Exorcist Author's Georgetown Gripe 'Well-Founded,' Says Vatican

William Peter Blatty doesn't think his alma mater is Catholic enough

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted May 14, 2014 8:47 AM CDT

(Newser) – William Peter Blatty, author of The Exorcist and a Georgetown graduate, doesn't think his alma mater is Catholic enough—and the Vatican just may be on his side. Blatty submitted a petition to the Vatican last fall asking that the school be stripped of its "Catholic" and "Jesuit" labels, because not enough of the student body or the faculty is Catholic. The petition, bearing 2,000 signatures, also cited "scandals" at the school, like the fact that pro-choice Kathleen Sebelius being invited to speak there. The Vatican responded to the petition last month, the National Catholic Register reports.

"Your communications to this Dicastery in the matter of Georgetown University ... constitute a well-founded complaint," Archbishop Angelo Zani wrote in the letter dated April 4. "Our Congregation is taking the issue seriously, and is cooperating with the Society of Jesus in this regard." However, it's not clear what the Vatican plans to do, and a request for clarification from the Washington Post went without comment. What Blatty really wants is for Georgetown to revive its Catholic identity, he tells the Register, and in that regard he remains optimistic and promises to "persevere."

In this photo released by Starpix, The Exorcist author William Peter Blatty, left, joins Linda Blair and William Friedkin, the film's director, at a screening of the remastered film, Sept. 29, 2010.
In this photo released by Starpix, "The Exorcist" author William Peter Blatty, left, joins Linda Blair and William Friedkin, the film's director, at a screening of the remastered film, Sept. 29, 2010....   (AP Photo/Starpix, Dave Allocca)
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