Friday, May 30, 2014
MANIPULATION BY ANY OTHER NAME IS STILL MANIPULATION
It is one thing for children who are children to manipulate their parents to get their way by telling them that their parents don't love them since they can't do what other children are allowed to do in their homes. But it is quite different when adults who profess to be Catholic do the same thing to the Church.It is a crass form of manipulation which is understandable in the immature but to be castigated in adults!
So I print this anonymous statement from the Macon Telegraph this morning concerning the situation of a Catholic institution striving to recover its Catholic mission:
“Our families are hurting. We feel scorned by our church, which we have dedicated our lives to,” the letter reads in part. “From coaching sports teams, to leading canned food drives, to going to Church every single Sunday -- we feel abandoned by the Catholic Church. We know God has not abandoned us. Our friends, loved ones, and many others in our community have not abandoned us. But we feel the hierarchy of our Church is denying us the pastoral care and love they are called to do.”
Let me just say that part of the pastoral care of the Church is to point out sin and corruption and to call people to repent and go to confession. Every person who goes to confession has in one way or another sinned against God and they do not make excuses for it, they do not blame anyone else for it and they do not disagree with the Church that the sin they are confessing is in fact a sin. In that context and as a priest representing both God and the Church I can forgive them acting in the person of Christ.
If someone came into confession after having sinned not only privately but also in the most public way possible and told me that she disagreed with the Church's teaching and castigated me for promoting the Church's teaching on adultery, fornication and publicly denying a basic tenet of the Church, I could not give that person absolution.
Some public sins in the Catholic Church, when the public sinner persists in them in the most public way in order to call into question the Church's sure and certain faith and morals can lead to public excommunication apart from being fired from employment in a Catholic institution.
Excommunication is pastoral. It is to call the one excommunciated to publicly repent and be reconciled to the Church.
Those trying to use an ideology that is opposed to the Church and in fact hates the Catholic Church need to recognize that the Church has every right to proclaim the truth and not be manipulated in any way from doing so.