Catholics4Change Views On New Archbishop in the Daily News


“Advice for Philly’s new archbishop: Listen to the people,” by Ronnie Polaneczky, Philadelphia Daily News Columnist, July 19, 2011

Excerpt from article linked above:

“Susan Matthews wants more than a verbal sit-down with Chaput. After offering him a welcoming cheesesteak, Matthews – who attended Philly parish and archdiocesan schools and whose young children are enrolled in Catholic elementary schools – would demand that the Archdiocese establish a lay advisory board.

“We need to become part of church leadership,” says Matthews, co-administrator, with Kathy Kane, of “Catholics4Change.” It’s a much-read local blog (nearly 110,000 hits since its February launch) calling for reform and strong collaboration between those who sit at archdiocesan headquarters and those who sit in the pews.

If a lay advisory board existed, there would be no need for the three-point “to do list” that Matthews and Kane call for on their blog:

* Protect the children of the Archdiocese.

* End the clericalism that isolates the church from its people.

* Give every sex-abuse victim a chance to receive justice.

“There are two types of Catholics” in Philly, says Matthews. “There are the very apathetic, autopilot Catholics whose numbers are dwindling. And there are the very disheartened souls who are crushed and heartbroken by the church – and they are flat-out walking away. Especially the younger ones. We believe in God. But the time has come to say we can be faithful without being fools.”

“It Won’t Be Rigali: Part 2,” by Natalie Pompilio, Philadelphia Daily News, July 19, 2011

Excerpt from above linked article:

“Susan Matthews, local writer and publisher of Catholics4change.com, said she was excited that there was an opportunity to have “meaningful conversation” with the Archdiocese.

“From what I’ve read and been told, Chaput is a very hands-on leader,” said Matthews, a former editor with the Catholic Standard and Times. “He’s an administrator who takes complete responsibility, and it’s not going to be, ‘Oh, the people under me handled that.’ That’s been Rigali’s style.”

What will be of concern to her readers, she said, is Chaput’s position that the statute of limitations should remain on sex-abuse cases. One of the February grand jury recommendations was to abolish the statute of limitations for all civil and criminal sexual offenses against minors.”

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53 Responses to “Catholics4Change Views On New Archbishop in the Daily News”

  1. S. Reid Warren, III Reply July 19, 2011 at 11:32 am

    In a New York Times article this morning regarding the appointment of Archbishop Charles J. Chaput to replace Cardinal Justin Rigali, as a non-believer I saw at least two areas for concern. One was: “aggressive public opposition to same sex marraige”. Although I realize that there are bedrock foundations to belief systems, being open to change, listening to and acknowledging new presentations of science and social issues, can be reasonable. The ban on marriage between blacks and whited backed by most faiths at one time and codified in law, has been shown to be the racist and bigoted ideology that it was.

    Love and partnership are love and partnership – whether between a woman and a man or between a man and a man or a woman and a woman. Love conguers all. Rules and laws against love are rules and laws against the very foundation of what makes us human. In addition, “David Clohessy, director of the Survivors network of Those Abused by Priests, described his record in fighting abuse as ‘dismal’ and said that he opposed legislative proposals to give child victims more time to file civil claims.” The time has come for dialog – not fiat.

    Reid

    • I don’t see any profit for the cause of C4C being allied in any way with the LGBT community in the fight to protect against sexual abuse by Roman priesthood or anyone else.
      Honestly, I don’t understand why those working for “Gay rights” or to make homosexual lifestyle acceptable in Christianity don’t form their own “religion” and stop their efforts to pervert even the little remaining of truth in the institutional church?

