Thursday, August 8

Boston Archdiocesan paper rips Keating for encouraging people to commit "sins" by withholding contributions and so on.

Just a question. Really. I'm not saying I know the answer. That's why it's a question.

Does the Pilot rip Catholic Massachusetts politicians for refusing to even mildly discourage the mortal sin of abortion? Ever? Let me know if you know. I'm all ears.

Good stuff at David Morrison's blog about the men's religious community's plans for sexual predators as well as a wise comment from one of his readers about where to root your faith.
Aaargh! I see from The Corner that Shoutin' Bill was on Donohue last night debating gay rights at Catholic colleges. I missed it! Did anyone see it?
A reader comments below that Jennifer Granholm was featured in a puff piece in this magazine published by the Diocese of Lansing. He doesn't have a copy, and can't find the article online - does anyone have a copy of this article?

Update: A reader writes that a "priest in the know" told him that whoever was responsible for the running of that article was fired after it was run...hmmm...

Here's a link to all the stories that the LA Times is running on the new cathedral (LRR) including today's article on the landscapers:

Halfway down Temple, in another unusual touch, California live oaks are pressed against the cathedral's garage wall, and the cardinal-red theme is carried on by trumpet and flame vines. Around on Hill Street, planting switches to a mixture of Italian stone pines and ginkgos. The ginkgos are customarily grown next to temples in China and Korea, Douglas says. The stone pines connote Rome. To the Campbells, the mix of plants symbolizes the meeting of East and West. "It's symbolic of the whole world being part of the sacred landscape," Regula says.....The eastern end of the plaza is roof space over a multistoried parking lot. Planting here is concentrated in raised beds. There is a small orchard of olive trees set in lawn. Grass is too wet for most olives, but this is envisioned as a children's garden one day, though the low branching habit of the trees would make playing among them difficult.The choice of olive trees alludes to the fruit whose oil fueled lamps of California's missions. Except these trees are sterile hybrids, without pollen or olives. Birth control for trees is acceptable if it prevents fruit staining the plaza.Along the southern wall, a vine-lined pergola will shade congregants as they proceed to the cathedral door. Here, touchingly, one finds the rosemary and roses of the Mary Garden and even Madagascar jasmine, a traditional flower of wedding bouquets.

For a different perspective, here's a link to the New Times' discussion of the financing of the Taj Mahony

From Kansas City, a story about the involvement of disabled people in church ministries
Molesting priest in St. Louis receives his marching orders from Rome

Both the archdiocese and the U.S. Conference of Bishops said they did not know if Ross was the first priest to be laicized, or removed from the priesthood, since a national level of focus was placed on the church and allegations of sexual abuse by priests earlier this year.The laicization process returns a priest to the status of layman and the diocese no longer financially supports him.

A couple more interesting article from law.com:

A profile of Mark Chopko, the bishop's general counseland

a look at one of the lawyers involved in some Boston cases.

The Conference of Major Superiors of male religous orders are meeting through Saturday and have decided that they will be keeping their accused abusers in administrative kinds of ministry, but away from children.

We have a family dimension. If a man is sick, he's still one of us, and often, these men are very sick," Keating said.
The approach differs from that of the nation's bishops, who agreed in June to remove abusers from all church work -- anything from teaching in parochial schools to serving in a Catholic soup kitchen. The prelates also said they would seek to oust some offenders from the priesthood. Priests take vows of poverty when they join religious communities. "It's in a sense like a marriage," said the Rev. Dan Ward, a Benedictine who serves as a civil and church lawyer for the conference. "The marriage vow is for better or for worse."


A very thorough article on lay review boards from law.com
There's an interesting abuse allegation case going on in Massachusetts. A priest has been accused of sexual abuse, but the incidents took place years before he was a priest, when he was working with drug addicts. The priest denies the accusations, and, of course, the parish rallies in support. This is what caught my attention:

Mr. Sharry passed out copies of a letter to Bishop Reilly that read in part: “Ironically, Father Coonan, as an example of his own faith, has told his congregation during his weekly homilies that for many years before his ordination he was not even a practicing Catholic, missing Sunday Mass on a regular basis, about as far removed from the laws of the Catholic Church as a lay person could possibly be. ...

In other words, the man apparently had lived badly, then turned his life around and eventually become a priest.

Some thoughts on this: First, I certainly hope that priests aren't going to be removed for acts they did when they weren't even Christian. But secondly, I can understand the diocese's need to remove him during the investigation - it is absolutely necessary that they do so, and conduct their own investigation to make sure that his conversion all those years ago had, indeed, been authentic, and nothing had happened since. Third, I am not convinced that rallies, ribbons and such are what a parish should be about here. There is always the possibility, as much as we hope there isn't, that this priest engaged in inappropriate acts after ordination. The diocese should be given the opportunity to investigate this in a calm, reasoned atmosphere. And as I've said many times, if parishioners want to write their letters in support, fine..but I am always distressed to see this focus on their priest become the center of parish energy. Aren't there other things on which to expend enormous amounts of energy?

A lengthy article on religious sisters accused of abuse
Today is the feastday of St. Dominic

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