leading cultural indicators

By Diogenes (articles ) | Jun 24, 2007

Cardinal Sean O'Malley has begun a campaign to educate Catholics in Massachusetts about the value of marriage. This isn't just about legal recognition of same-sex marriage there,the Boston Globe reports; there are other disquieting issues:

From 1986 to 2006, the number of Catholic marriages recorded in the Archdiocese of Boston has plummeted, from 12,274 to 4,519, about a 60 percent decline , church officials said.

That's a frightening indicator, all right. And the Globe story carries another. For a comment on Cardinal O'Malley's plan, the paper quotes a spokesman for those noted marriage experts, the Gay and Lesbian Advocates & Defenders.

Let's look on the bright side. While things in Massachusetts have now reached the stage where reporters ask homosexual activists to comment on Catholic pastoral initiatives, at least it's still legal for Catholics to comment on homosexual crusades. So things could be worse-- and will be, soon, if the tide doesn't turn.

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  • Posted by: - Jun. 27, 2007 12:53 PM ET USA

    That only one of the sacraments is under attack is not a realistic observation. All seven are being undermined by people both within and outside of the Church.Chastity is laughed at. Trial marriage (living together without benefit of ceremony) is advocated. The Eucharest is considered by many as only a representational act having no change of substance involved. The list goes on. What the modern liberals are looking for is a way to justify and legalize sin. And some bishops are helping them!

  • Posted by: - Jun. 25, 2007 8:59 PM ET USA

    A lot of sacramental marriages should not have been performed. In how many did the couple understand and adhere to the teaching on contraception? In how many did the couple commit themselves to one another exclusively and for life? The decline in sacramental marriage may be a good thing.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 25, 2007 7:15 PM ET USA

    My wife and I were asked to talk to engaged couples about the Church's teaching on marriage. The pre-weds were shocked (shocked!) to hear (for the first time, apparently) that contraception was wrong. They complained that we were "judgmental" and "too black and white". The people who asked us seemed dismayed, not that most of their pre-weds were already living as husband and wife, but that we had spoiled the mood. I don't think they'll ask us back.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 25, 2007 6:26 PM ET USA

    Uncle Di: With all due respect, as the Church has become little more than a homosexual colony, don't you feel you are shooting fish in a barrel? I thoroughly enjoy your column but I find after a few months that I am reading the social column for Castro Street in San Francisco. One of two men co-owning a home together here in NJ who are admittedly homosexual is the head of the K of C and a eucharistic minister in a local parish and people know it! I am told no one is all good or all bad.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 25, 2007 10:01 AM ET USA

    30 year priest; thank you for being faithful-you are in my prayers. I have begun preparing my family for my eventual arrest-once the "hate speak" laws are passed-since I can't not speak the truth. John the Baptist was a martyr for marriage (Herod took Phillip's wife as his own) & we are headed the same way here. May God have mercy on my poor country.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 25, 2007 12:28 AM ET USA

    A good idea . . . about 25 years too late. (Better late than never?)

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 8:36 PM ET USA

    The Cardinal seems to be a day late and a dollar short.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 5:07 PM ET USA

    Ex cop: I have always preached about mortal sin, not as a harangue but simply as a reality - and I suffer because of that preaching in my current parish ("...you are so negative..."). But the greater sufering comes not from those who hear me, but those in the chancery (especially the archbishop) who hear those complaints ("What can I do?" he asks; "We have to keep up the morale of the troops") and cower either in agreement or in fear.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 3:43 PM ET USA

    I have had a vision of heaven. Paul VI is going around saying: "I told you so".

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 2:29 PM ET USA

    Things are going to get much, much worse. We need to be purified.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 10:47 AM ET USA

    Catholic marriages are declining not just because of feeble minded Bishops but the clergy in general not talking to the faithful about ANY "rules". When is the last time you heard a cleric talk about mortal sin? We occasionally hear that abortion, same sex marriage or something else is "wrong"...but no mention of what the "wrong" is or what the consequences will be. Yet at the same time we hear much more impassioned discussions of social issues like immigration, hunger, and the death penalty.

  • Posted by: - Jun. 24, 2007 9:09 AM ET USA

    Archbishop O'Malley waits until AFTER the same-sex marriage ban vote to whimper about declining Catholic heterosexual marriage. That's like the Florida bishops kitten-like response to Terri Schiavo's murder by starvation. The Florida pro-life bishop said he couldn't help Terri because she wasn't in his diocese!!, and another bishop finally decalred it was wrong, but did so on the day her feeding tube was pulled. Terri died. My guess is so will Catholic marriages because of feeble minded bishops.