is the main text needed to slow heresies and schisms and to strengthen our Faith in every Catholic who reads it. When are those in charge going to care enough to get it ? ? ? ? ?

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 5:40 AM By Sue in soCal
Please, God, let this “teach-in” stick in the hearts and minds of the participants instead of in their craw!

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 6:59 AM By MacDonald
Hurray for this good news! Sometimes our people are only fed sensationalistic “news & views” that are shallow, and that ignore the rich traditions and resources of our Catholic faith. Good Catholics get misled by some charismatic character who grabs a microphone or a TV screen and claims to have all the answers, whereas they should engage in serious study, healthy debate, and happily plunge into the genuine depths of our Catholic heritage. UFO Catholicism is too silly to waste our time on.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 7:34 AM By MD
CCD-Thank you for this article. It is nice to read an article of hope and we should all continue to pray for our bishops and priests for continued orthodoxy. God Love You.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 7:40 AM By k
Thank you very much for this link. It was very informative and also contains links to other excellent Catholic resources. In addition to the information on Catholic education, I also found out that the State Department’s Country Reports on Human Rights this year has eliminated the section on religious freedom.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 8:48 AM By Peggy
It’s great to get positive news! With all due respect to Mike, I think the organizers and presenters of these seminars do get it. I wish I could attend…

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 8:55 AM By Maryanne Leonard
Thomas Aquinas College and St. John’s Seminary are two of the significant reasons we love living in Ventura County. This is blessed country. We also have the mission in Ventura that was established by Padre Junipero Serra in the late 1700’s as well as the wonderful mountains, valleys, and the great Pacific Ocean, established by God in the beginning and developed by the hand of man into a land of milk and honey, literally. So many blessings, and now this . . . mine is a greatful heart. Thanks for sharing this in CCD.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 9:26 AM By JLS
On the topic brought up by MacD, ie ufo, we saw some one evening in the desert, but then realized they were headlights from a distant highway. The moral of this tale, MacD, is that even a wild goose chase can discover reality.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 9:36 AM By Angelo
This is great news. It will bear much fruit. I once asked a priest who was ordained in 1946 what kind of books they studied in the seminary. He told me how they read the whole Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas in Latin. They had to read all of scripture in Latin, Aramaic, Greek and the Vernacular. They had to know Latin perfectly in order to read and study the Doctors of the Church in the original language of Latin. I realized this is the reason they knew everything. Sad today that many of the younger generation of Priests have an understanding of the faith as well as a 7 year old. Its great that the rich tradition of these superabundant resources are being reopened to the faithful.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 10:01 AM By Abeca Christian
Wow sounds great! God bless them too and may they read their Holy Bibles too! The word of God continues and will always refresh our soul! Their Holy bibles and the CCC together, what a wonderful combination! We have so much beauty in our church, all it’s richness writings from the early church Doctors and saints, wow such a beaut! Praise Be Jesus Christ!

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 11:08 AM By BETTY
MIKE is correct. When the CCC is not required text, you get more errors being passed on, more relativism and more secularism. “In its very structure, the Catechism of the Catholic Church follows the development of the faith right up to the great themes of daily life. On page after page, we find that what is presented here is no theory, but an encounter with a Person who lives within the Church.” “It is in this sense that the Year of Faith will have to see a concerted effort to rediscover and study the fundamental content of the faith that receives its systematic and organic synthesis in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.” – Pope Benedict XVI (Porta Fidei, Moto Proprio Data) If your Diocese Bishop does not require all his Priests to read the CCC and the Bible, ask him why.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 11:53 AM By MacDonald
JLS, you must have the most amazing adventures! Wild geese, UFOs in the desert, and God knows what else. My life seems so drab by comparison. I need to get some dogs again…”There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.” ~Ben Williams

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 5:58 PM By steve
the LAST place I’d send my kid is a ‘Catholic’ University…unless it’s Franciscan U @ Stubbie. Oh, wait, that IS where my kid is…..

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 6:22 PM By JLS
I stumbled through many of the Great Books while yet a rampaging pagan, but of course my selection improved as I moved through evangelicalism for a few years and now Catholicism for 33 years. What a great program for a Catholic college or university to offer. At least that is the good news; the bad news remains the fact that the grads still have to get jobs after they read all those books.

