It is hard to see how rebel catholic priest Peter Kennedy can believe he is doing the right thing. For years he has refused to teach the catholic faith, offering instead his own version of easy to digest do-it-yourself Christianity mixed with popular psychology. He has refused to accept guidance about why what he is doing is wrong, and refused to stand aside so that the people of his parish could have what they are entitled to – a priest who will teach and live the faith.
Now after reaching a mediation with church authorities which will see him replaced at St Mary’s South Brisbane, he has announced he intends to set up a church of his own (and that’s what it will be, his church, not Christ’s church) only a few hundred metres away.
A priest is supposed to be a father to his congregation, is supposed to protect and care for them, is supposed to teach them the faith so that they may be nurtured and grow in Christ. He is entrusted, and this is a solemn trust which ought to make every clergyman tremble, with the spiritual well-being of his people.
Clergy have crises of faith all the time. Occasionally clergy go off the rails. Very occasionally a priest will lose his faith completely. Clergy are human. As I have said before, I do not object to someone believing something other than the catholic faith (though I think they are losing out if they do).
The problem here is that Peter Kennedy is instead insisting on his ‘right’ to teach the people of St Mary’s South Brisbane his own philosophy, which seems to be a bizarre collection of every currently trendy notion, while telling them that this is the catholic faith. This is simply dishonest.
His beliefs are not the issue. His integrity is – if he had any, he would have left long ago.