Consistent Ethic of Life, Thirty Years Later
"The church is in a position to make a significant defense of life in a comprehensive and consistent manner." These were words spoken thirty years ago this week by Cardinal Joseph Bernardin at Fordham University, where he lectured on the U.S. bishops' pastoral letter The Challenge of Peace and formulated the framework for what would come to be known as the consistent ethic of life. We've asked four contributors to reflect on the lecture in light of current debates in the church and in politics, and to offer their thoughts on the legacy of Bernardin today.
This special symposium has been funded by a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation. You can read Joseph Bernardin's 1983 Fordham lecture in its entirety here [.pdf].