Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic Culture Resources

Ecclesiastical Minefield

Papacy, Synodality, and Renewal

by Jeffrey A. Mirus

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Book Description

Everybody wants personal renewal and every Catholic wants the renewal of the Catholic Church. But Church renewal is a minefield, in which God often writes straight with crooked lines—and we sometimes trigger explosions. These are essays written from March of 2019 though January of 2022 in which I explore how much care we must take with the papacy, the concept of synodality, and authentic Catholic renewal.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Ten steps every bishop can take to renew the Church
  • Theories that Francis is not the Pope (or can be deposed) destroy the credibility of the Church
  • On saving the Church by breaking the tensions intrinsic to the Church’s life
  • Once the crazy talk starts, it is hard to stop
  • German Catholic women, in thrall to the world, boycott Mass
  • On raising our voices in and for the Church
  • Cardinal control: Is the Church’s future at stake?
  • Pope Francis answers: Part inspiration, part frustration, so how can we grow spiritually?
  • What’s wrong with popular causes (and with clerics who ride them)?
  • How to explain Pope Francis without making things worse
  • Church troubles: What good Catholics may and may not do
  • Sedevacantism: An attack on the Church’s Authority Principle
  • On funding (or dissolving) episcopal conferences
  • Catholicism is even more local than politics
  • The German Synodal Path: Noteworthy or not worthy?
  • On Synodality and the German call to expand it
  • Lay Catholic social action: The bishops must have our backs.
  • Our Church: How should the watchman of Israel act?
  • How long, O Lord? Praying about Pope Francis
  • The Pope’s video on fraternity? Let’s go deeper.
  • 5 things I regret that went uncorrected in 2020
  • The road to heaven is paved by a healthy Church
  • The Church and social policy: When less is more
  • A Church dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century
  • Synodality and the evasion of responsibility
  • Francis knows the Church is in a rut. But does he know why?
  • My battle cry for Church renewal? Debureaucratization!
  • So the best we can offer is “encounter” and “dialogue”?
  • Pope Francis stresses importance of democracy. Why?
  • The ten commandments of liturgy
  • “Radical change is coming in the Church”
  • Diplomacy in the Church, in light of the Gospel