'If we are to have a vibrant church in the future, we need to tackle the dispiritedness that pervades the church currently.' ~Sarah Mac Donald
The fallout from the Vatican's recent own goal continues to rumble. It recently produced a document on its tougher procedures in dealing with clerical abuse. It should have been a document to highlight another positive step forward in dealing with a sorry mess. But the Vatican blew it. In its wisdom it decided in the same document to talk about the ordination of women and that anything to do with same was a sacramental crime. So the headlines screamed in the following days about how the Vatican equated child abuse with female ordination. At ground level it was interpreted as yet another signal of the Vatican's opposition to women, how it's afraid and fearful of them and how it continues to deliberately exclude them. The Vatican will say this was never its intention. But this is just another recent example of why so many have walked from the church. It is not just confined to young people but they are walking away through every age group. Thankfully many are still open to God in their lives but not under the umbrella of 'Church'. Does anyone care anymore why it has lost touch with people at ground level? Unless we can honestly answer this question then a vibrant church in the future will never happen. If Vatican II was supposed to be an awakening of the laity into a new period of co-responsibility then it never got a chance to start. It was smothered, choked and allowed to die. What a shambles.