If the money is beginning to balk, the power becomes likelier to change hands.
Now the money is speaking to the power
In an article that lacks local precedent (“Some rich donors turn from archbishop,” Nov. 7), the Star Tribune quotes five local, prominent Catholics, one anonymously, who have expressed disaffection with Archbishop John Nienstedt’s leadership and suggest that further financial support may not be forthcoming. These are wealthy people who can build buildings, write checks with four or more zeros, and are tapped to chair fundraising campaigns such as the one for $160 million that is currently under review.
One should look to money or power to understand how the Catholic Church, a worldwide institution, goes about its decisionmaking. Simply put, the two are equivalent. As local money dries up, power is speaking, which will very likely lead soon to the archbishop’s demise.
ED KOHLER, St. Paul
• • •
The article quoted John Derus of the DeLaSalle High School Board as saying that “the church is not a democracy.” Though Catholics do not elect their bishops, it behooves the leadership to initiate some democratic practices into the structures if it wants to serve people who value freedom and equality and human dignity.
Nienstedt’s rigid authoritarianism has divided the Catholics of the archdiocese since his arrival in 2007. He speaks of “restoring” trust that he has never earned.
PAULA RUDDY, Minneapolis
• • •
I turn to my Vatican II Council book and find, in the document titled “Decree on the Pastoral Office of Bishops in the Church,” two pertinent quotes:
• “A bishop should be solicitous for the welfare — spiritual, intellectual and material — of his priests, so that they may live holy and pious lives, and exercise a faithful and fruitful ministry.”
• “As the pastoral office of bishops is so important and onerous, diocesan bishops and others whose juridical position corresponds to theirs are earnestly requested to resign from their office if on account of advanced age or from any other grave cause they become less able to carry out their duties. This they should do on their own initiative or when invited to do so by the competent authority.”
I believe that the loss of donations, along with the comments of those in the article, plus the many of us not quoted, is grave cause.
DAVID PUTRICH, Bloomington
Debating the pace of the vote-counting
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.