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March 19, 2004

Comments

Michael Tinkler

Standback! She's opening another can o' worms!

Though, actually, there are fewer people who think the Neocatechumenal Way is the master conspiracy than think it of Opus Dei.

Maybe the N.W. needs to get Dan Brown on its mailing list to raise their profile.

r. wadas

Amy:

First of all I want to thank you for the excellent job you are doing. I always look forward to checking your blog.

In reference to the Neocatechumenal way, let me say I have been involved with it for the past 17 years. It is an amazing thing to some people we are too liberal, to others we are too conservative. How can it be cultlike when it is sponsored by the Pope. Also it is strictly parish based and will do nothing in a parish unless first of all it receives the blessing of the bishop and the permission of the pastor. It can be used by the pastor as a tool for the evangelization of his parish. So I don't see it as cultlike at all.

Much of the criticism leveled against the Way is by people who know nothing about it but only what is hearsay.

It is by the fruits that you see its validity. In the 40 years of its existence one can see its validity through the results of it. The many vocations to both the priesthood and the sisters. Its rebuilding of the family, it's adherence to the church in the teachings of the church. It's tremendous help in rebuilding marriages, keeping youth in the church and the list can go on. As you read in the Pope's statement concerning the vocations.

I guess it is always the role of the church to discern the validity of the charism. So like all new charisms in the church they have to be tested to see thier validity. I think that in the past 40 or so years, a short time in the light of the history of the Church, its fruits are very valid.

The criticisms of the way by many people who really don't know too much about it perhaps even proves the point. That something must be happening that people are taking notice of it albeit but only through hearsay.

All I can say is that I have seen the lives of people rebuilt not by the use of moralisms but by helping them to enter into the scriptures and the Eucharist so that they can experience in their own lives the working of God. I have seen children return to the church, marriages rebuilt, parishioners being overly generous to the church with their time talent and treasure. So if it seems to be working why knock it.

Regards
fr ray

r. wadas

Amy:

First of all I want to thank you for the excellent job you are doing. I always look forward to checking your blog.

In reference to the Neocatechumenal way, let me say I have been involved with it for the past 17 years. It is an amazing thing to some people we are too liberal, to others we are too conservative. How can it be cultlike when it is sponsored by the Pope. Also it is strictly parish based and will do nothing in a parish unless first of all it receives the blessing of the bishop and the permission of the pastor. It can be used by the pastor as a tool for the evangelization of his parish. So I don't see it as cultlike at all.

Much of the criticism leveled against the Way is by people who know nothing about it but only what is hearsay.

It is by the fruits that you see its validity. In the 40 years of its existence one can see its validity through the results of it. The many vocations to both the priesthood and the sisters. Its rebuilding of the family, it's adherence to the church in the teachings of the church. It's tremendous help in rebuilding marriages, keeping youth in the church and the list can go on. As you read in the Pope's statement concerning the vocations.

I guess it is always the role of the church to discern the validity of the charism. So like all new charisms in the church they have to be tested to see thier validity. I think that in the past 40 or so years, a short time in the light of the history of the Church, its fruits are very valid.

The criticisms of the way by many people who really don't know too much about it perhaps even proves the point. That something must be happening that people are taking notice of it albeit but only through hearsay.

All I can say is that I have seen the lives of people rebuilt not by the use of moralisms but by helping them to enter into the scriptures and the Eucharist so that they can experience in their own lives the working of God. I have seen children return to the church, marriages rebuilt, parishioners being overly generous to the church with their time talent and treasure. So if it seems to be working why knock it.

Regards
fr ray

Sherry Weddell

Like most of the best-known lay movements, it seems almost impossible to sort out the various rumors/accusations/declarations of holiness, truth, beauty, and light. I've tried a couple times and failed. Since Neocats are human beings, they simply can't be either as uniformly good or bad as hearsay suggests. So I'm left with anecdotal evidence from people whose judgement I trust.

I have never attended a NC meeting myself (although I've met a number of members as I've traveled. As a group, they are earnest young Catholics who did not strike me as very sophisticated. Of course, my experience to date may not be indicative of the movement as a whole.)

I do know that full formation in the NC takes 12 years. Because they are taking people through an evangelizing process based on the historic catechumenate, baptized and confirmed adults being treated like pre-Rite of Election catechumens. That is, not praying the Lord's prayer until a certain point, etc. This strikes me as sacramentally odd at least.

