Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley preached at an ecumenical service at Sudbury United Methodist Church on Sunday in commemoration of Cardinal Richard Cushing’s historic visit to the same congregation (below) a half-century earlier to discuss the Second Vatican Council’s efforts toward Christian unity.
Our underground correspondent, Guy Noir - Private Eye, wired us another story five hours ago in which he sayd that he followed our "fishwrap" link to what "they" thought was a more balanced story on O'Malley. He writes:
To some degree, yes.[Hat tip to JM]
Catholics used to demonize Protestants. (Traditionalist, I daresay, still often do. They can't make a distinction between a Mormon, a Methodist, or a Massachusetts Episcopalian, and seem to think every Protestant sect has to have an intentional "founder." I laughed when, prior to my conversion, Catholics would think that if they could prove Luther a bad guy, they could persuade me. "How could Luther found a church if...." They did not get that I, like them, thought Jesus founded my church, not Luther, not Wesley, and NOT Henry VIII...).
Today, however, it is another story: Lisa Wangsness, "Cardinal O’Malley, Methodists building ecumenical bridges" (Boston Globe, January 13, 2014).
Is there, after all, or can there be, a balance? (As a Catholic you don't have to deride Protestant sacraments, since they don't even have sacraments in the sense we believe in them. They have rituals. They are wrong on this score, but their error is really one of missing out, not claiming powers they don't have.) When we were in the grip of a much more severe clericalism, Vatican II seemed like healthy loosening. Now that we are in the grip of a theological free-fall, it seems like a license for doctrinal licentiousness. Reading this Globe piece, I wonder. When Cushing visited a Methodist Church, I am certain he seemed like a distinct Other, in demeanor, in garb, in emphasis. O'Malley... really, he dresses JUST like the female Methodist, and seems to have a similar vibe. Catholics used to distrust or disdain Protestants. Yes, I know. I had a best friend next door who could not come to my Protestant church.
But now, looking at, listening to O'Malley, Cushing's modern day successor, can anyone deny that it appears that the new phenomenon is that Catholics want to BE Protestants?
Also, when someone says their heart sings when they hear a sermon about helping the poor, the least among us, as if it is something hardly ever voiced, I wonder, in what church have they been? Maybe that's just me, but its been a reliable refrain for some 40 years!