Denver, Colo., Oct 10, 2004 / 22:00 pm
The first crisis of contemporary Catholicism is not sex-abuse scandals or voting blocs, “but a fundamental loss of Catholic identity,” said Greg Erlandson, publisher of the national Catholic newspaper Our Sunday Visitor. His talk Oct. 5 on the challenge of being American and Catholic was part of the Archdiocese of Denver’s fall lecture series.
“The intellectual muddle that has led us to this state of affairs is why I view the current crisis as an opportunity,” said Erlandson, referring to the controversy surrounding the personal beliefs and public advocacy position for abortion of presidential candidate Senator John Kerry.
Erlandson demonstrated the extent of the “muddle” when he cited a recent Pew poll, which reported that 72 percent of Catholics disagree that bishops should deny Communion to Catholic pro-abortion politicians, 75 percent do not consider same-sex marriage to be very important, and 55 percent support embryonic stem-cell research.
“It should come as little surprise then, that pollster John Zogby reported earlier this year that there was no longer a significant Catholic vote,” the Catholic publisher said.