Very conscious again of living in the age of post-clerical Catholics, in many cases because clergy are literally thin on the ground out in most parts of Africa and certainly rare away from urban centres. One local parish priest says Mass at seven far-flung parishes each Sunday and travels to the city during the week. He spends his pastoral hours driving, popping in, saying Mass fast-but-hopefully-not-without-feeling and rushing off again.
What else is there to nurture the faithful in the priestless Church of the future? Musing on this.
From Bill McGarvey’s article in America on Post-clerical Catholics, this sharp-sided reminder:
Back in 1959, Flannery O’Connor described an exchange with a relative’s non-Catholic husband, who entered the church after years of attending Mass with his wife. When asked what finally changed his mind, he said, “The sermons were so horrible, [I] knew there must be something else there to make the people come.”