THE Pope will be officially told the Irish Catholic Church is "on the edge" of national collapse and has only five to 10 years to make a radical recovery by giving laymen and women a greater say in decision-making.So says John Cooney, religion correspondent, of The Irish Independent.
Cooney reports that Cardinal Sean O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston, gave this commitment at a private meeting with members of the recently formed Catholic Priests' Association.
Redemptorist priest Fr Tony Flannery, revealed that Cardinal O'Mallley engaged in "serious discussion" with the association. Fr. Flannery was addressing the annual meeting of The People of God, (Pobal Dé), a lay reform group, who want more involvement in Church leadership and decision-making by the laity.
Fr Flannery said Cardinal O'Malley told the association that the Irish church had a decade, at most, to avoid falling over the edge and "becoming like other European countries" where religion is marginal to society.
MESSAGE TO CARDINAL O'MALLEY:
Do not listen to the prophets of doom, who wish to change the RCC to suit their own lifestyles and Celtic spirituality. The Holy Spirit is very alive and active in Ireland. The Lord has been preparing faithful people for many years now to go out into the whole world and proclaim the Good News. The Lord is in charge, but before the new evangelisation could begin, the 'filth' in the Church needed to be cleared out. Dirty and clean water cannot be mixed in the same glass without sullying the purity of the water. So, yes, the time is here. The ground has been prepared. The seeds are being sown at this very time. And the harvest will be rich. In due time.