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Differential treatment of two Jesuits.

New York -- Writer and editor Dimitri Cavalli noticed the media's sympathy after Father Thomas Reese resigned as editor of America, the liberal Jesuit weekly magazine ("Controversial editor resigns," C.I. July/August 2005). The Associated Press, Reuters, the New York Times, PBS, National Public Radio, network and cable television, and Commonweal all provided coverage.

Cavalli contrasted this excess with the scant attention to the case of Father Joseph Fessio, S.J., co-founder of Ignatius Press. Father Fessio taught theology at the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco and founded its "great books" program. Father Fessio publicly criticized the university for overhauling that program; hiring an openly-"gay" dean; and staging The Vagina Monologues--in Lent. Disillusioned, Father Fessio announced in March 2002 the founding of Campion College as an alternative to the University of San Francisco.

Father Thomas Smolich, S.J., provincial of the California Jesuits, ordered Father Fessio to discontinue any role with Campion; and punished him with an assignment as a smalltown hospital chaplain. The only mainstream media outlet to carry the story was the San lose Mercury News. Three months later, Father Smolich did allow Father Fessio to become chancellor of Ave Maria University in Naples, Florida--where he remains today.
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Title Annotation:United States; Thomas Reese and Joseph Fessio
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2005
Words:201
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