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CRC document.

I am saddened to hear (C.I., April, 2006, p. 16) that the Canadian Religious Conference, an organization of most of the Catholic religious communities in this country, has revealed its stated mind by suggesting that there should be dialogue about possibly diluting Catholic teaching. This proposal has been widely reported in the daily press but apparently the Catholic weeklies are not as interested in it. In my opinion, it is the biggest Canadian religious news item since the founding of the Church in Canada in the sixteenth century.

Why do I say this? The CRC executive members are telling the Canadian bishops, among other things, that they should allow so-called mercy killing [that is, euthanasia], same-sex "marriage," a revision of all Catholic sexual morality, the ordination of women to the priesthood, Holy Communion for Catholics who have divorced and remarried, and general absolution as an ordinary custom. They also would like Catholics in Canada to be "more independent" of the Mother Church in Rome.

The justification of all this is a false understanding of conscience which can trump any teachings of the Bible, the Church, or the Natural Law. This notion has been alive in Canada ever since the bishops' 1968 Winnipeg Statement which gave an erroneous explanation of our freedom to disobey Pope Paul VI's encyclical in favour of family life and against the contraceptive mentality (Hurnanae vitae).

The other big cause of this mentality is feminism, which has distorted the spiritual life of many communities of women in our country. It is the temptation of Eve: "Eat this apple and you will be like God, deciding for yourself what is good and what is evil."

I think that every Canadian religious community should give its members and the world an account of the relationship between itself and what the CRC has done. The ninety-five theses on indulgences which Martin Luther posted publicly in 1517 are minor in importance compared with what the CRC has asked for in our day.

If it is correct in claiming that its document is representative of the thinking of religious men and women, then the writing is on the wall for these communities. One piece of evidence is that they are not getting vocations. Young people are not willing to join a community which tells the world that it does not accept the Church's Magisterium. Every religious community in Canada, therefore, should make it known where it stands in respect to the CRC document. I have yet to hear from my own congregation.

On the other hand, if young people know that the community which they are joining resolutely opposes dissent, they will be eager to join the battle on the right side, because young people are idealistic and are drawn to undertake difficult tasks in a noble cause.

Toronto, ON
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Author:Kennedy, Leonard
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:Jun 1, 2006
Previous Article:Concerns about Canadian religious conference.
Next Article:"Dissent".

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