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Kenneth Woodward, a contributing editor on religion for Newsweek , has an editorial in the New York Times on what Benedict might say on Catholic education tomorrow. One notes first that Mr. Woodward has added his name to the list of people who are eager to tell Benedict what he should be saying to the Church and the country, though unlike some on that list Woodward also seems eager to listen to what the pope actually says. Furthermore, the tone of the article seems unnecessarily antagonistic; Benedict is a thoughtful scholar and pastor, not a partisan crank. This comes through in the text of the address the pope would have given at La Sapienza in Rome. But despite his tone, Woodward’s point is a sound one: More American Catholics are attending public universities and secular private universities than Catholic ones, and it would be good if Benedict’s speech took that into consideration. “What these students and their teachers need is a vision of what it means to be an educated Catholic, not just a lecture on preserving Catholic institutional identity,” Woodward writes. “If Benedict can manage that, his words will be worth remembering.” Given the content of his other speeches and given the intellectual force of his mind, I imagine that whatever Benedict says, it will be worth bearing in mind and remembering.



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