Towards a Christian Understanding of Academic Freedom

Author: Paul M. Quay, S.J.


Paul M. Quay, S.J.

"Faith in search of understanding!"—the wealth of meaning packed into this Augustinian phrase needs an explicit supplementation in our days by its converse: "Understanding in search of faith!" So Fr. Michael J. Buckley, S.J., has well argued recently in more modern language.1 If Catholic universities are to escape the secularizing tendencies that currently threaten them, these schools must be understood in a Catholic manner. Not only does Catholic faith have an intrinsic need to seek all aspects of truth naturally attainable but all natural human inquiry and search for truth is dynamically oriented towards Catholic faith. Through this understanding of the ultimate unity of truth, connaturally conjoined to the effort to make this unity explicit, Buckley shows that there is no valid theoretical basis for any trend to secularize Catholic universities.

Buckley's argument, despite its cogency, will probably have little practical effect unless it can be elaborated in the context whence the drive towards secularization concretely has come. Since it is, I think, academic freedom (AF) that has been the neuralgic issue, it may be worthwhile to work out in some detail how the interpenetration of the academic and the Catholic, which Buckley has rightly emphasized, can be made applicable to the problems that occur in connection with AF.

Appeals to AF have often been made in defense of various abuses occurring in higher education. Yet it would be a mistake to judge AF from such misuse, most of which has come from its increasingly secularist interpretations. Better far, to extract from AF whatever is good, in practice or in theory. The Church has long rejected similarly abusive notions of religious liberty, but has also come gradually to find within these notions valid elements, flowing indeed from her own tradition. From these she has derived a notion that serves similar functions without secularist distortion and error. So, here we shall look for a Catholic understanding of AF—one that would be intrinsically social in nature, not simply reflecting another form of unlimited individualism—to take the place of the unacceptable conceptions now widespread.

We shall need to look at several aspects that are not always adequately distinguished in current discussions: at natural freedoms to teach and do research; at civil ones; and finally at ecclesial ones.

Natural Freedoms

One of the things usually intended when one speaks of AF is freedom of research; another, freedom to teach.2 Though easily interrelated, these two freedoms are radically separable in practice as well as in principle. In practice, one can do research in a library or an industrial lab or in one's home, and never go near any classroom for a lifetime nor ever submit one's results for publication. And many a teacher has given up all efforts at research in order to concentrate the more on transmitting, in forms ever more assimilable by his students, things already known. In principle, research is the activity of an individual person in search of truth, seeking to satisfy his own thirst therefore, according to his own criteria and methods; whereas teaching is essentially relational, an activity describable only in terms of both the teacher and the one who is taught.3

Since both teaching and research require a further element, i.e., that which is sought or discovered or else which is proposed to the student, a connection is easily established between the two activities. Research can rightly be considered as an effort to discover more of truth that can be taught, or how better to teach it, or how more fully to understand it, or how to correct one's misapprehensions.4 So conceived, research retains (or should) its own nature, yet is subordinated to teaching and finds its justification—in this context—from its utility to the teacher and the student rather than from its intrinsic goals.

Freedom for Research

Freedom for research is a personal right, had because of one's personal nature, not because of any special expertise or competence. It is, therefore, universal, belonging to man as such. For this freedom is concerned with the search for one of the greatest of human goods, for truth, which begins in infancy and continues with varying intensities and success till death. One has not, therefore, merely a right to such freedom but an obligation to exercise it.

Freedom to Teach

The existence of a right to be free to teach seems almost as fundamental.5 For the transmission not only of religious truth but of all aspects of human culture depends crucially upon teaching by those who know. The freedom to teach one who wishes or needs to be taught, is, like that of research, first and foremost, a personal right, though now not an individual one, but one that is governed by the needs and welfare of both the one taught and the teacher.

The teacher—as teacher—exists primarily for the good of his students, only secondarily for his own good or that of his university, profession, or family. Even our Lord's existence among us as a teacher was for our good, not primarily His own. But as His achieving of our good manifests His kingship and His victory, so the good of all these social units will be adequately achieved only through the perfection of the primary activities of teaching and learning.

Civil Freedoms

On the other hand, the rights that are implied in AF must be civil rights, defensible in court, embodied in contracts and Faculty Handbooks, matters of job security rather than of a clear field of inquiry into truth. For the existence of a civil right of AF, there must be a university as well as a larger civil society of which the university, its faculty, and its students all are parts.6

AF represents the working out of the natural right of an individual to teach, in a social context consisting of a society of fellow teachers (including those acting as administrators), the students who come (and pay) to be taught, parents, alumni, the members of professions for which the students are being prepared, and the various levels and branches of civil government and of the Church. Hence, AF is one element in a framework designed to balance properly and to safeguard the rights of all these social groups—the element that embodies, within such a framework, some aspects of the rights of the individual faculty member to do research and to teach and the similar rights of the faculty as a whole.

Teaching in the universities has usually been of far greater interest to the rest of society than has been research. The family first of all, then the local community, the professions, the state, the Church, all have a major interest in the quality of teaching and in the truth of its content. For, ideas have consequences; and bad ideas have evil consequences. "Truth is mighty and will prevail;" yet in the short run, profoundly hurtful errors can be more powerful with fallen man than truth.

Since the mind of man is essentially social, its grasp of truth—its conformity with reality—is also essentially social, as are most utilizations of its knowledge. Whether a social group wishes to hand on the civilization and culture already achieved or, on the contrary, desires to utilize the universities to overthrow the government or other structures in the society, no government can ignore the importance of the university in forming the attitudes of the young, the least stable and most active of its citizenry. Hence, in much of the world, education is completely subject to the State. If some private schools are allowed, they usually remain tightly controlled by governmental regulations and supervision.

The general public has manifest rights in the education of its nascent intellectual leaders. Since the genuine professions all impinge directly on the common good, the university, as the door to the professions (as well as to much of business or financial success and to government posts) cannot rightly leave the public unconcerned.7 Hence, the arrogance, even absurdity, of university claims to a complete civic autonomy.8 Any entity that would seek to live autonomously within the civic body as though its life were entirely its own, would be part of civic society only as a cancer is part of the human body.

Thus there are obligations and responsibilities, resting upon each faculty member, to people who have no contact with the academic community.

