Regarding “Time for Catholics to embrace, not exclude,” Aug. 19, Page 22:

It is my understanding that The Catholic Sentinel is an organ of the Archdiocese of Portland and exists to assist the archbishop in promoting and defending the Catholic faith. The Sentinel should be ashamed that such a column by the Oregon Synod Committee was published in its pages.

The usual cry for allowing the clergy to marry is made. One should be perfectly clear: Holy orders exclude matrimony. A Russian Orthodox priest once told me how, before finishing seminary, he was sat down and told: either marry or be tonsured a monk; otherwise no holy orders. He could marry before ordination but after it is impossible. And the Orthodox, married clergy and all, have a serious clergy shortage too.

From the column one would conclude that, we, as a church, are so very judgmental and unwelcoming. But I have not seen it. I have seen the church attempt to help all who are in an irregular marital situation. We have ministries such as Courage and Encourage. The list could go on and on. But we are not the church of what’s happening now and we dare to follow Jesus Christ whether that is popular or not.

Randolph Raetz

Vancouver, Washington