Posted Wednesday, June 13, 2012 11:19 PM By Abeca Christian
BETTY maybe so with USA species but I recall my wonderful grandmother, who never owned the CCC and she knew the faith so well. She was very poor and humble. Maybe she is a rare breed. What ever happened to those wonderful loving traditional grandparents that we once all had. Or maybe I was the lucky one who did happen to have one in my life. Where you would even see the faith, you would see Jesus in all that they did and their love for Mary was so apparent. Our youth are missing so much from that. I think that modern technology has it’s good points but I think that since we are so easily to fall into sin, that modern technologically has destroyed, like media and movies, there is so much wickedness so easily available that we have more heretics around and we see less and less true devout loving Catholic Christians, especially in our elders whom are to lead us in that good wholesome direction, but we lack so much off.

Posted Thursday, June 14, 2012 6:58 AM By MacDonald
ABECA is most wise to remind us that the Holy Bible should be the main text of our teaching. The Word of God, coupled with the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and other basic texts, is a sure way not to fall into nutty movements, breakaway groups, or false ‘theologies.’ One reason I really LOVE the Catechism is that it not only articulates and explains the Catholic faith, but it also points the reader to the Scriptures, the Fathers of the Church, the Ecumenical Councils, the writings of the Saints, etc. This helps us avoid falling for every ‘fad du jour’ cooked up by the left or by the right.

Posted Thursday, June 14, 2012 1:09 PM By max
[picturing JLS scooting through his younger days as a “rampaging pagan” . . . with book in hand!]

Posted Thursday, June 14, 2012 2:31 PM By Abeca Christian
MacDonald thank you. I do want to add that CCC is used as a tool to learn the faith but it does not contain complete writings from the early church Doctors and is not complete, sometimes there is no clarity in certain topics but it is certainty a good tool to use along with the Holy Bible. When we learn from the wholeness of the faith, then when we study the CCC, the word of God etc, we can complete the puzzle but first we must have a loving relationship with our Lord, we must repent and turn away from sin, or all these tools we use to grow in the faith would not mean anything. Even the evil one knows our Lord but he still chose his ways, so I hope people first fall in Love with our Lord in order for them to appreciate the wholeness and beauty of our faith in Jesus Christ, His Church!

Posted Thursday, June 14, 2012 9:53 PM By JLS
The CCC is valuable as a study tool. The most remarkable thing I find about it is the need for each one of us, including the people who wrote the CCC, to follow Jesus through the means provided by the Church for two millenia.

Posted Thursday, June 14, 2012 9:56 PM By JLS
max, it is difficult to keep myself from recalling my “scooting” through my younger and pagan days. I’m actually much much stronger today; then I could lift more or less twohundred pounds of weights with a lot of effort, but today with almost no effort I can lift that much with the press of a button.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 11:23 AM By MacDonald
JLS, ah, your button-pushing days are easier, not doubt thanks to those pretzels and Cokes you mentioned on another page! And of course naps on your sofa, after memorizing the CCC, 2nd edition.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 11:53 AM By Doug
Mike, I would agree with you pretty much whole-heartedly if you substituted your reference of the ccc with the Catechism of the Council fo Trent. May God bless everyone to have a happy Father’s Day. Let’s also not forget to go to Holy Mass on Father’s Day to pay due respect to our Heavenly Father, His Holy Son, the Holy Ghost, and our Blessed Mother!

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 2:08 PM By Abeca Christian
Doug glad you brought up the CC of Trent! I love it!

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 2:11 PM By Abeca Christian
Speaking of schools, please keep us in your prayers, we are finding ways to help pay for tuition for John Paul the great for my child. There is nothing really offered for the middle class and we are trying to make it work for our child to attend there. I pray for a miracle! We are trying to be creative so our child won’t be nor us be in severe debt after completion.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 3:12 PM By JLS
MacD, I don’t drink soda pop, and I don’t have a sofa to nap on … so that makes it hard to take a nap. I’ve consulted the CCC at times; I did most of my reading and studying of authentic Catholic doctrine long before the CCC came out — unlike typical cradle Catholics, many converts actually bother to learn by reading the intrinsic writings. So, when I’ve cracked open the CCC, most of it was already familiar to me. Another thing is that I understand the Bible well enough to understand how it is talked about by the saints and doctors of the Church … don’t ask me why, but it is simply like that.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 3:18 PM By JLS
Button pushing days, MacD: I climb 1000 foot chert mountain sides, walk them for hours. Three or four years ago I spontaneously ran a quarter mile on a high school composition track … in street shoes and clothes in sunny 80 degree weather in about 75 seconds. First time I did that in decades … had plenty left over; probably could’ve done it in 68 seconds had I known how well I was performing at the time. Aerobic, often, eat nutritious food … forget the diet plans because they all call for buying highly processed artificial food. Yes, I have some strength issues, some of which are due to injuries that never healed up completely, such as mashed thumb joints, wrecked rotator cuff, knee I have to watch out for, big toe injury. These things can throw off your normal gait and cause even worse joint problems. Oh yeah, and the stiff neck I have from reading your posts : ))

