So then if we should speak out on abuses. .

. . . why then may we not speak out against the priest if we see him doing something wrong?

Who said you can’t? Of course in the proper way. You must go to him directly with concerns you have.

With charity, and love of course. Why cant you? :confused:

Your phrasing is problematic. To “speak out against” the priest implies that you are spreading dissent among the parishoners. If you have a problem with something a priest is doing, you should bring it up directly to him, privately and respectfully.

When we “speak out” in an effort to promote the correction of liturgical abuses, the focus is on a practice that is objectively wrong. If we speak out “against the priest”, the focus is on the person or the office. That’s a whole different matter.

Having said that, we all recognize that some liturgical abuses are the result of individual actions by individual priests. In Matthew, Chapter 18:15-17, our Lord gives us an action plan:

" ‘If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.’ "

Hope that helps.

Imperfections occur in the church’s ceremonies. The liturgical books should be faithfully followed, but they are not always. There is a reality of sin, but also the question raised by Jesus “Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye?” (Matthew 7:3).

Given each person’s limited resources, decisions need to be made about:
How sure am I that I am correct?
Which abuses/imperfections are more important?
Which priests are more likely to respond to advice/correction?
What approaches are more likely to be successful in a given situation?

The 2004 Instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum has:
"[183.] In an altogether particular manner, let everyone do all that is in their power to ensure that the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist will be protected from any and every irreverence or distortion and that all abuses be thoroughly corrected. This is a most serious duty incumbent upon each and every one, and all are bound to carry it out without any favouritism.
[184.] Any Catholic, whether Priest or Deacon or lay member of Christ’s faithful, has the right to lodge a complaint regarding a liturgical abuse to the diocesan Bishop or the competent Ordinary equivalent to him in law, or to the Apostolic See on account of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff. It is fitting, however, insofar as possible, that the report or complaint be submitted first to the diocesan Bishop. This is naturally to be done in truth and charity."

:clapping: :clapping:

:clapping: :clapping: :clapping:

You are amazing!:thumbsup:

It is your duty to report any abuse first to the Minister and then to the Bishop. If you do not do so you may endanger your own soul. However, that said I have done so myself in always respectful manner and have not attained any results. The abuse continues unchecked and unabated as it is very difficult to change minds.
Best of luck though

Of course you can, but only if you are willing to follow Christ and be rejected, banned, talked about, and even hated by some.

Which abuses/imperfections are more important?
Which priests are more likely to respond to advice/correction?
What approaches are more likely to be successful in a given situation?

Very good advice, John, and the first is probably the most important, initially. Haven’t we all seen posts that rail against very minor things that are not considered an abuse? I have noted some that were actually legit, but the poster was not aware of it.

I picture a new bride being scolded by her mother-in-law for every infraction that does not treat her son the way mom does things (or believes it should be done!) :smiley: This sets a very bad tone between people who should be supporting one another.

Yet if it is certain that there is a very grave situation such as when the Eucharist is being desecrated, one would need to strongly oppose while maintaining an attitude of charity.

A Christian does not “speal out against” someone, but rather speaks out against particular actions that someone might commit.

It is acceptable to note that “Fr. X does not do such and such action, which is mandated by GIRM xyz”

It is not acceptable to say “Fr. X is a twit”

Okay, finally getting back to clarify myself (two sweet girls needed to eat and go to bed, and only Mommy would do :wink: ).

What I referring to was this: in my Pieta Prayer Book it talks about criticism of priests, and how we should never do that, that only Jesus can judge him (page 34, specifically). I’ve read several posts and threads regarding this very thing. But when I was reading threads regarding liturgical abuses, I was confused as to why we were able to do something about those (that is, speaking out on them) but not on a priest.

Does that make sense? I love my Jesus and my Catholic Church so much, and am trying to learn and absorb as much as I can! Sometimes it’s hard to make myself understandable in light of my enthusiasm. :blush:

ETA: This doesn’t mean in the slightest that I’m going to go about looking for stuff that’s wrong in either my priest or my parish, FTR. :thumbsup:

Tiber Swim Team, class of '06

I think a newer prayer book would be better. Perhaps the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which includes:

523. What is forbidden by the eighth commandment?
The eighth commandment forbids:
false witness, perjury, and lying, the gravity of which is measured by the truth it deforms, the circumstances, the intentions of the one who lies, and the harm suffered by its victims;
rash judgment, slander, defamation and calumny which diminish or destroy the good reputation and honor to which every person has a right;
flattery, adulation, or complaisance, especially if directed to serious sins or toward the achievement of illicit advantages.
A sin committed against truth demands reparation if it has caused harm to others.
524. What is required by the eighth commandment? … The eighth commandment requires respect for the truth accompanied by the discretion of charity in the field of communication and the imparting of information, where the personal and common good, the protection of privacy and the danger of scandal must all be taken into account; in respecting professional secrets which must be kept, save in exceptional cases for grave and proportionate reasons; and also in respecting confidences given under the seal of secrecy.”

I looked up the forbidden “complaisance” in a dictionary: “1. politely deferential. 2. willing to please; acquiescent.”

The Compendium is at . It includes about 24 common prayers at Appendix A. It was approved by Cardinal Ratzinger in 2005.

Criticizing priests would mean nitpicking them, or playing Siskel and Ebert with their homilies, or complaining about every little thing. Telling the priest that you noticed something against the GIRM (or telling the bishop about it, for that matter) isn’t criticism, but rather, information and defense of the Church.

(It’s probably not a good idea to criticize and talk down your child’s teacher, especially not in front of your child. But if your child’s teacher were to do something that was really morally wrong or illegal, you’d tell the principal or the police.)

If you notice something good being done, it’s probably a good idea to talk to the priest about that, too. Then it might happen again. :slight_smile:

Oh gads, yes! All the time, I tell my priests that I love them, and tonight, I stayed late for a good-bye reception for one of the Sisters whom I love as well.

Stupid question: the GIRM is. . . ?

Meaning no disrespect, how can someone who doesn’t know what the GIRM is, and therefore doesn’t know what it says, be in a position to “speak out against the priest if we see him doing something wrong?” Lacking knowledge of the GIRM, how would you know what was “wrong?”

GIRM = General Instriction for the Roman Missal

Hope that helps.

Thurible, I thought I made myself clearer a few posts above, when I tried to clarify that NO, I wasn’t going to “speak out against a priest” and that my wording could’ve been better. I also thought I made myself clear that I am a brand-new Catholic and am learning all I can, and tell my priests that I love them every chance I get.


And the GIRM is the 'do’s and don’ts" of what a Mass should be.

It’s the Vatican’s Rule Book on the Liturgy,

If the priest violates some of the outlined instructions, pointing the error out is not a criticism, but rather assisting the priest in the performance of his ministry.

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