Readers Speak Out: April 12, 2020

  • April 9, 2020

Responding to crisis

COVID-19 is a terrible disease that is causing many to become ill and some to die. It is devastating the economies of the world. However, it is in times of crisis that one can truly observe the character of individuals and organizations. 

The Archdiocese of Toronto and The Catholic Register should be proud of their actions. They have shown compassion, imagination, courage and intelligence.

The Register has covered the actions of the Church in a comprehensive manner. Because of your articles we can see that the Church has not abandoned her people. 

From Masses on TV to drive-by blessings, the Church has drawn a logical line between physical distancing and its duty to minister to the spiritual and religious needs of her people. The archdiocese is not daring the coronavirus to strike down its parishioners through reckless disregard for physical distancing, yet she is still shepherding her flock.

In The Register’s March 29 edition, articles ranged from encouragement from the Pope to the use of social media and TV, to the ongoing needs of those depending upon the services of the agencies funded by Catholic Charities. 

Catholic Charities itself is dependent on the ShareLife campaign and, in the past, 99 per cent of its donations have come from the parishes. The Register points out how these organizations continue to serve during COVID-19 and that people can donate directly to the ShareLife campaign at

Although not every member of the clergy is tech savvy, the archdiocese as a collective is quite competent in this area. Mass produced by the National Catholic Broadcast Council for TV, Mass on Salt + Light, prayers and spiritual messages on social media abound. The Church is being imaginative and creative in meeting our spiritual and religious needs during the worst pandemic since the Spanish flu of 1918-19.

The myriad articles illustrate the diversity of actions taken by the clergy and laity. The Register has used crisp, clean writing and good reporting to make us proud to be Catholics. Thank you.

Mark Creedon,

Etobicoke, Ont.

Prime target

The wonderful work accomplished by Jean Vanier placed him on a pedestal that came crashing down once his moral indiscretions became public. His name was removed from Catholic hagiography and his writings removed from Catholic libraries. This, in my opinion, is discordant theology because it denies God’s mercy but more importantly God’s wisdom. 

Why do we assume that his sexual indiscretions will outweigh the weight of his enormous charity and his love for the indigent and people with intellectual disabilities? How many saints had their lives exposed to the intense public scrutiny of social media that Vanier has endured? 

We tend to believe that the devil is some mythical figure but Pope Francis often reminds us of the devil’s reality in our lives, particularly in the lives of those close to Christ. Vanier was a prime target.

It is unfortunate that the Church is so obsessed with sins of the flesh that we tend to see salvation through the prism of sexual restraint or abstinence rather than the prism of a suffering Christ. Vanier may have disappointed many of his followers but I am sure his enormous good work will not go unrewarded.

J.E. Sequeira,

Pointe Claire, Que.

Day of prayer

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis the Church should organize a World Day of Prayer for the healing of our nation and the world. The Catholic Register should help stimulate an interest in organizing this day of prayer, maybe through the office of Cardinal Thomas Collins. 

Or maybe there was one and I missed it. If not, I hope you can help make it happen.

Patricia Williams,

Scarborough, Ont.

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