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why the long face, comrades?

By Diogenes (articles ) | Aug 24, 2005

Ecclesial feudalism is crumbling in Boston, gloat the editors of the NCR, "the serfs have been educated; unquestioning loyalty has been shown to be a dangerous idol; Boston as benefice has lost its luster."

Mary Beth Carmody, a lawyer who is a member of St. Jeremiah Parish in Framingham, eloquently argues the case for a new direction: "We keep telling the archdiocese that we are not dissident Catholics. We are the core and foundation, we are the parish council members, we are the parish finance council, we are the confirmation teachers, the religious education teachers, the lectors and the eucharistic ministers. We are the core of the Catholic church, and not only that, we are their gold because we are the core that cares enough to fight."

Mary Beth, the question of whether you dissent from Church doctrine or not has no intrinsic connection with the positions you hold in the system. The fact that you ask us to deduce your Catholicism from your job title instead of your creed tells me that the proposed changes are illusory. Speaking as a serf, all I see in your restructured bureaucracy is feudalism without the faith.

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  • Posted by: - Aug. 24, 2005 3:34 PM ET USA

    Ah, yes. "We are the salt of the earth". But the salt has lost its savor. For too long many so-called 'ministers' in parish life and religious education have pharisaically broadened their phylacteries even as they watered down the teaching of the Church. "Look at me! I know more than God..." Which, come to think of it, is how all this got started. "Ye shall be like gods..." Plus ca change...

  • Posted by: Canismater - Aug. 24, 2005 12:07 PM ET USA

    Huh? I thought Lumen Gentium and Gaudium et Spes cleared up all the ecclesiological problems? You don’t think somebody's been studying the commentaries and not the documents, do you.

  • Posted by: Fiducia - Aug. 24, 2005 10:38 AM ET USA

    You hit the nail right on the head. Thank you for keeping Boston's many-faceted problems in the spotlight, Diogenes. There are hidden agendas behind many of these vocal congregationalists who arrogantly present themselves as representative of the faithful.

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