More on The Church
Cardinal Sean O’Malley gave quite the interview on 60 minutes.
Here is one of the most interesting parts:
In an interview with “60 Minutes” on CBS that producers said took more than a year for them to persuade him to do, O’Malley seemed troubled by reporter Norah O’Donnell’s question as to whether the exclusion of women from the Church hierarchy was “immoral.”
O’Malley paused, then said, “Christ would never ask us to do something immoral. It’s a matter of vocation and what God has given to us.”
“Not everyone needs to be ordained to have an important role in the life of the Church,” he said. “Women run Catholic charities, Catholic schools …. They have other very important roles. A priest can’t be a mother. The tradition in the Church is that we ordain men.
“If I were founding a church, I’d love to have women priests,” O’Malley said. “But Christ founded it, and what he has given us is something different.”
Source: The Deacon’s Bench
I think O’Malley’s words perfectly reflect what I was trying to express in my last post.
Although some conservatives may be alarmed by his honesty – “I’d love to have women priests” – his view is actually a really beautiful example of faithfulness, and really expresses a view of the Church as a divine institution – not made or controlled by us.
We may like a lot of things to be different. And certainly there are many things we not only have the ability to change but the responsibility to change in the Church — starting, of course, with our own hearts.
But Cardinal O’Malley reminds us that the Church belongs to Christ. And we cannot manipulate what He has given us as revealed doctrine, even with the best of intentions.
A friend of mine, noting the rather somber tone at the end of my last post, reminded me of Pope Emeritus Benedict’s words at his final General Audience that seem particularly relevant to this discussion:
I have felt like St. Peter with the Apostles in the boat on the Sea of Galilee: the Lord has given us many days of sunshine and gentle breeze, days in which the catch has been abundant; [then] there have been times when the seas were rough and the wind against us, as in the whole history of the Church it has ever been – and the Lord seemed to sleep. Nevertheless, I always knew that the Lord is in the barque, that the barque of the Church is not mine, not ours, but His – and He shall not let her sink. It is He, who steers her: to be sure, he does so also through men of His choosing, for He desired that it be so. This was and is a certainty that nothing can tarnish. It is for this reason, that today my heart is filled with gratitude to God, for never did He leave me or the Church without His consolation, His light, His love.
Source: Vatican News
I think Pope Benedict has it right.
I encourage you to read (or reread) the entire text of his last General Audience.