Academic Freedom

No detailed or even fully general definition of AF can be given because of its dependence, as we shall see shortly, on freely constituted contractual relations. But we may use, as a rough approximation, a notion of AF as a freedom of the individual teacher with respect to his university: he is not subject to controls, still less to punishment, imposed by the university or one of its parts because of what he teaches in his assigned courses or how he does so solely because of the desires of nonacademics.9 I think it clear that teachers in institutions of higher learning need to have a certain independence with respect to extrinsic pressures brought to bear on them by those who have inadequate competence to judge the truth of their teaching or who are motivated by concerns other than truth. For Catholics, at least, this is the independence needed by the faculty of a university to serve truth well. We are convinced, as Christians especially, of the transcendental nature of truth, i.e., that all legitimate desires, usefulness, expediency are, as all things else, best served in the long run by truth's being discovered and as widely known as possible. Without some institutionalized guarantee, nonacademic pressures such as the desires of benefactors, the commercial usefulness of results, the expediency of governments, whether civil or religious, would often exercise serious constraints on the truth's being sought or transmitted.

Worse, these same pressures, as is evident from the fate of universities in Communist countries, can force falsehood to be taught as truth. The same problem exists, though differently enforced, in the West. Consider, for example, the way in which the legalization of abortion has corrupted the teaching and affected the training given in many of our American medical schools. Current controversies concerning "political correctness" offer more than one example of similar pressures.

On the other hand, a professor's freedom is not absolute, and there exist academic reasons for which he may rightly be deprived of his teaching position. Incompetence in his field or in research or in teaching are all subject to assessment and punitive or disciplinary action if—but only if—judgment is passed by those who are academically competent. There is more, however, to consider here.

All agree that within a university, murder is rightly subject to nonacademic interventions, as is also theft or perjury, rape or the seduction of a minor student by a professor. Civil intervention is accepted also in cases of academic crimes, e.g., concerning such matters as professorial falsification of credentials or of grades, or theft or plagiarism of someone else's research results.10 What is pertinent to our concern here is that most schools would fire or at least refuse promotion to faculty whom civil courts should find guilty. In other words, even non-Christian institutions of higher learning retain, in at least vestigial form, an awareness that AF is conditioned upon some minimal level of moral integrity. This level, needless to say, should be made explicit in all contracts.

Problems of principle arise, however, as soon as a claim is made that nonacademics should have power to pass judgments concerning the matter taught or the manner of teaching it. The crucial question here is: Who is to decide whether the rights of the social groups affected have been violated by such teaching? One could reply: "Academics only." But this makes clear sense only if academics are indeed competent to judge of others' interests on a parity with their own. Evidently, this reply can seem inadequate to those who think themselves wronged by the academics. Whatever one may think of "political correctness," it has brought to the fore this somewhat neglected social aspect of AF.

I would suggest that AF be construed in such cases to mean that questions that are concerned solely with the truth of teaching are to be decided, within the university itself, by other academics or, outside the university, by the appropriate professional societies—groups belonging, at least by training, to the academic world.11 In all other matters, academics would serve only as witnesses along with all others who seek to be heard.

Faculty may well need outside help to remain honest (as is clear from the history of some of their professional societies, e.g., of the American Medical Association, of the American College of Pediatrics, of the American Law Institute, of the U.S. Supreme Court, to list but a few). But the first responsibility for cleaning up any mess rests with the faculty themselves. They are, therefore, to correct one another; and this publicly, if public harm has been done without public redress.

Institutional Freedoms

The university also has rights as a social body. These are sometimes labeled the rights of "institutional autonomy," but I prefer to speak of "institutional freedoms" (IF).12 In any case, the university itself has a "nature" or "identity," a set of goals and an ideal image of itself. It will have chosen certain things to teach, others to be left to other schools. It will be secular or religious, concerned more with Arts or with Sciences or with what it regards as a suitable mix of these. It will be highly selective in its admissions policies or perhaps open to all who have the tuition. None of this offers any essential problems. It could hardly be otherwise, for no school can do everything.

The IF are determined by this nature or identity, i.e., by the university's goals and policies as an institution. Given these, the university has certain rights in connection with their achievement. Though these rights have their roots in man's natural right to work together with his fellows for the achievement of some common good, their civil forms are based on the legal right to "free association." Whence, the need of contracts to regulate the interplay of the two sets of rights.

In this contractual context, judgment may legitimately be passed on a faculty member's suitability for the goals and purposes of the university, particular or general, even where pressures for a judgment come primarily from the nonacademic world. Such judgment may be made by his academic peers or by the university's administration without harm to AF. Evidently, problems of justice will arise if the goals and purposes in question have not been made clear to all concerned at the contractual level. The sort of pseudo-pious verbiage that ordinarily spells out the special nature of one of our Catholic schools for the edification of parents is often fraudulent and in any case is inadequate for legal purposes.

For, one is dealing with contractual relations between free men, who size each other up in terms of their own interests and ideals and, if satisfied, accept a mutual bonding. But this requires a full and up-front manifestation of the real goals and the real purposes of both parties. Both AF and IF, since flowing from and governed by free contract between this particular academic and this particular university, suffer profoundly if there is any concealing or fudging of one's academic or institutional aims.

Whether the university's identity is damaged by a professor's teaching, say, that special relativity is false is, then, conditioned by his contract. In most universities, this would be left to the judgment of the physics department. But this need not be the case, if the contract specifies something else, e.g., in a school run by the Flat Earth Society or the Tychonians. Thus, the competency of academics to decide particular cases depends, in part at least, on the contractual identity of the university. Physicists as a world-wide professional group might well decide what is to be accounted as false in physics; but within a university department they are free to teach accordingly only within the framework of those restrictions that a given contractual identity has established for what may be taught as true.

Obligations toward Students

Since the natural right to teach when asked is based on the obligation of charity to help others to the truth, the freedoms of both the faculty (AF) and the university (IF) must likewise be based on the good of the students, however specified by contract.

I spoke above of "serving truth well." What this service of truth may be can be drawn from the following: the truth in question is that which is to be generated in the minds and in the hearts of the students. To serve truth is to teach it to the mind but also to win its acceptance by the heart; to teach students how to seek truth but also to understand the conditions for finding it at all levels, both natural and supernatural; to show how to specialize and to practice one's specialty in a particular professional domain, but further, how one may not merely take account of these special aspects of truth but live one's life in accord with the fullness of truth. Therefore, the functions of a university are not restricted to those that are concerned with knowledge only. More than knowledge, there is need of wisdom. More than wisdom there is need of virtue. For, in order to know, one must love; and a grasp of truth, as truth, depends upon the right exercise of one's freedom.13 The primary responsibility of a university faculty towards its students, then, is to assist them through the diverse, particular subject matters towards the knowledge, wisdom, and virtue that mark a mature mind.