      • I understand what you are saying. I think the issue should not be complicated by other agendas being piggybacked on to the child sexual abuse crisis. I also think that being said child sexual abuse is a society issue and all members of society should be welcome to fight for children. Some adult gay males(and women) have been victims of child sexual abuse and I believe that is why many are watching how the laity and others are responding. As for Reid I suggest read Theology of the Body and Love and Responsibility and Humae Vitae they explain the churches teachings in a beautiful way as you stated you are a non believer you might not be aware of them.Peace

      • Actually, I belive the Spector had this area right – reason why the wasn’t a woman senator in this state – divide and conquer. Bring a hard nose bishop against G & L, pro illegal and has a strong stance against current abusers, but feels the old claims should be ignored. He would not work in Frisco or Boston, they would eat him alive. This is catholic4change so this type of appointment should bring out the pain all victims of the church feel. After we get out our anger and sarcasm, we can get back to our agenda. All ain’t well in Philly until these issues are addressed. May God be praised and God help His(maybe Her church). Don’t know why God needs a sex except to help us understand God in the early Church..Sorry for adding an issue

    • Actually, Reid, no.

      The Church must obey God – not our conditioned responses and desires – especially when Scripture so plainly forbids sexualization of same-sex relationships.

      Science backs up Scripture – from the latest CDC report to the published medical and mental health research.

      Same-sex attraction is a symptom of harm… a sign of identity disorientation…of childhood trauma, relational distress caused by trespass of one’s boundaries, of conflicts, contempt between parents, apathy, abandonment, abuse, etc.

      Same sex sex is not ok or normal or healthy or without negative consequences.

    • …Mr Warren, methinks I see an agenda here…………

  2. This is not a good appointment for Philadelphia other than the hard line Chaput has taken on priest that have assaulted children. Susan’s bullet point #2 on “clericalism” will not happen with this man. I have a good friend who worked in Denver for four years, and when I spoke with her yesterday and told her that this was the likely replacement for Rigali, she just about broke into tears. One of my biggest concerns is that he seems to have a true disdain for women, and I hope that this will not affect Susan’s attempt to meet with him and have a dialogue.
    Of course, I also believe that people can change…and my prayers are very deep for the archdiocese at this time. I guess I was just hoping for someone more progressive, for I truly believe we need to move forward, not backwards.

  3. National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) Media Statement

    Appointment of New Archbishop in Philadelphia

    Contact: Kristine Ward, NSAC Chair, KristineWard@hotmail.com, 937-272-0308

    The National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) calls on the new archbishop of Philadelphia to forego a lavish installation ceremony and reception and contribute the monies the events will cost to ease the suffering of survivors of sexual abuse by priests and nuns, truly promote the protection of children, and seek justice.

    Philadelphia is a hurting local Church.

    If anyone needs convincing here is the link to the second Grand Jury Report. http://www.phila.gov/districtattorney/grandJury_clergyAbuse2.html

    These bills are paid by hard working Catholics through their collection basket donations, their parishes’ assessments, the money given to diocesan appeals and direct gifts.

    In these hard times, both economically in our country and morally in the Church, NSAC asks the new archbishop to focus on what’s really important: the people, especially the children.

    Giving up a ceremony where his already known appointment will be read, a ring will be put on this finger and a crosier in his hand — things he already has — is a minor loss for this new bishop juxtaposed to actually aiding those who bear the burdens of rape and sodomy by priests and nuns and carry the wounds of the persistent cover-up of criminality.

    In addition to the monies Philadelphia Catholics will be called upon to spend, Catholics throughout the country will be tapped through their diocesan assessments for the travel, hotel and meal expenses of visiting cardinals and bishops.

    In the face of the revelations of the second Grand Jury Report and removal of 24 priests with credible allegations still serving in ministry on the day it was issued, NSAC calls upon these cardinals and bishops to refrain from making travel arrangements, send a congratulations email or make a phone call, skip the party and instead contribute the money to the survivor causes, the effort to protect children and bring about justice.

    • I see nothing wrong with an installation ceremony and some fanfare. They do it in politics, they do it everywhere. Let’s not get overly “Quaker” here.

  4. S. Reid Waren, III Reply July 19, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    I understand exactly where Gerald Nichols is coming from in his recommendaton that the LGBT start their own church. He misses the point. The LGBT community want acceptance, equality and the opportunity to worship in the churches of their choice. They don’t want “separate but equal” – that did not work in schooling. Gays want and deserve to be members of the Catholic Church, the Society of Friends, the Lutherans, the Batists…………….Just as blacks before them wanted to have full rights within the churches they joined.

