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3150 Newgate
Florissant, MO 63033
For Immediate Release:

Professor Leonard Swidler
December 31, 2006


ARCC's Open New Year's Letter to Our Bishops

Dear Brother Bishops,

Thank you for trying. For better or for worse, you are our bishops and we are your people. We would like to share with you some of the serious concerns that we have with your leadership. It is all about trust. Below are some of the questions we are asking ourselves and each other. We share them with you in case you would like to know.

1. Would it be at all prudent of us to trust the guidance of bishops who place the loyalty and welfare of an organization over the welfare and security of our children?

2. Is it logical to seek advice and guidance about our sexual issues from bishops who have no academic training in sexuality, who are not married -- not even once (1 Tim.3:2), who have renounced sexual pleasure, and who shun all sexual relations?

3. Isn't it unreasonable for us to rely on bishops to work for the locally identified common good who are unknown to us, who come from another community, who were forced upon us by a secret process, and who have committed loyalties to a yet more distant human authority.

4. Are we justified in continuing to contribute to any cause led by bishops who are not accountable, nor open, and who maintain absolute control over all assets and contributions past, present, and future under the guise of stewardship?

5. Can we reasonably trust bishops who, in one way or another, tried to manipulate our consciences to vote for George W. Bush?

6. What answer can we give to our God if we entrust the formation of our conscience to bishops who claim to teach absolute truth of faith and morals but who have not demonstrated their integration of new knowledge and understanding of cosmology, anthropology, biology, medicine, psychology, sociology, history, scripture, and reality in general acquired over the past century?

7. Can we have confidence in bishops who are complicit by their silence as brother bishops attempt to persecute and excommunicate their people?

8. How confident can we be in bishops who insist on secrecy, have secret advisors, cover up the truth, protect the guilty, all in the name of protecting the image of the Church?

9. Does it make sense to trust bishops who do not acknowledge that God speaks through the people of the Church, who do not know the "sensus fidelium" of their people, nor speak in their behalf for fear that Rome may not approve and may block their career paths?

10. Might we question the commitment of our bishops who refuse to provide priests for us in deference to man made laws which are contrary to our earliest traditions and Sacred Scripture?.

In light of the current problems in our Church the answer to these questions may help you to understand your people better and offer some clues should you ask yourselves, "What am I doing wrong?"

May the New Year witness the work of the Holy Spirit alive and well in us all!


(Consider sending this to your bishop as from you, or from your organization, or from ARCC)

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