The mature mind, however, is not the unconvinced or undecided mind, the so-called "adult mind" that seeks to stand apart from all times and cultures, as if it were some sort of angelic intelligence, in order to examine and judge them all dispassionately and to pick what is best from each. Nor is it the Hobbesian or Rousseauvian mind that lets all opinions flourish, but only in order to keep its own safe from attack or to guard its platform for speaking, while suppressing any other opinions gladly when sure enough of its own extrinsic strength.

If, then, the results of one's research are such as to overturn or challenge seriously the putative truth already in possession, these results are not to be offered to the undergrads or to the volatile of whatever age. Before tackling such difficult novelties, the accepted position ought first be taught—learned and absorbed and understood—before the student goes further. The truth in possession is what is to be taught at all levels and, except for graduate students already well grounded, only this.

For, we ought not to forget how difficult it is to conform one's mind with reality, even if this be not an original discovery of a researcher but a student's first coming to understand one of civilization's millennial possessions. How many times today we hear priests and religious complaining about theological doctrines they learned in the seminary that have inflicted harm on them or others—but which anyone who was present at the time recognizes never to have been taught there; the speaker is victim of his own lack of comprehension or integration. But this is not only true of sluggards. It can occur under the best of conditions for the best minds. Endlessly, we are called to rediscover what we really had never learned, whether this be as individuals or as whole cultures.14

Too often, indeed, AF is taken to be the teacher's license to teach his students about whatever he is interested in, in ways that will stimulate his understanding, arouse his spontaneous interest, advance his research programs, rather than attend to the difficult and time-consuming task of teaching dull minds the basics and getting them interested in and enlivened with very old and standard material, entirely for their profit.15 This is perhaps the most common motive for the easy acceptance of "multiculturalism." But can one justify teaching such materials, new and interesting as they may be for the professors, to students who have only the vaguest and most nebulous notions of the riches of their own, once Christian culture?

Civil Right to Research

All this has consequences for an aspect of AF, as usually understood, not yet considered explicitly here: the civil right to research. The right to research is also governed by the identity and purposes of a university and may range anywhere from zero to one hundred percent of one's university duties. The relative importance to be given research and teaching, what mixtures are compatible with the goals and purposes of the university, need to be indicated generically in the Faculty Handbook and specified, as needed, in greater detail in individual contracts.

Clearly, there exist restrictions for the sake of the common good upon the civil right to research e.g., on laser-weapons design, genetic manipulation, infectious materials, experiments on human subjects. But where the public good is not endangered, civil research rights depend entirely on one's contract. Nor should we forget that today centers for pure research exist and do excellent work. Society has less need than formerly for research at universities, save perhaps for the manpower and money already invested; alternatives are available. It is worth recalling, too, that the university will generally retain by contract all rights to inventions and other discoveries of direct monetary value.

One's right to do research, however, whether contractual or personal, must be concatenated and harmonized with one's concurrent teaching duties. The direct social obligation to one's students will, in general, take precedence to merely personal or deferrable research activity. Though unpublished and untaught research is of small interest to the university or to the general public, it may help both by keeping a teacher's competence alive. Indeed, the contractual right in question is often justified entirely in terms of the desirable effects such intellectual stimulation can have on one's teaching.

Failure to distinguish natural from civil rights and/or the confusing, at either level, the right to teach with the right to research leads to presentations of AF that are often grandiose but singularly unreal in tone and content, especially if referring to Catholic universities. But since these problems are of greater concern to Catholics than to others, it will be better to take them up later.

Canonical and Ecclesial Freedoms

Every man has a responsibility, according to his abilities, to seek some knowledge and understanding of the basic truths of man's existence and of his world. Not only does the Church acknowledge a right to research in this sense, but asserts it as a grave responsibility for all, especially for those who hear what she proclaims. Nor does such a right to research cease with acceptance of the faith. On the contrary, faith ought by its nature to seek understanding. The Church has been clear enough about this in the matters of her special competence and interest. Though she says less about secular matters, her history shows that she sees similar, if less stringent, principles and attitudes as appropriate to the other fields of learning as well. In virtue of baptism and confirmation, moreover, all Christians are called upon to teach the faith, as part of the priesthood of all the faithful.16

Evidently, the religious societies constituted by the family, diocese, Catholic universities or religious Institutes and other intermediate structures, indeed the whole Church, all have legitimate interests in the education of Catholics. It is not hard to see, then, how the quasi-natural rights of religious research and teaching should also undergo a process of socialization and, as the properly natural rights became civil ones, so those grounded in faith become canonical ones.

It is no surprise that AF for a theologian resembles the civil rights discussed above: his AF could be limited by the judgment of his theological peers, but not by forces external to the university; the Church would be free to apply her own judgments and sanctions, as does the State or even a teacher's country club; this theological AF would be defined by the contractual religious identity of the university; the spiritual good of the students would in general prevail over the personal interests of the faculty; the right to research would be specified (insofar as a university function) by the university's identity, one's contract, and the good of the students.

Yet these matters seem analogous, in a more complex domain, to the way a grocery store, say, that is owned and operated by laymen would be influenced by the Church, that is through their putting their faith in her teachings into practice in their daily lives, including all that they do in running their store. I think it fair to say that this is more or less the way AF is usually regarded by Catholics in higher education.

All this, however, is predicated on knowing what the Church teaches, what the faith is, what the life in Christ demands of each Christian individually and socially. And it is the Church alone who knows who and what she is and what it is she teaches.

The Church's Right to Teach

As Vatican II said,17 no new public revelation is to be looked for till Christ comes in glory. The same salvific message must go out in every age to all the earth. Though the message is now in a Book, supplemented by the countless other books of the Fathers and of orthodox theologians, yet the Church has always insisted that this is not enough. There is required for the integrity of the message the quasi-oral tradition of the right living of the Christian life and the witness of the full life of the Church in all her structures.18

From the grave obligation binding the Church to preserve what has been handed down flows a corresponding obligation incumbent on each Christian, since one preserves the doctrine of Christ more by living it integrally than by merely analyzing it theologically. But there exists, also, another category of quasi-natural rights, better designated as "ecclesial" rather than as "canonical": those that flow from the obligation of the Church to teach not only unofficially through each of the baptized but officially, i.e., in the name of Christ her Spouse, through the power of the grace of the sacrament of Orders, exercised principally by the bishops who are in fullness of union with the Bishop of Rome.

