Time for Catholic Church to make fundamental changes

December 28, 2013 

Pope Francis has asked Catholic bishops from around the world to attend a synod next October on "The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization." Though not a bishop, I am a Catholic, and the following would be my input could I participate in that gathering:

The Church should de-emphasize the role of the Old Testament in Catholic teachings and ceremonies. Yes, the Old Testament is the basis of our religion and has many uplifting stories, but it also contains, in my opinion, many un-Christian (as represented by Jesus) positions, e.g.; killing thy enemy, taking an eye for an eye, despising homosexuals, treating women as second-class citizens, etc.

Jesus never espoused any of these attitudes, but they're often supported by evangelizing, fundamentalist "Christians." We're not named after Abraham or Moses, but for Christ, so let's profess only what He stood for.

Take an active stand, commensurate with the Church's position on abortion, against capital punishment. How can we not publicly denounce this form of taking another's life, as we do against abortion. From the cross, Jesus publicly forgave His killers, yet we tacitly support, by our lack of commitment against it, what Jesus taught us to denounce.

Eliminate, totally, the Church's stand against contraception by artificial means. We Catholics are fervently anti-abortion, and yet disallow a practice that harms no one, that might reduce the number of abortions!

I'm a senior citizen, and when I attend Mass I see mostly other seniors around me, very few young people. I wonder what will happen to the Church when our generation is gone. It may be time to make some dramatic changes to the man-made (as distinguished from God's) policies, such as allowing women to become priests and permitting priests to marry. Many of us old-timers will be aghast, but we'll soon be gone, and if things don't change, so may the church.

Robert Kushner


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