"I don't know where we go from here, but we will muddle through this, together." Fr.
Bob McLaughlin, St. Basil’s
Church, Philadelphia Archdiocese, speaking to his congregation
after the grand jury released their findings.
VOTF at Work in the World
THIS Sunday, October 23 at Boston College: “Findings
from a Study of Voice of the Faithful” will
be presented. Come see what this study found out about
lines clearer than ever. Details from personnel
files of 126 priests accused of sexual misconduct with
minors were released by the Los Angeles archdiocese last
week. VOTF’s response is on our web
site. VOTF Santa
Barbara also released
a statement. (PDF) The full released report
is available at NCR Online.
For additional coverage, go to the Los
Angeles Times and The Chicago
Tribune. (A subscription is required to
view some of theses articles.)
continue to maneuver around bankruptcies: The diocese
of Spokane, WA, having filed for bankruptcy last December,
is appealing a court ruling over the use of parish and
church assets in the settlement of sexual abuse cases.
The diocese claims it does not own those assets. To fend
off their parishes’ liquidation, the diocese of Tucson,
AZ (also in bankruptcy) plans to separately incorporate
its parishes. According to US Catholic magazine, Tucson
is joining the dioceses of New York; Milwaukee; Rhode
Island; Davenport, Iowa; Stockton, CA; Lincoln, NE; and
resolution of the Church’s financial management issues,
members of the National Leadership Roundtable on Church
Management met last week. VOTF president
Jim Post reports.
and Pain – both seem on the increase: Philadelphia is still reeling from release of documents three weeks ago (see Oct.
6 issue of the Vineyard) – a catalogue of crimes against the innocent, yet there’s good news in the Philadelphia diocese? His name is Fr. Bob McLaughlin of St. Basil’s Church and he’s
as hurt and angry as his parishioners. Significantly,
he is saying so. Reported by Ronnie Polaneczky for
the Philadelphia News, we reprint with permission in Commentary “Duped
priest assails church leaders.”
- John Allen reports in NCR that
a ban on gays is unlikely
- VOTF Greater
Philadelphia will hold a forum on 10/26 on the grand
jury report and a prayer vigil at Cardinal Rigali’s
residence on 11/5. Jim Post will participate on a panel
discussion of the grand jury report at Villanova Law School on
11/1. For more information on these events, as well
as a link to the grand jury report, go to the VOTF
Greater Philadelphia web
- A priest for
30 years, Fr. Ercolano is taking a leave. His message
is painfully familiar. Read Commentary – “Dear
Family and Friends”
- Another priest
in a NY diocese spoke out in September. “And if they are truly looking for the root causes of the scandal then perhaps they should dissect a dysfunctional and top-heavy organization that has tried to protect its reputation more than it tried to protect its children. Not an easy reality to face but one that has to be addressed.” His remarks were published in the parish bulletin and on their web site. See the full text in Commentary – “They Still Don’t
gay priest speaks. The problem is not his celibate homosexuality.
The problem is his Church. Read
Church crisis is really about hypocrisy says Angela Bonavoglia (author of Good Catholic Girls) in NCR.
Conference of Major Superiors of Men will send a delegation
to Rome to voice its concerns on the question of gay
- A priest and his conscience – trying to honor both: “The popular, 55-year-old pastor of St. Michael’s Parish in Cobourg, Ont. is simply the latest to feel the episcopal lash and swift dispatch from his parish.” Read
about Fr. Ed Cachia.
- Reactions to the forced
resignation of Walter Cuenin in the Boston Archdiocese continue to reverberate
the diocese. Vigils, marches, and rallies are only the beginning. For updates
on actions being taken at Our Lady Help of Christians, check their web
site or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For coverage of the Our Lady’s rally, go
SURVIVOR SUPPORT: Fr. Robert
Hoatson’s name is on the short list of survivors and survivor support organizations for his tireless work on their behalf. Read about his new outreach to survivors in “Welcome
these, the little ones.”
A great voice is gone. Monika
Hellwig, theologian, writer, educator and outstanding model of Catholic intellectual
life, died on Sept. 30. For coverage, click here.
on VOTF Brooklyn, NY - Dialogue with Bishop DiMarzio and good results
for all; VOTF Northern CA successful
10/9 gathering to discern
the selection of their new bishop; VOTF
Chicagoland event with
Dr. Eugene Kennedy on Oct. 29.
USCCB Watch – watch our web site for VOTF’s
witness to the November USCCB meeting in Washington, DC. Not only is our
Rep Council meeting nearby in the same time frame (see National Representative Council Update),
but VOTF’s national interim communications manager John Moynihan and executive
director Ray Joyce will be present alongside VOTF leaders, as the bishops
For excellent Synod
coverage, updates on the ouster of Fr. Cuenin in the Boston Archdiocese,
and commentary on the release of information regarding the Los Angeles
personnel files of priest abusers, go to National
Catholic Reporter and use the Search box by topic. For the editorial behind
this statement, “Contemporary bishops are painfully learning that they can
either function hierarchically or they can exercise healthy authority but
that they cannot do both,” click here.
|A Concert to Benefit
Those Adversely Affected by the Recent Hurricanes Four well-know
artists will perform at Boston’s Cathedral of the Holy Cross, 1400
Washington Street, Boston, MA on October 22, 2005, 7 pm. (617) 542-5682.
Suggested offerings: $20 for students, $25 for adults. Additional details:
781-641-1117 or email Regina at email@example.com;
call Bonnie at 781-721-2285; and/or visit the web
site. Featured artists: Jeanne
Cotter, Marty Haugen, Donna Pena, and Jojo David. All proceeds
derived from this concert and t-shirt sales go directly to Catholic
Charities USA for Hurricane Relief Victims & Efforts.
For more information on Catholic Charities, visit their web
Mark your calendar, bring a non-perishable with you, enjoy a wonderful
night of music and help the helpless!
Letters to the editor – Last
month, the great majority of correspondents agreed on two aspects of Eucharist:
1) It is a Gift - for EVERYone and 2) the Gift is from God. Read some of
your responses. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Quote for our time: From George
Bouchey, VOTF member, Camden, NJ diocese
Yesterday, during Yom Kippur services, I found in the prayers the statement that exactly expresses my feelings about why I am still a practicing Catholic:
"Help us, then, to fulfill the
promise that is in each of us, and so to conduct ourselves that, generations
hence, it will be true to say of us: The world is better because, for a brief
space, they lived in it."
Coming up in November issues of In
the Vineyard: Retired University of Texas professor Joseph Heffernan will review The Catholic Challenge by Thomas W. Rezanka; a review of The Priesthood of the Faithful by Paul Philibert, O.P., S.T.D.; interview with Dick Taylor of VOTF Greater Philadelphia. His book-in-progress is Love in Action; and a look at the Catholic understanding of acceptance and authority.