AUSTRALIA INCOGNITA (9/13/13)
The Adelaide Archdiocese under Archbishop Philip Wilson, former President of the Australian Bishops Conference, is a strange, ultra-liberal place.
A Place, apparently, where parishes are not even allowed to publicize pro-life activities such as the upcoming 40 Days for Life campaign, lest anyone be offended at being told that abortion is murder.
Death of a diocese
Adelaide is one of those dioceses where Catholicism looks like being snuffed out sooner rather than later.
The number of priests continue to fall catastrophically (in 1990 there were nominally a hundred diocesan priests; in 2000, 91; by 2012 it was down to 74), and there are few vocations.
The proportion of Catholics was down substantially in the last census - most of them moving to the no religion group.
Some of the blame for the catastrophic state of decay there can perhaps be sheeted home to Archbishop Wilson's ultra-liberal immediate predecessor. But the decline has continued, and if anything accelerated since Archbishop Wilson was appointed in 2000.
But in Adelaide, Archbishop Wilson has now directed that priests not publicize the upcoming campaign (starting on September 25). An email from the Vicar General "asks that you do not publicize in our church bulletins the material you may receive from time to time from Forty Days for Life or similar organizations..."
Vicar General Fr Phillip Marshall can't even bring himself to actually use the word abortion in the explanatory note for this instruction, instead using all sorts of euphemisms and talking about how (instead of fighting abortion head on?) they are doing good things in supporting "those who have died unborn, those who have experienced the loss of unborn children, and the families and communities affected by that loss."
Rejecting the role of the laity!
The stated rationale for not supporting the campaign? Apparently only the bishops are allowed to speak on these issues, and the laity's role is just to pay, pray and obey!