Monday, October 24, 2005

"Best of the Best?"

VOTF wants everyone to know how wonderful it is.
Voice of the Faithful, a national lay Catholic reform group launched at the height of the clergy sex abuse scandal, has a membership that is deeply devoted to Catholicism but will need to recruit more active members if it wants to remain vibrant, according to academics who gathered for a symposium on the organization's future yesterday at Boston College.

The academics based their observations on a survey the Voice of the Faithful conducted earlier this year.

The organization will use the survey, which included responses from 1,300 members nationwide, to help it develop a new action plan to broaden lay people's role in Church decisions.

Among some of the key findings praised by the group and academics yesterday:

93 percent are ''cradle Catholics," meaning worshipers raised in the Church.

2 out of 3 attend Mass at least once a week, opposed to 34 percent nationally.

8 out of 10 pray at least once a day.

Half are members of parish councils; 45 percent are on liturgy committees.

87 percent have college degrees, with six out of 10 members holding a graduate or professional degree.

I can't say I'm a terribly huge fan, seeing VOTF more as a bull in a china shop than a group which actually understands the nuances of ecclesiastical governance, one able to distinguish canonical issues from doctrinal ones.

Then again, if it's better to light one candle than curse the darkness, they've got this outrageously angry Boston pseudo-Catholic beat.

Tip to Jim Mac.



Blogger John Hearn said...

Just a question Rocco: do your think that anyone whose style and politics you don't like is worthy of being called an "...outrageously angry...pseudo-Catholic..?" Many of your own posts could be seen to qualify for the above approbation if one had the uncharitable disposition to make that case.

24/10/05 15:30  
Blogger John Hearn said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

24/10/05 15:35  
Blogger RC said...

Hey, Roc. I know Carol McKinley personally, and although she flies off the handle sometimes, calling her a 'pseudo-Catholic' is an undeserved slap.

24/10/05 16:13  
Blogger edgleason said...

Gee calling Carol Mckinley a pseudo -catholic is name calling 'slap'!! Her calling VOTF members schismatics and calling others 'pigheaded and stupid' are endearing expressions..
I have a name for the above posters #^%$@
Frisco Eddie

24/10/05 16:29  
Blogger John Hearn said...

Hey Frisco, lucky for you that someone can be pigheaded and stupid and still be a good Catholic!

24/10/05 16:41  
Blogger Rocco Palmo said...

No, John, not lucky for Eddie -- lucky for you.

24/10/05 17:07  
Blogger Jeff said...

I thought you didn't believe in judging who's a real Catholic and who's not, Rocco? When did that change?

24/10/05 17:27  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


At the very least, remove the link to her venomous blog. Quoting her is one thing, but sending traffic her way is quite another.

24/10/05 17:42  
Blogger John Hearn said...

Well Rock, I guess that we're all just really lucky that way!

24/10/05 17:56  
Blogger edgleason said...

Hey Guys.. lets forget about the name calling stuff and say a prayer that new seminarian candidates have the same backround as VOTF members. 87% college grads. 60% andvanced degrees, 67% attend Mass weekly or more.50% parish council members..
Frisco eddie

24/10/05 18:22  
Blogger John Hearn said...


That's interesting; where did you see those stats?

Prayers on the way!

24/10/05 18:47  
Blogger Bill White said...

What the heck happened here? Rock went on vacation a while back and when he started up again it's as if someone else took over the place. Did someone hijack this blog to damage his public image?

24/10/05 20:11  
Blogger Disgusted in DC said...

When someone accuses his own bishop - Sean O'Mallley in this case - of schism, then pseudo-catholic is a pretty accurate way to describe such a person.

24/10/05 20:26  
Blogger Fungulo said...

It's not 'pseudo-catholic' to call one's Ordinary 'schismatic' - or anything else, for that matter.

Among the people who actually LIVE in What's Left Of The Archdiocese Of Boston, 'schismatic' is probably the nicest word that's been used about The Brown Bag in the months/years since he arrived to be the 'gentler face' of an administration, the strings of which are clearly still being pulled by Lennon and Law . . . .

24/10/05 20:31  
Blogger Jeff said...

More to the point, Patrick, Catholics who don't think you have to believe anything in particular in order to be a memeber in good standing can with far greater justification be called "pseudo-Catholic." Question the Divinity of Christ? Hey, we're probing the boundaries. But, geez, say something temperamental about your bishop and you're off the farm.

Fine. She's a pseudo-Catholic. But Rocco can't play the game from both sides, that's all. Big tent or small tent: you gotta decide.

24/10/05 22:12  
Blogger Tony said...

Wow, talk about exploitation. The blue-haired "Kumbaya Catholics" at VOTF have been exploiting the "abuse scandal" for years to promote their heterodox agenda.

I find it deliciously ironic that those liberal things that they're pushing for, have been instrumental in causing the scandal in the first place.

I will be real happy when the scandal fades into oblivion, taking VOTF with it.

25/10/05 16:05  
Blogger David L Alexander said...

"That's interesting; where did you see those stats?"

John, Dom Bettinelli's got the latest buzz over at He talks about the article in the Boston Globe with the stats. His analysis is good, and (for VOTF-watchers like us) not surprising.

By the way, I have no reason to defend Carol McKinley, who's ready to burn me at the stake any moment. (Anybody got a match?) But I'd suggest that people look up the definition of the word "schism" or "schismatic" before they reduce such labeling to "name-calling."

After all, if the biretta fits...

25/10/05 16:08  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it deliciously ironic that those liberal things that they're pushing for, have been instrumental in causing the scandal in the first place.


I'm not overly fond of VOTF for many reasons, but your statement quoted above just does not make sense to me. Granted, I'm not overly bright, but I do try to stay informed.

Could you please clarify for me just what things that they're pushing for, have been instrumental in causing the scandal? Please be specific, so I can try to grasp this.


25/10/05 16:58  

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