The Sex-Obsessed Church Should Focus on Justice Instead

The Sex-Obsessed Church Should Focus on Justice
Instead

It seems farfetched to find anything positive about the latest
charges of sexual misconduct in the Catholic Church. And yet, as
David Morris compellingly argues in AlterNet, the scandal
opens a promising new path for the Church as a result of the
publicity.

‘The timing is felicitous,’ writes Morris. ‘Pope John Paul II is
increasingly frail. Speculation about a successor is emerging. The
current debate about changing the Church’s thinking on sexual
topics could blossom into the kind of full-throated debate about
the Church’s mission that shook doctrinal foundations a generation
ago.’

One of the best options for this refocusing, according to Morris,
is to reconsider the stance that the Church took regarding its
mission forty years ago at Vatican II, a groundbreaking council of
bishops that reexamined the Church’s role in the modern world. From
this council, the Church abandoned many of its restrictions and
doctrines to better serve its members.

However, that era soon gave way to another phase of intolerance in
which the direction of Vatican II was reversed–hence the Catholic
Church’s current negative view of sexuality.

But Morris argues that with the current weakening of the Church’s
longstanding authority on sexual issues and morality–which critics
have long argued to be shortsighted, faulty, and too rigid to serve
as a guide to the masses–the Church again has the opportunity to
redirect itself to new frontier and become a more positive force in
guiding its followers.
–Julie Madsen
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