The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
OrbisNonSufficit, SergLts, RusFrog, JanSorman, Icons
5654 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
0 registered members (), 149 guests, and 184 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Byzantine Nebraska
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
Upgraded Russian icon corner
Russian Greek Catholic Global Congress
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics34,866
Posts412,726
Members5,654
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 2 of 2 1 2
Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Request [Re: Jean Francois] #319262 04/18/09 04:28 AM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 396
J
johnzonaras Offline
Member
Offline
Member
J
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 396
It is nice to see some one respond with some thought rather than a knee jerk reaction.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Request [Re: johnzonaras] #319266 04/18/09 05:34 AM
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 458
Erie Byz Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 458
I think it's good that Catholic symbols were covered up. I know many people are thinking, "Are you nuts, he's speaking at a Catholic University?" I just might be, but that's not the point right now ;-) Anyways, I'm assuming they chose GU because it's an academic setting with high quality facilities, with that being said I think for Catholic identity it is good to cover up the symbols. Right now many Catholic are trying to disassociate themselves with the President over his views regarding issues of life and since this is the case why would we want overtly Catholic symbols being "advertised" with him, it would seem as almost an endorsement from Catholicism. We could look at it by GU saying "ok, we'll let him use our facilities because he is the President, but we do not want to associate our Catholic identity with his viewpoints," it would be yielding to the office and not the person. I hope these ramblings make as much sense as they did in my head.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Request [Re: johnzonaras] #319269 04/18/09 08:36 AM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 706
I
indigo Offline
Member
Offline
Member
I
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 706
Amen,Jean Francois and johnzanaras!

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Request [Re: indigo] #319282 04/18/09 03:01 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,540
Administrator Offline
John
Member
Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,540
It seems to me that politicians - including President Obama - are always eager to gain the implicit endorsement that comes with speaking at universities and religious institutions.

It also seems to me that such universities and religious institutions should never cover up their message, and as Catholics our message to the world is Jesus Christ.

If any politician is uncomfortable with the symbols of the place he is visiting he ought to go somewhere else to speak. It is certainly logical for Catholic institutions to welcome pro-life politicians and shun pro-death politicians. President Obama could have been invited to a debate on the issues, one in which the Christian viewpoint was also expressed. But a pulpit at a Catholic university was inappropriate as a venue for much of his pro-death platform. Pray for the president, and for all of our elected leaders. That they may find Christ and respect life.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Request [Re: Administrator] #319292 04/18/09 04:54 PM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,217
L
Lawrence Offline
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,217

Catholic institutions are not public forums. If an individual's views are publicly known to be contrary to that of the Church's, they should not be allowed to speak there, period.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Lawrence] #319296 04/18/09 07:00 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
L
Latin Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
Resurrectio Domini, spes nostra

Georgetown University hides a relatively little-known Christian symbol (the letters IHS, which are far less known and less recognizable than, say, a crucifix) during Pres. Obama's speech. From the comments so far, it is clear that this is offensive to many Catholics and many separated Christian brethren. It seems their ire is directed in equal measure at the White House and Georgetown University.

Who does Pres. Obama think might be offended if he appeared beneath the letters IHS?

I guess it might offend some secularists, who don't want to see any sign of religion in the public square. But aren't the secularists going to be offended anyway, because Pres. Obama spoke at a Catholic university, and even referred to the words of Jesus?

It might also offend some followers of non-Christian religions. But many followers of non-Christian religions in fact want a more prominent role for religion, not just their own but any religon, in the public square. Many devout followers of other religions tend to show respect for devout Christians.

So, by trying not to upset the delicate feelings of secularists and perhaps some followers of non-Christian religions, I would guess he has ended up offending far more people than he has pleased. Even worse, he has given the impression that he doesn't really know which values he stands for.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Latin Catholic] #319301 04/18/09 07:41 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 262
H
Halia12 Offline
Member
Offline
Member
H
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 262
I guess I will never understand Americans. You guys elected this man and yet he is shown such disrespect as a person. I cannot understand why you have to attact his person: why can't you just be concerned with his policies and discuss that without showing disrespect to his office as president.

By the way, the original quote that started this thread did not provide the whole story from CNN and so was misleading.
Quote
Georgetown Says It Covered Over Name of Jesus to Comply With White House Request
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
By Edwin Mora

http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=46667

Photo of Gaston Hall stage that shows symbol "IHS" that was covered up during
President Obama's speech to accommodate a White House request. (Wikimedia photo)

(CNSNews.com) - Georgetown University says it covered over the monogram
“IHS”--symbolizing the name of Jesus Christ—because it was inscribed on a
pediment on the stage where President Obama spoke at the university on Tuesday
and the White House had asked Georgetown to cover up all signs and symbols
there.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the “IHS” monogram that had previously adorned the
stage at Georgetown’s Gaston Hall was still covered up--when the pediment where
it had appeared was photographed by CNSNews.com.

