Last Updated:Friday - 09/24/2010
June 30, 2008
WCR Letters to the Editor
Newman grad senses growth in clericalism
Re: "A seminary for the ages" and "Funding crunch leads Newman to cut 3 faculty positions" (WCR, June 16).
I have a bachelor of theology degree from Newman Theological College. It was once my proudest achievement.
After working for the Church for most of my adult life, I believed that once I had my degree, I would continue to be one of the "workers in the vineyard" for a long time to come.
However, my employment with the Church ended about a month ago and I know that I will never go back. Why? It's simple - the Church doesn't want people like me.
These two articles, when read together, confirm for me that lay people are, and will continue to be, second-class citizens in the Catholic Church.
The Archdiocese of Edmonton has worked very hard over the last 10 years to promote the priesthood (and other "clerical" ministries like the permanent diaconate), while at the same time, discontinued programs for the laity like Formation for Pastoral Service.
It's no wonder that lay enrollment has gone down to the point where the BTh and certificate programs are being cut. This makes me very sad.
Newman Theological College was created because of a dream that came out of the Second Vatican Council, a dream that lay people would experience "full, active, participation" in the Church. That dream is being slowly, quietly snuffed out.
I have a feeling that the Vatican II dreamers, like our Archbishop Anthony Jordan, would be deeply saddened by this as well.
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