This right to teach has always been claimed for herself by the Church. The power of her representatives to teach in her name has always been jealously qualified and their doctrine subject to her inspection. Therefore bishops have as the major part of their task—much more important than administration—the preaching of the living faith and the supervision of both unofficial and official teaching, especially that of their priests when speaking as such, i.e., at Mass, in the confessional, or in the governance of a parish.

Hence, as Buckley pointed out in another article,19 bishops are always free, and obligated according to circumstances, to say of anyone, anywhere, "He is seriously misrepresenting Catholic doctrine." Bishops are, moreover, as free to correct slanders and false statements about Catholic doctrine that are made in the media or in secular universities as they are to do so among Catholics. Their obligation to do so depends on the relative degree of harm they envisage among those who are their own flock firstly, then among other Catholics, other Christians, and the rest of mankind.

In any case, the Church alone has sole authority concerning what her teaching is and what her practice should be. To neither State nor family nor university nor faculty is conceded, as such, any authority at all (whatever may be their powers of persuasion when led by the Holy Spirit) in the determination of her faith and the life of grace.

Here, then, is the root problem: If the Church alone (in and through the bishops) can teach authoritatively, then a theology department, as such, cannot. But then does not the converse hold as well: are not the bishops as external to the theology department and to the Catholic university as they are to any secular campus or grocery store or the halls of Congress?

Theology and Faith

Before attempting to respond, we should note that the pattern here is not unfamiliar. It is one we find in all areas of Catholic life. There are three types of response possible for almost anything we know by faith: one of negation, one of incompleteness, and one, to use the scriptural word, of fulfillment.

There is a philosophy from the self-sufficient, autonomous reason; there is faith itself; and between them in some manner lies theology. There is the frank opposition of the secularist State to the Church; there is the ideal of a Christian State (if only one knew how to define it or to make it an ideal and not a tyranny to be shunned); and between them there lies a state officially neutral with respect to diverse religions but still recognizing the benefits to itself from the better among them. There are the secularist, the bishop, and the theologian. There are a secularist's philosophical ethics, the spiritual understanding of Christian behavior in Christ, and moral theology. There are a secularistic application of historical-critical method, the literal and spiritual senses of the Scripture, and the various modes of Catholic scriptural studies. The list could go on much longer.

The basis for the distinction between what I have called incompleteness and fulfillment is the fact that Christianity is not a spiritual theory but an action of God in our world. But theology in our modern sense is the application of secular methods, those of philosophy, of linguistics, history, science, the whole range of secular disciplines, to questions proper to faith and the life in Christ.

Thus, the historical-critical methodology used in scriptural study is a conflation of methods derived for the secular study of texts, of manuscript traditions, of scribal transmission, of cultural context, of redactional chronology, etc.; but, as such, it omits the Church's own proper understanding of the Scriptures. As a method, it offers a sizable portion of what she means by the "literal sense" of the Scripture but no portion of what she means by the "spiritual sense," which is that for which the literal sense was primarily given. Now, I would argue that this sort of theologizing is quite legitimate in itself. But its direction or thrust is other than the direction or thrust of faith. The former tries to understand the matters of faith by means of the natural operations of the mind; hence, it is discomfited should a nonbeliever in all honesty find its arguments unintelligible or "full of holes." But faith tries to see all aspects of the world with the mind of Christ: in the light of God Himself, through His revelation and through the activity of the Holy Spirit—a seeing that works through our natural powers but holds them in subordination.

Here we touch the most fundamental difference between the incomplete and the fulfilled. In the former, the faith and the Christian life are seen as elements, perhaps all-

important ones, in the make-up of the world we know naturally; in the latter, all the world is known in the light of a faith and hope issuing in charity. In fulfillment, faith is no longer a sort of exteriorly given complement to the intellectual life but the innermost life of this life itself.

The activity of faith is that for which the mind was made, as far as life on earth is concerned. The natural powers were created for their utilization of incorporation by faith. Faith is not superadded to them but is the mode of knowing for which these others were created and without which they are truncated, not of their natural being but of their original purpose. It is as if one had an integral champagne bottle, but empty. Its nature is clear and complete; but it lacks wholly that for which it was made. If, however, the bottle itself were shattered, even access to the barrel would not enable the broken shards to preserve the wine.

Bishops as Witnesses

If then—to return to our problem—a bishop speaks for the Church but has little or no professional theological understanding, how can he judge what the theologians are doing? Is he not essentially an outsider to the theological disciplines, even as the Church sees these as outsiders, i.e., without share in her teaching authority? And how can a bishop judge of any of these disciplines unless he is expert in them?

On matters not impinging on the faith, the bishop is indeed an outsider and has no more authority than his learning and understanding can give him. But in matters of the faith, he is an insider, and not only in the theology department. For his role is interior to the faith itself. A faith that does not include the bishop and the Pope is not a Catholic faith. A professor who makes a statement about any matter pertaining to faith has by that fact implicitly appealed to the faith as handed down through the bishops, which faith includes the whole Catholic doctrine concerning the successors to the apostles. Episcopal teaching authority—disciplinary authority is ordinarily a subdivision of canonical authority—is thus internal to every activity of a Catholic university insofar as it is Catholic.

One may still ask how such things can be. At root, the power of the Church to judge of the truth or falsehood of a particular teaching depends not upon her grasp at a human level of the intricacies of scholarly inquiry into either secular or religious matters but, as Father Ladislas Orsy remarked,20 upon the Spirit at work in the Church, who recognizes what He is doing elsewhere. Through the Spirit the Bride comes to know the voice of the Groom, and goes about seeking Him till she finds Him. It is the Spirit of Christ who reminds her of all that He has taught her. She judges, therefore, not primarily through the arguments of the theological or other disciplines but by comparing the conclusions they reach with her faith as handed down in her living tradition. Christ's Spirit within her acknowledges what He has wrought, now as hitherto, and refuses the works of any other spirits unless these are made subject to Christ.

Fidelity to her Beloved also requires that she point out clearly whatever errors are making their way among her members. Especially would she be unfaithful if, without comment, she should let be taught as His what covertly contradicts the truth she bears by His gift alone. To speak out boldly on these matters is her right; it is also her grave duty, to be carried out whatever the consequences to her in the way of persecution.

