Arcbishop John Myers of Newark has expressed a lack of confidence in the US bishops’ conference’s child protection advocate. Myers, responding to an invitation to speak at a Voice of the Faithful event along with Kathleen McChesney, said: “I can only say that her decisions and the conduct of her office leave more than a few Bishops for whom she technically works in a state of perplexity.” The letter doesn’t get any more specific, but an archdiocesan spokesman said Myer’s disappointment with McChesney relates partially to her several meetings with Voice of the Faithful groups.
Myers has banned VOTF from forming chapters and meeting on church property in his archdiocese. It’s interesting that the newspaper article gives a slightly more honest appraisal of VOTF than some other newspapers:
Voice of the Faithful, which claims more than 25,000 members nationwide and contends it is mainstream and loyal to church teachings, has attracted many liberal Catholics open to far-reaching changes that Myers has condemned.
It contends that it is faithful, although that has yet to be proven adequately.
In his letter, Myers wrote that he has been investigating the group and has determined “it is aligned or being aligned with groups in the Church which are clearly in dissent from formal Church teaching. I think it would be a serious mistake for the Church to promote in any way an organization which is counter to its own teachings.”
That seems to be the crux of Myers’ problem with McChesney: that she would lend credence to a group that undermines the Church’s teachings.