Saturday, April 09, 2005

My Response to Thomas Cahill

Thomas Cahill's piece on the Pope in the New York Times so annoyed me that I dashed off a letter to the editor. They didn't print it, but here it is:

Thomas Cahill correctly reminds us of the variety of “traditions” within the Catholic Church. But when it comes to Pope John Paul II, he makes the same mistake his supporters and detractors made throughout his papacy—trying to limit him to one “tradition” in order to criticize or promote it. “Conservative,” “liberal,” or “aggressively papal” will never sufficiently describe this man who defied characterization. Concern over lack of diversity in his appointment of bishops is legitimate. But to then conclude that “he was not a great religious figure,” and that he was “dismissive of the moral requirement to protect and cherish human beings,” is to ignore his repeated emphasis on the dignity of all human life, our special responsibility to the poor, and his contributions to the promotion of peace, justice and human rights around the world. I dare say it is more likely that the youth who were so inspired by him will save the Church than that the Bishops he appointed will destroy it.


Blogger David Nowaczewski said...

Bravo Mark!
I read the Cahill piece too and had to laugh at some of it, especially the 'empty church' bit. If only he would come to my parish (or most of the parishes here) in Chicago, he wouldn't be able to think over the screams of all the kids.
BTW, I was a novice in the New Orleans province a few years back, entered with Anthony Wieck and Derrick Weingartner. I am finishing up law school in Chicago and will be returning to Detroit after graduation. I am married (for 3 years now) and have a daughter and one more on the way. God is good! I stumbled across your blog while putting off writing a paper, great stuff, I'll be reading it from time to time. My prayers for you in your ministry and for your vocation. My best to Fr. Kitten when you see him.

4:39 PM  
Blogger Mark Mossa, SJ said...


It's good to hear from you! I do remember you. Sounds like you're thriving!

Thanks for your comments. I don't blog everyday as some do, but I do try to post something several days a week. So, please do come back!

Blessings on you and your family, as well as the completion of your studies!



8:10 PM  
Blogger Peter Nixon said...


Nice post and nice blog. I like the balanced approach you take to things. Good luck blogging. I did it myself for a couple of years, but had to give it up.

I'm a layman who is studying theology at the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley right now. You've got some good men in formation here. Perhaps they will send you here to complete your studies prior to ordination!

All the best,

Peter Nixon

6:27 PM  
Blogger Mark Mossa, SJ said...

Thanks Peter!

Say hello to my brothers at JSTB for me! I'm off to theology studies this Fall, but it will be in Boston, at Weston. But perhaps we'll run into each other one of these days!!

11:22 PM  

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