Yesterday morning The Catholic University of San Antonio of Murcia celebrated the inauguration ceremony of the 2014/2015 academic year. The president of the Spanish Forum on the Family, Benigno Blanco, delivered the inaugural lecture, titled “Building a society friendly to life.”Throughout the speech he questioned why “evident principles such as not killing a child to fix a problem, are not understood by a great part of our society or by our government.
The opening ceremony also included speeches by the President of the University, Mr José Luis Mendoza; President of the Autonomous Community, Mr Alberto Garre; Archbishop of Valencia, Cardinal Antonio Cañizares; Bishop of the Diocese of Cartagena, Monsignor Jose Manuel Lorca Planes ; Rector of the University , Josefina García Lozano ; the Minister of Education , Culture and Universities , Pedro Antonio Sánchez; and Honorary President of the University , Antonio Montoro . Also present at the head table were the Mayor of Murcia, Miguel Ángel Cámara ; government delegate Joaquin Bascuñana ; President of the Regional Assembly , Francisco Vidal Celdrán ; Archbishop of Burgos , Archbishop Francisco Gil Hellin ; and general vicar of the Diocese of Cartagena ; Juan Garcia Tudela.
Benigno Blanco, who headed the speeches, began by highlighting that the great dilemmas that affect life, and in particular the family in this day and age are a reflection of a greater crisis in our civilization that transcends politics and laws. He highlighted that it is everybody´s mission to “regenerate” society from the bottom upwards.”
The issue of abortion
Following the ongoing debate in Spain about the legalization of abortion matters, the President of the Family Forum emphasized that beyond our political obligations and the duty we have to exercise these, “we as citizens must deal with three main issues. Firstly we must exercise solidarity with pregnant women, so that no woman has tp look at pregnancy and come to consider something as drastic as abortion. Secondly we must build a culture that learns tol ove life. A society which supports violence – and abortion is an ultimate example of violence – is not a just society.” The third item was to make present in public a commitment to life, through exercising our democratic rights: namely our freedom of speech and right to vote.”
He also mentioned that it had seemed that Spain would become the first Western European country to initiate the reversal of abortion laws, but this has not happened. He encouraged the congregation to continue striving for life and invited all involved to the demonstration in Madrid on Saturday 22nd November, titled “Every Life Matters”.
UCAM as a leading example
Benigno Blanco stressed that the Catholic University of Murcia is “giving a great example of what needs to be done, through social responsibility, promoting of initiatives which affect the formation of new generations, and shamelessly maintaining their own identity, while offering themselves to serving society.”
Jose Luis Mendoza stated that the university has already come of age, and has arrived at this stage with over 16,000 students and investing strongly in research and investigation. “The UCAM was born with a purpose to evangelize, educate young people according to ethical values and Christian morals, and offering a quality education.”He added that this course has begun with new degrees and Masters courses such as Musicology and Modern Languages, and with an emphasis on strengthening research by investing an extra 9 million Euros.
The President also highlighted the University´s strong commitment to internationalization , with the opening of UCAM´s Business School in Uruguay , UCAM in UAE, UCAM Spanish Soccer School in Indonesia, as well as new offices in Beijing (China ) and Manila ( Philippines); and its expanding relationship with the business world , through the Instituto Tecnologico de Murcia, and implementation of new programs such as Industrial Doctorates . The latter was also referred to by the rector of UCAM , Josefina García Lozano , who stressed the University´s total involvement not only in the formation of excellent professionals, but also of excellent people, who contribute to society.
The ceremony began with the celebration of the Eucharist which was chaired by the Archbishop of Valencia, Cardinal Antonio Cañizres. In his homily the Cardinal spoke in memory of the victims of the bus accident in Cieza saying that “from the first momento of hearing the news i felt deeply touched and united to the families of the victims of Bullas un their pain, their hope, and their anger and turbulence.”
“UCAM has been united with the loved ones of all the victims in a particularly strong way, and we offer this celebration for all those who perished in the accident, for all the injured, for the families and for the town of Bullas which I visited in various occasions and which I remember profoundly because of the deep faith that is lived and practiced there”.
The Archbishop of Valencia, Monsignor Canizares, highlighted that "UCAM seeks the Truth and wishes to transmit it within its body and to society in its mission to respond to the light of Christ, as offered by the Church, even if this means going against the current and standing opposed to the materialistic, relativist and liberal trends of today´s society”.