Thus, the primary function of the bishops is, as representatives of the Church in union with the chief witness, the Pope, to bear witness to Christ and His teaching. Whatever the merits of the theology of individual popes or bishops, their authority lies not, as such, in their theology but in their witness. Bishops, then, are witnesses to the faith handed down once for all.21 Their judgments are obtained not by means of theological investigation and conclusion but by the action of the Spirit in history and by the Church's entire life in Christ, not merely the life of her theological schools or even of her conciliar and papal definitions and decrees.

Bishops do not act primarily as theologians legitimately searching for deeper understanding by rational methodologies. Rather, a bishop is through his own life in Christ to help his people understand the Church's teachings. His penetration into truth comes about principally through his union with Christ as pastor in His Church and through his love for his flock, always in need of greater interior knowledge of their Lord. His searching, then, is not that of the theological enterprise; but his decisions, insofar as conjoined with those of his fellow bishops, provide the "data" concerning which theology and, to some extent, all other disciplines carry out their proper functions.

Note too that theology is not a "convergent science," i.e., it does not purify and rectify itself over time through its own specific methods, except insofar as it submits to the Magisterium of the bishops.22 This is made clear enough by the endless array of ever proliferating sects. The only difference from other nonconvergent disciplines is that religion makes enough of a difference that divergent theologies generally produce dissent and schism.

In this world, integral fulfillment cannot be had. Our modes of understanding suffer from sin, both our actual sins and those basic distortions and weaknesses of mind and feeling that are the residue of original sin. Though the incomplete disciplines, intermediate between denial and fulfillment, are necessary for the Church in her

development in a given culture, and necessary also for each individual at a corresponding period of growth, the temptation to secularization always remains,23 as does also the call to fulfillment, towards which all freedom is directed.

The Meaning of "Catholic"

If a university claims to be "Catholic," the meaning of the claim should be specified concretely by contractual provisions that embody the self-identity of the university and the free assent of its teachers.24 It does not seem to be necessary, though it is perfectly proper, for bishops to have juridical ownership or control of a Catholic university or any of its parts, as long as their general supervision, embodied in the giving or withholding of the right to call oneself a Catholic teacher, is acknowledged. What is required is full clarity in the specification of public identity and in the terms and context of contracts. One university might declare that, for it, "Catholic" means that it was founded by Catholics but implies nothing more than this historical fact. Another might declare that it guarantees a Catholic president and/or a numerical preponderance of Catholics on the Board of Trustees and/or among the faculty. Still others might claim a fully Catholic faculty, at least in certain departments. Others, again, might state that Catholic faith and Catholic morals, as taught by the universal magisterium, are the norms for public actions and utterances of all faculty and students. But however defined, "Catholic" should be used as part of an honest description, not as a mere "come-on."

That such "truth in advertising" is not always present is due, in part, to a quiet form of governmental oppression. Though in this country higher education may well be less tightly regulated than elsewhere, yet governmental controls, especially through strings attached to funding, have become ever more intrusive. The acceptance of such funding when coupled with Catholic university administrators' fears of monetary cut-offs,25 has gradually suppressed much that is distinctively Catholic in our universities, especially that in which a Catholic worldview suffuses appropriately all disciplines and activities. A university administration is, I think, free to make such changes, but only on condition that it should be completely clear and public about the corresponding shifts in its use of the term "Catholic."

To be a Catholic university in the sense in which most people understand the term when used without qualification, a university would have to consider, as explained in the previous Section, the full range of authentic Catholic teaching (the teaching of the bishops with the Pope) as internal to the university's understanding of all disciplines. That is, the teaching of the Church, with its proper "notes," is normative for what may be taught, how, and to whom.

Neither should a university offer any apologies for being Catholic in the fullest and strongest sense. If one believes the Catholic faith, then, though his grasp of its truth will always and necessarily be imperfect and incomplete, he will have available the greatest abundance of truth and the clearest light for understanding that in his day this world provides. Surely, this should be a matter not of pride but of enormous confidence and joy in the Lord.

Negatively, this means that dissent from official teaching would never be allowable in the classroom or in published research. Assuredly, the theologian is free to ponder, especially if his speculations are for the sake of gaining a fuller perspective, all sorts of doctrines that the Church would never approve as he reflects privately or with his theological peers. For that matter, a true withholding of assent to what is not a matter of faith26 despite his best efforts to give assent, is permissible, even obligatory in conscience at times. But he may not inflict his doubts or problems on those who are not professionally, psychologically, and spiritually mature enough to deal with them.

Albert Einstein showed strikingly, albeit on a merely natural level, the sort of academic integrity called for. Max Planck had "invented" the quantum as a mathematical construct that could give the right physical equations, but it was Einstein who, five years later, took the quantum seriously as physical fact and, by using it to explain the photoelectric effect, began quantum theory. A few years later, the theory was taken over and developed by such greats as Bohr, Heisenberg, Dirac, and Pauli. These men argued with great plausibility that the equations of the theory not only are radically statistical, giving only probabilities for finding a given value of some property—something Einstein was quite comfortable with—but are complete and adequate descriptions of the real world—something Einstein found totally unacceptable. He refused to consider the probabilistic aspects of quantum theory as intrinsic to the very constitution of the world.

Bohr regarded the theory as complete though this implied that an object has no actually existing properties except insofar as it is being observed or measured. But for Einstein, a theory that could not speak of the reality of what was not at the moment being observed by human beings had necessarily to be seen as incomplete. Einstein spent the rest of his life opposing Bohr's interpretation of quantum theory though such action isolated him increasingly from his peers, who for the most part accepted Bohr's approach. Finally, in 1935, Einstein with two colleagues published the great paper which claimed to prove from quantum mechanics itself that its description of the world is necessarily incomplete.27 The problem there set out for quantum theorists has yet to be satisfactorily resolved. Nevertheless, Bohr's interpretation, which Einstein disliked so strongly yet understood so profoundly remained in possession; the vast majority of his professional colleagues continued to accept it.

