This is a long article, by Bishop John Shelby Spong. It is radical, and difficult in parts, but it makes great sense to me at this time in my life.

As the 21st century approached with millennial celebrations, I felt myself increasingly compelled to assess the state of the Christian religion throughout the world. There were multiple signs everywhere of its decline and perhaps even of its imminent death. Fewer and fewer people were attending European churches and those that did were rapidly aging. North American churches were breaking into either a vapid, liberal emptiness or a religious, anti-intellectual fundamentalism.

This is a piece written for the Association of Catholic Priests website by Paddy Ferry from Scotland, which, apart entirely from the part referring to myself, is an excellent account of issues around priesthood, church, and development of doctrine.

Peadar, I was interested to read your post and your book recommendations for Tony re our Catholic priesthood. I would have expected that Tony has already read more than most priests. He certainly has helped me with some recommendations and I have also read all the books that Tony himself has written.

A letter from my Superior General

I got this letter some weeks ago in relation to the upcoming date of my golden jubilee of ordination. To say the least I was surprised and irritated by it; it was certainly insensitive.

My original suspension from ministry twelve years ago was imposed by my religious congregation, under pressure from the CDF in the Vatican. But now, things have changed in the Vatican with Francis in charge, and my reading of my situation is that my suspension could easily be lifted by my religious superiors, if they so wished.

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