The Church must stress confession before Communion

Re: “A Church of reverence” (Guest Column, Dec. 6).

Why have I never heard a sermon regarding the issue? And by extension, why have I never heard a sermon on any of the “hot button” issues (cohabitation, same-sex attraction, abortion, contraception, etc.)?

Preaching to the choir? Possibly. But we, the faithful, need to be strengthened, encouraged and reminded. It seems to me to be part and parcel of being a pastor.

Sadly, we have two generations now who have grown up being told, “You’re adults. You can decide when you’ve sinned and need confession.” Now, suddenly, the Church is gently trying to convince Catholics that they need to make use of the confessional again. Something about horses and barn doors comes to mind. The good shepherd leads his flock. He doesn’t just follow them and scoop up the debris.

Luke Nover, LaPorte, Indiana

Receiving Communion

Re: “A Church of reverence” (Guest Column, Dec. 6).

Russell Shaw raises a good question. However, I think another big question is: How can extra Masses be set up in parishes on Christmas and Easter to accommodate all the nominal Catholics who come and receive Communion without so much as an admonition about the need to have been to confession in the last year and be in the state of grace? I would hate to hear Our Lord ask on the day of judgment, “How could you as my priest/pastor allow all these people to eat my body and drink my blood in an unworthy manner without even telling them their sin? Depart from me you wicked servant.”

John Erlinger via online comment

‘Fortress Church’

Re: “Three outcomes for the U.S. Church” (In Focus, Nov. 22).

The present Church, dwindling in faith, reverence, devotion, obedience and numbers is, in great part, due to the hierarchy’s capitulation to the modernist heresies so feared by Pope St. Pius X. The result of this was Vatican II’s caveat to the “modern world” — heterodoxy, false ecumenism and the rejection of the Mass of the Ages and the entire Latin Tradition. Pope St. John Paul II prayed for a New Evangelization because he belatedly saw that the old, which had converted most of the world, had been carelessly set aside.

The “Fortress Church,” as you disparagingly name it, is the vigorous Church of the past and of today. Those who maintain Tradition, despite constant harping persecution, are the future of the Church — or there is no future Church at all. Thanks be to God, the young people, who had lost their birthright, are discovering it again. To paraphrase good Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the future Church will be smaller but comprised of those who engage the secular world by being missionaries, not ecumenists.

Carolyn Kimberly, Littleton, Colorado

Mall chapels

Re: “’Tis the season ... to go to Mass at the mall” (Faith, Nov. 22).

I heard about your article on the chapel located at the Prudential Center in Boston. Well, we have one of our own here where I live, which is located at the Bergen Town Center, in Paramus, New Jersey, called The Chapel at the Mall, which is tucked in the back of the Bergen Town Center. I wish you could have more stories about Masses at the shopping mall in your publication.

William T. Dunphy, Maywood, New Jersey

Refugee challenges

Re: “Fear and the Gospel” (Editorial, Nov. 29).

No one is blaming refugees for terrorist actions. We just don’t know who among them are not refugees but terrorists. And there is no way to vet them, because that data is not kept in that part of the world. Why can we not set up safe zones in neighboring Muslim countries like Kuwait and Saudi Arabia? I’m sure the U.S. and other countries could apply enough pressure to get them to agree to refugee camps. That would satisfy both charity and subsidiarity.

Sue Paroski via online comment

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