The new Catholic Common Ground
Liberal New York Times columnist Bill Keller and conservative Catholic League crusader Bill Donohue have found it — in Wild Bill’s latest book, “Why Catholicism Matters.”
As Keller (a self-described “collapsed Catholic,” a nifty neological step beyond “lapsed” Catholic) puts it in his op-ed today about Bill D’s thesis:
His [Donohue's] point: “Quite frankly I believe, as Pope Benedict the XVIth said just before he became pope, that maybe a smaller church would be a better church.”
Much as I wish I could encourage the discontented, the Catholics of open minds and open hearts, to stay put and fight the good fight, this is a lost cause. Donohue is right. Summon your fortitude, and just go. If you are not getting the spiritual sustenance you need, if you are uneasy being part of an institution out of step with your conscience — then go. The restive nuns who are planning a field trip to Rome for a bit of dialogue? Be assured, unless you plan to grovel, no one will be listening. Sisters, just go. Bill Donohue will hold the door for you.
So Bill and Bill have something in common with the Freedom From Religion Foundation, which has been running their ad telling Catholics “It’s Time to Quit the Catholic Church.” (Oh, and start sending your money to the FFRF instead…That ad space is expensive.)
It is a truth universally acknowledged that opposite extremes will meet each other on the far side. This seems to be the case as well.
I’ll settle for that deeper, broader, more satisfying — if crowded and complex and maddening — Common Ground, thanks.