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8 US bishops want council to discuss root causes of scandal

Eight United States bishops have written a confidential letter calling for a Plenary Council to be called as soon as possible to discuss what they consider the "root causes" of the current crisis in the Church.

Crisis magazine editor Deal Hudson, who has obtained a copy of the letter, explains that a Plenary Council would be a meeting of all US bishops which would focus on "those issues that were swept under the rug at the June bishops' meeting." Hudson declined to name the eight bishops who signed the letter, but said: "These bishops represent the entire theological and political spectrum."

Hudson quotes the letter saying the council would address "things [that] need to be going on so that in this cultural milieu priests and bishops will preserve their celibate chastity along with all the other virtues that constitute the life of holiness proper to pastors?"

Priests must, says the letter, "foster the acts of virtue required of pastors and the means needed to achieve those virtues, especially celibate chastity (e.g., daily celebration of the Mass, frequent Confession, daily meditation, regular acts of asceticism, obedient submission to Church teaching and discipline, simplicity of life)."

Crisis Magazine | Bishops' Secret Letter Revealed


6 Aug 2002