Saint Mary’s College of California in Moraga (SMC) held a symposium on the future of Catholic higher education October 24. A panel of distinguished leaders in education discussed how Catholic higher education has a profound role to play in today’s society and the challenges it faces. They spoke about the need for clear, vivid messaging about the uniqueness and relevance of Catholic higher education’s mission, the utility of maintaining the dynamic tension among the sources of authority in the Catholic tradition and the necessity for the unification of reason with faith.
Panelist Bishop Sánchez Sorondo, this year’s SMC Montini Fellow and chancellor of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academies of the Sciences and the Social Sciences, noted the purpose of the first Catholic universities-to see Christ as the teacher, to provide a Catholic vision of the world and to respond to new reasoning arising in society. “We need to go back to that great vision,” he said, “to combine faith and reason.”
The panel also discussed financial sustainability during challenging economic times and the increasing number of students who cannot afford private college tuition.