Now, during this same period he was writing a book, published just three years later, for a semi-popular audience that sketched the history of physics from Galileo onwards.28 When he came to quantum theory, he set out simply and accurately the majority understanding of quantum physics. Only a professional would notice the carefully wrought wording by which he remains at the epistemic level without broaching his ontological disagreement with Bohr's position. Thus he comments: "It is impossible, on the basis of quantum physics, to describe positions and velocities of an elementary particle. . . . It is hard necessity and not speculation of a desire for novelty which forces us to change the old classical view [his own]."29 His only qualification to this is, "But it always remains for the future to decide whether we chose the only possible way out and whether or not a better solution of our difficulties could not have been found."30 A moment later he adds, with the same quiet reservation, what to most readers must seem a total capitulation to Bohr's interpretation, "We have had to forsake the description of individual cases as objective happenings in space and time,"31 a statement he elaborates over the next few pages. Then, after a brief indication of the difficulties, acknowledged by all, that still remained for quantum field theory and nuclear theory, he remarks, "Will the further development be along the line chosen in quantum physics, or is it more likely that new revolutionary ideas will be introduced into physics? Will the road of advance again make a sharp turn, as it has so often done in the past?"32

So he ends his exposition. The theory in possession is presented strongly and truthfully, though the ontological status Bohr gave it is not mentioned. It was not for Einstein even to hint that there was anything wrong with Bohr's approach to quantum theory in a book for people who, though educated, would have no way of evaluating or defending themselves against any arguments that he, the greatest figure in the physics of his day, would offer them. He would not stoop to that, though with his peers he had just proposed a difficulty so profound that they have not managed to answer it adequately even today, nearly sixty years of controversy later.

This, in my judgment, is a model for every Catholic theologian, each of whom, moreover, is dealing with matters vastly more difficult to grasp than quantum physics and of far graver consequences for men's salvation.

To summarize this section, let me quote some lines from Donald Keefe, S.J. Though explicitly concerned with the identity of a Jesuit university, they apply with obvious changes to any Catholic university:

The commitment to the Roman Catholic Church, a commitment which is the sole raison d'être of [Jesuit] universities, is not to an idea, a theory, a hypothesis; it no more submits one to a theologoumenon than does marriage; the commitment is personal, to a person and not an abstraction. This again has been re-emphasized in the recent discussions among the Jesuit leadership in Rome: the Jesuit commitment is papal . . . . Caricature is the contemporary fate of this commitment, in an age in which secularism has succeeded in making such an affirmation of the faith to seem generally unintelligible if not ridiculous. Despite this widespread incomprehension, it specified the Jesuits and their mission: apart from this commitment, they are nothing at all.

The people who associate themselves with the educational mission of the Society of Jesus, whether as students, as faculty or as administrators of the Jesuit college or university, indeed are constituent elements of the Jesuit mission in higher education, but they are this in reliance upon and in terms of the prior reality of that mission in its Jesuit specificity. This does [not] enlist them in the Society, nor impose upon them vows which they have not taken: they enter the Jesuit mission freely; once participating in it, they remain free, to remain or to leave, but they never acquire that freedom which the Jesuits themselves do not possess, the freedom to change the Jesuit commitment to the hierarchical Church. The Jesuit college or university does not have this freedom, and what it does not have it cannot give to its members, be they students, faculty or administrators.33

Difficulties from Confusion of Rights

Here I wish to return briefly to the problems generated particularly for Catholic universities when the various kinds of rights are not adequately distinguished but are lumped together under AF.

A number of Catholic colleges and universities have felt themselves embarrassed by students' demands to have pro-abortion or pro-"gay" organizations approved by the university for the use of university facilities and the receiving of university funds. Assuredly, the natural right to research guarantees the students freedom from university interference with their inquiries after truth, whether individually or in a group. When coupled to the right to teach, this freedom would extend to all their discussions of opinions among themselves. But nothing requires that the university open any of its facilities or grant funding for these discussions. For the university has its rights also, those incorporated in its IF. So long as it does not take action to impede free discussion among its students, it remains free to restrict its funds and facilities in accord with its declared identity as Catholic. Especially is this the case when the organizations are explicitly biased against the express purposes of the university. Official status through university approval or "recognition"—a verbal cop-out—has no basis in any natural right.

So, also, students who wish to invite some "big name" in the field of their interest are free, so far as the university is concerned, to do so. But there is not obligation of any sort on the university to assist with funds or space; rather, if the lecture or conference is foreseen to be hostile to the goals of the university, there is at least an initial presumption of an obligation to refuse funds or utilization of facilities.

A common retort to this line of thought is that the students should be exposed to all opinions, that AF demands that no ideas be unheard. But this is simply equivocation with AF. Unless the university has, in accord with its own goals, established a contractual relationship with the student body to support any student organization's choice of speakers, there is no civil right involved at all. And even if such a contractual relationship exists, it is not that of AF. (What too often gives it a prima facie appearance of AF is the fact that faculty are not always above utilizing student organizations for the furthering of their own ideas; and such faculty may complain that their freedom to hear these ideas is being infringed. But the same distinction is operative for the faculty. If they wish to hear some authority speak, it is not ordinarily the task of the university to prevent them; but precisely because of its IF neither does it have any obligation to grant use of its funds or facilities for the talk, unless such use has been provided for in the faculty contracts).

We forget too easily, however, when the demand that all ideas be heard is made, that it is for just this reason that Catholic universities exist. Where else at this level will the students hear distinctively Catholic ideas, ideals, modes of understanding, and ways of viewing the world? It is the truly Catholic ideas that are always in greatest danger of not being heard. In most matters of great public controversy, today at least, the media are already drowning the students with materials and arguments all on one side, e.g., defense of abortion and premature cessation of medical treatment, feminism and "inclusive language," "alternative lifestyles," utilitarian ethics, individualism in the guise of "privacy." What students need to hear is clear, patient, and very complete defense of basic Catholic truth—often today their primary need is to learn the rudiments of the faith. Let the scholar probe for the values in feminism or in utilitarianism; let the student be shown simply that there exists at least one other intellectually respectable alternative, perhaps many.

Another form of this retort, when extended to the faculty level, is the claim that strongly pluralist scholarly debate is an essential function of the university. Such debate among theologians is the great purifier of doctrine; controversy is healthy since it always deepens the Church's insight into revelation; and the like. The aura of unreality surrounding such remarks comes in part from the fact that very little of this debate occurs within our more "pluralistic" departments. Rather, there are factions, departmental politics, struggles to gain power for one's own side when hiring new faculty, each group otherwise going its own way. In brief, the departments are usually characterized by coteries of the like-minded rather than by vigorous debates among those who differ.

Yet this is excusable and hardly unexpected. Serious debate is not usually possible except between those with more than an average degree of competence in the specialized area under discussion. Those with less, if not defensive, tend to be reluctant to engage questions that are marginal to their own scholarly interests and that would consume time better spent on their own specific areas of research. The great challengers of one's own opinions are rarely members of one's own university. Rather, serious debate is normally carried on through professional articles and books or by papers at scholarly conferences with the private discussions thereby engendered.

