From time to time in this space, I like to talk or even brag about the size of the Church, its universality across the planet and its constant pursuit of unity. Although there are always problems present, I have given the Church high marks in this area but have we entered, over the last few decades, into a new story in the life of the Church? The unity and doctrine is fairly consistent but respect for authority and leadership is now frequently questioned.
If you step back and watch the planet spinning through space, you will see many situations all across the globe. There is trouble in Australia, rebellion in Germany, tension in the United States, hostility in Ireland and so on. How has the Church been responding to these many and varied upheavals? I would like to quote from Robert Mickens of the London Tablet when in June he said that the biggest problem of the Church is not about communications, as serious as that issue is, but is the absence of a “governing strategy.”
“The head of an organization of 1.2 billion faithful, which is the Catholic Church, needs a program of governance.”
The author of that statement went on to say that despite the many internal and external structural problems facing the Church, the principal one is that it is still governed like an absolute monarchy.
“Even the Holy See has to realize that in the 21st century every authority, even the most ancient, must respond to public opinion about its actions, omissions and mistakes. English speakers call this accountability.”