Dogs at the Table

...or to put it another way, "Perish, priest!"

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

So Why Should You Listen to a Blowhard from Lower Armpit, Nova Scotia

Two and a half years since my last entry.  Busted.

But it isn't like I haven't been doing anything.

One year was self-imposed silence. A long, and (frankly) irrelevant story, but it involved the direction of leadership in our Diocese.  Financial consolidation, traditionalist views about ordained ministry, a flawed episcopal election process (and not because I wasn't part of it, although I have been part of two electoral processes (Nevada 2000, Qu'Appelle 2013) but because there was neither grace nor excellence in what we did here),  Given my frustration, my Spiritual Director suggested that I take a year away from speaking publicly about policy or leadership in the church -- we called it my "Matthew Fox" may recall that Fr Fox was a Dominican, wrote extensively about Creation Centred Spirituality, and after an article in 1988 (Is the Catholic Church a Dysfunctional Family), was silenced for a year by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (later, Pope Benedict), and subsequently expelled from the Dominican order (after which Fox was received into the Episcopal Church).

It wasn't easy -- I am a person of strong opinion, especially when I see something that is wrong or foolish -- but it was time well spent.  I read Matthew Fox and listened to several of his talks on YouTube and other sites.  I reflected on what was really bothering me.  And came to the conclusion that I might just be ever so slightly right.

My conviction runs to the difference between education and formation.  I used my first occasion to speak after my "Matthew Fox Year" at an ordination on December 3, 2014 (St Francis Xavier).  I pointed out the difference between the two disciplines.-- education and formation -- and coming down clearly on the side of formation.

What, might you ask, is formation?

Formation is the discipline that builds identity, not knowledge; it is about being rather than doing; it is about competence, not capacity; it is about community rather than the individual.

Think about it!

Today's weigh-in: 218 Some things haven't changed.


Post a Comment

<< Home