Letters & Op-Eds 2014

Words and deeds

 

James Carroll’s article about Pope Francis includes several compelling details, not least that Mary McAleese, the former President of Ireland, called for the Pope to involve ordinary Catholics in the 2014 synod on the family (“Who Am I to Judge?,” December 23rd & 30th). There is a precedent for such involvement. In the nineteen-sixties, Pope Paul VI involved ordinary Catholics in the papal birth control commission discussion about whether to lift the ban on contraception. A miracle of sorts occurred when these laymen persuaded the Pope’s handpicked clergymen to revoke the ban. Sadly, the findings of the commission were suppressed for fear that they would cause a revolution in the Church and lead to questions about other teachings. These events may cause those in charge of the synod to disallow ordinary Catholics from participating in the decision-making process, whether Pope Francis is involved or not.
Jon O’Brien
President, Catholics for Choice
Washington, D.C.

This letter was originally published by The New Yorker.