John Chuchman today gives voice to a common concern one hears expressed in communities where people feel increasingly disenfranchised from their church or faith community: should we speak up or remain silent; should we stay or leave? It's a good discussion point. What thoughts do you have?
Not a day goes by
without my hearing two internal competing voices:
These hierarchs are destroying my church,
I must speak out against their abuse;
the other urging,
John, it's a waste of time and energy;
the good 'ole boys will never change the rules of their club
and jeopardize their prized positions.
Give it up.
Superimposed on those voices within,
I get contrary messages from others:
Please keep speaking out against the abuse;
silence is complicity;
others urging me,
Don't be controlled by your anger.
Let's move on, John.
I most enjoy my writings and workshops
on Spirituality and spiritual growth and nurturing,
find it almost impossible to stop speaking out and writing
against the destruction of my church.
Millions of Catholics have simply left, moved on.
The Church has been such an important part of my life;
I seem unable just to leave.
the loss of all church can and should be for me
and, as a grief counselor, I know I must continue to name my loss
without letting my loss name me.
However, it is not a loss that's over and done,
but one that keeps happening
as the abusive hierarchs
abusive act after destructive act.
Love, John Chuchman
This reflection is also published on John Chuchman's blog.
The background used to support John Chuchman's reflection has been sourced from stock.xchng one of the sources for free images on the net provided by people who voluntarily upload their work for others to share. Daniel Cubillas who is located in Spain provided today's image. A gallery of Daniel's freely available images can be found at: www.sxc.hu/gallery/dcubillas. The Sparrow image used in the headline has been sourced from stock.xchng also and is adapted from a vector art illustration by Radoslava Todorova in Sofia, Bulgaria: www.sxc.hu/photo/1375691
John's latest book, I AM because LOVE IS: God as VERB, is now available in paperback from Amazon. Click the image for more information. Kindle edition to come.
John Chuchman is a bereavement counsellor. He is a graduate of John Carroll University and former Ford Motor Company executive (1959-1992). He has been a Hospice volunteer since 1990. John has received Pastoral Bereavement Counselor certification and a Certificate in Spirituality (Kino Institute of Phoenix, Arizona.) In 2000, he was awarded a Master of Arts degree in Pastoral Ministries from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota. His website provides information about his regular retreats and information about his books. he also writes a "Poetman" blog which you can find on the website or via this link: [Visit John's blog] | [Visit John's website]
What are your thoughts on this commentary?
You can contribute to the discussion in our forum.
[Index of Commentaries by John Chuchman]