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Catholic university still can’t say what will be in LGBT workshops

Event will allegedly ‘follow the teachings of the Catholic Church’

A Catholic university in Texas is still unable or unwilling to comment on some pro-LGBT workshops being hosted there in the coming school year, though the school has insisted the events will line up with Catholic teaching.

The University of St. Thomas in Houston has been under fire recently after reports that the school will host two LGBT events in the fall. Over 22,000 people signed a petition urging the school to drop the events.

The controversy began in the school’s student government this past year when the newly formed Diversity and Inclusion Committee requested funds for the LGBT events. Those funds were originally denied because the organizers could not clarify what the events were to consist of. The funding only went through after the student government took steps to ensure the workshops would be in line with Catholic teaching.

Yet even as the fall semester approaches, school officials are still not clarifying what the events will consist of and what specifically they will teach.

Richard Ludwick, the president of the university, released a letter late last month slamming the “distortion of truth that has been circulating” around the proposed events.

“The fact is, the University of St. Thomas is a Catholic university faithful to the Magisterium and its teachings for more than 70 years.”

“The event… will be presented as an exploration and clarification of Catholic teaching on same-sex attraction,” the letter continued.

Ludwick’s letter offered no information at all regarding the content of the events. The president’s office was also unable to provide any further details.

“The event is in the very early planning stages but as stated in Dr. Ludwick’s message, will follow the teachings of the Catholic Church. At this point, no further details are available,” presidential assistant Anne Lambert told The College Fix via email. Ludwick “currently is out of the country,” Lambert said at the time.

Priest leading discussions advocates gay chastity

In his letter, Ludwick said the events will be headed by the Raphael Salzillo, a Catholic priest. Salzillo will also be a speaker at this year’s Courage and EnCourage Annual Conference. Courage is a group that offers “pastoral support in the form of spiritual guidance, community prayer support, and fellowship” for individuals experiencing same-sex attraction, helping them to lead lives of chastity in accordance with orthodox Christian teachings.

The Fix reached out to Salzillo for more information on the events, including what exactly will be taught and how the teaching will be “explored and clarified.” Salzillo did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Salzillo “will be joining the UST Faculty this fall,” the president’s letter added.

Ludwick directed sharp criticism at those who have raised concerns about the university’s event.

“Some may feel threatened by UST, its growth and goodness, and instead of standing with Christ, and our university, choose to pursue paths planned by the father of lies and promote those lies,” he wrote.

“Please know that this Catholic university continues to grow in Christ, following the words of our motto, ‘Crescamus in Christo,’” he added.

MORE: Tensions at Catholic university over LGBT event

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About the Author
College Fix contributor Maria Lencki is a student at Franciscan University of Steubenville double majoring in political science and communication arts.