We in the States often or at least occasionally fret over “Those Who Have Left The Church To Join Other Religious Groups.” The Aparecida bishops do too. In this document, they don’t address the nones. They don’t diagnose the problem others have highlighted in the US, one since the revelation of sex abuse cover-up: the sense that morally and administratively, the Church has left them.
In this section and the next, they recognize some impulses:
225. In our pastoral experience, often sincere people who leave our church
- do not do so because of what “non-Catholic” groups believe, but fundamentally for what they live;
- not for doctrinal but for vivential reasons;
- not for strictly dogmatic, but for pastoral reasons;
- not due to theological problems, but to methodological problems of our Church.
They hope to ﬁnd answers to their concerns. They are seeking, albeit with serious dangers, answers to some aspirations that perhaps they have not found in the Church, as ought to be the case.
The comment that some non-Catholic groups have a more attractive way of life: what to make of that?
For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.