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From Chauncey Shea re letter.

I see you published my letter of April 2nd in the current (June 2004) issue of Catholic Insight. Quite frankly I have mixed feelings about that, for the reason I doubt it will achieve what I set out to do.

Does this mean, Father, you will not pursue the idea of forwarding a joint letter to the bishops along the lines suggested by yours truly? I'm anxious to know your thoughts on the matter, especially as to where I go from here. I don't see the point of writing the CCCB myself for I have been down that route and all you get for your efforts is a polite reply. What I do think though, is that the bishops may just pay attention to a group of Catholic writers who are dedicated to preserving and spreading the teachings of the Church.

I happened to note in Catholic Insight for June that your comment (I assume it's yours) following the article headed "Atheism and religious fervour" in The News in Brief Section, very much parallels what I'm saying. Can we not get the bishops to change course and correct the damage done to the Church since Vatican II?

Thank you ever so much for what you do and may the good Lord bless you always.

St. Catharines, ON

The editor replies:

Thank you for your letter of June 28. As we explained in our March edition, the project of getting petitions and sending a letter to the bishops is in the hands of a group called Rosarium (March, page 32). The person in charge is John Pacheco in Ottawa. His email address is as follows:

We tried six years ago and got the issue of revoking the Winnipeg Statement before the CCCB meeting in Niagara Falls, October 1998. It got nowhere. An estimated 60 bishops against 10 voted not to retract the Winnipeg Statement.

I agree with everything in your letter but it is not something I can do much about, other than pursue my chosen course of publishing a magazine of record and thereby keeping lines of communication open among English-speaking Catholics in Canada.

With respect to your suggestion of a committee of three or four Catholics in each parish organizing to defend the Church, it is good but somewhat unrealistic. A little committee in each diocese may be feasible. But that group should join the Catholic Civil Rights League.

A small group of us started the League in Toronto outside the parish structure, in 1985. It flourished for a few years, then went dormant, but was revived by Professor Tom Langan et al seven or eight years ago and today has an office and a full-time staff member. It needs support desperately to keep going. You should join it, perhaps, and become the regional representative by starting a local action group (your committee of 3 or 4 adults).

How do you keep your group going? By organizing monthly meetings, discussing articles, have speakers once in a while, and take action with letter writing, etc. Have the meetings at your house over tea and cookies after the business meeting is over. Once you are underway, then let the Bishop know you exist. Keep detractors out. If you have a sympathetic parish priest, so much the better, but stay independent.
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Title Annotation:Letters To The Editor
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:Sep 1, 2004
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