Of God’s Way, Catholic Witness and the Heritage of the Saints

Letters 08.13.23

Letters to the editor offer a variety of opinions.
Letters to the editor offer a variety of opinions. (photo: NCRegister.com)

Informative Column

Father Raymond de Souza’s commentary on “Pope Francis Finds His Ratzinger” in the July 16 edition of the Register is outstanding. His writing style is superb and so informative. He is a terrific investigative journalist. Thank you so much for having him as a contributor. He does a great job.

 Dennis Opferman

 Fort Worth, Texas


God’s Way

The edition for July 16 had a page 1 article about the newly appointed prefect for the Dicastery of the Doctrine of the Faith, Archbishop Victor Fernández.

I was somewhat disappointed and alarmed by the archbishop’s quote: “I will do it my way.” I realize that I am a mere mortal layperson, but I have to say to him: No, Your Excellency, you must do it God’s way. To try to reinvent or refine what was instituted by God is a path away from God. Many of us will be watching closely.  

 D. Shaw 

 Burnet, Texas


Being Catholic

In the “Kudos to the Bible Belt” letter (July 16 issue), the writer takes issue with this line: “Now, thanks in large part to Catholic leadership, pro-life laws have gone into effect in many states.” Yes, the Bible Belt seems to be the leader in passing pro-life laws, but the above sentence itself is not untrue.

Beginning with five Catholic justices on the Supreme Court to the pro-life leaders who have brought us the March for Life, the predominant voices, the tip of the spear, is Catholic, and for this we can be thankful.

Those states with large Catholic populations and those leaders in those states who claim to be Catholic create scandal with their positions on life. It is as though they don’t recognize that they will have to sit on the judgment seat of Christ, as all of us will. Not only are they flouting Church law, but the natural law, as well. 

As someone who entered the Church and holds the truths of the Church to my heart, I ache for the timid souls — all souls, and those in positions of power — who don’t seem to recognize their own mortality, yet identify themselves as Catholic with little understanding of what that means and entails.

Continue to pray for the conversion of sinners, including ourselves. 

 Mike Acheson

 Port Angeles, Washington


Nix the Church Tax

The Kirchensteuer (Church tax) is not a good thing for the Catholic Church in Germany, or any church for that matter, since it frees the German bishops from fundraising. Fundraising success depends on how well you teach the faith to your flocks so as to generate a spirit of generosity. As the German Church has an assured government support tax, it probably receives less feedback from the faithful, except for them to leave, which is also a form of feedback. The tax also lessens the incentive to seek such feedback. But if the German Church depends on voluntary donations, then it must listen to and strive to better teach the faithful. It might also have less time for mischief, such as its personal Synodal Way that seeks to “modernize” Church teaching. Perhaps a thoughtful German bishop might petition, or prompt his flock to petition, the government to end such a counterproductive tax. 

 Curt Lampkin

 Azle, Texas 


Loss of Our Past

Related to your coverage of Church-related desecrations:

My thoughts on some key monuments: Many of us have traveled the Southwest and marveled at the many missions that have marked their position in our history and in our culture. Arizonans and tourists alike often visit the “Jewel of the Arizona Missions,” in Tucson, Mission San Xavier del Bac, established in 1692 and still providing prayer and inspiration to people of faith to this very day. It was founded by Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, a Catholic missionary who founded a whole chain of missions in the Sonoran Desert.

Kino is being walked through the process leading to canonization. Padre Kino is considered the “patron saint of the Borderlands” and “the voice of the underprivileged.” The Italian Jesuit introduced Christianity to America in 1691. Now, he is one more step on the road to canonization. Father Neely, associate director of education at the Kino Border Initiative, said of Father Kino, “He wasn’t forcing culture together with a sword, cannon or musket. He did it with his own spirituality. He tried to reconcile.”

[Another] missionary who had founded a chain of missions in California from his first mission, San Diego de Alcala, to several missions in the San Francisco area. They include such notable missions as San Juan Capistrano, Mission Santa Barbara and Carmel’s San Carlos Borromeo del Carmelo. Uniquely, all the missions, numbering 21, were a day’s walk apart.

Sadly, the statue of Father Junípero Serra, already canonized as a saint, was one of many victims of the recent monument destruction taking place in our country. His statue in San Francisco was toppled, just as Columbus, another figure from that era, has been toppled numerous times.

When you consider that statues of Padre Kino stand in the Kino Park in Nogales, Arizona, the Arizona History Museum in Tucson, and the Wesley Bolin Plaza across from the Arizona State Capitol Building, it becomes disconcerting to ponder their safety. And all this while Kino is soon to be sainted.

As Catholics, and other people of faith, say prayers for the people who search for their faith, it is my hope that the searchers they pray for won’t be led astray, lost in confusion by the destruction of these tributes to the individuals that don’t deserve this ridicule.

I will say it like a broken record: The loss of these individuals, Kino and Serra for example, is the loss of our past — for us, our Southwestern past, once again; and if we fail to remember who they were, we will fail to know who we are.

 Charles Lopresto

 Phoenix, Arizona



Related to “Sound of Freedom Stirs Hearts” (front page, July 30 issue): The correct website link for Metanoia Manor in Louisiana, which serves girls recovering from sex trafficking, is Metanoia-inc.org