UNITED KINGDOM -- Public relations blunders leave the faithful confused
Public relations blunders leave the faithful confused
Malicious or ignorant reports do not only damage the reputation of ordinary Catholics; they also cause ordinary Catholics to lose confidence in their pastors
By The Catholic Herald on Wednesday, 21 July 2010
The Catholic Church was back in the headlines last week and, as is so often the case these days, the headlines made depressing reading. Put briefly, the Vatican issued updates to Canon Law that strengthened the penalties against sex abuser priests and those who take part in the attempted ordination of women. The secular media eagerly seized this opportunity to suggest that, in the eyes of the Church, the abuse of children and the ordination of women were equally serious crimes. The Vatican denied this, but it was too late: the simultaneous announcement of the new canonical penalties – which would have attracted little attention a few years ago – positively invited the Church’s enemies to do their worst.
This sort of public relations disaster is more dangerous than Rome seems to realise. Malicious or ignorant reports in the media do not only damage the reputation of ordinary Catholics; they also cause ordinary Catholics to lose confidence in their pastors.
It is easy to forget that members of the Church cannot always discriminate between true and misleading stories in the press. On this occasion, faithful Mass-goers were among those left confused and angry by stories implying – incorrectly but plausibly – that something was wrong with the Church’s moral compass. At no time in recent years has the Vicar of Christ faced so many devious opponents; yet the truth is that anti-Catholic polemicists were handed this latest piece of propaganda on a plate. It must not happen again.
DanGoddu [Moderator] 8 hours ago
I disagree with both the author and the previous post.
What should have the Vatican done instead? Not say or done anything? I view updates to Canon Law to better deal with this terrible matter as a good thing. How can clarification to prevent and or deal with the abuse issue more justly and forthright in the future not be a good thing? Actions based on self-inspection and re-evaluation is part of the reconciliation process. This is what the Magisterium does: keep the moral compass pointing in the right direction.
As for woman ordination, the glass ceiling doesn't exist in this case. We need to clearly understand why God made man and why God made woman. Re-read Genesis 1, 2, Tobit, Song of Songs, and Ephesians 5. Use the Theology of the Body as your study guide.