- Tide of suffering in an unholy war
Jan De Volder
As the Islamist group Boko Haram is said to be surrounding the city of Maiduguri in the latest stage of its campaign of violence against Christians and Muslims alike, an expert on the country considers why the authorities are powerless to halt its progress
- Home News
- World News
- Parish Practice
- Letters Extra
- The living Spirit
- Cardinal Burke lashes out at Kasper over claims he 'speaks for Pope Francis' on divorce and remarriage
- Bishop says church hierarchy had no idea of his affair with woman six years ago
- Pope Francis likens neglect of older people in care homes to ‘hidden euthanasia’
- Westminster auxiliary John Arnold appointed new Bishop of Salford
The question of the so-called shortage of priests, as with other issues presented to us, can be approached by seeking immediate and short-term solutions. This, I believe, would entail “managing decline”, whereas what we are facing is something long-term and systemic and therefore more to do with ongoing conversion than tinkering with an ailing machine. The division of the Church into a dominant clerical Church over/against a second-class lay Church can no longer be sustained.
Regarding our basic parish communities I believe the effort to maintain our smaller communities is in the short term, very worthwhile and possible with greater preparation of leadership in these communities: the Church is after all a community of faith. In the long term, however, we have to look at the whole governance of the Church, often seen as written in stone, but far from it if we study our own history. The lack of persons in the community deputed to lead us in the celebration of the Eucharist has gone on far too long and is an unnecessary scandal, but also a symptom, not the heart, of the challenge we face.
Canon JG Koenig, Kettering, Northants