There is no longer any doubt that there is a growing crisis within the Catholic Church today. A crisis that could set back the Church more than four hundred years. Many Catholics unwillingly find themselves on opposite ends of the religious spectrum. As the
Ignoring the call for the reforms instituted by Vatican II the hierarchy persists in implementing more and more rigid forms of orthodoxy. It is understandable then that a vast number of Catholics, throughout the world, are experiencing profound feelings of alienation from the faith and Church they once embraced. For its part the Catholic hierarchy makes no apologies for its unbending position and unwillingness to enter into dialogue with its followers especially anyone who does not agree with its teachings. In fact Pope Benedict XVI has stated on several occasions that the future of the Church will depend on a much smaller community of believers. Just think of what kind of Catholic that will be? It seems that today the Catholic Church will no longer tolerate anyone who dares question authority. It has even inaugurated various forms of punishment, ranging from withholding communion, to silencing and finally excommunication. Right wing elements, drunkenly empowered with the support of the
Many parishioners today fearful about growing problems such as the economy, global warming, swine-flu, or war in the middle east find that their greater spiritual needs go completely unanswered. Working on a diet of fear; hardly a week goes by when the Church does not issue a stern warning about what a Catholic is to believe or not to believe and practise. Most official Church edicts are expressed in difficult or archaic legalistic terms which tend to create more division than understanding. The terms are reminiscent of the G.W. Bush era when the latter stated ‘if you are not with us, you are against us’! In the absence of true dialogue there can only by division.
Catholic news services provide an alarming increase in the spreading division among Catholics believers. An on-line edition of an
As the battle for orthodoxy heats up the Church will continue to polarize its remaining followers instead of building bridges to those it has so shamelessly abandoned. Is there not enough religious intolerance in the world today?