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Journal of Catholic Higher Education

The only international journal dedicated to contemporary Catholic higher education

Now Available: Volume 36, Number 1

The ideas of John Henry Newman, interreligious relationships, and embedding the Catholic Intellectual Tradition into the economics curriculum are just a few of the topics addressed in the current issue of the Journal of Catholic Higher Education, which probes some of the academy’s most pressing questions.


In this issue:

The Ecclesiology of Catholic University Mission: Learning from John Henry Newman and Vatican II
Timothy P. Muldoon
Catholic universities in the United States have developed complexity reflective of the larger development of modern universities and “multiversities.” This complexity, together with the decline in the numbers of sponsoring religious orders and diocesan priests, presents new challenges for the sustaining of a theologically rooted, ecclesially oriented mission. This essay draws from the writings of John Henry Newman as a resource for considering the challenges of integration of knowledge, and goes on to examine the documents of the Second Vatican Council as foundations for discussing a contemporary ecclesiology of Catholic university mission, its proyecto social, amidst the complexities of university life.


Peer Ministry: Students Leading Conversations on Interreligious Issues at Catholic Colleges and Universities
Helen M. Wolf
A survey and interviews completed by peer ministers at Catholic colleges and universities in the United States from October 2012 to February 2013 reveal that the interviewed student ministers are engaging peers in interreligious dialogue. The research corroborates the premise that the promotion of interreligious relationships is important to this generation and is integral to the work of campus ministry offices. This article proposes that peer ministry programs, which exist at almost half of U.S. Catholic colleges and universities, can guide and nurture interreligious relationships on Catholic college and university campuses in order to understand more fully the faith and religious outlooks of their peers. These student leaders can help shape the nature of a very needed, yet still emerging, context for interreligious dialogue. A proposed educational model for the formation and training of peer ministers can also serve to prepare campus ministry professionals engaging in interreligious dialogue.


Changing the Narrative for Catholic Higher Education
Thomas W. Smith
Throughout the twentieth century, Catholic higher education in the United States modelled its institutional structures and intellectual life on the best standards and practices of the secular academy. The question for Catholic higher education became: How can we remain distinctively Catholic while engaging in these projects? Yet the situation today is quite different and calls for a different narrative. The contemporary crisis in higher education means that the institutional and intellectual paradigms of the secular academy no longer provide a stable foundation on which to build a distinctively Catholic edifice. So a first step for Catholic institutions trying to work their way out of their crises is to find a new narrative to describe and respond to the challenges that face them. 


Can We Talk? Employing Conversation to Ameliorate Undergraduate Distress at Catholic Colleges and Universities
Susannah J.P. Petro
This article addresses students’ need for robust relationships to counteract the epidemic of loneliness, anxiety, and depression pervading contemporary undergraduate life, and proposes that Catholic colleges and universities can find in Catholic theological anthropology a warrant for recognizing relationship-building as central to their mission. The article (1) identifies three socio-cultural forces (individualism, hyperconnectivity, and confrontational styles of communication) that impinge upon student well-being and predispose them to attenuated relationship and disconnection, (2) highlights the unique pressures of undergraduate education that increase student stress and anxiety, and (3) examines the Catholic theological conviction that the human person, made in the Divine image, is made whole through authentic relationship. The article identifies conversation as foundational to relationship and offers a theoretical model for teaching and implementing a praxis of intentional conversation across the academic, residential, and co-curricular divisions of Catholic undergraduate institutions to foster students’ ability to enter and sustain relationships.


Teaching the Catholic Intellectual Tradition in Economics
Emil B. Berendt
While much work has been done to explicitly incorporate ethics and Catholic social thought into the business curriculum, comparatively little has been done in the field of economics. This paper attempts to fill that gap by arguing that integrating Heinrich Pesch’s Solidarism into the standard economics curriculum seamlessly introduces Catholic social ethics and, more broadly, the Catholic Intellectual Tradition to students. In particular, Pesch uses the language of economics in expressing Catholic social thought, which makes it fit naturally into the economics classroom. The contributions of the Catholic view of the nature of the human person to welfare economics also are explored.



Journal cover

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Subscribers can access journal content online through the Villanova University Falvey Memorial Library. User registration is required, and you must be a subscriber (or at an ACCU member institution) to read full articles online. Non-subscribers may access abstracts. Access to selected issues of the journal's forerunner, Current Issues in Catholic Higher Education, is also available through the Falvey Library site.




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