People on the edges are what the Church sacrifices most today Elizabeth Young RSM told the conversation on Flashes of Insight.
She describes these people as ‘lost opportunities’.
Young, a pastoral worker who once worked in a large diocese, says that city dioceses, hospitals, schools and parish communities are generally well resourced and have good systems in place, however, there is an issue on the “missionary edges”.
As a sacramental church, the limited resources go first to priests who can celebrate sacraments Young told Flashes of Insight.
She thinks that people are missing out and the Church is sacrificing lots of opportunities by not being able to offer sacraments to people who are being cared for by those who love them and committed to them.
“Sacraments add just so much to ministry”, she added.
Young says she loves the fact the Catholic Church is a sacrament-based church but wonders what might be when something so valuable to those on the margins is not available to them.
“Our church is perhaps sacrificing the ability to be there with people Jesus would have been with”, she said.
Young says we love the Church but in these times need a lot of hope in Christ, as the Church continues to develop.
Kate Bell a theologian and catechist with the Palmerston North diocese in New Zealand makes the issue tangible.
She describes women’s ministry, as, at times, “doing the role with our hand behind our backs and a gag in our mouths.”
Bell says it is the Church that is making the sacrifice; the sacrifice and cost to the Church is the loss of potential not being brought into actuality.
It is a point that Jo Ayers, an Auckland theologian and author amplifies, saying she often wondered what would happen to the church if women went on strike for a generous amount of time.