1) A prominant (yes, he's "orthodox") priest/theologian in Rome told me that he served as a chaplain to the Neocatechumenate for a year there but quit because the NC liturgies are so markedly different from the Latin rite and the group wasn't open to changing this. I understand that that major divergences from the Mass are also practiced by other groups such as St. Egidio. The differences are not traditionalist in nature but would verge on an informality (dropping parts of the liturgy, having live lay response/discussion of the homily, etc.) that would make some of Amy's readers very unhappy.

Because NC members celebrate their modified Mass separately from the normal liturgies of whatever parish they are in, this has fueled the perception that they are "divisive".

2) A few years ago, a Roman cardinal (who shall remain nameless) being hosted by a bevy of US bishops (who shall remain nameless) in the presence of a couple of orthodox priest friends of mine asked his bishop hosts if they would be open to bringing the Neocatechumate into their dioceses. The silence that followed was deafening. The only one who responded was a bishop on the verge of retirement, who expressed grave reservations.

You may think, that the bishops present had a liberal agenda going and disliked the NC for that reason but actually the group was "mixed". It's possible to have reservations about the movements that are not founded upon knee-jerk liberalism objects to anything "observant".

4) A very astute (and orthodox) priest friend of mine had a bad experience of the NC as a pastor in California years ago. He was asked to help a family whose daughter had joined and refused to be in contact, etc. At least the local group he was dealing with 15 years ago seems to have had some "cult-like" tendencies.

4) On the positive side, most of the movements (including the Neocatechumanate) have been brought into the Archdiocese of Denver in a big way by Archbishop Chaput. Denver has two seminaries - one run by the Neocatechumenate to produce missionary priests for other dioceses.

I would be most interested to hear what other direct experiences others have - not because I have any agenda for or against the NC but because I have to deal with movement members everywhere I go and I could do much more effectively if I had a better understanding. If you'd rather not discuss this in a public forum, feel free to write me at sherry@siena.org.

Carrie

I've read that NC-Way has a different Mass but never been able to pinpoint the differences. If anyone knows of a source I could access that gives the text of their Mass, I'd appreciate it if you'd let me know about it.

katie

As to whether or not NC is cultlike, I would expect that every zealous movement is subject to this charge at some point and in certain instances it may have some basis - there is strong peer influence present in movements - the sense of community is often a driving factor and that sometimes overwhelms the conscience, judgement, preferences of individuals. As a 25 year veteran of a movement, I can look back and critique certain "lockstep" periods in my group with some wry-ness (is that a word?) That does not cancel out the very large benefit of my experience, just gives a sense of perspective when my own college-student sons (devout and zealous) pursue and develop groups in their schools. My observation is that young people are particularly inclined to impose their vision of the "right way" on others...and must be warned not to coerce with peer pressure...something that is helpful to one person's spiritual life can be offered but ought not to be held up as a standard (unless it is in fact, i.e. Lenten observance, Sunday obligation....

Ultimately, many groups reflect the character of the local leaders and will vary accordingly.

Dana

I have attended a NC Mass and I was quite uneasy with the whole thing. I am generally very uneasy about groups who feel they need a speacial Mass with speacial rites in a special place (it's never held in a church) and only for members. I think allowing them to do this creates a clique that hurts the unity of a given parish. I have no problem with letting them meet, but it seems to me that they should attend a parish mass like everyone else. Allowing individual groups to have individual Masses creates a very slipery slope...what will we allow next? On a positive note: their catechetical methods work wonders.

David Kubiak

I have been out of town and just looked at this thread. It's probably dead by now, so I won't go into a long dissertation. But I will say that I have what I consider to be reliable knowledge of the fact that a number of Curial cardinals are very disturbed by the fact that Neo-catechumenate priests now dominate in the diocese of Rome. You could argue that societies in the Church have always come under suspicion historically. It's easy enough to judge for yourself about this one. Look at the version of the liturgy that was approved for them (which involves receiving Communion sitting down), add to that the violent reaction of their priests to the traditional Roman rite, and as I say, come to your own conclusions.

John

Just a few comments relating to some messages about the Neocatechumenal Way

1) "That is, not praying the Lord's prayer until a certain point" is entirely false. Of course the Our Father is said at mass, and other liturgical celebrations from the beginning.

