“The Bishop Wants an Apple Orchard”


The diocese held its first of three information gathering sessions for the adult formation task force. It felt like St Blog’s Live, though with a 60-40 prog tilt rather than 25-75. Some people said some articulate things. Some people said some silly or irrelevant things. Both sides of the Great Divide said things for each camp. The articulate/irrelevant camps, that is. Not much was said in terms of bridging any of these camps or expressing true catholicism, as opposed to one’s own brand of orthodoxy. I left at half-time to go grocery shopping. But I did turn in my four page survey with three pages of Apostolicam Actuositatem tacked on the end.

New Wine was compared to an orange grove. The bishop wants apples now. He’s the king because Jesus established a hierarchy, so there you have it.

Not one of the better moments of the night, and that came from a diocesan official I otherwise respect. Other people complained about various things (keep in mind this is adult formation information gathering): not being able to find the tabernacle, no consultation, too many divorces, I-was-starting-New-Wine-and-now-I-have-nothing-to-do, etc..

Today is the retreat day for the parish staffs of the diocese. I might suggest what I was too bothered to suggest last night:

The bishop is in charge. If we disagree and he insists, we have no power to do anything about it. (My 12 Steps kick in here.) If New Wine has indeed prepared the laity of the diocese so well, why don’t we cultivate an orange grove after picking apples? Do lay people need a diocese to take initiative for them?

Personally speaking, I would be pleased and honored to teach and mentor the next wave of lay ministers. I received a good education and I’m more than willing to “give back.”

More later.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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