Learn from Pentecostals, says Pittsburgh's Cardinal Kasper
PITTSBURGH, Oct. 11, 2006 (www.catholicnewsagency.com) - Instead of simply criticizing Pentecostal churches that draw Catholics as members, Catholic leaders should consider why their parishes aren't meeting the needs of those who leave, said Cardinal Walter Kasper said Monday.
"Our response cannot be in the form of a polemical approach, leaving ourselves to condemn the activities of other groups," the cleric reportedly told an audience of 225 people at Duquesne University.
According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Cardinal Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, said it is crucial to be engaged with the diverse global Pentecostal movement, which numbers 600 million members.
Catholics who leave their parishes often they long for a sense of Christian community and direct spiritual experience that they find lacking, he continued. In addition, many haven't been taught enough about their own faith to respond to criticisms of their faith. These problems are acute in the global South, he said.
The cardinal called for better faith formation, which does not denigrate other Christian denominations, small parish-based prayer groups, youth groups and Bible studies where people can form a close spiritual community.