Monsignor Harry J. Byrne, JCD * * * Comment/

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July 6, 2012


Bill Keller, the Editor of the New York Times from 2003 to 2011 now holds forth as a periodic columnist.  On June 16, his Op-Ed piece described many of the tensions within the Church, leading him and many others to become "collapsed Catholics". He recommends that those Catholics, who are disaffected by the leadership of the Church, rather than continuing their fight for reform, should leave the Church.

Two days later, four Letters to the Editor were published in the NY Times. Each expressed sympathy with Mr. Keller's diagnosis and prognosis for the Catholic Church. But no one seemed about to take his recommendation to leave.

Marc Lavallee writes that "to leave allows no room for reconciliation, reformation, and peace within conflict that is central to Christian social life".

James Jenkins: "Catholics need to understand that the church fostered by John XXIII is surely dead. It is past time that they should let go...Abandoned and betrayed by their shepherds, Catholics will struggle to keep the faith alike for future generations."

Jean E. Rosenfeld declares: "Catholicism has a distinguished spiritual tradition of cultural openness; while fundamentalism is driven by intolerant exclusivity...Rottweiler (Pope Benedict's name) politics is destroying Catholicism. As a Catholic woman, I call on the Catholic sisterhood, lay and religious, to stay, speak, and reclaim Catholicism."

Marion Eagen states: "The  behavior of the Roman Catholic hierarchy disappoints me on so many fronts...How many times have I contemplated joining the Episcopal Church?...Why do I stay? Because my own parish, with its engaged pastor, deacon and staff, vibrant liturgy, and forward-leaning membership, is a comfortable home that embraces each one of us in times of joy and sorrow and provides an atmosphere for real spiritual growth...I would suggest that those who are on the verge of leaving that they should shop around first. There are welcoming and joyful Catholic communities just waiting for you to join. I know. I belong to one."

Vox populi!

posted by Msgr. Harry J. Byrne | 3:13 PM | 0 Comments