2) "dropping parts of the liturgy" again is false. If anything, the true meaning of the signs and sacraments is brought out more fully.

3) The fact that the statutes of the NC are virtually approved after a number of years of examination by impartial experts suggests that the NC should be given the due that it deserves. It is simply one of many charisms that have arisen following the Second Vatican Council.

Please, whilst debate is healthy, only volunteer information that you know to be true

Hagar

i've had experience with the the NC-Way, just because i was forced to, i had to pass it to become catholic, the priest did'nt offer any other course, so naturally most of the people who would want join the Church would hopefully stick to their way. what i saw, was that they would repeat the same thought over-and over again, that "god loves you" and that god can help you with you're loneliness and frustration aso. which is not bad or wrong, but whay do they assume im lonely or unhappy. the priest told as that "faith is a feeling", which says that when i have the feeling everything is good, and i must get that feeling. but im not a believer bacause i want to feel good, that's not the reason that god exists. they did'nt give much information about the sacraments or any about teaching of the Church, i had read it all from the CCC. they claim that the God let the church pass through same dark period from 318 -1962, which they don'nt undrestant, and now finally there is light after VII. im not a gradate theologian (although studying) so i will not go on, but these are pretty clear signs to me.
i saw that they try to draw i map of faith for everyone, and setting is very narrow, if you don't see yourself there then you have to try more. but faith can be so different of a experince that if you want to put people on youre map you would have to start changing people.
in response to john
2) not enough familiar with the 1. point. but dropping parts of the liturgy is very true, for example the washing of hands, which as they said was done because in the old times the priest needed to clean his hands from the manure and dirt. and the rest of the Church does that still for some %&ยค# reason. the exlusiveness of the group is very emphesised: "if you fallow you us then you will are going on the road of salvation, we aren sure about the rest of the Church though".
3) think politics. stories like "the pope sent us" are just ridiculing JPII

Church Mouse

Dear all -

If you'd like to see what a good job the Neocats are doing in the St Vincent's parish of Redfern, in Sydney Australia, then visit the community's website - http://church-mouse.net.

Fr. Marcus M. Medrano

The NCW became a part of my my parish in 1991 and was asked to leave the parish by me in late 2003.To begin with I was very happy to have them as part of the parish because it was dieing and I was looking for something to give it life.As I listen to the cathecises and participated, I celebrated everyone of the liturgies of the word and two Masses on Saturday for the English and Spanish Communities at 5pm: and 7pm,or hardly missing a monthly convience, sometimes in Spanish or in English. I began to feel decived after about eight years. They were not here to help the parish, but were more interested in growing more and more communities.I found that there were two parishes, the one I was pastor of and the one the the regional responsible were pastor of. The members of the NCW would never talk to the regular parishiones, even to the point that the regulars began to ask "who are those people you see around here, why don't they ever speak to us? I also heard from those who gave the NCW a try, that when they left they were never treated the same as when they belonged. I heard this from several of those who stopped attending NCW functions. But when I began to pull aways, after rationizing that all the fears they had place on me about being a Judas, or not being saved with out the NCW were stupid things to believe or that those other Catholics who came to Mass on Sunday were fooling themselves because they were not Christians. When as Catechecist and I was given the book which contained the formate used to give the talks (along with six others who were to give the catechisis) and we were told "Don't let anyone see this book, don't leave it out in the open on the coffee table where someone might read it, because if you do you might go into crisis. I think I know the NCW. Even as I write this feel a little afraid, but I'm putting my trust in MY GOD! Also, I was very sick for about a week and they probably knew since some of the members contiued coming to Sunday Mass on Sundays for awhile. Out of the 100 members of the communities not one of them called or came to visit. Once you decide against being part of them your MUD!

