This is a must read, but first, I want to raise some questions of my own. I truly don't have the answers to these questions, but I believe they ought to be discussed:
If the Fathers of the Church were living today, would the bishops among them be considered pastoral enough to survive their episcopacies? Would they have the support of their brother bishops?
How about the Apostles?
Still better, would Our Lord Jesus Christ be considered pastoral enough by today's standards?
While approaching things in a pastoral manner is indeed very important (I don't want to downplay that), I am wondering who will suffer more on Judgment Day: Bishops who had unshakeable zeal for truth, who were "unpastoral" in their approach, or those who were so pastoral that many of the faithful were scandalized and led into grave error and sin.
We won't even get into the subject of some bishops who have, in the name of "pastoral correctness", tolerated distortions of Catholic teaching to such a degree that it has brought about widespread dissent within their dioceses, and who remain in their posts for many years.
I can't help but wonder if there is a double standard.
Just out of interest, please feel free to add some of the most quotable-quotes from Jesus, the Apostles, or the Fathers of the Church to the combox (keep them brief for space). How about the Doctors? Are there any quotes that would be labeled "pastorally incorrect" by standards apparently in use today?
Here is that analysis: Bishop Martino's Departure - Did he jump or was he pushed? (CWNews)
Please pray for our bishops.
EDITED @11:42 Sept 2, 2009
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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!