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Voice of the Faithful

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 Contents - Dec 2003AD2000 December 2003 - Buy a copy now
Editorial: The challenge of Christmas - Peter Westmore
John Paul II's 25th anniversary: the impact of his teachings - Cardinal George Pell
News: The Church Around the World
INTERVIEW: New Melbourne and Sydney Religious Education texts - Msgr Peter Elliott
VOCATIONS: Melbourne's 'Hearts on Fire' vocations congress a success - Fr Paul Stuart
EVENTS: Adore 2004: a Eucharistic Congress for youth
BOOKS: DANIEL MANNIX : Wit and Wisdom - new edition - Michael Gilchrist
Social Justice Statement 2003: a response from Bishop Saunders
Letters: Social Justice Statement - Michael Barr
Letters: Centrality of tabernacle - Marie Cassey
Letters: Common sense - Michael Barry
Letters: Inspiring article - Thomas Jones
Poetry: Ex Maria Virgine - Delia Craig
Letters: Voice of the Faithful - St Michael's Group
Letters: Heresies - John K. Hannon
Letters: Unwarranted school closure - Maurice McGrath
Letters: Men at church - Rosanne Turne
Letters: Perth homeschooling conference - Lorraine Haydon
Books: Confirmed in the Faith, by Dora Nash - Joanna Bogle (reviewer)
Books: Adventures in Orthodoxy, by Dwight Longenecker - Richard Egan (reviewer)
Books: Celibacy in the Early Church, by Stefan Heid - Fr Peter Murphy (reviewer)
Books: You Are Peter, by Olivier Clément - Peter Westmore (reviewer)
Books: Socrates meets Machiavelli, Socrates meets Marx, by Peter Kreeft - Bill Muehlenberg (reviewer)
Books: AD Books - Top Ten Sellers in 2003
Books: AD Books - A happy and a holy Christmas!
Reflection: 'Jesus Christ: the door of our salvation' : the meaning of Christmas - Pope John Paul II

Mary Ruth Monsour's warning of the establishment here in Australia of the US body Voice of the Faithful ("Dissident US group establishing a foothold in Australia", September AD2000) is timely and certainly should concern loyal Catholics.

It is worth noting that there already exist here in Australia, organisations whose aims are very similar to those of VOTF and include working for the "restructuring" of the Church". Some of these include: Women and the Australian Church (WATAC), whose "Issues and Concerns" include "to work to change oppressive Church structures in Church and society and in particular to address the issue of the ordination of women".

Australian Reforming Catholics (ARC) has a Charter which includes the vision of "a Church in which all positions of ministry and leadership are open to all".

Catalyst For Renewal (CFR), as indicated in the above article, has announced its support for VOTF. Featuring on CFR'S website among the "sample conversation themes", under the heading "Church", is the following: "What are we talking about? A new ecclesiology underlies just about everything else we would want to consider, such as priesthood and associated issues; authority, power and wealth in the Church; divorce and remarriage; the structure and life of parishes; the election of bishops; the role of the Church in the civil order; new forms of ministry; the place of various segments of the population in the Church, e.g., young adults, women, gays, professional people, young parents, the aged, etc, the pastoral rather than legalistic approach."

Some of the weekly Newsletters of the Commission for Australian Catholic Woman (CACW), which we began receiving via email in July 2002, as well as promoting material for the above groups, featured the websites of dissident US organisations such as FutureChurch and Call to Action. More recently the Newsletter has been focusing on employment, professional leadership training for women, gender equity, Women's Rights (including support for the ratification of CEDAW, which promotes reproductive health, a euphemism for abortion rights), social justice (including Native Title) and environmental issues, such as promotion of the International Year of Fresh Water and of course inclusive language.

Faithful Catholics should support those bishops who, by ensuring that the faith is protected from the influence of dissident groups, are acting as true shepherds to their flocks.

Perth, WA

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Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 16 No 11 (December 2003 - January 2004), p. 14

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