Fr. Marcus M. Medrano

The NCW became a part of my my parish in 1991 and was asked to leave the parish by me in late 2003.To begin with I was very happy to have them as part of the parish because it was dieing and I was looking for something to give it life.As I listen to the cathecises and participated, I celebrated everyone of the liturgies of the word and two Masses on Saturday for the English and Spanish Communities at 5pm: and 7pm,or hardly missing a monthly convience, sometimes in Spanish or in English. I began to feel decived after about eight years. They were not here to help the parish, but were more interested in growing more and more communities.I found that there were two parishes, the one I was pastor of and the one the the regional responsible were pastor of. The members of the NCW would never talk to the regular parishiones, even to the point that the regulars began to ask "who are those people you see around here, why don't they ever speak to us? I also heard from those who gave the NCW a try, that when they left they were never treated the same as when they belonged. I heard this from several of those who stopped attending NCW functions. But when I began to pull aways, after rationizing that all the fears they had place on me about being a Judas, or not being saved with out the NCW were stupid things to believe or that those other Catholics who came to Mass on Sunday were fooling themselves because they were not Christians. When as Catechecist and I was given the book which contained the formate used to give the talks (along with six others who were to give the catechisis) and we were told "Don't let anyone see this book, don't leave it out in the open on the coffee table where someone might read it, because if you do you might go into crisis. I think I know the NCW. Even as I write this feel a little afraid, but I'm putting my trust in MY GOD! Also, I was very sick for about a week and they probably knew since some of the members contiued coming to Sunday Mass on Sundays for awhile. Out of the 100 members of the communities not one of them called or came to visit. Once you decide against being part of them your MUD!

clare

Dear Fr. Marcus:
I assure you that you have made a correct and very courageous decision in asking the NCW to leave your parish. I was in it for about 2 years and have left it permanently. It initially seems very lovely and I will certainly say that there are some nice elements in it. However, it is a theological disaster. The most crucial things are that they (1)deny the True Presence of Christ in the Consecrated Host, (2)deny the resurrection of the Body, (3)deny that the Mass is a sacrifice for our sins, (4) there is no actual alter at the Saturday night Eucharist (5) they do not say the Apostle's creed etc. The theology of Kiko and Carmen is an arrogant and terribly misguided Lutheran nightmare. ( I used to be Protestant so I am familiar with Protestant theology.) I could go on in detail about the theology but the following 2 sites discuss it very well:
http://www.christianorder.com/features/features_1995/features_apr95.html
http://www.cathud.com/info/neocatechumenate.htm
In addition there are many cult-like aspects to the NCW. You either go along with everything they demand of you or you are, as you said, "mud". When I left because I objected to the theology I was ostracized and denounced by all these people who claimed to be my "brothers and sisters". I became more and more physically ill in this group and it has cost me 2 years out of my life. Like you, when I left , nobody called to see how I was doing even though they all knew that I was becoming more and more ill. It does not foster true Christian mercy, compassion, forgiveness or any of the virtues of the Rosary. I am now going to do whatever I can to expose how theologically dangerous and incorrect it is. Kiko and Carmen cleverly keep the theology hidden so many good people are being swept into it. They arrogantly deny the actual teachings of Christ about the Eucharist as in John6:53-58. You just have to read St.Paul's admonition St. Paul (Col 2.8):" Beware lest any man cheat you by philosophy and vain deceit; according to the tradition of men, according to the elements of the world and not according to Christ" to know just how wrong Kiko and Carmen are.
Tragically, many NCW seminaries are being created. I understand your fear - I feel the same way in saying what I am saying. If you go against them, even with with great love, you no longer exist to them. Take courage, Fr. Marcus, you have done the correct thing in removing the NCW from your parish. May God bless you in every way for doing this.

Concerned Parishioners - Kelmscott WA

If anyone would like to have a read of how this 'way' has transformed a parish, then go to http://church-mouse.lanuera.com and have a look at the 'testimonial from the concerned parishioners of the Kelmscott Parish.

Esther

I agree with what has been said previously (see comment from "fr ray" above), if someone accuses the Neocatechumenal Way is because they do not know anything about it but from hearsay. I have been in it for 25 years. We do not try to separate from the rest of the groups of the Church, we do not have different masses. Quite tired of reading nonsenses and false arguments about us. The Pope agrees with it (see Statutes).
You do not want to belong to it, that is fine as noone forces you to, but leave the ones that want in peace. I have seen miracles like impossible marriages being rebuilt, thousands of vocations, so many young and old people finding their faith again... How can this be bad? How come all these miracles if this is just a fraude or a sect according to some people?

