Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Cardinal Schonborn Blasts Bishops for Cowardice Re: Contraception

Catholic Action UK has this story. Many thanks to them.

Given the well-publicized liturgical shenanigans that he's been a part of lately, this is a breath of much-needed fresh air.

But those bishops, said Cardinal Schonborn, were "frightened of the press and of being misunderstood by the faithful". Blame lay not only with the bishops responsible at the time - none of whom is still alive - but with all bishops for the fact that Europe is "about to die out". "I think that it is also our sin as bishops, even if none of us were bishops in 1968," he added. Bishops have not had, or did not have, the courage to "swim against the tide" and say yes to Humanae Vitae, he said. The cardinal, who is close to Pope Benedict XVI, particularly criticised two of the many 1968 bishops' conference declarations on Humanae Vitae, which all stressed the importance of the individual conscience.He singled out the Maria Trost Declaration, whose signatories included Cardinal Franz Konig, the late Archbishop of Vienna, president of the Austrian bishops' conference and a Father of the Second Vatican Council, and the Konigstein Declaration, whose signatories included Cardinal Julius Dopfner, the late Archbishop of Munich, president of the German bishops' conference and another Council Father.

Cardinal Schonborn accused the signatories of "weakening the People of God's sense for life", so that when "the wave of abortions" and increasing acceptance of homosexuality followed, the Church lacked the courage to oppose them.

This is pretty heavy stuff coming from such a high-level prelate, especially since he's singling out the hierarchy on an issue that's very third-rail for a lot of folks.

Of course, the question becomes the same as the one posed by Cardinal George's recent comments below. Folks still aren't doing what they are supposed to do in this respect, and I'm talking about priests and bishops here. What is going to be done about it?

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