(CHURCH MILITANT) – Catholic theologians and educators gathered in a Wisconsin resort town during the week of July 23, 1967, to discuss how they could modernize Catholic universities.
Their final document was informally named the Land O' Lakes Statement after the town where these influential priests and laymen held the meeting. It was signed by 26 heads of U.S. Catholic colleges and universities, one of whom was Notre Dame University president Fr. Theodore Hesburgh.
The document ultimately called for Catholic universities to "have a true autonomy and academic freedom in the face of authority of whatever kind, lay or clerical, external to the academic community itself." It would be the first effort whereby Catholic institutes of higher learning would trade in their Catholic identity to better compete with secular universities.
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