    Reid

    • I understand exactly where Mr.Warren “is coming from ” as well. Thanks for being honest about it sir. The point is that “Gay Activists”[those who practice homosexual activity] exclude themselves from the congregations whom believe the bible when it calls that sin. It seems pretty obvious when one thinks about it. It is clear that the scriptures teach that the local church cannot be faithful to Christ and at the same time tolerate those openly living sinful lifestyles.

  5. What would Marci Hamilton say about this appointment.

    All is well now.

    “When similar legislation to eliminate the statute came up in Colorado in 2006, Chaput was outspoken in his opposition, hiring lobbyists to fight the bill, said Gwyn Green, a Colorado state representative who supported the bill.

    “In my opinion, he plays dirty. He plays hardball,” Green said. “He personally libeled me and accused me of being anti-Catholic and I was a Catholic all my life.””

    from the above article.

    This issue is resolve lets get to the next – He paid to fight the SOLs in Colorado – He is not in Kansas(CO) anymore, Philly is more complicated.

  6. I think it is time that we all pray more, and comment less.

  7. Writings submitted by the Catholic Church of Colorado & the Colorado Catholic Conference (CCC), official lobbying arm of the Catholic Church in Colorado:
    http://www.archden.org/index.cfm/ID/127/Statute-of-Limitations/

    In an e-mail interview with Our Sunday Visitor [in the Denver Catholic Register], he spoke about his decision to vigorously fight what he sees as an unfair attack on the Church.
    http://www.archden.org/dcr//news.php?e=355&s=4&a=7461

    From the above article, point #1:
    * SOL of limitations make exceptions for public institutions and unfairly target private entities.*

    “OSV: What motivated you to take such a strong and public stance on the issue of statute of limitations?

    Archbishop Chaput: Statutes of limitations exist for very good reasons that have nothing to do with any Church. Memories fade. People die. Evidence gets old or lost. In general, changing statutes of limitation or making them too long is a bad idea, and most law enforcement professionals know that.

    Of course, certain crimes are so terrible, like murder, that no statute of limitation is warranted. Some people argue that the sexual abuse of minors is such a crime. Catholics don’t necessarily oppose that approach. Many Catholics are parents. They very rightly sympathize with victims and want to protect their own children. But the Catholic community does insist that all such laws, reporting timeframes and penalties apply equally to everyone and every institution, with no hidden escape clauses.

    Unfortunately, most state laws don’t treat public and private entities equally when it comes to claims arising from the sexual abuse of children. In almost every state, public officials use a combination of governmental immunity, very brief reporting timeframes and very low financial damage caps to make it difficult for anyone to sue public institutions — including public schools.

    Religious and private institutions enjoy no such lop-sided protections. The evidence now shows that public schools are a major environment for adult sexual misconduct and abuse with minors. But most state laws effectively ignore that.”

    Same article, point #2:
    *Anit-Catholicism is at work in many of the legal proposals to change SOL laws.*

    “OSV: Is anti-Catholicism at the root of some of these proposals in Colorado and across the country?

    Archbishop Chaput: Some of these legal proposals come from a genuine desire to help victims. We need to remember that, even when the proposed legislation is bad.

    But yes, there’s a new and peculiar kind of anti-Catholicism at work in many of these situations. Some of the worst anti-Catholics are angry, disaffected Catholics. Others are people who don’t like the Church for her witness on abortion or contraception or immigration or the death penalty; the list of grievances is endless. Sexual abuse can become a convenient cover for a lot of unrelated hostility.”

    HB 878 and HB 832 do not make a distinction between public and private entities. While Susan Matthews and Kathy Kane, along with the rest of us involved with this blog, are clearly and rightly angry with the way the sexual abuse crisis has been handled in Church, I would challenge anyone to consider Susan or Kathy as having an “anti-Catholic” agenda. Quite the opposite… they are holding their Catholic Church accountable for its mistakes, misdeeds, and crimes and doing so out of love for their Catholic faith. Like many of us, they see that the Church leadership has failed to effectively address the sexual abuse issue and is calling on its leaders to protect the children of the Archdiocese, end the clericalism that isolates the church from its people, and give every sex-abuse victim a chance to receive justice.

