Readers Speak Out: October 25, 2020

  • October 22, 2020

Active bishops

Re: Letters to the Editor (Sept. 13):

Mr. Ray Temmerman, a past National President of the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace - Caritas Canada (CCODP), in his letter states: “In 1967, the Catholic Church in Canada chose to give birth to a new life, the organization we have come to know as D&P. It was to be an independent, lay-led, Catholic institution delivering competent, professional development aid.” Further, he states that in founding the organization the bishops then became its “fathers.”

However, the wording the bishops approved on Oct. 13, 1966 states: “The entire organization should be established as a Bishops-Clergy-Lay Association, reflecting thereby the new conception — post-Council — of the Church as defined in The Constitution on the Church.” 

The same historical record confirms that the bishops intended not only to remain active participants, but they intended what became CCODP to be an expression of “organized activity within the Church,” “giving witness of the solidarity of Christians” by informing and educating “not only the Christian community ... but also the entire Canadian community,” financing “community development projects” and providing “funds for emergency needs ... regardless of colour, race or creed.”

The participation of the bishops and their national assembly, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, is likewise required within CCODP because of its membership in Caritas Internationalis, as well as because of the 2012 “motu proprio” of Pope Benedict XVI, Intima Ecclesiae natura (“On the Service of Charity”). The reason this close inter-relationship and collaboration remain essential for CCODP’s effectiveness and witness as its solidarity and assistance continue to be urgently needed.

Bede Hubbard,

Consultant with the General Secretariat of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops  

Gatineau, Que.

Refreshing look

It was indeed refreshing to see the request from Cardinal Gerald Lacroix to slow down the catechesis of our young people. I am hoping this means moving from a place of punishment and guilt, to recognizing the human spirit as intrinsically good. This changes the whole flavour of church, from negativity to the wonder and beauty of humanity, but weak in that same vein. So we need redemption and forgiveness, why Jesus died on the cross. With love the primary response, it is always forgiving and encourages growth. Freeing is the word, rather than burdensome and heavy.

With so much change over two centuries, and with COVID-19 changing every equation of life, it does seem appropriate to take a new look.

Judy Stefnitz,

Burlington, Ont.

Desperate need

What an excellent idea from Cardinal Lacroix that parishes take a “break from catechesis” and use the opportunity to evangelize our Christians.

We desperately need this. A recent poll found that 70 per cent of those receiving Holy Communion did not believe they were receiving the body and blood of Christ. Their observed behaviour after receiving bears this out.

It has always been my opinion that we Catholics need to be converted to our faith, and a necessary step is instruction in what we believe. May we start with the sacraments, or whatever area our leaders deem more urgent.

Sylvia Chin,

Markham, Ont.

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