Monday, August 27, 2018

"Welcome Words But Action Needed" , Analysis of Pope Francis Visit

https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/editorial/the-irish-times-view-on-pope-s-visit-welcome-words-but-action-needed-1.3608409

My Response: I agree with the Irish Times that Pope Francis's appeal for forgiveness was heartfelt, and the culture of secrecy and handing over documents needs to be addressed. In addition, until the Catholic Church embraces the gifts of all the baptized including women priests and married priests. and changes the all male celibate clerical, hierarchal model,  the root of the problem will not be corrected. One thing is clear, the top-down secretive cover-up culture must end and it needs to begin with the Vatican and the bishops now. Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP, https://arcwp.org, sofiabmm@aol.com


While Pope Francis appears sincere in his appeal for forgiveness, nothing can repair the damage done and words are, in themselves, not enough. The church will have to demonstrate that it is truly serious about rooting out abuse and tackling the culture that allowed it to develop. That will include new investigations, redress and handing over documents.
This must be done for the victims, but also for all the practising Catholics in Ireland and across the world who feel betrayed by the church they cherish. The Catholic Church can have no credibility without this happening and it is the defining test of Francis’s papacy.



Pope Francis was born in December 1936 in Argentina. File photograph: Luca Zennaro/Reuters
"In an increasingly secular age, the church faces indifference and even sometimes hostility. Against this backdrop, the pope’s emphasis on the overriding importance of love as the value that underpins family and society was apposite." File photograph: Luca Zennaro/Reuters

In an increasingly secular age, the church also faces indifference and even sometimes hostility. Against this backdrop, the pope’s emphasis on the overriding importance of love as the value that underpins family and society was apposite. So too was his emphasis on the importance of forgiveness at all levels of human relations.
It was appropriate that in his speech of welcome to Pope Francis, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar acknowledged the contribution the Catholic Church has made to this country, from the movement that led to independence, to the provision of health and education in a State which did not have the resources to provide them. He made the point that the Catholic Church has helped Irish people to understand that they were citizens of a wider world and part of a global family.
The Taoiseach didn’t shirk the dark aspects of the Catholic Church’s history, pointing out firmly that in place of Christian charity, forgiveness and compassion, far too often there had been judgment, severity and cruelty, in particular, towards women and children and those on the margins.
Saying the time had come to build a new framework between church and State, Varadkar captured the mood of many by expressing the hope the visit of Pope Francis would mark the opening of a new and more normal chapter in the relationship between Ireland and the Catholic Church. 
It was appropriate that in his speech of welcome to Pope Francis, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar acknowledged the contribution the Catholic Church has made to this country, from the movement that led to independence, to the provision of health and education in a State which did not have the resources to provide them. He made the point that the Catholic Church has helped Irish people to understand that they were citizens of a wider world and part of a global family.
The Taoiseach didn’t shirk the dark aspects of the Catholic Church’s history, pointing out firmly that in place of Christian charity, forgiveness and compassion, far too often there had been judgment, severity and cruelty, in particular, towards women and children and those on the margins.
Saying the time had come to build a new framework between church and State, Varadkar captured the mood of many by expressing the hope the visit of Pope Francis would mark the opening of a new and more normal chapter in the relationship between Ireland and the Catholic Church.

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