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  •  Just Sister will do for her... (8+ / 0-)
    Catholicism: A Changing Church -- Despite Itself
    Sister Joan Chittister, OSB

    Catholic Visionary

    Excerpt:
    The church itself is no longer part and parcel of the national political identity anywhere. Not in Poland, not in Ireland, not even in Italy.

    Clearly the church will be forced to deal with the effects of all these things, and more. Or, rather than being an international force, a credible voice, it will soon become an international relic. Some of the necessary changes implied by these realities are already beginning to be clear. In the church of the 21st century, in order to be a vibrant and effective factor in society -- as well as an institutional remnant of the past -- four issues strain for attention and promise more change to come.

    Snip!

    Her four issues before the church:

    1.Clericalism, the by-product of an illiterate society, has already come head to head with the levels of professionalism around it. To be acceptable in the 21st century, priesthood will need to be a purely ministerial function, not a civic, academic or social office.

    SNIP!

    2. Gender equality will be one of the major social issues of the 21st century. Churches that cling to sexism in the name of God will find themselves ignored on other issues.

    SNIP!

    3. The laity will become a driving force behind the declericalization of a patriarchal church if for no other reason than the need for personnel. Educated in every dimension of life now to the highest degree, including theology, the laity will expect both to lead and to be listened to in the church.

    Snip!

    4. Finally, theology itself, in the light of evolution, will need to be rethought, revised and reshaped to honor a God big enough to believe in, a God beyond the maker of a child's heaven and more an impelling force than the laws of those who take literalism as the measure of the spiritual life.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    I edited a lot out but you can see why she gives the Bishops boils!

    •  I would never have left (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Flint, Shaking the Tree

      the Catholic church if the good Sister was in charge! WAHOO!

      We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. ~ Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis

      by kellius on Tue Feb 07, 2012 at 02:08:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  One thing I found out... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kellius

        There is a big difference between the Holy Orders (Bishops, Priests, and Deacons) and the Monastic Orders like the Benedictines, Celestines, Jesuits, etc.

        The Holy Orders seem to be more concerned with what I call "brand management" and canonical law and keeping the flock in line. It is the religion.

        While the Monastic Orders are more concerned with the spiritual experience through contemplative practices. The emphasis is on Spiritual path. Sister Joan is a Benedictine.

        I'm not Catholic but since a very early age I was attracted to the writings of her fellow Benedictines like Thomas Merton, Brother David Stendl-Rast and others.

        Brother David Stendl-Rast wrote the foreword to the Vietnamese Zen Master Thich Nhat Hahn's book "Living Buddha, Living Christ." This book is remarkable in its depth of insight and understanding of both spiritual paths.

        I'm a Buddhist and a Christian and Benedictines would come to the Zen Center frequently and we had great interactions with them. The dialogue was always very... human, honest, and sincere.

        The monks also weren't laying a conversion trip on us, where my interactions with most Priests over the years were the exact opposite.

        I have profound respect for the monastics as they seem to be on a spiritual path and the Priests are on a religious path.

        Its never a good idea to generalize and there are exceptions:

        At Morning Star Zendo, persons of all faiths are invited to practice Zazen (sitting meditation).

        Robert Kennedy, S.J., Roshi, is a Jesuit priest and Zen teacher in the White Plum lineage. He studied with Yamada Roshi in Kamakura, Japan, with Maezumi Roshi in Los Angeles, and with Glassman Roshi in New York. Glassman Roshi installed Kennedy as sensei in 1991 and conferred Inka (his final seal of approval) in 1997, making him a roshi (master).

        Kennedy Roshi is the author of Zen Gifts to Christians and Zen Spirit, Christian Spirit.

        http://kennedyzen.tripod.com/
         

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