A clarification and apology

I have had some inquiries and comments about my open letter to Bishop Durocher.  For the most part, the majority of people have agreed with me that his homily was in extremely bad taste.

I do, however, want to make a correction.  The bishop referred to pro-life “militants” in his homily.  I took issue with that label, of course, calling it an “ad hominem” attack on pro-lifers, since it carries an extremely negative connotation in English. Apparently, the bishop (who is bilingual) has responded to a query to him about this, and said that, in French, “militant” does not have the same nuance.  In French, the word “militant”, he says, means someone who believes in a cause, is proud of it and is involved in it in a committed way.  Although the homily was written in English, such an explanation is certainly reasonable, although his message was confusing because he juxtaposed “Development & Peace” against “Prolife Militants”.

I accept his explanation and I have corrected my response to his commentary in the original article. I also apologize for my reaction on this point. Unfortunately, I do not believe it changes the general thrust of his homily in any significant way.  In fact, he should remove his entire homily from the Diocese’s website.

I have also been asked why I did not contact the Bishop in private about his homily first before airing my grievances publicly.  That’s a very good question.  I am well aware of what Christian charity demands in these situations.  I cannot say any more than that at this time.

Please pray for Bishop Durocher and all of the bishops that they may clearly see and understand the necessity to act expeditiously and thoroughly to address the abortion scandal of Development & Peace.

Please also pray for me and my family as we have had to endure the insults of various ministers and lay people within the Church.

7 thoughts on “A clarification and apology

  1. “[The laity] have the right, indeed at times the duty, in keeping with their knowledge, competence, and position, to manifest to the sacred pastors their views on matters that concern the good of the Church. They have the right also to make their views known to others of Christ’s faithful…” —(Canon Law 212).

    Praying for you and yours.

  2. The book “Saving those Damned Catholics” by Judie Brown should be required reading for every Catholic leader, and also the average lay person. In it she exposes the North American Bishops as falling far short in their leadership role. Her quote, “that Shepherds are called to lead their flock, not feed them to the wolves,” shows how dismal the situation is.
    Even in Canada, they are not much better, if one remembers the Maritime bishop who vehemently defended his priests, who were later exposed as the perpetrators of sexual abuse.

    There is something rotten in the Catholic Church that was identified by Martin Luther. This same rot exists to this day. Apparently the housecleaning was not complete during the reformation.

    I applaud you Catholics for standing up for the truth; there is a ray of hope for your Church. Hopefully, the leadership will have a change of heart, and see the light. Our prayers are with your great Church.

    May God guide you!

  3. John,
    You have nothing to apologize for. If it is only one word that the Bishop is taking issue with, then he is wasted your time. On the substance of his homily you are absolutely correct. While you and your family are in my prayers, I am afraid that Bishop Durocher is at the top of my list.

  4. John,

    I think that it is kind and fair of you to give the bishop the benefit of the doubt on this one point. Personally I believe that the bishop is a very smart man who is well aware of the english language including the word militant and its connotation. Besides, the Chrism mass is both english and french. Regardless the damage is done, how many unsure people in Cornwall want to get involved with the pro life movement with the title militant added to it. (french or english!) I do not believe that we were put in a positive light.

    Unfortunately there was much more said than the above mentioned statement. Will continue to pray for you and your family, I am sure it is not easy. God bless you for your conviction and courage…oh that all catholics would stand together!

    ps. maybe it was providential that you wrote first..before a chorus of dancing begun.

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