VOTF Policies and Positions (2002)
Voice of the Faithful has not developed many policy positions
to date, and those we have developed focus on the sexual abuse crisis.
We have said that the Church has a responsibility to respond to
survivors in a meaningful, healing way. We have said that bishops
and laity in each diocese should engage in a serious and substantive
dialogue. We have said that the structures of decision-making that
gave rise to this crisis - secrecy and deception - should be exposed
to the healing power of sunlight and disclosure. These policies
make sense. These policies respond to the crisis facing our Church.
These policies address the real problems confronting parish priests,
bishops, and laity.
To state more specifically what we do and do not stand for:
Voice of the Faithful is focused on those actions necessary
to respond to survivors, to support priests who are living their
vows, and to effect structural change that helps ensure this
type of abuse never occurs again in the Catholic Church.
We accept the teaching authority of the Catholic Church.
We have taken no position on the many other issues that divide
Catholics in 2002.
We do not endorse any organizations or interest groups.
We do promote a full and open discussion about the root causes
of the sexual abuse crisis and the remedies that are needed.
We do take the position that the bishops and the Vatican have
failed to address the sexual abuse crisis and its consequences
We do take the position that bishops fail in their role as
shepherds and teachers when they refuse to engage the laity
in a meaningful and substantive discussion of the issues.
We do take the position that Pope John Paul II rightly called
clergy sexual abuse "crimes," and a "shame and scandal" for
the Catholic Church.
We do believe that cleaning up this culture of deception and
scandal is job #1 for the bishops.
Voice of the Faithful will stay true to its mission and goals.
We will support survivors of clergy sexual abuse. We will support
priests in the faithful discharge of their vows. And we will work
for structural changes that help ensure that clergy sexual abuse
does not occur again in the Catholic Church. Ours will remain a
philosophy of "centrism," of providing a voice for all people in
the Catholic Church. In this way, we will "Keep the Faith and Change
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Voice of the Faithful is recognized as one of the
most promising lay organizations to evolve in the Catholic Church. Your
support is absolutely necessary for us to continue. The online
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is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization. )
To provide a prayerful voice, attentive to the Spirit,
through which the Faithful can actively participate in the governance
and guidance of the Catholic Church.
1. To support survivors of clergy sexual abuse.
2. To support priests of integrity
3.To shape structural change within the Catholic Church.
Pray Each Day
Jesus, Lord and Brother, help us with our faithfulness.
Please hear our voice, and let our voice be heard. Amen. More
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