Obedience--two Way Street


#1

I have been reading “Tomorrow’s Catholics, Yesterday’s Church,” by Eugene Kennedy. He describes two kinds of Catholiic with different outlooks. One group emphasises the institutional structure of the church. They see themselves as the orthodox with a special attachment to obedience. Many of them post on the internet defending traditional practices against change.

Obedience is a desirable concept needed for order and stability, but it is not one sided. While the laity have an obligation to follow the rules, the hierarchy has a complementary duty to be accountable when exercising control. This has been lacking in the American church. Criminal actions have been covered up and huge sums of hush money paid out in secret.

The Holy Spirit guides the church but does not micromanage. The people of God have a duty to participate in keeping the institutional church pure. It is undeniable that corruption has existed in the church in the past. There will always be potential for mistaken policies in the human side of the church. It is the responsibility of both laity and clergy to correct abuses.


#2

[quote=gksaoh]I have been reading “Tomorrow’s Catholics, Yesterday’s Church,” by Eugene Kennedy. He describes two kinds of Catholiic with different outlooks. One group emphasises the institutional structure of the church. They see themselves as the orthodox with a special attachment to obedience. Many of them post on the internet defending traditional practices against change.

[/quote]

It’s utterly amazing to me that some of the very same people who see themselves as orthodox and obedient to the church are often the same people who denounce the Second Vatican Council! So much for obedience! :cool:


#3

[quote=MaryAgnes]It’s utterly amazing to me that some of the very same people who see themselves as orthodox and obedient to the church are often the same people who denounce the Second Vatican Council! So much for obedience! :cool:
[/quote]

Actually, most denounce the so called “Spirit of Vatican II”, and this spirit was rooted in anything but obidience.

As for the abuse, had Priests and Bishops followed church teachings on morality, this would not have been a problem. Sadly, after Vatican II, so many Bishops went away from church teachings and followed the modern ways of society, when the concept of sin all but vanished.


#4

[quote=gksaoh]I have been reading “Tomorrow’s Catholics, Yesterday’s Church,” by Eugene Kennedy. He describes two kinds of Catholiic with different outlooks. One group emphasises the institutional structure of the church. They see themselves as the orthodox with a special attachment to obedience. Many of them post on the internet defending traditional practices against change.

Obedience is a desirable concept needed for order and stability, but it is not one sided. While the laity have an obligation to follow the rules, the hierarchy has a complementary duty to be accountable when exercising control. This has been lacking in the American church. Criminal actions have been covered up and huge sums of hush money paid out in secret.

The Holy Spirit guides the church but does not micromanage. The people of God have a duty to participate in keeping the institutional church pure. It is undeniable that corruption has existed in the church in the past. There will always be potential for mistaken policies in the human side of the church. It is the responsibility of both laity and clergy to correct abuses.
[/quote]

If I’m reading this right, there seems to be a false dichotomy being drawn. Being obedient to the Magesterium does not mean supporting free-reign for clergy to engage in criminal activity.

Likewise, disobedient Catholics are not the ones who care about keeping the clergy obedient to the Magesterium.

Are these not the two kinds of Catholics this piece seems to be implying?


#5

[quote=Genesis315]If I’m reading this right, there seems to be a false dichotomy being drawn. Being obedient to the Magesterium does not mean supporting free-reign for clergy to engage in criminal activity.

Likewise, disobedient Catholics are not the ones who care about keeping the clergy obedient to the Magesterium.

Are these not the two kinds of Catholics this piece seems to be implying?
[/quote]

I have to agree. I don’t see the connection between a disobedient and dissenting Catholic woman who plays priest in full knowledge that she is excommunicating herself and criminal activity of clerics.

First of all, clerics are human and they too must deal with the effects of original sin, which means they can fall as easily as any of us into pride, greed, envy, lust, among others.

However, what requires our assent is the Church’s teachings on faith and morals. It is not ok to have pre-marital sex because one’s conscience tells them it is just fine since they love this person and intend to marry him or her. The other thing that requires our assent, relative to obedience, is to any authority - be it our pastor, bishop or other on issues where they have jurisdiction and are in communion with Rome. If they ask us to do something clearly contradictory to Church teaching we are not obligated to obey. But when they are aligned to Church teaching we are expected to obey them.

There is one similar dimension. We are even called to respect civil authority and others in positions of authority, such as our boss, provided they do not ask us to do anyting contradictory to Catholic teaching.

I’ll let this writing explain it more. It is an interesting article that goes through the various types of obedience and how it is determined, often with scriptural passages cited. Under “Reverence for Authority” you will see more on what I said directy above.

opusangelorum.org/English/Obedience.html


#6

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