Archive for November 8th, 2013

Editorial: Put Concrete Realities on U.S. Bishops’ Agenda / National Catholic Reporter

Earlier today, we posted a link to comments Thomas Reese made in National Catholic Reporter about the upcoming meeting of U.S. bishops, which takes place in Baltimore next week. Reese says he sees disparity between the bishops’ agenda and the direction Pope Francis has said he would like to take the Church and the type of bishops he would like them to be. Now the editorial staff at NCR weighs in on the same topic:

Anyone looking at the published agenda of the meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (see story) would say that an efficient, business-like organization could deal with that in half a day. The published agenda is beyond prosaic: approval of some liturgical translations, an election of officers, some committee reports, and a “presentation for a proposal to develop a formal statement on pornography. (Spoiler alert: They are against porn.)

“There is, it seems, very little action in the bishops’ action items.

“The bishops should quickly deal with this old agenda, and then address the central question facing them: What kind of conference do they want to be?

“Pope Francis has been clear about what he expects of bishops: He has condemned in no uncertain terms clericalism and careerism. One of his earliest statements was that priests — and by extension bishops — should ‘be shepherds with the smell of sheep’ on them. In late October, ordaining two archbishops, Francis told them: ‘Keep in mind that you were selected to serve, not to dominate.'”

Read the rest of NCR’s editorial by clicking here.

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Pastoral Priorities from Pope Francis for U.S. Bishops Meeting in Baltimore Next Week / National Catholic Reporter

When the U.S. bishops meet Nov. 11-14 in Baltimore, people expect them to discuss the pastoral priorities facing the church in the United States. Instead, they are dealing with minor liturgical translations, a statement on pornography, and political conflicts over contraception and gay marriage. It is as if they have not heard anything Pope Francis said in the last eight months.

“If Pope Francis dropped in on their meeting, what would he say to them? I doubt he would waste much time talking about their agenda. Instead, he would challenge them, as he did the Latin American bishops when he talked to them in Brazil.” By Thomas Reese, National Catholic Reporter

Read the rest of Reese’s commentary by clicking here.

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