The last few weeks have been interesting. We had the lifting of the excommunication of the nutcase bishop and the Legionaries of Christ revelations regarding their founder. Great stuff for all the anti-catholic folks and those who are not specifically anti-catholic but view us and the Church as just innocently mistaken. What to do? The Church needs to be very aggressive in its handling of both of these big news stories. Regarding the holocaust denying bishop, he needs to recant his absurd statements in a full and clear manner. I think Benedict has spoken out very clearly in the last few days on this issue, however, I do have mixed feelings on the lifting of the excommunications. While I understand the motivation and reasoning of the Pope, I am not sure it was the correct thing to do at this time. Part of me says let them go their own way. Let them fully submit to the Church or no deal.
As far as the Legionaries of Christ and their future, the Pope needs to step in and take firm control. The order should be disbanded and its priests given the option of joining a diocese or another order. The image of the Church has suffered greatly in the last years because of a few that have brought scandal upon it. How many Catholics have left because of those scandals and the hierarchy's mishandling of them?
Well said, but will the media listen?
VATICAN CITY, 12 FEB 2009 (VIS) - At midday today, the Holy Father received members of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organisations.
Speaking English, the Pope began his remarks by recalling his first visit to a synagogue, in the German city of Cologne in August 2005. He then mentioned his trip, in May of the following year, to the extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau. "As I walked through the entrance to that place of horror, the scene of such untold suffering", he said, "I meditated on the countless number of prisoners, so many of them Jews, who had trodden that same path into captivity at Auschwitz and in all the other prison camps".
"How can we begin to grasp the enormity of what took place in those infamous prisons? The entire human race feels deep shame at the savage brutality shown to your people at that time", he said.
The Pope then noted how today's visit "occurs in the context of your visit to Italy in conjunction with your annual Leadership Mission to Israel. I too am preparing to visit Israel, a land which is holy for Christians as well as Jews, since the roots of our faith are to be found there".
"The Church is profoundly and irrevocably committed to reject all anti-Semitism and to continue to build good and lasting relations between our two communities. If there is one particular image which encapsulates this commitment, it is the moment when my beloved predecessor Pope John Paul II stood at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, pleading for God's forgiveness after all the injustice that the Jewish people have had to suffer"
"The hatred and contempt for men, women and children that was manifested in the Shoah was a crime against God and against humanity. ... It is beyond question that any denial or minimisation of this terrible crime is intolerable and altogether unacceptable".
"This terrible chapter in our history must never be forgotten. Remembrance - it is rightly said - is 'memoria futuri', a warning to us for the future, and a summons to strive for reconciliation. To remember is to do everything in our power to prevent any recurrence of such a catastrophe within the human family by building bridges of lasting friendship.
"It is my fervent prayer that the memory of this appalling crime will strengthen our determination to heal the wounds that for too long have sullied relations between Christians and Jews", Benedict XVI concluded. "It is my heartfelt desire that the friendship we now enjoy will grow ever stronger, so that the Church's irrevocable commitment to respectful and harmonious relations with the people of the Covenant will bear fruit in abundance".