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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Letter to Editor of the Southern Cross

Dear Editor

The article Bishop removed over women priests, celibacy (11-17.05) refers.

Having read from a wide variety of sources regarding this ousting by Pope Benedict XVI of Australian Bp William Morris, I gained insight into several interesting facts.  His 2006 Advent letter reflects the deep concerns of a Good Shepherd; the question of rules regarding ordination of priests was widely discussed for more than five years – even beyond Bp Morris’ diocese and indeed, he states ‘internationally’! He received support from the President of the Australian Conference of Bishops and has the support of a considerable number of clergy. Roman authority has ousted the Shepherd but the need to dialogue will go on. He is a man of courage and clearly believes in the primacy of conscience.

Thus we say: all praise to the good Bishop for getting people thinking sensibly about what could be done to make the churches flourish better. Why should anyone in the catholic church feel that responsible dialogue about the rules for priesthood would threaten the integrity of the faith? Surely a local bishop is best placed to see what needs urgent discussion. Much more threatening to the faith is the suppression of such dialogue. Every time one sees what could be done (especially someone in authority) but remains silent about it, one diminishes oneself a little bit. A psychologically unhealthy pew-Catholic is the result.  One could also say that the Body of Christ is betrayed by silence.

The Arab Awakening was predicted by no one but pressing down the lid cannot stop the pot boiling over.

J P Giddy
R Gravenor

[not yet published in Southern Cross at 22nd June 2011]

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