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In the Vineyard
May 2003

Volume 2, Issue 6

"That servant is fortunate whom his master finds busy when he returns." Luke 12:43

This is one sweet moment for Voice of the Faithful. In this issue, the Chicago Area VOTF notes their commitment to VOTF's goals by moving forward "…one person, one parish at a time." A few days ago, we saw the rich fruit of such an effort. Our Brooklyn siblings, banned by Bishop Daily from meeting on church property in that diocese, have been heard. Bishop Daily has listened and the ban has been lifted. In their dialogue with the Brooklyn diocesan leadership, Brooklyn VOTF has modeled for all of us the truthful telling of "Who We Are," the patience of familial love and the wise knowing that comes from good hearts and discerning minds.

VOTF continues to be banned in seven dioceses around the U.S., something in which no Catholic, regardless of VOTF membership, should acquiesce. We continue to pray for and support banned parishioners in Connecticut, Maine, New Jersey, New York, and Oregon.

Regardless of hardships, the steady, persistent drive of VOTF members to achieve our goals is inspiring. The conviction from our very first day and the very first day of every one of our Parish Voices and affiliates is that VOTF's "prayerful voice, attentive to the Spirit" will prevail.

  • Not one affiliate looking for dialogue with a bishop has given up in the absence of a response from their diocese (as in Colorado, Affiliate News) or, worse, in an ecclesiastic environment of hostility. VOTF SE Wisconsin has even proposed a diocesan synod, a call heard with increasing frequency among concerned Catholics.
  • Not one day of Lent passed at the seat of the Boston, MA archdiocese without a VOTF member "keeping watch" in support of survivors.
  • Not one affiliate has limited their efforts to their own group. They constitute a marvel of innovative and ambitious outreach to survivors and their caregivers, to theologians and to a growing roster of speakers informed and informing on our Church. (see Wash., DC Affiliate News)
  • Not one month has passed in VOTF history without leadership gathering to speak and respond to the crisis on its many levels as well as to address the challenges of VOTF growth.
  • Not one month passes that someone hasn't devised yet another engagement activity with our priests. (see Florida in Affiliate News, Priests' Support Working Group, Vineyard Archives)
  • Not one day passes that someone in the wide world of VOTF doesn't send us a prayer, a wish, a pat on the back.
  • Not one week passes that VOTF isn't humbled by the generosity of our members both in volunteer time donated and/or in financial contributions to our work.

    VOTF is the never-ending story of Church in the 21st Century with more good hearts arriving all the time. It must have been at a time like ours that Trappist monk Thomas Merton offered this prayer:

    My Lord God, I have no idea where I'm going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it…. I will not fear, for you are ever with me….

    Peggie L. Thorp, Editor

Voice of the Faithful, VOTF, "Keep the Faith, Change the Church,"
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In the Vineyard
May 2003
Volume 2, Issue 6

Page One

Top Story: NY Bishop Daily Lifts Ban on VOTF

Support News

VOTF International News

Parish Voice News

New England Notes

VOTF Council Updates

Letters to the Editor

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In the Vineyard Archives