Thursday, June 6, 2013
I THINK THAT ONE OF THE THEMES OF POPE FRANCIS' PAPACY WILL BE ELIMINATING CAREERISM IN THE CHURCH
Pope Francis to future diplomats: No to careerism! (READ THE FULL ADDRESS HERE!)
As it regards careerism in the Church the Holy Father said:
...First of all, this freedom “means being free from personal projects: from some of the concrete ways that, perhaps one day, you imagined living your priesthood, from planning the future; from the perspective of staying a long time in 'your' place of pastoral action. It means making yourselves free, in some way, even from the culture and the mentality that you came from, not to forget it and even less to deny it, but to open yourselves, in charity, to understanding diverse cultures and meeting persons belonging to worlds that are even very far removed from your own.”
“Above all, it means being vigilant in order to be free from personal ambitions or aims, which can cause so much harm to the Church, taking care to always put, not your own fulfillment or the recognition that you could receive within and outside of the ecclesial community, but the greater good of the Gospel cause and the fulfillment of the mission that you will be entrusted with. … The ministry that you are preparing for asks you to go out of yourselves, a self-detachment that can only be achieved through an intense spiritual journey and a serious unification of the life around you to the mystery of God's love and to the inscrutable plan of his call.”
...This freedom from ambition or personal aims, for me, is important, it’s important! Careerism is leprosy! Leprosy! Please, no careerism! For this reason, each of you must be willing to integrate your vision of the Church, however legitimate, every personal idea or assessment, within the horizons seen by Peter, of his particular mission at the service of communion and the unity of the flock of Christ, of his pastoral charity which embraces the whole world, and that, thanks also to the action of the Pontifical diplomatic service, wishes to make itself present especially in those places, often forgotten, where the needs of the Church and of humanity are greatest.
In a word, the ministry for which you are preparing – because you are being prepared for a ministry, not a profession: it is a ministry! – this ministry calls you to go out of yourself, to a detachment from self that can only be achieved through an intense spiritual journey and a serious unification of your life around the mystery of the love of God and of the inscrutable plan of His call. In the light of the faith, we are able to live the freedom from our own projects and our own will, not as a cause of frustration or emptying, but as an opening to the superabundant gift of God, that makes our priesthood fruitful. Living the ministry in service to the Successor of Peter and to the Church to which you are called may appear demanding, but it will allow you, so to say, to be and to breathe within the heart of the Church, of its catholicity. And this constitutes a special gift, because, as Pope Benedict recalled when speaking to your community, “wherever there is openness to the objectivity of catholicity, there is also the principle of authentic personalization” (Speech to the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, 10 June 2011).
MY COMMENTS: The Holy Father's address has broad implications. Bishop Lessard use to warn his priests that they "weren't in private practice" developing their own agenda. No they were part of a presbyterate following the agenda of the Church, of Holy Mother Church, the Magisterium.
We are expected to go where the bishop sends us even if we are not prepared to go or we feel that we have much more to accomplish. That entails freedom of which celibacy should assist us.
But I think the Holy Father's words apply to Religious sisters, such as the LCWR, who have their own agenda for the Church, that of female priests, promoting active homosexuality and same sex marriage and changing the meaning of the Church's understanding of "poverty, chastity and obedience." They have made a career out of being religious rather than ministering as the Church expects and teaches and being obedient to the only legitimate human authority in the Church, the Magisterium, the pope and bishops in union with him and guided by the Holy Spirit.