President Obama is greeted by Georgetown University President John J. DeGioia as he arrives to deliver remarks on the economy, April 14, 2009, at Georgetown University. Georgetown had covered the symbol "IHS" on the pediment above and
behind the two men. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

“In coordinating the logistical arrangements for yesterday’s event, Georgetown honored the White House staff’s request to cover all of the Georgetown University signage and symbols behind Gaston Hall stage,” Julie Green Bataille,
associate vice president for communications at Georgetown, told CNSNews.com.

“The White House wanted a simple backdrop of flags and pipe and drape for the speech, consistent with what they’ve done for other policy speeches,” she added.
“Frankly, the pipe and drape wasn’t high enough by itself to fully cover the IHS and cross above the GU seal and it seemed most respectful to have them coveredso as not to be seen out of context.”

Pediment in Gaston Hall with "IHS" covered as photographed by CNSNews.com, April 15, 2009. (Photo by Penny Starr,CNSNews.com)

On Wednesday, CNSNews.com inspected the pediment embedded in the wall at the back of the stage in Gaston Hall, where Obama delivered his speech. The letters “IHS” were not to be found. They appeared to be shrouded with a triangle of
black-painted plywood.

Pictures of the wooden pediment prior to Obama’s speech show the letters “IHS" in gold. Many photos posted on the Internet of other events at Gaston Hall show the letters clearly.

The White House did not respond to a request from CNSNews.com to comment on the covering up of Jesus’ name at Gaston Hall.

President Obama speaking at Gaston Hall at Georgetown on April 14 with the "IHS" covered up on the pediment behind him. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Georgetown, which is run by the Jesuit order, is one of the most prestigious Catholic institutions of higher education in the United States.

Roman Catholics traditionally use “IHS” as an abbreviation for Jesus’ name. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, “St. Ignatius of Loyola adopted the monogram in his seal as general of the Society of Jesus (1541) and thus became the emblem of his institute.” The Society of Jesus is the formal name for the
Jesuits.

Gaston Hall stage as it looked on the afternoon of April 15 with "IHS" still shrouded. (Photo by Penny Starr, CNSNews.com)

Although the monogram was covered over on the wooden pediment at the back of the Gaston Hall stage where it would have been directly above and behind President Obama as he spoke, the letters “IHS” are posted elsewhere around the hall
approximately 26 times on shields representing different parts of the United States and the world.


Obama did not mention the name of Jesus during his address. However, he did mention Christ’s Sermon on the Mount.

“There is a parable at the end of the Sermon on the Mount that tells a story of two men…‘the rain descended and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house…it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock,’” Obama said.

“We cannot rebuild this economy on the same pile of sand,” he added. “We must build our house upon a rock.”
_______________________________________________________________


To me this part is significant:
“The White House wanted a simple backdrop of flags and pipe and drape for the speech, consistent with what they’ve done for other policy speeches,” she added.
“Frankly, the pipe and drape wasn’t high enough by itself to fully cover the IHS and cross above the GU seal and it seemed most respectful to have them covered so as not to be seen out of context.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Halia12] #319303 04/18/09 07:56 PM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 9,962
I
Irish Melkite Offline
Global Moderator
Member
Offline
Global Moderator
Member
I
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 9,962
Quote
To me this part is significant:
“The White House wanted a simple backdrop of flags and pipe and drape for the speech, consistent with what they’ve done for other policy speeches,” she added.
“Frankly, the pipe and drape wasn’t high enough by itself to fully cover the IHS and cross above the GU seal and it seemed most respectful to have them covered so as not to be seen out of context.”


Frankly, to me, the bolded sentence, which I've read and re-read several times over the past few days, makes no sense.

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Irish Melkite] #319309 04/18/09 08:34 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
L
Latin Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
Resurrectio Domini, spes nostra

I agree with Neil.

"Most respectful" to whom? And who or what exactly would be "out of context"? Would it really be so bad for the world to see a picture of Pres. Obama standing beneath Christian symbols? And if he didn't want any reference to Christianity, why did Pres. Obama himself mention the words of Jesus, and why did he choose a prominent Jesuit university as the venue for his speech? It all just seems a confused muddle to me, and I am worried that Pres. Obama simply does not know what values he stands for. I wish he did, though, because it would be better for him and for all concerned.

