I get a lot of questions in my mail, many of them personal, many of them professional — meaning ones that are usually requests for comments or articles. One of the professional ones taught me more about the present state of the church than much else could possibly have done.
The article being requested was to have been part of a survey of responses to questions raised in one of their previous publications. The question asked how religious might go about educating the laity to take a discerning and respectful role in their capacity as part of the sensus fidelium.
The question assumed, of course, that the position of the faithful and the position of the official teaching magisterium might differ on the issues in question.
It was, I thought, a realistic question in a period of so much cultural and social transformation and might profit by being considered from the perspective of the research on social change. So I’lll tell you what I wrote.
You can decide for yourself how dangerously destructive of the church it is…