The Editor: The Holy Father is no laggard. He has distinguished himself for his acumen to pick up on the most obscure and niggling issues and arriving at workable and durable solutions.
The article on viri probati (PM, March 15) underscores this point. Organizations such as Corpus have conscientiously made the Vatican aware that the problem of steadily decreasing numbers of priests in their ranks, particularly in the developed world, does confess of one obvious solution.
I am certain that of the number of canonical priests still active in their faith communities, a good many have the present ability to provide meaningful service and ministry. They are and have been a visible sign in our midst labouring conscientiously doing diverse sorts of pastoral work in prisons, hospitals and the like, a good many providing service gratis. Many have been able to transition providing invaluable counselling service and crisis intervention utilizing some of their transferable skills garnered from their seminary training and time as priest.
To state the case, these men have established themselves as persons of good character and virtue long before and after receiving their dispensations. It’s time to bring these viri probati in from the “cold.”
The sooner accomplished, the better for both faithful and the church. — Randy Fleming, Moose Jaw, Sask.