Esther

Liz

Christianity teaches that God does not impose on His people. God gave us free will - to choose right from wrong, good from evil, life or death. The "Way" as the neocatechumenal community is referred to, does not and will never impose on anybody based on this teaching. How do I know this? I have been "walking" in this path for many years. I started walking when I was in my teens and then because of my personal ambitions (travelled all over the world) I was not able to walk with a community. In all those years that I was not walking, I thirst and hungered to be walking with Christ's community again. But, alas to no avail. The countries that I've been in still has not heard or experienced the way. After sometime, I was given by God an opportunity to walk again with a community in Los Angeles spearheaded by a very zealous, almost retired priest, Fr. Earl Walker, who is already in his eighties but still walking. With the personal crisis that I am experiencing in my life today (I moved to another state again), I have stopped walking but my heart and my soul long and thirst to be able to "walk" truthfully and honestly with God's community once more. I might be able to find a neocatechumenal community in Texas, if not I could go head further east to New York and join Fr. Angelo & the community there or go back to California. Such is the intensity of experience that one will have if one decides to walk in "The Way" (referring to our Lord Jesus Christ)- that you will not see or experience anywhere else. Nobody minces words, sugar-coats, white-wash, etc. Each and every catecheses or "steps" that an individual or community undertakes in "the Way" is one and the same...uniform...wherever you go, be it Africa, Asia, Europe or America.

God Bless Us All!!!

Madeline

Amy...

Greetings and happy Advent season. I am a first timer here and I truly appreciate you allowing me to comment..

It is really a blessing that God allows persecution and crisis in one's life. If there was no judgements, anger, resistance, ignorance, rejection, etc. we would not need the church - the world would be perfect. However, this is not the case. Sin is every where and wants to destroy everyone. I have read all the comments above this and I see and appreciate why I have God in my life. There is so much hurt and judgements because those communities you, Fr. Marcus and Clare, had once belonged to, had not treated you to the way you wanted to be treated. The community you walked with, were just as weak in spirit, just as you were, and if anything, they needed God just as much as you both did. Asking or expecting them to call or visit you is almost like forcing someone to take the log out of your eye when they themselves have not taken the log out of their own eye. Did you ever find out what could have happened? Did you give them the benefit to explain why they didn't visit you? I am sure if you walked in your community even for a week, you knew that no one was perfect, even if they acted like it. The people who walk with you are not as blessed and pious as the other, in fact you all walk in the same light. Your judgement on your brethren is like a slap on Jesus as we should be living under the His teachings to treat each other christ-like.

Who am I to speak, I am still a sinner, I still forget to call my brethren and at times find it difficult to visit them in dire situations. However, I am assured that my prayers for my brethren contribute just as much as my presence to "show face". I also understand that it is also a form of reassurance that there are people out there who do care for me; who love me, etc. It is only human to feel this way. Again, no one is perfect... not even me, nor my catechists. But I come to this site to support the very instrument that has brought me to understand, love and be proud of my catholic faith; that has brought me to appreciate life, family and most importantly the ressurection of Jesus Christ in the form of the Holy Eucharist. To appreciate the days of obligation in mass especially during the Advent, Lenten and Ordinary seasons. I have a greater reliance on the Mother Church to comfort me in my times of troubles, suffering, crisis and joys. My community has been the support, despite not always meeting my wants, desires, and/or needs, but as vehicle to share with me their own miracles and blessings - being a witness to this, is a sign of hope in my life that if they can pull from their pit of hell, then I could do it just as well, and ofcourse all this through the help of the Holy Spirit and the Word that God gives to me every week. I have never loved the church the way I love her today and despite how cruel people could be, I still manage to see that God could work miracles for them, like He did for me. This intercession, is the light I needed, so He could tell me that God our Father wants to save me and grant me entrance into his kingdom of eternal life. I believe that God has a plan for every single person, this includes priests, bishops, cardinals, etc. - no one is exempt. Any there is a reason why many people are given the chance to persecute the Church (in all her forms). Is is so that one day, these very people will arise from it with much humility and forgiveness that they didn't only blaspheme the brethren, but they ultimately blasphemed Christ.

I have walked the Neocatechumenal Way for 6 years. I am no better than the person who walked for 2 years , 15 years or even 25 years. It is just that God allows me to witness and experience what I need to in His own time and according to His will. Have you ever wondered how you managed to be a messenger of God and how much He could take that away from you? It would be so quick, it would be like a "thief in the night." I pray for you, Fr. Marcus, Clare and to all those who spend time to put down the miracles of the Catholic church, I pray for myself, I pray that God will bless us each day of our life and that He may instill in us all, His Holy Spirit so that we may walk with love.

