I have read and watched with interest and disgust the contention escalating between the son of Senator Edward Kennedy, Congressman Patrick Kennedy and the Catholic Church.
Representative Kennedy has been both privately and publically reprimanded by his local bishop for supporting abortion rights legislation. The bishop claims young Kennedy started it by attacking church doctrine. The church then responded, not with forgiveness and turning the proverbial cheek, but by denying Kennedy the sacrament of communion, privately at first, then publically after Kennedy publicized the church's private letter to him.
There may also be a political agenda on the part of Congressman Kennedy.
In a public pronouncement Kennedy's bishop claimed the moral ground on this issue.
I was born a catholic, raised a catholic and abandoned its dogma when I was old enough to think things through with mind-full thought and common sense. I do believe though that many of the churches foundations have comforting value and sacred traditions.
I do dispute the church’s claim of moral ground. This is not a moral issue. It is a dogma issue.
A church that protects its clergy from discovery and prosecution in pedophilia allegations, a church that historically sold indulgences for the illusion of heaven’s entrance, a church that can annul the sacred contract of marriage, even when children are present, has no right to claim a moral ground, in any cause, anywhere.
Unless the Catholic Church as a whole, as a universal community, embraces these changing times and the enlightened spirituality of its parishioners it will continue to diminish in influence throughout the secular world. The church needs women priests. It needs married priests. It needs to be open and honest in its problems. It needs to be ‘Catholic” in its understanding of life, not dictatorial as the current Pope prefers.