Via George Sipe at Convert Journal comes word of a CNN piece that was aired last week titled Call to the Collared:
CNN’s Lisa Ling produces specials called This is Life with Lisa Ling on a very wide variety of subjects. Last week they aired Called to the Collar (subtitled “He’s 26 and a Catholic priest”).
I found it very interesting. Not interesting in understanding the vocational call of the priesthood, but of how the secular (or at least non-Catholic) world sees our spiritual fathers. There are rough edges including awkwardly worded questions and a fascination on how anyone could choose celibacy (called the “ultimate sacrifice” – where do I begin…). The sex abuse scandal is repeatedly featured, of course. While these things elevated my spidey sense a few levels, on reflection I concluded they were representative of questions a non-Catholic audience would have.
Yet, (surprisingly I must admit) this is NOT another priest or Catholic bashing exercise. Ling seems
honestly interested, curious and even unexpectedly surprised at what she finds. It is a fair presentation (which I would not believe CNN capable on any genuinely Catholic topic).
Sure, it could be better. They make it seem like this diocese is an anomaly when in fact many similarly orthodox dioceses have strong vocations. Older priests, religious brothers and sisters along with deacons and so many amazing lay people are ignored. The real story is much bigger than that which is told. None-the-less, this is a good start.
A good start indeed. I've not yet watched the whole thing (it's 42 minutes long minus all the commercials) but what I have viewed I find well done and even moving.
I was particularly struck by this baptism segment I'm excerpting from the larger piece. Keep an eye out for the mother's expression and her words as she describes what baptism means to her:
That's simply beautiful and makes me look longingly forward to the baptism of my own granddaughter Amelia.
Hats off to CNN for this surprising piece.