Even though I am a Norwegian and not an American, I have great respect for the office of President of the United States of America, and I wish both the nation and Pres. Obama all the best. In our globalized world, more than ever, we need America to be prosperous and successful, for the sake of the prosperity and success of all. However, I see nothing remotely disrespectful in criticizing individual decision of Pres. Obama or his White House staff. Nor do I see anything disrespectful in drawing conclusions about the character of Pres. Obama on the basis of his decisions. And we cannot hide the fact that Pres. Obama has made some bad decisions on matters that Catholics and many separated Christian brethren care a lot about.

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Administrator] #319327 04/19/09 01:02 AM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
L
Latin Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 1,405
I wouldn't care to comment on other members' English-language skills, but I guess both American and Canadian may be considered varieties of English. Halia is quoting one Julie Green Bataille, associate vice president for communications(!) at Georgetown. I'm not so sure English is Ms. Bataille's first language! wink

For example, since when is "signage" an English word? And the last quote starting with "frankly" still makes no sense to me! But then English isn't my first language, so what do I know? smile

Quote
“In coordinating the logistical arrangements for yesterday’s event, Georgetown honored the White House staff’s request to cover all of the Georgetown University signage and symbols behind Gaston Hall stage,” Julie Green Bataille, associate vice president for communications at Georgetown, told CNSNews.com.

“The White House wanted a simple backdrop of flags and pipe and drape for the speech, consistent with what they’ve done for other policy speeches,” she added. “Frankly, the pipe and drape wasn’t high enough by itself to fully cover the IHS and cross above the GU seal and it seemed most respectful to have them covered so as not to be seen out of context.”

Source
Georgetown Says It Covered Over Name of Jesus to Comply With White House Request, 15 April 2009

Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Latin Catholic] #319533 04/21/09 02:44 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 262
H
Halia12 Offline
Member
Offline
Member
H
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 262
Originally Posted by Latin Catholic
I wouldn't care to comment on other members' English-language skills, but I guess both American and Canadian may be considered varieties of English. Halia is quoting one Julie Green Bataille, associate vice president for communications(!) at Georgetown. I'm not so sure English is Ms. Bataille's first language! wink

For example, since when is "signage" an English word? And the last quote starting with "frankly" still makes no sense to me! But then English isn't my first language, so what do I know? smile


Thank you Latin Catholic for pointing that I was not the writer but merely quoting the article. The language is awkward. Perhaps it would have been more helpful for Ms. Bataille to issue a printed statement rather than speaking off the cuff. I can see that her awkward language has only added to the confusion.



I think the points are:

1) the Georgetown University monograph was covered because part of it would not be in the picture frame and therefore it was deemed disrespectful to include only part of the monogram.



2) As stated in the article “Although the monogram was covered over on the wooden pediment at the back of the Gaston Hall stage where it would have been directly above and behind President Obama as he spoke, the letters “IHS” are posted elsewhere around the hall approximately 26 times on shields representing different parts of the United States and the world.”

Therefore, there was no attempt to cover up the monograms in the other 26 locations. To me this indicates that the White House was not trying to insult Christianity of the University as a Roman Catholic intuition.

It is unfortunate that when this thread was started the whole article from CNN with the comments from the Georgetown University Communications office was not included.

I think without the comments of Ms. Bataille, it was easy to jump to conclusions for some who are politically opposed to the current president.





Re: Georgetown hides 'Jesus' for Obama Speech at White House Requ [Re: Halia12] #319625 04/22/09 04:51 AM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 9,962
I
Irish Melkite Offline
Global Moderator
Member
Offline
Global Moderator
Member
I
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 9,962
Originally Posted by Halia12
Thank you Latin Catholic for pointing that I was not the writer but merely quoting the article. The language is awkward. Perhaps it would have been more helpful for Ms. Bataille to issue a printed statement rather than speaking off the cuff. I can see that her awkward language has only added to the confusion.

I think the points are:

1) the Georgetown University monograph was covered because part of it would not be in the picture frame and therefore it was deemed disrespectful to include only part of the monogram.

2) As stated in the article “Although the monogram was covered over on the wooden pediment at the back of the Gaston Hall stage where it would have been directly above and behind President Obama as he spoke, the letters “IHS” are posted elsewhere around the hall approximately 26 times on shields representing different parts of the United States and the world.”

Therefore, there was no attempt to cover up the monograms in the other 26 locations. To me this indicates that the White House was not trying to insult Christianity of the University as a Roman Catholic intuition.

It is unfortunate that when this thread was started the whole article from CNN with the comments from the Georgetown University Communications office was not included.

I think without the comments of Ms. Bataille, it was easy to jump to conclusions for some who are politically opposed to the current president.


Halia,

I agree with you that Ms Bataille's wording was awkward and think that you have done a good job of deciphering what she intended to explain.

However, I would note that the full article, including the referenced remarks, is contained in the opening post.

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
Page 2 of 2 1 2

The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2020 (Forum 1998-2020). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.3