I was fearful the media had won the day and that Australian Catholics had "taken to the catacombs" until they felt it safe to come out and stick up for their clergy.
The October AD2000 has put my worst fears to rest.
Where else can I find encouraging and outspoken support for our clergy, and for Dr Pell in particular?
The media has topped off the last twenty years' cry of "Down with the bishops" - heard not only from so many of the laity but also from too many of the clergy.
Blessed Mary McKillop's fights with the hierarchy were on a practical level of substantial benefit for the Catholic community of the day. Today's fights seem more concerned with matters of faith and morals where a community, be it lay or clerical, decides it knows better than the Vatican and the local bishop.
Where they may be justified in their 'rebellion', too often they see themselves as today's Martin Luther - who also ended up going too far; and his supporters a good deal further than was necessary!
PETER R. McNAMARA