The Coalition of Concerned Catholics, a group of lay faithful primarily concerned with the dissent, heterodoxy and apostasy present in the Church, recently published an open letter to Bp. Felipe Estévez of the diocese of St. Augustine, Florida. They have given Church Militant permission to republish it in full.
His Excellency, Felipe Estevez, MA, STL, STD
Bishop, Diocese of St. Augustine
11625 Old St. Augustine Road
Jacksonville, FL 32258
Friday, March 1, 2019
Dear Bishop Estevez:
As committed Catholics, we are concerned that not enough is being done globally about the abuse crisis in our Church. Presently, the issue is the abuse of seminarians, priests, brothers, deacons, religious and other adults — both male and female — by those in the presbyterate, diaconate, episcopate and other religious.
Homosexuality has infiltrated the Church, and the majority of the abuse comes from clergy and religious with same-sex attraction disorder perpetrated upon post-pubescent boys and men.
Additionally, the corresponding cover-up of these abuses by those in authority — your brother bishops, archbishops and cardinals — is even more reprehensible. With the conclusion of the Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church, known colloquially as the Vatican abuse summit, we see essentially that nothing new was accomplished and we were only offered platitudes, bromides and politically correct cleric-speak by those in the hierarchy, including our Holy Father, Pope Francis — the servant of the servants of God.
Thus, members of this faithful coalition will not be donating to your annual stewardship appeal. Instead, the hard-earned dollars of the laity will go to organizations that are helping to uncover and report on these abuses in the hopes of real reform. They are:
We will continue to do this, and encourage others nationally and internationally to do the same, until we see clear evidence that you and your brother bishops in the USCCB are confronting, in both word and deed, the corruption and evil present among your ranks. We can no longer tolerate malevolence at the expense of those trusting the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church.
Your sheep are hurting, Excellency. We have been marginalized. Victims are still on the periphery and have not been accompanied on their journeys of healing. You have been called to "listen radically," so please do not let the voices of your flock fall on deaf ears. Ubi est tenebrae fiat lux! Where there is darkness, let there be light!
As faithful laity, we seek clarity, not confusion; orthodoxy, not obfuscation; courage, not cover-ups; and salvation, not sophistry. We want solid apologetics, not apologies for our Church's rich teaching.
So, we are praying, fasting and doing penance every day so that each of you will be lionhearted leaders, who are truly holy and fearless shepherds of our souls.
Christopher M. Shea
Chief Executive Officer
Coalition of Concerned Catholics
cc: His Eminence Daniel N. DiNardo, STD, President, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops 3211 Fourth Street N.E. Washington DC, 20017 and Cardinal Archbishop of Galveston-Houston 1700 San Jacinto Houston, TX 77002-8291
His Excellency Christophe Pierre, JCD, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States of America 3339 Massachusetts Ave., N.W. Washington, DC 20008 and Titular Archbishop of Gunela