Thoughts of a Catholic convert

My Photo
Location: United States

Monday, May 07, 2012

The Irish, the Austrians, and us

I saw in the news .....

Association of Catholic Priests discuss Church's future

An organisation which represents more than 850 priests in Ireland has been meeting on Monday to discuss the future direction of the Catholic Church. .... The ACP meeting, entitled "Towards an Assembly of the Irish Catholic Church", has been taking place at a hotel in Dublin. One of the event's organisers, Father Brendan Hoban, said: "We believe that in 20 years time there will be very few priests in Ireland. "We believe too, as everybody understands, that without priests you have no eucharist, and without eucharist you have no church. "We are saying, 'what's the plan B'." ......

However, in recent months, some of Ireland's most vocal, liberal priests have been disciplined by the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). They include leading ACP member, Father Tony Flannery, and the broadcaster and newspaper columnist Fr Brian D'Arcy. Fr Flannery, who is based in County Galway, was ordered to stop writing articles for a Redemptorist Order magazine to which he had contributed for 14 years. Fr D'Arcy was told he must get prior approval to write or broadcast on topics dealing with church doctrine ......

The ACP recently commissioned a survey of Irish Catholics which found that 90% would support the introduction of married priests. The survey also found that 77% of Irish Catholics want women to be ordained, while more than 60% disagreed with Church teaching that gay relationships were immoral ...

I don't know what will come of this meeting, but it cheers me up that there are priests in Ireland who are committed enough and brave enough to work for change in the church - and of course there's also the Priests'/Pastprs' Initiative in Austria too. Interestingly, I saw a past post at the ACP's website that had this excerpt from a 1995 document written by some US Bishops ....

‘The need to find ways to have more open discussion in a climate of trust is best illustrated by considering current issues in the church that seem not to be addressed openly. These include the priest shortage, priest morale, ecumenical issues, school funding, women and equality in the church, the relationships of youth, Hispanics in the church, better preaching, better liturgy, better relationships with the poor, the relationship of the conference with Rome, the public face of the church on abortion, the annulment process, the loss of Eucharist, alliance of the right wing with some fundamentalist leaders, contraception, sexual ethics, the kind of candidates being attracted to priesthood, anticatholic feeling surfacing in the United States, the ordination of married men, rumours of a high percentage of homosexual men in the seminaries and in the priesthood. In particular, the issue of paedophilia among priests continues to create a very serious credibility problem for the U.S. bishops because of our perceived unwillingness to fully address and explore the reasons for this terrible tragedy.’

What became of these guys and their hopes for an open discussion of the issues?


Blogger MadPriest said...

As I have said on my own blog, I believe that the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland, Austria and The Netherlands will seek to distance themselves from Vatican control. I also believe that the hierarchy is aware of the fact that there is not much they can do about this now and that this is why they are concentrating on controlling Roman catholics in the Americas (including, very much, the USA) and why they are upping their political involvement in the States and elsewhere.

3:28 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

Hi MP,

Thanks for the comment. I think you're right. I was reading too that the nuncio to the UK from Rome has been on the backs of the UK Catholic bishops too lately - something about it in The Tablet.

2:45 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home