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Saturday, July 21, 2012

In the UK ...

Last month there was mention in a Pray Tell post of priests in the UK organizing ...

In England and Wales, six priests who claim the support of over 30 priests recently wrote a letter to The Tablet expressing deep concern about the direction of the church. They call for better dialogue between the hierarchy and laity, a theology of sexuality “rooted in the actual experiences of the faithful” and a discussion on ordaining married men as priests. They criticize the Roman Curia for bypassing basic teaching of the Second Vatican Council such as collegiality. “The recent imposition of the new translation of the Mass texts is an obvious example of this,” they said. They invite supportive priests to contact them.

Today I saw further mention of this group in the Independent Catholic News. ...

London: priests' group appeals for inclusive dialogue on future of Church

More than 70 Catholic priests and deacons gathered at a London church yesterday to pray, share concerns, and discuss the future of the Church. The meeting at St John's Anglican Church, Waterloo, was called following a letter in the Tablet ....

Fr Joe Ryan, north London parish priest and chair of Westminster Justice and Peace said he was glad to be part of the process of "building up the body of Christ" by attending the meeting. Fr Paul Saunders from Southwark Diocese said he saw it was "part of our stewardship" to pass on and develop the teachings of Vatican II.

Fr Patrick McLaughlin who spent years in peace and reconciliation at Corrymeela in Northern Ireland quoted Antony Di Mello who spoke of the need to "combine loyalty and obedience with creativity and confrontation" .......

In a message, Professor Tina Beattie suggested the establishment of a forum which included representatives from the bishops, priests and laypeople, 'in a spirit of respect and mutual trust' to begin an ongoing dialogue .... A future meeting will take place on 10 October, at Heythrop College.

It's inspiring that groups of priests are beginning to come together in different areas - Ireland, the US, Austria, Australia, and the UK - to call for a dialogue in the church between lay people and priests and the hierarchy, especially given the chilling effect of such priests sometimes being punished for speaking up. I hope something comes of all this!


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