Front of Taube

Notre Dame de Namur University's Catholic Scholar Series Continues Wednesday, March 25, with Father Louie Vitale, O.F.M.

Belmont, CA, March 17, 2009 — NDNU’s Catholic Scholar Series continues with longtime social activist Fr. Louie Vitale, O.F.M., as he addresses "The Non-Violent Response to Terrorism: Saying No to Torture," at 7:30 p.m., March 25 in Taube Conference Center.

A well-known speaker, Fr. Vitale, will discuss the response to the threat of terrorism by means other than the use of torture. NDNU’s Catholic Scholar Series features the social aspects of contemporary society and how they affect theology and practice.

The Franciscan priest served as the provincial of the California Franciscan Friars from 1979 to 1988, and co-founded the Nevada Desert Experience to end nuclear testing. He recently completed 12 years as the pastor of St. Boniface Catholic Church in San Francisco.

He also served a six-month sentence for trying to draw attention to the School of the Americas/Whinsec at Ft. Benning, GA in 2006. Since its founding in 1946, the school has trained more than 60,000 soldiers from Latin American armies and police forces in combat, counter-insurgency, and counter narcotics. SOA graduates have been implicated in a wide variety of human rights violations in Latin America and allegedly are responsible for some of the worst human rights abuses there.

“Fr. Vitale is one of the most dynamic speakers I have ever heard,” said Sister Roseanne Murphy, SNDdeN, and NDNU’s Executive Director of Planned Giving. “He is a hero to many people who long for justice and peace, and to stop the use of torture by the United States. He stands with the best of the modern prophets.”

Fr. Vitale holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from UCLA, is the recipient of the PAX Christi USA Teacher of Peace award, as well as an honorary degree from Quincy University in Illinois. In 2006, he received the Jefferson Award for Community Service from KTVU Channel 5, the Global Human Rights Award, and the St. Thomas More Society Award. He is also currently the “Action Advocate” for Pace e Bene.

The lecture is free and open to the community. For more information regarding NDNU’s Catholic Scholar Series, contact Sister Roseanne Murphy at (650) 508-3551.