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 3:20 PM By JLS
MacD, I forgot to mention that the buttons I push are the safeties on my guns.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 3:56 PM By k
I think they should read both the CCC and the Catechism of Trent.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 5:06 PM By JLS
Well, MacD, more on button pushing: It would be good to push the buttons, rather beads, on the Rosary for the prayer requests posted on these blogs.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 6:09 PM By max
read the german catechism of the diocese of augsburg. this will give you everything you ever wanted to know about catholicism, and then some.

Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 7:27 PM By Dana
k, just let them have it out in the OK corral. Men will be men. Let’s hope they don’t get too graphic with their injuries, though. My brother could top them all with football injuries (4th string Ohio State) motorcyle crashes, car crashes, bike crashes, injuries building homes for the poor in Mexico and New Orleans…it’s amazing he’s still with us, out taking down trees in his woods, hiking etc. Men are pretty resilient. God is an amazing designer.

Posted Saturday, June 16, 2012 9:19 AM By Dana
Oops. This posts reminds me, I need to send some $ to Wyoming College. They send wonderful CD’s of their students choral work and they appreciate anything you can send. I haven’t been praying for them like I should either. I would dearly love to see my grandchildren go there, but unless there’s a major change in certain people’s( who shall remain nameless) belief systems that ‘aint gonna happen.’

Posted Saturday, June 16, 2012 9:53 AM By JLS
max, I still have a copy of the (ahem, protestant) Bible in German (Luther’s translation, as I recall). I learned German with that arcane typeface where the “s” and “f” were distinguished by only the smallest difference. I have a confirmation (protestant) autograph booklet given my great aunt back in the German section of St Louis MO. The script of the signers is impeccable, almost like a machine wrote it.

Posted Saturday, June 16, 2012 9:58 AM By JLS
Dana, exciting life, your bro’s. If I had to do it all over again, I’d opt for bull riding. In fact now I think I may search youtube to see if anyone ever hops on the back of one of those bulls running at Pamplona. Moving back into reality a little bit, one thing that comes to mind at mention of your brother’s many tumbles, is that it takes a well developed and compassionate society to support such activities where the injured spring back to health and keep on going on … a chalk mark on the chuck house of the USA.

Posted Saturday, June 16, 2012 10:01 AM By JLS
Also, Dana, I try to be humorous with my personal tales, because I’m aware to some degree that they are relatively minimal. I always stand in awe upon hearing of actual amazing feats done by many others … and usually have no comprehension how they accomplish such stuff. I’d probably fit somewhere in the middle of the pack, a little bit beyond Walter Mitty, I would hope.

Posted Sunday, June 17, 2012 8:37 PM By JLS
Dana, Wyoming College seems like a good one for academic Catholicism. My father grew up in Laramie; the winters can be extremely harsh. My ancestors handled the cold ok, guess I could do it; if I were decades younger, I’d give it a shot. If I had kids, I’d send them there; of course I’d send some of them to the Orthodox college in Russia, and then enjoy the rivalry in story telling during vacations.

Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 7:05 AM By max
JLS you should typee all your posts here in frakturschrift, that old german typeface you mention. it would be quitee a hit! and don’t worry — it won’t cause any fractures.

Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 1:57 PM By Doug
Since the title of this article is the Great Books in the L.A. Seminary although the mainstream thought of the excerpt from the original article is about seminars, I’d like to ask a question. How many and what subjects of unabridged books have they still have on their L.A Seminary library shelves that are older than 50 years old? Can one find a copy of the Catechism of the Council of Trent still there on the book shelves or a copy of the Roman Missale from before the 1960s? Or any other old unabridged texts written by Saintly scholars or Doctors of the Church like St. Robert Bellamine, St. Louis DeMonfort, St. Thomas Aquainas, or St. Theresa of Avila, or St. Ignatius Loyola, or St. Alphonsus Ligouri, or Father James L. Meagher, or even a Douay-Rheims Holy Bible? Just curious how well (or bad depending upon how one looks at it) the librarians did away with the old and in with the new! Many of the old books were burned across the world when they did away with the old and came in with the new.

Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 7:32 PM By JLS
max, I might give it a try … Ich moege (yeah, I know there are two different ways to conjugate the verb here, but forgot sort of) eine Trei (yeah yeah, nice try, JLS) geben.