God bless us all..
Love and Peace!

James

Hi, I'm from Malta,

just wanted to say as regards to all the comments on the Neo Catechumenal Way... remember Gamaliel and his words in the Acts of the Apostles;

"Men of Israel, be careful how you deal with these people. Some time ago there arose Theudas. He claimed to be someone important, and collected about four hundred followers; but when he was killed, all his followers scattered and that was the end of them. What I suggest, therefore, is that you leave these men alone and let them go. If this enterprise, this movement of theirs, is of human origin it will break up of its own accord; but if it does in fact come from God you will be unable to destroy them. Take care not to find yourselves fighting aginst God."
Acts chapter 5, 36-39

Also, as Catholics we believe that the Popes are guided by the Holy Spirit, right? And Pope John Paul the Second and Benedict XVI certainly are. They support and encourage the Neocats.

May the Peace of Christ be upon us all!

James

Sue

The Neocats are incredibly deceptive and work in the dark - hallmarks of Satan.
Pope John Paul II and now Pope Benedict have both warned them to be obedient. I highly doubt that they will change, since they have been "getting away with their disobedience" for too many years now.
Their Saturday evening liturgy, which must be celebrated somewhere other than in the church, is hardly recognizable as a Roman Catholic Liturgy. I have attended quite a few and the only person I see making out on the whole deal is Kiko. Way members take up a "secret bag" collection at each "Way Mass" and use the money to buy Kiko's chalice, Kiko's paten and don't forget Kiko's icon which must be in the "sanctuary" front and center.
The icon we had at our parish that Kiko painted was of the Blessed Mother and baby Jesus. Our Way catechists told us that baby Jesus coincidentally looked just like Kiko as a baby!!!!!! Coincidentally? I highly doubt it.

Madeline

Response to Ms. Sue.

Peace,

Was just curious why it seems you have this hate or judgement for the "Neocats" and why you spend so much energy to put down the Neocatechumenal Way when there are far greater things happening in this world that are more serious, like the crimes, the terrorism, the diseases, the catastrophes, etc.

Maybe I don't understand but I have witness that there have been fruits from this Neocatechumenal Way. Is there anything wrong with bringing those who strayed away from the church, back to the church? rebuilding marriages? rebuilding families? Vocations to the priesthood? Vocations to be a nun? Vocations to be catechists (teachers)? etc.

I am glad that God allows people such as you, to persecute the fruits of the Holy Spirit. Without this persecution, I think many of us would have not been adamant on seeking God for refuge and understanding.

I pray that God will make light of all the events in our lives whether good or bad.

Peace.


Sue

Response to Madedline,
The Neocatechumenal Way destroyed my parish. It caused division through deceit. I don't think that is from God.

Zabbie

First and foremost, The Way is not a cult, sect, or any of those negative things that some of your misguided, fearsome,arrogant readers has thought and has been thinking all along.

The Way is Jesus Christ, therefore, The Neocatechumenal Commnunity is the Body of Christ. Christ is the mover of this community living in peace, joy, harmony & complete obedience to the heirarchy of the church authority instituted by Jesus Christ himself.

So, pray tell, how can The Way be any of these things it is being accused of?

The platform and propaganda of those people who said they have been in the way or have heard things (hearsay) about the way is purely fear-based out of ignorance and may I even say,arrogance. Fear of the unkown is what this is all about. Unwillingness to go out of one's comfort zone is another explanation. People who has gone complacent, lazy (idle) are afraid of change.
I
am not that learned nor do I claim expertise in our Chruch's history, but what I do know is that it is not by intellectual assent that we come to have an encounter with God. It is by His choice that our eyes, mind and hardened hearts are opened to receive Him in His chosen time and way - not by our will, time or efforts.

I can turn blue in the face explaining to or talking to a parishioner or even a priest about The Way, but if God has not opened their ears,minds and not softened their hearts (just like what God did with Pharaoh's heart)they just wouldn't and possibly couldn't understand the facts/truths/reality that is happening or has been taking place.

