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THEOLOGIAN PETITION
Voice of the Faithful Has the Right to Exist
Drafted by Dr. Thomas Beaudoin, Dr. William Clark, S.J. and Dr. Anthony Massimini

As Catholic theologians, we support the rights and responsibilities of lay Catholics, acting in the grace of their spiritual gifts, to gather in the Spirit of Christ, who dwells within the whole Church.

Their gifts are God's empowerment and blessing of the laity's unique voice for the renewal and up-building of the Church and the world.

These rights and responsibilities of lay Catholics are part of official Catholic teaching, and we encourage all Catholics to read the documents of Vatican II.

Thus, we fully support the right and responsibility of Voice of the Faithful to meet in prayerful discernment of the signs of the times, and to present to the hierarchy for confirmation and implementation what their sense of faith requires them to voice.

"Christ fulfills His prophetic office not only by the hierarchy who teach in His name and by His power, but also by the laity ." (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, n. 35)

"They [the laity] are, by [reason of] knowledge, competence or outstanding ability which they may enjoy, permitted and sometimes even obliged to express their opinion on those things which concern the good of the Church." (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, n. 37)

"While preserving intact the necessary link with ecclesiastical authority, the laity have the right to establish and direct [apostolic] associations, and to join existing ones . [B]y their expert assistance they increase the efficacy of the care of souls as well as of the administration of the goods of the Church." (Vatican II, Decree on the Apostolate of Lay People, n. 19, 10)

Signatories:
Dr. J. Matthew Ashley, University of Notre Dame
Dr. Richard J. Beauchesne, Emmanuel College, Northeastern University
Dr. Tom Beaudoin, Boston College
Dr. Eugene C. Bianchi, Emeritus, Emory University
Dr. Francis J. Buckley, S.J., University of San Francisco
Dr. Francine Cardman, Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. William Clark, S.J., College of the Holy Cross
Dr. Anne Clifford, Duquesne University
Dr. Richard Clifford, S.J., Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. Francis X. Clooney, S.J., Boston College
Dr. Marie A. Conn, Chestnut Hill College
Dr. Paul Crowley, S.J., Santa Clara University
Dr. Nancy A. Dallavalle, Fairfield University
Dr. James Dallen, Gonzaga University
Dr. Margaret A. Farley, Yale University Divinity School
Mary Kathleen Flannery, SSJ, Chestnut Hill College
Dr. Jeannine Hill Fletcher, Fordham University
Dr. Richard R. Gaillardetz, University of Toledo
Dr. Roberto Goizueta, Boston College
Dr. Thomas H. Groome, Boston College
Juliann Kriege Heller, Ph.D. Candidate, Boston College
Dr. David Hollenbach, S.J., Boston College
Dr. Harold (Bud) Horell, Boston College
Dr. Karen L. Howard, Merrimack College
Dr. Mark Jordan, Emory University
Dr. James F. Keenan, S.J., Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. Alice Laffey, College of the Holy Cross
Dr. Paul Lakeland, Fairfield University
Dr. Brian F. Linnane, S.J., College of the Holy Cross
Dr. Robert Ludwig, Depaul University
Dr. Carole McCollester, O.P., Loyola University, New Orleans
Dr. Gary Macy, University of San Diego
Bette Manter, Th.D. Candidate, Harvard Divinity School
Dr. Anthony Massimini, Pennsylvania College of Art & Design
Dr. Robert Masson, Marquette University
Dr. Vincent J. Miller, Georgetown University
Dr. Paul Misner, Marquette University
Dr. Catherine M. Mooney, Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. Margaret Mary Moore, Theology and Life Institute, Inc.
Maureen Beyer Moser, Ph.D. Candidate, Duquesne University
Dr. Theresa Moser, R.S.C.J., University of San Francisco
Dr. Timothy P. Muldoon, Mount Aloysius College
Dr. Frederick Murphy, College of the Holy Cross
Catherine T. Nerney, SSJ, Chestnut Hill College
Dr. Maureen O'Brien, Duquesne University
Dr. Kenneth L. Parker, Saint Louis University
Dr. Richard Penaskovic, Auburn University
Dr. Gaile M. Pohlhaus, Villanova University
Dr. Barbara Quinn, R.S.C.J., University of San Diego
Dr. Jane Regan, Boston College
Dr. Alan Revering, Quincy University
Dr. Ann R. Riggs, Rivier College
Dr. Virginia M. Ryan, Rivier College
Dr. John R. Sachs, S.J., Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. Elisabeth Schussler Fiorenza, Harvard Divinity School
Dr. William M. Shea, Saint Louis University
Dr. Vincent M. Smiles, College of St. Benedict and St. John's University
Dr. Leonard Swidler, Temple University
John Switzer, Ph.D. Student, Boston College
Dr. Terrence W. Tilley, University of Dayton
Dr. John Topel, S.J., Seattle University
Dr. David Tracy, University of Chicago
Dr. Paul Turner, Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, MO
Dr. Edward Vacek, S.J., Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Dr. Sally M. Vance-Trembath, University of San Francisco
Dr. Cristina Vanin, St. Jerome's University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Dr. Terry Veling, St. Thomas University, Miami
Dr. Johann M. Vento, Georgian Court College
Dr. Win Whelan, St. Bonaventure University


 

 

 

 

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3.To shape structural change within the Catholic Church.
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