Some weeks ago someone did us a favour, although we did not think so at the time. Fortunately our web host, Rochenhost, is exceptionally vigilant and was able to advise us without delay that some sad soul had implanted malicious code into the website. To make sure that we got rid of all malignancy we took the decision to destroy the website completely.
We have spent the intervening weeks in consultation and prayer over the best contribution we could make towards a Church which reflects Vatican II values.
We Are Church in the UK is a call to recognise that all the Baptised, including the laity, are part of the community of faith, the Church. As Pope Pius (1946) and Pope John Paul II (Christifideles Laici) said, the laity do not merely belong to the Church, they are the Church.
We believe that the Holy Spirit inspires all God's people, not just those who are clergy or in religious communities. The ordinary man and woman has a contribution to make to the success of the mission of the Church. That mission is to be the seed and beginning of the Kingdom of God.
When the We Are Church movement began in 1995 it was known that there were specific issues which concerned a very large number of Catholic Christians. These were summaried as:
- the need for people in the pew to be part of the decision making process
- the need for women to play a full part in the life of the Church
- the need for celibacy to be optional for the ordained ministry.
- the primacy of an informed moral conscience
- the need for there to be a culture of joy and not threat in the community of faith.
We Are Church calls for dialogue throughout the whole church over these issues and others that arise. We do not believe that any one group has all the answers. By all shades of opinion being in the conversation it will be possible for the Holy Spirit to speak and for God's wishes for His community of faith to become apparent.
It has to be said from the outset that We Are Church in the UK are not trying to replace the Church's leadership structure. We echo the words of Richard K Taylor in his book, "Love in Action"
We respect the essential role of Pope, bishops and clergy in the Church. We accept the validity of authoritative leadership at the level of the universal Church, charged with safeguarding the Church's unity and preserving sound teaching. We affirm the fundamental doctrines of the Church and have no desire to change them.
Dialogue in the Church must happen at parish, deanery, diocesan and global level. We Are Church's contribution is to offer a place where we collect links to what is being said and thought in many parts of the Church. Opinions expressed on the linked sites or documents are those of the website authors and not necessary of We Are Church (UK). We will not link to material that defames, insults or otherwise demeans individuals or groups.