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From Larry Bennett re the contemporary Canadian Church.

Ronald Reagan is reputed to have said that he didn't leave the Democratic Party, but that the party had left him.

I must say that I am beginning to feel the same, as it concerns the Roman Catholic Church; or, rather, its Canadian branch.

I have become tired of defending, or at least making excuses for, priests who ignore their vows of celibacy (a small number, granted), or those who ignore their vows of poverty, or who defy liturgical norms (e.g., allowing liturgical dance) or insist on turning the celebration of the Eucharist into some sort of revival meeting. Or those who encourage their flock to act "according to their conscience" on such matters as birth control, and even abortion. I am tired, too, of good priests who remain silent out of fear of being ostracized by both parishioners and other clergy.

It's a terrible thing for a Catholic to feel like he has no parish to call home, or who is afraid to give his confession to a priest who may not hold to such medieval views as the inviolable secrecy of the confessional.

As far back as the Fourth Lateran Council, in 1215, Pope Innocent III, said, "The corruption of the people has its chief source in the clergy." Perhaps he was onto something, or perhaps, as is finally beginning to happen across Canada, priests and bishops are making their voices be heard, despite threats from politicians and the judiciary. One can only hope and pray.

Surrey, B.C.
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Author:Bennett, Larry
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:May 1, 2005
Previous Article:From Fr. Jan Kolodynski re Auschwitz (CI. Mar. 05, p. 15).
Next Article:From Bernard Kane re "Let's not have any illusions" (Feb., p. 9).

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