In any case, can Catholic schools really afford the luxury of faculty positions for challengers of all major areas of magisterial teaching when these departments are quite unable, through lack of funds and of positions available, to present positively and in depth all major areas of Catholic thought? The mere fact of the bringing in of outside speakers is an implicit acknowledgment of the difficulty. Now, there may be some place for "sparks" to be ignited among the faculty, much more rarely among the students, from the visits of live adversaries. If so, bring one in on occasion to address the appropriate group of faculty with their sufficiently advanced graduate students—though I think that real "sparks" are more likely to be struck by the current heroes of nondissenting Catholic intellectual life, such as were in their day Dawson, de Lubac, Lonergan, or von Balthasar.

A less frequently perceived difficulty comes from the fact that the natural rights of research and teaching, as also those based on faith, are grounded in the accessibility of truth. All these rights and AF with them will perish without effective acknowledgment of this accessibility. Yet not all academics recognize this, even in some Catholic theology departments. The problem is well illustrated by some comments of author Jorge Luis Borges:

If life's meaning were explained to us, we probably wouldn't understand it. To think that a man can find it is absurd. We can live without understanding what the world is or who we are. The important things are the ethical instinct and the intellectual instinct, are they not? The intellectual instinct is the one that makes us search while knowing that we are never going to find the answer. I think Lessing said that if God were to declare that in His right hand He had the truth and in his left hand He had the investigation of the truth, Lessing would ask God to open His left hand—he would want God to give him the investigation of the truth, not the truth itself. Of course he would want that, because the investigation permits infinite hypotheses, and the truth is only one, and that does not suit the intellect, because the intellect needs curiosity. In the past, I tried to believe in a personal God, but I do not think I try anymore. I remember in that respect an admirable expression of Bernard Shaw, "God is in the making."34

But consider what is involved in this "search for truth." Can we actually find the truth as a result of searching? If so, can we know that we have found it? If to either question we say no, then of what value is the "search for truth?" Either the truth cannot be found or we cannot know that it has been found. The search is an idler game than hunting the snark. Some would claim that the effort of the search develops one's intellectual powers. But to what end? Are developed intellectual powers a good in themselves? Is this one truth, at least, that is known? To spend one's time searching for the impossible seems not only silly but hurtful. It could hardly be the subject of a right—though one might properly argue that it could be rightly prohibited. To draw a salary for such a search under the guise of serious effort towards an attainable goal seems a fraud that obligates those who so act to restitution.

If, then, we say yes, there is no reason to think that we have not already found a fair amount of truth through our centuries of searching. Indeed, there are good reasons for thinking that we have found a great deal of it, as is seen evident in the natural sciences. A fortiori it would seem that those to whom God Himself chose to reveal His truth and whom He selected to transmit it to others would have grasped that truth and transmitted it. If relating, as Christians hold, to human salvation, then such truth is still being transmitted and known by and within His Church.35 The importance of preserving such truth, of manifesting it, and of defending it from misunderstanding, misinterpretation, distortion, and human selectivity, whether this be done in parishes or in universities, seems equally evident.


The great problem at the center of all disputes about faith and academic theology lies in the fact that even on the natural order a truly new idea (good or bad) comes in out of the blue, requiring a new perspective of anyone who would grasp its meaning and import. Time is needed to examine it and weigh it and to discern its consequences, the more so as it is usually imperfectly formulated, even as judged by the standards of its originator. If it is a theological idea, it impinges directly on human salvation. The closer it is to the truth, if yet it be false, and the more popular devotion it stirs up, the more dangerous it is. Any transit from genuine discovery to teaching must be singularly careful and subject to episcopal evaluation.

Since our grasp of truth is always partial, since we remain, at our best, weak of mind and inclined to evil from our youth, and since the Lord has not promised the fullness of redemption in the present age, there is no understanding of AF or of universities or of anything else that will stop the quarrels and contentions we are concerned with. Recall the troubles of such men as Courtney Murray, Danielou, and de Lubac. Yet it was de Lubac, well after <Humani Generis>, who recommended to me, for a statement of the attitude called for in such circumstances, the little book of the French theologian, Georges Chantraine, S.J., <Vraie et fausse liberté du théologien>:

[N]o original thought can be immediately assimilated by the best minds, a fortiori by the entire social body. Why be astonished, then, that in the presence of theological thought that is truly new the magisterium hesitates for a time, sometimes long, is circumspect, prudent, reticent, or even that it hobbles an original effort through its still narrow views. That is the ordinary situation, often very painful, of the search for God such as it is carried on here below.

How slow are you to believe, and uncomprehending! Do we keep enough in mind this reproach of Jesus to His apostles? This slowness of the Twelve neither halts nor hinders His going up to Jerusalem. Their lack of understanding does not prevent Jesus from dying on the Cross. On the contrary, their slowness calls forth the patience of Jesus—who today as then does not cease to invite us to penitence. Lack of understanding "makes necessary" His sufferings—which by breaking our heart, opens the eyes of our understanding.36

Rev. Paul M. Quay, S.J. is Research Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University of Chicago.


1 "The Catholic University and Its Inherent Promise," <National Jesuit News> 22, pp. 28 & 11 (#7, June 1993).

2 Sometimes intermixed with these will be putative freedoms to teach one's peers via journals and books, or to teach the general public via the popular media. Or again students or faculty may claim a right to open the university's premises to outsiders, if this is done for academic purposes; or conversely, an outsider may claim a right so to lecture. What may be said of these freedoms will be discussed in more detail below.

3 Though a certain relationality is often present in research, this depends chiefly on the previsioned use of the knowledge sought—one seeks it for one's employer, one's students, one's professional peers.

4 Throughout this paper, "to teach X" is equivalent to "to teach that X is true"; "to teach about X," however, implies nothing as to the truth of X.

5 This right calls for more detailed analysis than given here, since it is conditioned essentially by the freedoms of those who might be taught, the predominant right of parents with regard the teaching of their children, and a number of other factors.

6 Though our discussion speaks directly of AF in universities, on most points there is no difference in principle between AF for teachers in grammar school and professors in graduate school. The chief difference is that there are fewer and fewer non-academics who are competent to judge the truth of what is taught as one moves upwards. The right of parental control over a young person's education may also have ceased by the time he has reached the graduate level.

