December 4, 2007
Dear Marquette University Board of Trustees,
We are a group of Milwaukee area citizens, including students and alumni, who wish to work with you in upholding MU’s “values-centered curriculum,” which is focused on Gospel values. One of the conflicts and contradictions we specifically would like to discuss with you is Marquette’s hosting and condoning of the military science departments: Navy, Army, Marines and Air Force that teach values in direct conflict with the Christian Gospel values espoused at Marquette. For example, the Army states in its manual:
“Your personal values may and probably do extend beyond the Army values, to include such things as political, cultural, or religious beliefs. However, if you’re to be an Army leader and a person of integrity, these values must reinforce, not contradict, Army values.”
On the other hand, the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” teaches:
The citizen is obliged in conscience not to follow the directives of civil authorities when they are contrary to the demands of the moral order, to the fundamental rights of persons or the teachings of the Gospel. Refusing obedience to civil authorities, when their demands are contrary to those of an upright conscience, finds its justification in the distinction between serving God and serving the political community.”
We believe that Marquette students, like the students from the eight other universities and colleges that train at the MU departments of military science, should be allowed to have access to military officer training and scholarships. Also, Marquette should be able to open its campus to military recruiting and make available military training, like the other eight area colleges. Thus, MU would still be available for Federal Grants under the Solomon Act.
We simply would like to talk with you about Marquette, like UWM and the other seven colleges, no longer hosting any department of military science. By hosting this military department whose curriculum is not subject to the moral standards of all other MU departments, Marquette is, in effect, endorsing values contrary to the Gospel and teaching of the Church.
We hope for a discussion with you, the Board of Directors, on ways Marquette can be faithful to the Gospel. Will you share a dialog with us on this issue of morality? We can be reached by mail via Patrick Kennelly at 1131 N. 21st, Milwaukee, WI 53208. If possible we would like to begin this conversation with you before Christmas break.
On behalf of
Mark Peters, Phil Runkel, Daniel Rosenow, Jeanne DeSimone Sieger, Joyce Ellwanger, Don Timmerman, Roberta Thurstin, Sr. Virgine Lawinger, Patrick T. Kennelly, Timothy M. Prendergast, Barbara Aho and Joseph Radoszewski, Bill Sell, Marilynn Weiland, Patrick Ruel