Month: February 2020

A Time to Pause

Chris McDonnell, in the Catholic Times, reflects on how we might beneficially use Lent this year.
“It is a time to ask questions, a pause time on a journey, a time when we might re-examine the baggage we carry from month to month, maybe a time to lighten the load.”
“So maybe there is a good question that we could all address this Lent, how might the Church meet the needs of the community without resorting to worn platitudes? …. We should encourage each other to face reality and trust that we might follow God’s Spirit as it moves in our hearts.”

Discernment, dithering or disaster? Has the church the luxury of time to wait on decisions? 

Brendan Hoban, in his Western People column, reacts to the letter, Beloved Amazon, issued by Pope Francis last week.
“It is important for us to name the disappointment, the frustration, the sadness, the upset, the anger that are part of the fall-out from last week’s letter.”
“The answer is that for some people, and progressively more, the waiting is over. Parents with children – teenage and adult – understand why time is important. Our leaders seem to be in denial about the impact such catastrophic delays are having on the confidence and the membership of our Church.”

“But I say this to you.”

Seamus Ahearne challenges us to think what the message of Christ is for us in current circumstances. “What might it be?  Now. Here. For us.  Might we be politically sensitive like Francis in regard to the Amazon? In regard to our own land. Might he demand of us, to be politically challenging in our local Church?  Might he drag our leaders away from the mind-set of praying for vocations towards being radical in what vocation, actually means today? How about a sensible deconstruction of how Liturgy has been imposed on the Church?  Much of the language in the Books should be censored.  Should we ruthlessly check,  if it is an obstacle to worship? “

Beloved Amazon

Pope Francis has issued his much awaited response following the Synod on the Amazon. In his document ‘Beloved Amazon’ Francis calls for greater lay participation in the church and says the training of priests in the Amazon must be changed so they are better able to minister to indigenous peoples. “Every effort should be made” to give the faithful access to the Eucharist.
He also writes “This urgent need leads me to urge all bishops, especially those in Latin America, not only to promote prayer for priestly vocations, but also to be more generous in encouraging those who display a missionary vocation to opt for the Amazon region”
He does not deal specifically with the issues of the ordination of women as deacons or married men as priests.

A Priest in the Family

Stan Mellett, a Redemptorist with over 60 years priestly experience, gives his thoughts on the future of ministry.
“… the point of departure is the sacrament of baptism. Everyone is priest, prophet and king; each one with different roles and gifts serves the whole People of God. Like Jesus who came not to be served but to serve and give His life for many.
The ordained minister for today and tomorrow will need to have a mind set and attitudes whereby he/she is like the rest of men and women – not a person apart! Deeply prayerful with ‘the bible in one hand and the daily paper in the other’ at the service of all life and all creation!”

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