Get Up, and Get Moving....

An opportunity for people of serious and orthodox Catholic faith of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to share the means to improve their own Churches.

Location: near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Truth or Consequences....

Was surfing about and happened across the Voice of the Faithful website. Trust me, I am not going to make it a secret habit to go there under the cover of internet darkness each night. Always on the lookout for how things in the big wide world relate to Milwaukee's little corner, I was intrigued when I found the following May, 2003, reference to our fair Archdiocese:

Members are also discussing effective ways to support various priests in our archdiocese who have taken actions based on their convictions and suffered consequences. One of the priests, Fr. Dave Cooper, recently allowed the Women's Ordination Conference to hold a prayer service in his church. This service received publicity in local papers, and Fr. Cooper was then summoned to meet with Archbishop Timothy Dolan. As a result, Cooper issued an apology in the archdiocesan newspaper and the editor of that paper issued a formal written clarification/apology for reporting on the prayer service.

What strikes me here is the notion that Fr. Cooper thinks he suffered consequences. Or at least someone interpretted his visit to the principal's office that way. Let's see...a pastor who, on the one hand, has a position of authority as teacher and leader but also who, on the other hand, has a boss (Fr. Dave remember that promise of obedience to an archbishop and his successors?) is asked to be minimally accountable for what he teaches. Accountable to his boss no less. Oh my, suffer the little children for accountability.

Fr. Dave remains the pastor of one of the largest parishes of the diocese; has all his rights to preside at sacraments; still draws one of the world's highest salaries for a priest; and was not asked to step down from any chaplaincy (KC's) or participation in communal or ecumenical (Catholic-Jewish dialog) activities. If there are consequences in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, I don't know what they are. I daresay that most of us in the real world (teachers unions excepted) would siffer far more "consequences" for flauting the organization leadership and corporate policies so blatantly.

What is really at issue here is the absolutely selfish way that so many of our parish priests in Milwaukee have no commitment to working for a shepherd...many of them want to be their own little bishops instead. Many do not want to be accountable to anyone: theologically and ecclessially to their archbishop, communally to thier parish, or fraternally to their fellow priests.

Maybe there will come a day when there is a bona fide consequence for Fr. Cooper, or any other Milwaukee priest, to whine about. That's what they do best...whine.



Blogger Terrence Berres said...

At a local VOTF meeting on March 22, 2004, Fr. Cooper clarified that he only pretended to apologize so he could keep his job.

Monday, January 09, 2006 8:18:00 AM  

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