The Church is certainly not in trouble. It thrives in Africa, Latin America and Asia. The West, the US and Europe, is in trouble due to its rejection of the Church. the Church is not thriving in those places.
In Catholicism the thinking is “you are what you read”.
What are you reading?
The Catechism states that one is not safe when reading illogical, degrading untruthful material. That goes for general entertainment, and one is not to be fooled by the film industry’s rating system, BTW, it’s the theme that counts.
It’s not necessarily inappropriate to insult at a time like this. What it is is silly.
And it is meant to discourage.
One: If it detracts for the sake of cynicism, it does not come from a good place, and it is at least a waste of time, if not discouraging.
Two: The church is centered on faith. It is also, at the same time, centered on reason. It is the truth.
The hierarchy, if you take a moment to view the bio of anyone anybody is criticizing, there will be a moment of sobriety and a turning away from the detractors. People don’t give the average priest, much less, the hierarchy, attention of his education and works.
Three: Of course there are errant ways, as the Church is run by humans. Humility is a key. Peter denied Jesus three times, yet he was chosen After repentance, to lead the Church. that’s it.
the church is Bible based. Duh! Of course it is. Read a Missal, the daily readings of the mass (throughout the world it is the same day to day) and one will get a chronological and salient bible study. Most Catholics just don’t know that.
It is also based on tradition, like any family.
And it is based on the Magesterium - the divinely inspired teachings of the theologians.
Keeping away from criticism is recommended, while reading those who strive for truth is worthwile:
Catholic exchange website
The Missal (includes the Bible)
The encyclicals (Papal letters); esp Humanae Vitae
Popes JPII, esp Theology of the Body and BenXVI
Re the "health" of the church is duly noted. In fact, recently read the the catholic religion is now the "largest" religion in China. Can't source that and not sure all the details. I do know the distribution of the bible in china has been beyond anything one can imagine.
Re "you are what you read." Absolutely. I agree with that and raise you what you watch and eat and the company you keep is important (vital)
Here is my issue . . . Many conservatives, Christians sometime live too much in a cocoon. They have a narrow view of the world and a narrow view of competing view points. Because of your past knowledge of Ann, you and others dismiss her out of hand. There are plenty of people we disagree with, but you know once in a while they do say something from a perspective worth considering. Ex:Pat Caddel at CPAC. So yes, we should be very careful what we read, and yes criticism specially inside the church can be unhealthy. But when someone with reason sounds an alarm, maybe, just maybe it's worth considering, if nothing more than to validate our own thoughts
Reading your thoughts, very thoughtful and important and will always consider, we agree in principal. I was just grinding my teeth because so many here dismissed what a person had to say without reading what that person had to say. You and others actually did, but I was breaking an eye tooth because most we're not saying WHY she was being blasphemous.
well said and worth repeating. Criticism is not totally inappropriate (as you said) but it should be measured and specific. Ann's diatribe is way over the top. I learned long ago that those that exaggerate to make a point often have no point.