Religion and Ethics Newsweekly: The Priest and the People

REV. PATRICK LEE: It’s like being a parent to be a pastor. You never give up on your children, but you keep holding the ideal and explaining the ideal and hoping people will strive for it, but not condemning them when they fall short.

[JUDY] VALENTE: With so many Catholics going their own way these days, the role of pastor is perhaps more complicated than ever.
Rev. Patrick Lee

REV. LEE: When I was growing up, the church was the ideal we tried to change ourselves to match. Now people want to change the church.

VALENTE: Father Lee is the pastor of two parishes in Chicago. Most of his parishioners are highly educated, and they represent a diversity of views about church teaching.

REV. LEE: All authority is being questioned in our times. Some of it selfishly, some of it enlightened. I think Americans are more comfortable in an educated democracy now, and so they want to spread that democracy to the church, which has never really been a democratic organization. I think we have to be open to a dialogue of understanding what the church teaches and really hearing it and not dismissing it instantly. On the other hand, I think the church has to open itself to the wisdom of its laity.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic