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Catholic teachers need sense of mission

Hon urges university teachers to face up to modern challenges

Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-fai (far left) meets with Archbishop Peter Liu Cheng-chung (middle) and President Bernard Li of the Fu Jen Catholic University Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-fai (far left) meets with Archbishop Peter Liu Cheng-chung (middle) and President Bernard Li of the Fu Jen Catholic University
  • Francis Kuo, New Taipei
  • Taiwan
  • February 25, 2011
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Teaching staff in Catholic universities should have a sense of mission in their academic researches, said a Vatican official when he visited Fu Jen Catholic University, one of the three Church-run higher educational institutes in Taiwan.

Doing academic research is “not just extending the database but should also broaden life,” Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-fai said. The secretary for the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples talked to around 50 staff members on February 24, the day after he arrived Taiwan for a pastoral and private visit.

The theologian-archbishop warned about the challenges that Catholic universities are facing, such as relaxations on morality and secularization.

Abortion used to be banned but now many countries have legalized it. Secularization has created an imbalance between spirituality and materialism, he noted.

Catholic universities should give more care and concern to homosexuals and give guidance to their behavior, he said when he was told that another big challenge to the mission of Catholic university is homosexuality.

Taiwan government has required local universities to be open on gender equality, especially allowing the setting up of homosexual students’ group.

Archbishop Hon stressed that the Catholic Church has to uphold the holiness of matrimony, noting that families formed by homosexuals would weaken the function of a family while creating more social problems, such as surrogacy.

Besides the dialogue session with the staff members, the prelate also met with the university’s board of directors and its president.

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