Thursday, 2 February 2012

'Here, take my card...'

I've been reading responses to the Catholic cards initiative pioneered by our own Rt Reverend Bishop Kieran Conry.

As it happens, I quite like them, design wise and there is a nice quote from Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman on the back.

But...and there was always going to be a but...

As other commentators have pointed out, lay persons don't 'celebrate the sacraments'. Only Catholic priests can 'celebrate' Sacraments. Others have suggested that this calling card has the feel of a bus replacement service for the train to Heaven that is the six precepts of the Catholic Church.

The issuing of these cards by the Bishops does raise other questions, questions such as, 'Why has no previous generation of Catholics required these 'reminders'? The answer would perhaps be that the 'Catholic identity' was so knitted into parish, family and personal life that cards like these were not necessary. Catechesis in childhood and youth was simple, direct and understandable enough for young people to 'get' the Catholic Faith. In addition, the ancient liturgical rite of the Church does or did a heck of a lot of teaching also.

I liked Mac McLernon's suggestion that the cards could, as well as stating the request to call a Priest in an emergency, include the 'patient's desired wish not to be put onto the Liverpool Care Pathway. My only other suggestion would be to have the word 'unceasingly' after 'Pray' (How much should we pray? When?).

Aside from that, I like the cards, while trying to hold back the feeling that they are a little patronising and babyish. Give thanks to God, though, that His Lordship is doing his best to restore a sense of Catholic identity. It still worries me though that previous generations, for whom the Mass was so sacred and so holy, did not need them.

'But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel, after those days, saith the Lord: I will give my law in their bowels, and I will write it in their heart: and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.'   
 Jeremiah 31:33

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a piece of junk, but perfectly in keeping with the rather insipid and sickly sweet faith of our Bishops. Another immediate turn off for thousands.


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