Roamin' Catholic

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

A New De-Frocking Process

News Item: Earlier this summer, Pope Benedict XVI has granted the Congregation for Clergy new powers to dismiss from the priesthood and release from the obligation of celibacy priests who are living with women, who have abandoned their ministry for more than five years or who have engaged in seriously scandalous behavior. The new faculties were announced by Cardinal Claudio Hummes, prefect of the clergy congregation.

John Horan responded with an open letter to Cardinal Hummes. With a good mixture of fact and irony John's reponse hit's a sympathetic core among many of the thousands of priests who left "active" ministry. You can read the entire letter at , posted August 4th.

I think the cartoon captures Hummes new job.

Friday, September 04, 2009

"Come Home"... to what?

The lead article is yesterday's SunTimes (9/3/09) was about a 1.3 million dollar publicity campaign being planned by the Chicago, Joliet, and Rockford dioceses.,CST-NWS-cath03.article With a TV and advertisement blitz, bishops hope to reawaken the faith in the 75% of Catholics who don't go to Mass regularly. While inviting these inactive Catholics to "come home" for Christmas, the bishops overlook the reason why they may have left in the first place - or were driven away.

Why would they come back to the same old place they left in the first place? If the homilies were boring or irrelevant, if they felt unwelcome because they were divorced and remarried, used birth control, were gay, felt women were degraded, etc., has the Church really changed? Many bishops still wouldn't accept them at the altar rail. Boston Cardinal O'Malley had to defend himself from other conservative Catholics for not only permitting a Catholic funeral for Ted Kennedy, but for participating even marginally.

I think the Church needs to show some good will effort to meet people halfway.

Ironically, while Creasters (Christmas and Easter attenders) get the guilt complex to go for the holiday, everyone (especially regular attendees) gets put out because the churches are busting at the seams for the holiday. People in their holiday best clothes are herded into hot gym Masses with poor acoustics and minimal music. because the church is over crowded. Not a pleasant experience for anyone.