7 The same interests have been operative also in the institutionalization of teaching.

8 <The Magna Charta of European Universities>, adopted in Bologna, Sept. 18, 1988, in the English translation from the International Federation of Catholic Universities seems to make such a claim in its first "Fundamental Principle," though the text is awkward enough to leave the matter in doubt.

9 This notion may be compared with the definition given in the Apostolic Constitution <Ex Corde Ecclesiae> (Pope John Paul II, <Origins> 20, 265-276 [#17, o.4.90]): "Academic freedom is the guarantee given to those involved in teaching and research that, within their specific specialized branch of knowledge and according to the methods proper to that specific area, they may search for the truth wherever analysis and evidence lead them and may teach and publish the results of this search, keeping in mind the cited criteria, that is, safeguarding the rights of the individual and of society within the confines of the truth and the common good" (note 15, 276).

In this definition, repeated often and almost without modification throughout the entire document, a good many different things are fused together that it seems important to distinguish, e.g., the natural right to search for truth, the very different social relationship involved in any teaching, the nature of a university as a legal entity, etc. This paper may serve as a sort of expansion of and commentary on the definition just quoted, especially with respect to the two "cited criteria."

10 Admitting the serious practical difficulties that would be likely, it does not seem possible in principle to exclude civil intervention in cases, say, of intellectual seduction (perversion or corruption of the mind of minors), failure to teach what a course is offered to teach, the teaching as true what is patently not (provided again that it is the academically competent who pass this judgment).

11 Nothing said here or elsewhere in Section II is to be taken beyond the context of the civil aspects of the university's life.

12 The points made in note 8 and corresponding text give adequate reason to avoid the language of autonomy. But more, it is ludicrous in view of state charters, accrediting associations, government funding, and the millions of dollars spent each year by our larger Catholic universities in paperwork in order to show compliance with the host of governmental regulations, many of which directly touch what is academic. The fact that this chaining of the university academically is not much noticed is due largely to the fact that it acts negatively, to exclude, e.g., religious "permeation" of the curriculum.

13 Cf. Paul M. Quay, S.J., "Temporality and the Structure of Physics as Human Endeavor," in <Physical Sciences and History of Physics> (Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science, vol. 82), ed. R.S. Cohen & M.W. Wartofsky, 199-230, Dordrecht: D. Reidel (1984), at 220-228.

14 Thus, the incomprehensions that marked the Galilean overturning of then current Aristotelianism, needful as this revolution probably was, are only now beginning to be purged from the intellectual community.

15 Though it is small credit to a teacher that he can stimulate the brilliant or self-starting student, there are, nonetheless, problems with bright students also. They are easily bored. They may need a spark from outside to kindle their latent interests. They are often arrogant and quite unaware that they are the easiest victims of skillful propaganda. But they can be well provided for via examinations for advanced standing, supplementary reading, special-topics courses, tutorials, and personal contact with deeply Christian professors.

16 Cf., e.g., Cc. 211 & 212 in the New Code of Canon Law.

17 In its Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, <Dei Verbum>, #4/2: "Oeconomia . . . christiana, utpote foedus novum et definitivum, numquam praeteribit, et nulla iam nova revelatio publica expectanda est ante gloriosam manifestationem Domini nostri Iesu Christi."

18 As with all strictly oral cultures, this orality makes for a certain conservatism, one that is ineluctable for Christians. Only with the preservation of what may at times look like a great undigested mass of accreted doctrines, philosophies, cultures, habits, vices, social activities can the theologian find anything to quarry for his own efforts of refinement of understanding.

19 Michael J. Buckley, S.J., " 'In Hunc Potissimum . . .' Ignatius' Understanding of the Jesuit University," <Readings in Ignatian Higher Education> 1, 18-27 (#1 Spring, 1989) at 25.

20 Cf. Ladislas Orsy, "Fidelity and Freedom: the Issue of Dissent," <ASSEMBLY 1989: Jesuit Ministry in Higher Education: Fidelity and Freedom> (Washington, DC: Jesuit Conference, 1990), 24-35.

21 Cf. Jude, v. 3.

22 On this and much else in this section cf. Stephen Barr, "Church Authority and the Science of Theology," <Catholic Higher Education: Proceedings of the Eleventh Convention of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars>, ed. P.L. Williams (Pittston, PA: Northeast Books, 1989), 137-142.

23 Recall that the secularized notion of AF has been the instrument of choice in limiting, enslaving, and finally eliminating the Catholic understanding of AF—for we should not forget that it is the latter that, in various and ever developing forms, prevailed when the European universities began.

24 Cf. William J. Byron, S.J., "A Catholic Reflection on Academic Freedom," <Origins> 18, 597-604 (#36, Feb. 16, 1989), at 600.

25 That these fears may not, at present, be well grounded can be seen from Kenneth D. Whitehead, <Catholic Colleges and Federal Funding> (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1988), and also his "Institutional Autonomy, Academic Freedom and Government Support," <Catholic Higher Education: Proceedings of the Eleventh convention of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars>, ed. P.L. Williams (Pittston, PA: Northeast Books, 1989), 13-20, and also: William Joseph Wagner, "A Response to Kenneth Whitehead: The Relation of Autonomy and Academic Freedom to Government Support," ibid., 21-35.

26 "Withholding of assent" is not the same as "dissent," which latter seems always to imply some sort of teaching of one's counterposition and one's reasons for holding it to those incapable of professional response.

27 A. Einstein, B. Podolsky, N. Rosen, "Can the quantum-mechanical description of physical reality be considered complete?," <Physical Review 47> (1935), 777.

28 <The Evolution of Physics>, with Leopold Infeld (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1938).

29 Ibid., 286-287.

30 Ibid., 287.

31 Ibid.

32 Ibid., 293-294.

33 Donald J. Keefe, S.J., "The Jesuit University as 'Complex Institution': A Jesuit Reply to Dr. Quade," 30 pp. (preprint).

34 Interview reported by Amelia Barili entitled "Borges on Life and Death" in The <New York Times Book Review>, July 13, 1986.

35 Cf. Vatican II, <Dei Verbum>, #7.

36 Georges Chantraine, S.J., <Vraie et fausse liberté du théologien>, Desclée de Brouwer, 1969, 104-106.

This article was taken from the Winter 1994 issue of "Faith & Reason". Subscriptions available from Christendom Press, 2101 Shenandoah Shores Road, Ft. Royal, VA 22630, 703-636-2900, Fax 703-636-1655. Published quarterly at $20.00 per year.