D and P suffering from episcopal meddling


The Canadian Catholic development organization is one of the jewels of the Canadian church. Formed after Pope Paul Vl’ appeal to the churches of the north to heed the  cry of the poor(see Populorum Progressio, 1967), D&P has been a much respected international player for decades.

Recently, the present Tory government  hacked 70% of its funding with the result that their fall programs have been curtailed. What a waste of time and energy.

However the worst curtailment has come from their own bishops now under the leadership of Toronto’s Collins and Edmonton’s Richard Smith..

They simply have trashed the  fall programme as it is deemed too critical of the Canadian government. Anybody who has followed the Harper government knows that it is anything but progressive or development friendly. Their record on climate change is abysmal. Their stunning tilt toward Israel and abandonment of  the suffering Palestnians is there for all to see.Can anyone imagine John Baird as Foreign Minister.His latest scold of the UN is laughable.

Rebuffed by the international community for a seat on the Security Council on account of  its adulation of Israel and its horrible ecological footprint, it now lashes out at the international body. This is one government churches need to oppose on many fronts and Third World development is surely one.

Here’s the point.

The bishops do not wish to upset the Harper government.There is not one ounce of prophecy in this body. instead of speaking truth to power they are cozying up to power for their own institutional reasons. And as to their own development people they use microscopes to find any group in the 3rd world offering any family planning.Then they go ballistic. No they deep-sixed  the Development and Peace fall programme. This is unconscionable.

One of the reasons it is playing footsie with the Tories is that on immigration they want to keep the foreign priest pipeline wide open.That’s all we need in the Canadian church!

I have heard fro too man sources that these imports are simply not up to the Canadian reality. Poland and India are not sending us  their best. As far as Africa—especially Nigeria—not a good scene. One would welcome progresssive priests from anywhere but not more reactionary,thoroughly Romanized curates.The days are long gone when Catholics will tolerate anybody in from to them—as long as he is ordained and can say the words of consecration. It is bad enough that we have accepted reactionary Anglicans who can’t stand female priests and bishops,

Instead of fighjting Rome for the obvious—drop the ban on women and married men– these bishops are relying on imports who are totally unaware of the Canadian reality, have huge language problems and generally bring a slavish Roman theology to the best educated generation of Catholics in history. It is not working and it will not work.

What was working was  D and P until the bishops began to create a climate of fear with their meddling.



  1. 1

    Time to face it, dear friends Even progressive Catholics have been tip toeing around this reality for years.The sole reason the episcopacy of Canada wants to get in good with the federal government these days is its surreptitious campaign to roll back reproductive rights. Misogyny pure and simple from these fellows on both sides
    Great pity it is D and P now paying the price.D and P should have gone independent years ago.
    R Ganley

  2. 2
    theobloke Says:

    Development and Peace was a key social justice thrust that some Catholics held on to in their attempt to stay with the church. Now the church has messed this up too. Tragic.

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