    • Laura Boquist quoted AB Chaput:
      AB Chaput:
      But yes, there’s a new and peculiar kind of anti-Catholicism at work in many of these situations. Some of the worst anti-Catholics are angry, disaffected Catholics. Others are people who don’t like the Church for her witness on abortion or contraception or immigration or the death penalty; the list of grievances is endless. Sexual abuse can become a convenient cover for a lot of unrelated hostility.”

      If I were a black man I would be very vocal in objecting to the egregious and disingenuous argument made by Gays that the resistance to the gay agenda is comparable in any real way to the racism that blacks faced in earlier times in this nation.

      But I don’t need to be a black man to object to “Catholics” even Archbishops, who appear to me to be attempting to use the same tactic by crying “anti-Catholic” when experiencing resistance to the agendas,doctrines and practices of the Roman Catholic Church.

      What kind of strange God do some imagine? If truth exists, and I am convinced it does, can there exist a God Who on one hand places a soul [as an infant] in a religion that inculcates dogmas and practices that this same God reveals as being contrary to His eternal truth , and on the other hand guarantees by some alien form of “justice” the right of that soul to live in defiance of the eternal truth, because of the excuse “I was born this way” or “I was raised Catholic.” And the same paradigm, in my estimation, applies to the soul claiming the right to practice sexual acts contrary to God’s commandments “because I was born this way.”

      If that is what the God of the bible is like, then why did He make known to us that we All are sinners, and then send His own Son to die our death for us, so that we can live forever with Him — for eternity? It wouldn’t have been necessary would it—if our excuse was “I was born this way?”

  8. S. Reid Waren, III Reply July 19, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    Laura Boquest,

    You are a breath of fresh air. You stickto issues in your discussion without citing scripture and beliefs.

    Anti-Catholicism, although it exists, is not the real issue for The Church – telling the truth and dealing with disaffected parishioners is the real issue. Heirarchy that does not listen to and respond faithfully to the disaffected will eventually collapse.

  9. S. Reid Waren, III Reply July 19, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    I see that I am accused of having an agenda. This is true. I am a 77 year old straight man who couldn’t care less what any adult does in bed with another adult as long as it is consensual and does no harm to the participants. For too long all too many have tried to foist their beliefs on others, even though the others do not share those beliefs. I’ve never understood what anti-Semitism, Anti Catholic, anti female, anti gay, anti-black ……..has ever done but to vilify the other. There have been myriad excuses and “reasons” why this is done, but I don’t believe any of them.

    For those who see the use of contraception or gay relationships as sins, or any of the other intollerant stances – ” let them without sin cast the first stone.”

    • To S. Reid Warren III,
      Please enlighten those following this discussion on why you are so exercised and interested to promote the idea of sexually active homosexuals and lesbians being welcomed [along with their sexual activity] being welcomed and accepted into churches whose beliefs are professed to be biblical; and also explain how , in accord with the purposes of Christians4Change, the acceptance/welcome of such will be helpful in the fight to protect children from sexual abuse?

    • ..so in other words you’re not a practicing Catholic
      receiving the Sacraments.. one has to ask, why
      do you visit this site???

  10. I wonder how difficult it is for incest victims to understand the concept of a loving Father or a Holy Family. Some have difficulty in forming relationships weith men and may find a relationship easier with a woman. I was very upset with Arlen Spector’s questioning of Anita Hill (1991) and his victory over Lynn Yeakel. I found him to be very sexist, but thats hardball politics.

    http://www.newsweek.com/2011/07/17/the-growing-demand-for-prostitution.html

    Our society has changed and we need to have the tools to fight abuse. I have read this fathers day a few times how people have a hard time on that day, biological fathers, step fathers, guardians and those fathers that have a special mission from God, too many have left us down. All of us should know what Jesus means by Father’s Love, but too many of the victims of incest are father/step father – daughter abuse. They along with those physically abused may never understand the Love that Jesus means.Also, may have difficulty forming male/female relationships as all victims of abuse. Society needs to change and as Crossan would say “take the log of your eye before removing the twig from your neighbors.Been awhile since I read that quote from Historical Jesus…. so it may not be exact

