Sunday, November 15, 2009

Professor John Cavadini Has Been Knighted By The Vatican

Granted, 99% of the folks reading this blog have no idea who John Cavadini is. That's ok. I get to tell you about him, which is an honor by itself.

When you hear stuff about the theology faculty at ND, you normally are getting stuff from Richard McBrien or Hugh Page or some heretical nonsense from a lesser known name. I had classes with a few of them, Prof. Page included. A lot of souls in purgatory benefitted from my time with these folks.

Not so with Prof. Cavadini. First of all, as a human being, the man is a marvel. He is a kind and generous person who still managed to get his PhD and not lose either of those qualities (or his good sense). Second, his teaching was great in that you actually learned stuff. I took a his class "Roads to God." It was the best. Period. He had us going through everyone from Gregory the Great's biography of St. Benedict, to Dante, to St. Teresa of Avila. I'm not sure I can put into words how refreshing this was. It's not that there wasn't Catholic stuff at ND. There was.

There was also rampant liturgical abuse, the aforementioned whackjob professors, an increasing push to secularize the school, and the sowing of the seeds that would ripen into the Obama invitation. Watching a guy like Prof. Cavadini work his classroom magic without seeming to give a crap for all these other forces at work and still making stuff interesting was probably a bit like seeing Elvis in concert. It's not really miraculous or anything, but it is special. To show that I'm not just exaggerating, here's an older article about him from what looks to be Prof. Freddoso's page.

Now that you know a bit about him, you can understand why I was so pleased to find out that he'd been named to the Order of St. Gregory the Great. When you read what the Order is, you might not think it's a big deal. Personally, I think being knighted for anything is worth a mention. Being knighted by the Pope should be pretty high up there on the achievement list for any Catholic.

There are some ND folks that frequent here. If you happen to know Prof. Cavadini, tell him congratulations and that it's good to see a rep for the school getting some kind of positive publicity.


Javier said...

Kudos to you random blogger/Domer alum! I had a meeting with Prof. Cavadini this morning and it was the best 30 minutes of my day. He also neglected to mention anything surrounding his award because he is so humble...that's what Google searches are for!

Anyway, from a senior domer and fellow "Roads to God" alum, blessings and a Happy Thanksgiving!

Anonymous said...

Just stumbled on this blog after a doing a google search of Prof. Cavadini. I am thinking about applying to Notre Dame in theology and I noticed you said you went there and took theology classes? Was that what you were studying there, theology? If so would you recommend someone going there if they are looking for Orthodox teaching that follows Church teaching? From what it sounds, it may be liberal and that has me worried. Can you still receive a good education there if you pick the right professors? In other words how many Prof. Cavadini's are there at Notre Dame?