A reader writes:
Why are you still a Roman Catholic? Why have you not started attending an Episcopal church? Familiar liturgy, similar theology, radically different morality. The US Episcopal church has committed itself to being a community where all people are members, where all people can be married and blessed and become priests and bishops. We in the US are paying a high price for our commitment to equality--a schism in the worldwide Anglican communion--but we are standing firm. We've got Anglican African bishops and Pope Benedict himself trying to poach Episcopal parishes. We're tiny, we're beleaguered, and we are standing up to the entire world and the entire Christian community to do the right thing.
I know that an Englishman named Sullivan is genetically indisposed to ever imagine attending a branch of the Church of England, but, man, we could use your help. This is where you belong.
As a former Catholic, I read "As The Onslaught Continues" and feel really bad for you. On the one hand, I appreciate that you do not abandon your faith. But on the other hand, I look at my own situation and have hope that one day you will truly send the right message and stop supporting a faith that does not support you.
I know that you are an intelligent and thoughtful person and you hope that one day your church will come around. I thought that way for decades and as a child, I knew I would live to see the day when my church would see the light on many issues. I finally stopped waiting 5 years ago and decided that I needed to stop supporting (with my time, talents and treasure) a church that was not supporting all people equally.
I joined the Episcopal church and I could not be happier with my decision. The church is not perfect either, but at least they are moving on the tough questions and struggling with them every day. As a white and straight male, I can not imagine what it must feel like to have people consider you as less than equal. Keep up the good work and I hope this does not come across in a bad way. I just ache for your situation. I still love the Catholic church, but I had to love it enough to walk away.
Thank you for such a wonderful post. I left the Catholic Church some 30 years ago, when they refused to marry my fiancé and I. We were straight, but he was divorced. I remember being just shocked that they would toss me out. Who were they serving, I wondered? I spent a long time in the spiritual ether-world before I finally settled in as a Buddhist practitioner. But my family are long-time Catholics; I find myself back in those churches now, mostly for funerals. And am struck by how empty they feel. They are protecting the principle (what principle was that anyway?) and sacrificing their people. It’s tragic, a pyrrhic victory for an imagined morality.