I have heard the Good News proclaimed 19 years ago in our Parish. I have walked for 8 straight years and has gone out for 7 dry years because of my ambition and attachment to this world. I have now been walking again for the past 4 years and stonger than ever. I have travelled around the world in different continents and had have a sampling of exposure and active religious life with Islam, Hinduism, Zen, Buddhism, etc.

And boy, oh, boy, there is nothing quite being a Christian, a follower of Christ. A Catholic. But sad to say, that even in our very own Church, and Assembly of the Faithful, there are still those who do not believe!!! Our very own Vatican hierarchy of authority or officials have their own doubting Thomases and Judases!!! So much more just the ordinary people in our parishes all over the world.

My prayer is this, that May God's Peace and Joy Reign Forever and ever, Amen!!!

Sue

I am not misguided, fearsome or arrogant as the last person suggested. However, the fact that they chose to attribute these characteristics to me is quite normal for a "Way Groupie".
"The Way" is not Jesus Christ, it is "Kiko"

mark

sue be still while i remove the splinter from your eye

Sue

Mark, it might be hard to see my splinter for the log in your own. However, I will pray for you.

A. Williams

All of the Neo Cats that I know are either extremely ignorant of the teachings, 'norms' and canon laws of the Church, or just don't care to study or follow them! And by the way, my wife is a member, and I have attended about 150 of their Masses in the last 3 years.

Because I believe in 'orthodox', Catholic faith..that is, loving, following and teaching the liturgical regulations of the Church, given in documents such as "Redemptionis Sacramentum", and the encyclical "Ecclesia de Eucharistia"..I have been basically termed an "enemy" of the NCW in my parish.

The very circumstance was this: I asked the pastor, last Sunday, after the normal morning Mass, if he ever read the letter sent by Cardinal Arinze to the leaders of the NCW. He said no. So I said I would bring him a copy.

Two hours later I brought it to him and he was very interested and happy! He is old, and from Spain, and I sensed he had been waiting for something like this a long time..and read it with great enthusiasm,and making many comments in favor of it, as he read point for point!

However, during this audience, and as we were almost concluding, and he mentioned that he would take care of the NCW errors.. Divine Providence intervened and
in walked the leader (Lead Catechist of our parish)of the NCW. It was his son who brought me to the Pators room, so maybe he informed his father..I don't know? But anyway, he walked in and he entered short discussion on the "letter".

Earlier that morning, I tried to give him a copy of the Arinze letter, but he thought it was a fake because it didn't have a Vatican stamp on it. He didn't want my copy then, and seemed to want to hide!

However, in the room with the Pastor, I kind of forced a copy into his hands, which he accepted. I encouraged him to study it well.

Anyway, I tried to tell him, that, just because I love the the Holy Faith, and support and defend all of the canonical laws and 'norms' of the Church, I am not thereby an ENEMY of the NeoCatechumenal Way! I am jsut a faithful son of the Church! (Whats wrong with following the rules?? We need to do it in all other aspects of Catholic teaching and theology, don't we?, ie. birth control, bio-ethics, etc..)

His response to my saying that I wasn't an enemy was this: "with friends like that who needs enemies"! Even though this was such a 'cliche' and so overdone, I basically got the messege..yes. I indeed was an enemy of the NCW!....even though I was promoting a letter from Pope Benedict XVI to the NCW!

Anyway, my marraige has always been on shaky ground for the 3 years now since the wedding. I have posted on this site before, about some of these NCW problems. However, now that the leadership of the Way considers me an out right enemy, I feel that my marraige might be doomed!

Regarding my marraige:

When I talk to my wife and try to mention that I am 100% Catholic...that I study Catholic doctrine and Catholic apologetics for fun! (ie..I participate in Jimmy Akins Apologetics blogs and comments, and here also at the Amy Welborn site)... she gets very angry! She doesn't talk. She becomes very disturbed. I even needed to remind her that she was very lucky to have a husband who truly believed all that the Church teaches!

Really its not that common these days! So also, I am religiously very informed...(it is very hard to read Jimmy Akins regularly, and NOT Be informed!!) So she is lucky I am a faithful Catholic!

