Lay Apostolates Respond to Vigano's Letter: 'Necessary Corrections will be Lost if Sensationalism Drives Rhetoric'
Contact: Therese Sanchez, 740-283-2484
HOPEDALE, Ohio, Aug. 30, 2018 /Christian Newswire
/ -- Sister apostolates, The Saint Joseph Foundation (SJF) and Catholics United for the Faith (CUF) are calling on members of the Catholic Church to vigorously pursue desperately needed reform. This comes as a response to Archbishop Vigano's recent letter exposing significant corruption at the highest levels of the Church's hierarchy. Many Catholics and non-Catholics alike recognize that the events revealed in the letter are not comprehensive and represent symptoms of deeper problems. "If only the symptoms are addressed, greater scandals will follow," warns SJF and CUF President, Philip Gray.
Gray cites widespread secularism, antinomianism, and a significant distortion of the identities of the ordained and the laity as the foundational problems that have allowed corruption to persist. A canon lawyer, Gray argues that these issues discourage the cultivation of faith in an increasingly atheistic world, reject necessary structures that protect the rights of individuals, and hinder the proper relationship that should exist between the ordained and the laity. Cardinal McCarrick must come to justice. Those whose corruption allowed him to persist in his evil acts must be brought to justice. Catholics must insist that efforts to obtain this justice begin a wider process of correction throughout the whole Church.
"The Church has been plagued with sex scandals for centuries, and we have long known it reaches the highest levels of the Church," says Gray. "What must be understood," the lay leader explains, "is the connection between these scandals and a pandemic influence of secularism in the Church. The Church in North America no longer informs the culture with her faith; rather, secularism informs authorities in the Church on how to behave. This secularism rejects the laws and structures of the Catholic Church that protect the faith and rights of those who believe. Ultimately, these problems are rooted in a distortion of identity and roles in both the ordained and the laity."
In Grays estimation, if the McCarrick scandal is addressed by establishing new procedures and lay investigative boards, the result will be more of the same. McCarrick and his protectors may come to justice, but greater scandals will arise. Remembering Matthew 12:43-45, Gray cites similar efforts taken to address scandal in the 1990's and 2002. He urges, "Catholics must insist that the laws of the Church be applied properly, and demand that faith inform the work of our pastors." SJF and CUF are preparing a comprehensive statement on this issue as well as a strategy for reform to be published in the near future. The Saint Joseph Foundation (stjosephcanonlaw.com) is a non-profit, Catholic apostolate founded in 1984 to assist the faithful in the vindication of their rights within the Catholic Church. Its legal cases have affected virtually every diocese in North America. Catholics United for the Faith (cuf.org) is a non-profit, Catholic apostolate founded in 1968 to unite the faithful from all walks of life in order to support, defend, and advance the Teaching Office of the Catholic Church. CUF's membership is international.