Trinity College Dublin already has an Irish School of Ecumenics – Committed to applied research at the intersection of politics, theology and religion – which, as previously noted, seeks to influence public policy.. And now, as the Irish Times reports, the Jesuit-controlled Milltown Institute – with courses in theology, philosophy and spirituality [A supernatural degree? – Ed] – is in talks with Trinity to establish a Catholic institute of theology at the University. University College Dublin, which emerged from the Catholic University of Ireland, founding Rector Cardinal John Henry Newman [that’s Saint John to you – Ed] has some interesting things to say about claims that they rejected earlier advances from the Institute, “lest it would once again be tagged as “the Catholic University”.” From the Irish Times report
UCD, which was engaged in talks on the issue last year, grew out of the Catholic University of Ireland founded in Dublin in 1851. A spokeswoman for the university said it had moved on “to a more mature place where religion and the past are concerned”. She added it was “concoction to suggest there had been an anti-Catholic recoil” there during the discussions with the Milltown Institute. “Contrary to popular mythology, UCD’s overriding concern had been about academic quality” in the discussions with Milltown which took place through the summer of last year.
The report also has this on the Milltown Institute
The Milltown Institute comprises two entities: a recognised college of the NUI (National University of Ireland) which awards civil degrees; and a pontifical faculty which awards degrees accredited by the Vatican.
Its courses are in theology, philosophy and spirituality. It is one of the main centres for the study of these disciplines in Ireland and attracts international students from an estimated 40 countries.
A statement from the institute said, where the negotiations with TCD were concerned, its trustees wanted “to see Catholic theology in a major university in dialogue with the surrounding culture, in ecumenical dialogue and in dialogue with other religious traditions. This vision is shared by TCD. The preservation of the ethos and identity of the respective partners forms a cornerstone of this alliance.” Talks were “at an advanced stage”, it said.