  11. S. Reid Warren, III Reply July 20, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Gerold Nichols, I think you don’t understand the thrust of my conceren. I just don’t understand the need that some have to vilify others for their practices or beliefs. Christians have done that to Jews with devastating effects over the centuries, much of it led from the pulpits. Some religious people have from time immemorial been intrusive into the lives of how others practice sex and love – defining for others what is good and permissible and what is “sinful”. Nowhere, nowhere was this more prominent than among allegedly celibate men in The Church. Pure hypocracy on their part regarding how they believed others should behave. The sex scandals in The Church are not new in the past few decades – they are only known by the laity now. Before they were welll concealed. My point about gays and lesbians is that this effort to demonize them is just the latest demonizing of sexual practices such as masturbation (thou shalt not spill thy seed upon the ground), contraception, and “all the rest” which I won’t belabor. It is the hypocracy about sex in The Church over the centuries that feeds into the rape of children by priests. Over 90% of Catholics admit to using contracetion at some point in their lives. This is the gap between the laity and the hierarchy. Even the majority of Catholics don’t care what gays and lesbians get up to – they figure it is none of their business – as indeed it isn’t.

    • In reply to S. Reid Warren III:
      I agree there is a lot about the “thrust of ” your concern that I don’t understand. Leaving aside the Roman church— my comment still is that if I was a member of a local Christian church, a bible believing church— I would not have anything to say condemning anyone else, gay, lesbian, whatever; however, since my church was a bible church, I would expect the bible to be taught there, and the bible condemns homosexuality as sin.

      Again I ask you: If one is practicing openly sexual activity that is condemned in the bible, then why would one desire to be a member of a church where the bible is believed? And why would one desire for the members of that church to change their beliefs about the bible to conform to one’s beliefs that are opposed to the bible?
      I recognize that you have difficulty seeing the distinctions I am making. I hope this will help with that.

  12. I have spent much of the past 2 days researching Archbishop Chatup, paying particular attention to his writings and journalistic impressions of him. I find great reason for optimism that he will revitalize our Archdiocese, protect our children and respect the laity. While a strict interpreter of Catholic moral doctrines (something which is not necessarily bad), he has a reputation of anti-clericalism. I had not heard that term until recently, but it refers to what we common folk know as the Church hierarchy (and many ordinary priests) believing that they are superior to the lay faithful. This is the mentality that leads a bishop to protect the reputation of the Church or himself and his priests, rather than the faithful. It is the mentality that is so prevalent in large eastern city dioceses. Over the years I have heard that it is rarely found in the western and southwestern Church. If it is true that Arch. Chatup does not subscribe to clericalism, there is great reason to believe that our local Church will see a major change and that the lay faithful will find respect, rather than contempt, by our Archdiocesan hierarchy. Let us all pray for Arch. Chatup and that the Lord uses him to eliminate clericalism from Philadelphia.

  13. Here is a beautiful quote from Archbishop Chaput from an interview with the CNA that says a lot about this man: ““The biggest challenge, not just in Philadelphia but everywhere, is to preach the Gospel. . . . We need to have confidence in the Gospel, we have to live it faithfully, and to live it without compromise and with great joy.”

    In Colorado, Chaput immediately turned accusations over to the law enforcement authorities for investigation to carry out to the full extent of the law and he did not practice cover-up and such as Bishop Finn of Kansas in the Ratigan affair or has been so scandalously done in Philadelphia.

    Trut

  14. Truth is (tragically) the advocacy organizations have set themselves in an unresolveable and unbiblical dichotomy – they want to embrace LBGTQ/etc. but not sexual abuse.

    Both are symptoms of sin/harm and both are sinful harmful actions – and – both must be repented and abandoned. See I Corinthians 6:9-20 and Romans 1:18-32

    There is no Biblical exemption for our feelings, desires or sense of identity. God only recognizes two orientations (repentant and unrepentant) and two sexes, male and female.

