I know that many of you have been interested and curious about Fr Iggy O’ Donovan’s thoughts on various topics we have discussed on Protect the Pope, as a representative of dissent, reform, progressivism, liberalism, spirit of Vatican II, or any of the categories that we use during a time when the noun ‘Catholic’ is no longer enough. I welcome his contribution to Protect the Pope because since the founding of this site I have valued a variety of voices, faithful and loyal, atheist, secularist, gay activists. What sets Fr Iggy’s contributions apart from other dissenting or reform-minded Catholics is that he doesn’t assume a superior, dismissive or patronising tone. However, like other dissenters or reform minded Catholics he can be evasive when asked direct questions. Someone has sent me links to Fr Iggy’s debate with Fr David O’Hanlon on Humanae Vitae. Fr Iggy compares Humanae Vitae to an embarrassing uncle who sits in the corner during weddings that everybody ignores. On the contrary, on Protect the Pope Humanae Vitae is one of our favourite uncles who guides us about life with his hard won wisdom.
Also, a fellow alumnus of the Gregorian University sent me this background information about Fr Fuchs. Fr Iggy mentioned that Fr Josef Fuchs SJ was a Moral Theologian who taught at the Gregorian University – even though he disagreed with Humanae Vitae. In fact Fr Fuchs was on the Papal Commission set up by Pope Paul VI to look at the matter of the Contraceptive Pill.
But what Fr Iggy does not mention (or perhaps does not know) is that after Humanae Vitae, Fr Fuchs was no longer allowed to lecture on the Sixth Commandment at all at the Gregorian University. I had Fr Fuchs for General Principles of Moral Theology – and he never said anything about Humanae Vitae. It was not part of his course.