Thursday, May 8, 2008

3 stories from TIME on Catholicism

Is Liberal Catholicism Dead?
Saturday, May. 03, 2008 By DAVID VAN BIEMA

He may not have been thinking about it at the time, but Pope Benedict, in the course of his recent U.S. visit may have dealt a knockout blow to the liberal American Catholicism that has challenged Rome since the early 1960s. He did so by speaking frankly and forcefully of his "deep shame" during his meeting with victims of the Church's sex-abuse scandal. By demonstrating that he "gets" this most visceral of issues, the pontiff may have successfully mollified a good many alienated believers — and in the process, neutralized the last great rallying point for what was once a feisty and optimistic style of progressivism.

Frank Words from the Bishops
Tuesday, Jun. 21, 2005 By RICHARD N. OSTLING

One of the most important teachings to emanate from the Second Vatican Council was "collegiality," the concept that bishops collectively govern the Roman Catholic Church in union with the Pope. In a concrete application of that principle, since Vatican II ended in 1965 Popes have periodically summoned synods of bishops to offer advice on issues facing Catholicism. In practice, however, churchwide power is exercised by the Vatican Curia and the Cardinals who supervise its administrative agencies.

Back to the Catholic Future
Monday, Apr. 18, 2005 By RICHARD N. OSTLING

Wearing white chasubles, a grand assemblage of Roman Catholic bishops will file through St. Peter's Square and into the basilica next Sunday to con-celebrate a Mass with Pope John Paul II. The stately ritual will mark the beginning of a two-week world synod of bishops, summoned by the Pope to commemorate and evaluate the results of the Second Vatican Council, which concluded 20 years ago.

With the exception of the 1978 conclaves that elected Pope John Paul II and his short-lived predecessor, John Paul I, no meeting in Rome since Vatican II has provoked as much advance speculation as this synod. One reason is sheer mystery; its agenda is wide open, and no one knows what will happen. Beyond that, many liberals fear that the synod may be part of John Paul's ongoing campaign to enforce discipline and theological orthodoxy. Conversely, some conservatives look to the synod as an opportunity to act against what they see as near heretical aberrations that have sprung up since the council.

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