  15. S. Reid Warren, III Reply July 20, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    I’ll not reply to Gerald or Sibyl above, (how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?) because to do so only diverts attention to the broader issue – Susan Matthews marvelous efforts to bring the laity into dialog with the hierarchy and the whole issue of secrecy and coverup. It takes a woman! Interesting that no men stood up to take leadership on this issue. After all, it is the problem which the men in The Church started when they began the systematic rape of children. There is plenty of proof outside of The Church that when women are actve and involved in the professions, universities, and politics there is always improvement. Imagine a Nun in the pulpit. No more second class status in The Church.

  16. Let me see if I have this right.

    Rigali is going to retire and it has nothing to do with the scandal in Philadelphia.

    He is moving to Tennessee where his best friend is the bishop and “has built a home for him to get away from it all”. I guess we are the “all” and the Tennessee “all” have paid for the home. Sounds like Bevilacqua circa 2003.

    In his comments yesterday, Rigali said “We have learned so much that we didn’t know before.” “We would have liked to know then what we know now”

    Lot of we’s in there. I don’t know about him but most people I know didn’t need to learn that abusing children and hiding the perpetrators from the law was evil and for the very small group that did need to learn that, I would think that the first Grand Jury report would have been the text book for higher education.

    Now, the new Cardinal to be comes in and what do we learn about him on day one?
    He said:
    That Rigali was “one of the great churchman of my lifetime” (O dear)
    He had not read either of the two grand jury reports (must have been a great in flight movie from Denver)
    He mobilized Catholics against legislation to increase the statue of limitations for sex crimes in Colorado.
    He wants to meet the victims of abuse (Didn’t Law and the Pope already do that)
    He put a Phillies hat on for a great photo op. (If he is a right handed bat with power, I am behind him 100%)
    Looks like more of the same from the Good Old Boys Club. Like Grouch Marks said “who are you going to believe, me or your eyes”?

  17. I believe that the heirarchy of the Roman Catholic Church have not a clue what Chritianity is, nor do they care.

    And I believe that Chaput was sent here by Rome to crush the spirit of those who would reform the Statute of Limitations. He will accomplish this by appealing to parishoners’ “Catholic Guilt” while diverting their Sunday contributions into the pockets of politicians.

    I challenge him to man-up and walk in the footsteps of Jesus.

  18. How on earth will the reform of the Statute of Limitations help anyone? Millions are already being paid out to assist victims in their needs- especially in the area of therapy. Don’t you realize that the media and some lawyers are trying to brainwash our culture into believing that this is the “just and right” thing to do?

    Yes, great idea….let us ‘punish’ the Church. And without any financial resources, She will no longer be able to serve the tens of thousands of young, elderly, disabled, and homeless that She does each and everyday.

    If you want real change in the Church, become a Saint. Anything else is a superficial attempt.

    • WHAT ABOUT THE ‘VICTIMS’ WHO DID NOT SURVIVE? WHAT SHOULD THE ‘church’ do about this ? ‘tl’ your language gives you away because ‘its all about the $$$$$ ! If it is a choice between the so called services that the ‘rcc’ provides and the welfare of children what do you choose ?

      • You are naive to think that the statutes are not all about the money. Don’t get me wrong, I am fully in favor of justice and reform on all levels, but I don’t believe that this is the best recourse. I have a friend who has been abused, and the last thing that this person wants to do is to be dragged back out into the limelight by a greedy lawyer. (and please don’t tell me that they don’t exist and are not exploiting this already tragic situation)

    • Victims are sueing to protect other children. They don’t want to sue to do you have any idea how emotionally difficult it is to sue your offender let alone your church? If the church did the right thing in the first place and was christian they would not sue. Sueing is the last resort for many. The church is reaping what it sowed. This is not “punishment” this is consequences for their actions and in many cases lack of action and indifference to the suffering of many. The tax collector in the Bible had to pay back 3 times what he stole not just the amount he stole. This is what happens when the church does not show compassion as Jesus taught. If the Church goes bankrupt….it goes bankrupt and then it will be cleaned out and the good people of the church will rebuild .

      • If you are in favor of Justice then have the Laws passed that will give the option for VICTIMS . The VICTIMS won’t be compelled to come forward, the ‘rcc’ has literally gotten away with murder. If a VICTIM does not want to go to court then he wont, but I doubt that as it will be an opportunity to HEAL. I await what you think is the ‘best recourse’ ?