However, I relly believe she is almost completely 'controlled' by the 30+ years she has been in the group! I think searching for and following the "Truth" is almost not possible with her any more? I think that she was taught 'blind' obedience to 'the Way', and this is so strong that not even encyclicals, or letters from the "Congregation for the Discipline of the Sacraments" can help! I truly believe that she follows the Church only through the teachings of the Way, and not through any other Church Sourse...and will not be open to any other interpretation...even from the most orthodox of Catholic teachers or apologists! For her, the NCW is the ONLY WAY...even though it has numerous liturgical errors and teachings, and the Chuch has set out to try to correct these!

What is wrong with 'The Way' is too long to tell! All those who support it are those who are either ignorant of current Church teachings, canon law and 'norms', or else who don't care for such regulations and teachings. For them, I think, Kiko's lessons and 'feelings' are the authentic teachers, and they are the authentic and 'true' Catholics, as mentioned above and in other posts.

The last thing I want to say on Church laws and regulations is that I sense that NONE of the NCW members want to read the DETAILS of the Cardinal Arinze letter...they only want to scan over it and paraphrase it!

Just read the Wikipedia NCW site! The letter is only 2 pgs. but has about 10 references to Church liturgical documents, which they COMPLETELY IGNORE!

For instance, regarding lay testamonies..the letter says:

"Careful attention must also be paid to the Instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum no.
74." This is an essential reference!! and says CAREFUL ATTENTION!!!

read what it says about their beloved commentaries or 'echoes' after the readings:


[74.] If the need arises for the gathered faithful to be given instruction or testimony by a layperson in a Church concerning the Christian life, it is altogether preferable that this be done outside Mass. Nevertheless, for serious reasons it is permissible that this type of instruction or testimony be given after the Priest has proclaimed the Prayer after Communion. This should not become a regular practice, however. Furthermore, these instructions and testimony should not be of such a nature that they could be confused with the homily,[156] nor is it permissible to dispense with the homily on their account."


So now... all of the NCW members who only want to rely on 'touchy-feelie' experiences from the NCW need to rethink their Catholic Faith! They need to study the DETAILS of Catholic theology and canon law! ..and this was only ONE example!

And really, how else are we to make judgemnets of the group if not from the 'norms' and canon laws that the Chruch provides??

To conclude...

This December, 2007, the 2 years permission, granted by Pope Benedict XVI to the NCW...which Kiko has publicly acknowledged, wherein they are called by the Church to stop their many abuses liturgical innovations, will have expired.

Only then we will REALLY find out what type of faithful Catholic movement this really is! I really pray for them to be obedient...and to convert to orthodox beliefs and practices, as the Pope demanded of them (again...read the details).

However, even with this I think I will have a long and hard time with my wife, as she has be so indoctrinated with these false liturgical practices and NCW teachings for so many years! So too, I now need to really carry my cross given me by Christ.. as the NCW leader here has termed me...an enemy! How this will effect my marraige I don't really know at this point.

However, I love Jesus so much.. that nothing in this world, even my marraige, will make me deny His truth or His TRUE CHURCH! I only pray for perseverence to the end!

Mary Ann

The day after tomorrow we will have our parish's first Catechesis, to which everyones has been invited.

Upon first hearing about the group and their stay in our parish for a short time, many were up in arms about it, especially after they had read things about the NW on the net - both positive and negative.

I must admit, I am very leary of it, but to make an objective decision as to whether I agree with their concept or not, I will attend a couple of their " meetings" and then form my final opinion. I certainly hope that I will have an opportunity to ask questions.

My very first impulse about the group was " divide and conquer", because I read about the how the Way kind of separates parishes.
Another thought occured to me, that somewhere in the bible I read about how to be alert because of people, even within the church, will cause confusion among the believers.

Like I said, I will try to remain objective and not make up my mind on heresay.

I will post my experiences during the coming weeks.

One more thing... I am a cradle Catholic and have not really practiced my Faith until about 3 years ago. I thank the Holy Spirit - working through our Priest- for the beginning of my Conversion. I did however have to take that first big step and go to confession.
I am working daily on becoming a better Christian/Catholic and my Christian Life is certainly a work in progress.
The reason I am sharing this, is that I believe that only God can change someone's heart, not any group. I am just a little apprehensive about the Neocats, as they seem to be called.

If they were so great in doing God's work, then why has Spain, the country where I believe they originated, almost totally fallen away from the Catholic Faith, and for that matter, all of Western Europe?

May God be with us and may the Holy Spirit give us the Wisdom to discern what we hear.

Mary Ann

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