Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Catholics in Crisis Times

We've been there for some time. Our church has failed us, in their abdication of spiritual leadership. They permitted a moral rot to enter the priesthood, and failed to protect their vulnerable children.

Time and again, they allowed parishioners to accept lax standards, failed to exercise their responsibility to teach church doctrine, responsible morality, and set an example through their own lives.

At this time too many in the church have a weakened conscience, poor attendance at mass and the sacraments, and a deep and meaningful spiritual center.

And, this week, I received word that my diocese, as well as many more, will not have masses or other sacraments - with the exception of what used to be called Final Rites - until at least April 1, 2020. Funerals and weddings may be held with just the immediate family present.

This is huge. As an American Catholic, I've always known mass to be held on Sundays, and even daily in most churches. Catholics have an obligation to attend mass, unless it is not possible (as in war conditions, or no priest available to perform mass). I've only missed masses for grave reasons - my own personal illness, or that of a family member. Once, when we were unable to find a church on a trip through the South, my grandfather insisted on attending a Protestant service, as the lesser of two evils.

So this is huge. It is unprecedented in the United States. And it may well change Catholics' relationship to mass.

Fortunately, in this electronic age, we have alternatives. We have access to televised/video masses that satisfy our Sunday obligation, if not our ability to receive Communion. But, we will miss the physical nearness of our priests, fellow parishioners, and the Real Presence.


Bill said...

It seems it will be hard to convince the parishioners that an all powerful God protects them, when obviously the priests don't believe. Unfortunately the Catholic Church is far from being the only one with this lack of faith

Linda Fox said...

No, God will not necessarily step with with magic to protect the parishioners from being infected. But he will aid them in other ways - such as giving them spiritual strength.