    • I agree victims should have a choice especially because when they were children they had no choice.. Do you know how hard it is to prove case? I do my husband and I took a predator to court last year thanks to the change in age in statues of limitations……..it was the best thing and the hardest thing we ever did. We did it to protect other kids. Yes there are greedy lawyers but children are at a disadvantage you need to know dates and places and many dont even remember the year it happen but they will remember the rest of their life they were assaulted.

      • I love the church. I have been supporting it with time and money for many years. I am very conservative but sometimes people and even the insitutional church needs to hit rock bottom before they realize they have to change usually discomfort(finacial loss) even jail time comes before change. I believe the churches doctrine and dogmas etc and that the Holy Spirit will never abandon the Church of Christ……good catholics do exist and will rebuild the church. The church has and continues to have the option to reach out in compassion and then many the lawsuits will decrease.

    • TL, as you said above, you should pray more and comment less.

      Reforming the statute of limitations gives undiscovered victims a chance to come forward. It gives them a chance to sue for money for therapy, since every single victim needs it.

      It is a good idea to punish anyone who sexually abuses children, lies about it, and ignores the victims. Its much worse if they leveraged the faith people had in them. If you still have faith in priests and bishops, no avalanche of truth will dissuade you.

      Pray more and comment less.

    • TL, with and uneducated pathetic opinion like that …… I would only use two letters for my name as well.

    • ..hey TL,,there’s only one sure way to punish the Catholic church.. hit ’em in the wallet..

  19. “TL” wonders (in the last post):

    How on earth will the reform of the Statute of Limitations help anyone?

    TL, if you really do not know what the benefits are of extending and/or eliminating the statute of limitations for crimes related to the sexual abuse of children, and are legitimately interested in learning what benefits can be attained from such legislation, I would suggest that you search Google using “statute of limitations” and the states of Delaware and/or California. Each instance makes a very convincing case for the positive effects of such legislative changes and the main benefits have little or nothing to do with “money”.

  20. Frankly, I hope the new archbishop promotes the Traditional Latin Mass, and puts a complete end to the liturgical abuses I have seen in many Philadelphia Catholic churches, namely loud talking before and after Mass, the use of too many “busybody” lay ministers and altar girls (not approved by Pope John Paul II). How people worship is “how” they believe–this is what Pope Benedict has written. The Ordinary Form of the Mass in many instances (and in many parishes) has tragically gotten very sloppy. Sloppy worship, sloppy moral behavior.

    • Thom, I admit I’m stunned by those who bring their large coffees into Church, text before Mass, sloppy attire and children who seem to need a trough of snacks and half a toy box to stay relatively calm. However, I grew up in a post Vatican II Church where none of this was common.

    • Jude,

      Latin and loud talking aren’t the Catholic church’s big problems.

      They sexually abused children. They lied repeatedly, intentionally, and in an organized fashion, just like all other Catholic churches worldwide. They fight the victims. They have destroyed faith in bishops, priests, and the church, probably for generations to come.

      The church is burning down, and you’re worried that the library books aren’t in alphabetical order.

  21. We seem to be getting off-topic, but I’ll add my two cents.

    My first cent… Some Catholics prefer the formality and ceremony of a traditional Mass… and there is beauty and meaning in that tradition. Others find meaning and beauty in a simpler expression of Mass… and appreciate the faithful involvement of the laity – men and women, girls and boys. My grandparents love the traditional Mass; I love a simpler Mass. I believe God is present in both.

    Personally, I struggle to get to Mass. I do not feel welcome. Many times I am in tears during Mass, because I do not feel wanted. I bring my children… with books and hope that they can be calm for the sake of those around me… and pray that I can find a home within the Church that I grew up in. I followed God’s calling to be a Jesuit volunteer, serving a year in community to live according to Jesuit values. When I married my husband, together with our spiritual director we planned a wedding that was meaningful and reflected our Catholic values instead of the wedding industry’s values. We have baptized three children. In 2008, the Sunday before the election, I sat with my daughter while we listened to the Monsignor tell us that in order to get to heaven, there was only one candidate we must vote for… not the one for whom I planned to vote. I read comments on blogs and following articles that claim I am not a “true” Catholic for questioning the Church’s teachings on married or women priests, for enjoying a non-traditional Mass, for desiring joyful music and homilies that might engage my children during a children’s Mass… as they squirm and sing or talk a bit too loudly and I hope that those around us will be not be offended.

