07-01-2021 A Letter From Our Servant Leaders

  • Rich Chobot, President; Holy Spirit Conference; Annandale, VA July 1, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    You letter contains the following observation:

    “The Episcopal Conference should be consulted.” It is unusual for our National Episcopal Advisor to engage so intensely in our debates; so it was clear to me from Bishop Conway’s persistence that it was actually the U.S. Bishops who were letting us know that they did not think this was desirable or advisable.”

    This to me is an inference, rather than a statement of fact. The inference is based on the Bishop’s “persistence”, rather than any formal pronouncement on the part of the Bishop or an organization like the USCCB. Does such exist?

    It should be clear to anyone joining the Society that we are a Catholic organization, and as such are committed to follow the teachings of the Magisterium. A person who is opposed to these teachings–which encompass much more that right to life– is unlikely to join us. Likewise, the principle of consensus decision making should be sufficient to protect a conference from allocating resources for a purpose contrary to the teachings of the Church.

    Final point: Are we Vincentians so insecure as Catholics that we cannot accommodate people of other faiths within our Active Member ranks? Your comments regarding Associate Member status as an alternative are well taken. However, they also suggest a second classism that some non-Catholics might find difficult to accept.

    • I to feel the US bishops are overly concerned with Catholic Identity. Our concern that folks might leave the church if exposed to others may be real but by avoiding that we also avoid the opportunity for folks of other faith traditions to join us. We need not make apologies for bringing our faith and beliefs to the table when people of other faith traditions join us. I often find other traditions refreshing and enjoy a different perspective. If people start leaving our faith in droves due to exposure and interaction with others it is time to examine our traditions.

  • I enjoyed reading your article and your explanation to why non Catholics are preferred not to be able to join The St. Vincent DePaul Society via the Rule Book of the Society.

    Friends through Christ,
    La Donna Bala

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