Thursday, May 29, 2008

An interview

with Russell Shaw from Inside Catholic:

My book (Nothing To Hide: Secrecy, Communication, and Communion in the Catholic Church-Ignatius Press) ends with some practical recommendations. For instance: adopt policies that guarantee openness in conducting the business of dioceses and parishes and religious institutes; make a fresh start with pastoral councils and finance councils by giving them a real say in decisions and making their proceedings public; give qualified lay Catholics a consultative voice in the choice of their bishops and pastors; put freedom-of-information policies in place in Church institutions; allow diocesan newspapers to be more than house organs and operate as reliable sources of information and vehicles for public opinion. We have to revive the ideal of shared responsibility, too -- not as part of a power struggle, but so that we can all work together for the welfare of the Church.

You all know I am a Russell Shaw fan, but will this work without becoming a power struggle (remember the apple)? (Read the comments below the article too-not a comprehensive discussion, but some good points scored on both sides.)

If I may weigh in briefly...I think dioceses are much too big. The Bishop has a role of shepard more than administrator. What is a good shepard? Perhaps the best definition comes from Christ: I know my sheep and they know me. How many Bishops can say this? I think if Bishops concentrate on their roll as teacher of the Faith and shepard of their flock, then many other things will fall into place.

Oremus pro invicem!

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