A portentous question, no? Well, that did not dissuade the editors of Patheos, an online religion website, from posing the question to a variety of Catholics. Patheos describes itself as follows: "Patheos.com is the premier online destination to engage in the global dialogue about religion and spirituality and to explore and experience the world's beliefs. Patheos is the website of choice for the millions of people looking for credible and balanced information or resources about religion. Patheos brings together the public, academia, and the faith leaders in a single environment, and is the place where people turn on a regular basis for insight into questions, issues, and discussions."
Anyway, they gathered together a wide-ranging group of Catholics (including--full disclosure--me), from left to right, conservative to progressive, and a few places in between, to reflect on the question: Kevin Appleby, Fr. Robert Barron, Kathy Coffey, Kate Dugan and Jennifer Owens, Michele Dillon, Hugh Hewitt, James Hitchcock, Ted G. Jelen, Deacon Greg Kandra, James Martin, S.J., Tim Muldoon, Barbara R. Nicolosi, Thomas Peters, Shu-Fy H. Pongnon, Elizabeth Scalia, Paul Snatchko, John Kenneth White and J. Matthew Wilson.
James Martin, SJ