I wrote a couple of days ago how about how closely Richard Sipe’s comments (quoted at the Wild Reed) on sexuality and the church, on the sensus fidelium, and the hierarchy, so closely matched the conclusions I was reaching myself. What I didn’t know at the time, was that William Lindsey posted a comment at the Wild Reed immediately after my own with almost identical thoughts on the comments thread. Bill, like me, also wrote about this in his own blog, drawing attention to the “synchronicity” involved: Colleen Kochivar – Baker too had been writing along similar lines. Since then, Bill has written again about the synchronicities involved.
“Synchronicity” is a word I have been using a lot lately, especially in private correspondence with Bill Lindsey. There have been several occasions where one or other of us have been wanting to write on a particular topic, but have been slow to do so: then found the other has written something almost identical. As illustration, the story of the South African athlete is one example. As a South African travelling in that country as the news broke of rumoured gender test results, I was thinking of writing, but stalled as I wondered if it was strictly relevant to this blog . No sooner had I decided to put something together, than I found that Bill had written a post with almost identical thoughts to my own, so I left the topic alone, except for a comment at Bilgrimage. There have also been other examples.
“Synchronicity” is a word carefully chosen, in clear distinction to “co-incidence”. In strictly temporal terms, they mean much the same thing, but “co-incidence” implies an occurrence due purely to chance. “Synchronicity” has no such connotation, and suggests instead at least the possibility of some linking causality- such as (perhaps) the influence of the Holy Spirit.
There has been another synchronicity operating recently, which I would now like to share with you. Bill Lindsey, Colleen Kochivar-Baker and I have found that we have all been thinking (originally, independently), about pooling our resources to create some form of shared, collaborative blog, beginning to create a united progressive voice in response to the right-wing who claim (incorrectly) to speak for majority Catholic opinion.
We have begun sharing ideas, and although it is still very early days, we have reached provisional consensus on some important basic issues. This will not replace, but complement, existing blogs. Each of us will retain our present personal sites, but will cross-post pieces that seem either particularly good, or especially appropriate to a shared space. We see this as a place to articulate progressive, primarily (but not exclusively) Catholic perspectives and will include contributions from a range of countries, for an international perspective. In addition to the three of us who have begun the discussion, we hope that other existing bloggers will join the venture. I also hope that some of the regular readers, who frequently post useful and insightful contributions as extended comments, my feel ready to provide occasional independent contributions of their own, without taking on the burden of maintaining a full blog.
John McNeill, the noted theologian, psychotherapist and writer, has noted before a belief that we may now be in a “Kairos” moment, i.e. a “time ripe for change”, with the Holy Spirit preparing to renew the church through its people. Several other writers have noted signs of renewal coming from the people of the church, if not yet from the palaces of power. Central to the concept of the Kairos moment though, must be a recognition that the Holy Spirit does not achieve these breakthroughs alone: she needs the co-operation of us, the people.
I believe that this is one small way in which we can assist in this moment. Anybody else out there want to participate?