    I struggle to feel welcome in my broken-ness, in my weakness. I struggle to feel welcome in my conflict with where I find God in my life and how I struggle to find Him in my Church. I struggle to feel welcome in my desire to challenge my Church to reach out and minister to disaffected Catholics, and be accountable for its failures to victims. Am I anti-Catholic to have these questions and struggles?

    My second cent… a homily I heard years ago that still gives me pause.

    “There was an elderly gentleman at a church who had served as head usher for many years and was dearly respected by those in his community. One Sunday as the Mass was starting, a young many wearing jeans and a faded Tshirt walked down the aisle and sat down at the altar. This was highly unusual at this church, but quite common at the young man’s college Masses. There were many stares of disbelief among those in the pews.

    Soon, the head usher slowly shuffled down the aisle, towards the young man. Knowing glances were shared among those in the pews, understanding what the head usher must do. As he reached the young man, the head usher leaned down and put his hand on the young man’s shoulder.

    Then he sat down next to him at the altar. He wanted the young man feel welcome.”

    Please, let’s remember to welcome each other, in all of our imperfection and differences. As a wise Dominican priest once said to me, “You never know what door you may be opening to another.”

  22. My wife who converted to Catholism felt the same way. People would march to protest Jan 22 and yet not support the young families that would bring their infants and young children to church. My kids received communion younger than most and we had the go to the priest after mass for them to receive( my wife did, I just stood there until they received it.

    In the 60’s we had protests about x rated movies at the Orleans theater, we can’t get many protestors to attend a protest against abuse. I love the latin mass but when I read this

    http://www.icsahome.com/logon/elibdocview.asp?Subject=Denver+Archbishop+Chaput+investigating+vast+sex-and-money+Church+scandal

    I get worried about going pre VII, especially with the violence against women and children that an open society tries to prevent. I don’t know why there are so many families headed by single parents, but one reason maybe the couple should not have been married in the first place, found the partner was violent or drug addicted or they believe that they had to get married. Also, the respect for the institution of marriage is low. There are other reasons for the problems in the church besides VII and loss of the Latin Mass. Maybe we need some support for families and change our attitudes toward women and children so they won’t be easy targets for predators.

    My wife enjoys singing instead of the mumbling of such beuatiful prayers. Go to a mass and listen to the chant of the Eucharistic Prayer and hearing each word is so beautiful. I love the sound of the guitar and have been through Gospel masses and services, kids are not bored during a well planned liturgy and tend to be quite when they are supposed to then.

    Pastor asked me why I didn’t attend mass regularly, I gave the same answer as you expressed Didn’t feel comfrontable. Wrote a request to attend another parish – denied. Still went there anyway, no envelope, no attendence – loose change welcome but not proof of attendence.

    501c regs don’t allow religions to support candidates anymore so you should not hear those political speeches anymore. I do love the Latin Mass, but how many priests can pronounce the words properly or translate Cicero properly.

  23. OBEY – PRAY – PAY………………. The Catholic Way Baby.. As for the mess in Philadelphia, you want the truth?????? Not sure many of us could handle it….Forget the Anti-Catholicism crap!!! The issue is the fact that our LEADERS can not and WILL NOT tell the truth and we parishioners are tired of the lies and double talk…Chaput is a puppet for Rome sent to the City of Brotherly Love to kill any talk of reforming the Statues of Limitations. Like Denver, he will pull the guilt card and use the parishoners gifts/$$$ to grease the politicians. Oh, and if you are a female and want a say in he church good luck with this guy….We should all be insulted that the church objects to the change in the statue law, its down right sick… We the parishioners are insane!!!!!!!!!! We do and allow the same thing over and over again and expecting different results…WAKE UP!!!!!!!! Continue to PRAY and cut the OBEY AND PAY and changes will come…

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