Joe Feurhard brings us the news that the USCCB has lost their encyclopedia.
Theologian Monika Hellwig had a near encyclopedic knowledge of Catholicism, which might be expected of the coauthor of the Modern Catholic Encyclopedia. She wrote more than 20 additional books, hundreds of scholarly articles, countless lectures, and even delivered the occasional homily (for those churches that allowed a laywoman to invade that priest-only space).
Gone to meet "The" Encyclopedia. The Alpha and the Omega.
Allen reports his disappointment:
Thus, bishops have been crystal clear about the conundrums generated by the priest shortage, by the exclusion of divorced and civilly remarried Catholics from Communion, and from the ban on Protestants receiving the Eucharist at a Catholic Mass. What they don’t seem interested in doing is getting rid of clerical celibacy, or relaxing the rules on Communion.
The real solutions, they believe, must be found elsewhere.
What remaining reasons would diocesan bishops have, for example, for refusing to meet with members of Voice of the Faithful, whose official program is, unlike Küng’s positions over the years, deliberately non-doctrinal?
(Could it be the bloggers holding the Bishops accountable? The children of Pope John Paul II dropping the dimes at the Chanceries and saying you best be knocking it off?)
And what about other groups -- like Call to Action and We are Church and the Women’s Ordination Conference -- all of them nervous that they’re not part of the conversation and all of them intent on staying in, even if it means grousing about things. Remember, many if not most of these folks were educated in the finest Catholic schools and universities. They know their stuff, they know the church has changed in the past and will in the future. They also know from long association with theologians and priests and bishops that even church officials talk about things that we’re all told are not supposed to be spoken about.
They want to Talk about Touching:
Everyone knows bishops can’t magically change things or make everyone happy. But how about occasionally looking past those differences and appreciating what we have in common? Many in those “dissident” groups keep the social ministries going, make sure the Sunday liturgies are prepared and teach the faith to the next generation.
No need to spend four hours together including dinner, but an hour now and then over coffee and, in honor of the pope, some good strudel, would show the world we can disagree yet get along. A little conversation might go a long way toward defusing tensions and narrowing the divides.
In a rare departure from our normal requirement, we have allowed a person to speak anonymously in our pages. In this case, a gay priest talks about what he perceives would be the effect of a Vatican document prohibiting gays from being ordained .
I wish he had let us use his name, as I wish other gay priests would go public, but I also know why they can’t. They fear for their vocations. It’s a strange matter, to say the least, to give your life to a church that tells you, midstream, that it really doesn’t want you. Odder still, of course, when one knows that so many not only in normal priestly ministry but also in positions of leadership are in the same fix. This is a strange time, indeed. So we thought the importance of hearing from a gay priest who takes his ministry seriously overrode the normal obligation to disclose the identity of someone given such prominence in our pages.
We're salivating to expose what every single one who "comes out" has been teaching to the people in the pews...despite their "anonymous" pretense that they are loyal to the precepts of the Roman Catholic Church.
There are no losers here. Homosexually-oriented men who are authentically living a life of celibacy - long ago gave up their "sexual identity". They surrendered it at the door. It's a non-issue. They simply teach what the Church teaches and scuffles over "sexual identity" are immaterial to their ministry....as it is to ours.
Outing them on the parish level and putting pressure on the Bishop and priest - is crucial to their departures.
This was my personal favorite:
In Boston, vigil protests continue at parishes resisting the archdiocesan decision to close them; in one parish, parishioners are threatening to refuse to receive a new pastor where their beloved pastor of twelve years was forced by the archdiocese to resign.