29 July, 2011

How should we respond to threats from the State to make the seal of confession a criminal offence?

Christ said that his followers would be persecuted for his namesake and it seems to be coming to pass. Many folks claim that this is part of an external persecution. I disagree. These attacks on the rights of the Church and its members are a direct result of her own failings: infidelity to religious vows and moral fecklessness in the wake of these sinful (and sometimes criminal) acts. If the State is bludgeoning the Church, it's with a club of our own making. We have no one to blame but ourselves.

Yet... this is not an excuse or reason for further violating our religious obligations as clergy by breaching the seal of the confessional. In the face of the infidelity of other clergy, we MUST redouble our commitment to be faithful to ours. If the Church is going to fulfill her mission here on earth she will need to recover her moral authority... and the only currency in which she can amass to win back her good standing will be the faithful witness of Christians, even in the face of persecution. 

We are unquestioningly coming into an age of 'white' martyrdom when priests will lose their freedom and liberty for the faith. Probably this will be a precursor to a new wave of 'red' martyrs as well. Yet it was by the blood and sacrifice of martyrs in times past that has nurtured and promoted the Church to success. It will do so again. Jesus told us as much.

The Church is learning again that the Cross is the path to holiness
 

The hermeneutic of continuity: How should we respond to threats from the State to make the seal of confession a criminal offence?

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