Catholic reform group to assemble

Fri, Jul 6, 2012, 01:00

A STEERING group which is planning a lay organisation seeking reform in the Catholic Church is to organise regional meetings in Ireland for next month and September ahead of a proposed general meeting later in the autumn.

It is hoped that a policy framework, including a statement of objectives broadly advocating an agenda based on the second Vatican Council, will be agreed at that general meeting.

The group was established at a meeting of lay Catholics in All Hallows College Dublin on May 30th to develop an umbrella organisation for lay Catholics interested in reform.

The group comprises four men and four women and met last week for the first time. It agreed on some key issues which will underpin a policy framework.

This included agreement that the organisation will be structured along the lines of an association or alliance of Irish Catholics open to members of existing groups and non-aligned individuals.

It also agreed on establishing a working relationship with the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) and has requested an early meeting to initiate discussions.

Two members of the steering group have also agreed to establish “study groups” to work on drafting documents for the new organisation on faith development and youth issues.

Speaking ahead of the All Hallows meeting last May organiser Noel McCann said: “There is a need for such an organisation because people are scattered around the country feeling the frustrations that are part and parcel of being a Catholic today as a lay person. And you have to do something about it. One way of doing that is to get organised, to bring greater cohesion and focus . . . to the agenda and see where we go from there.”