If a priest accepts the Neocatechumenal Way in his parish, I'm sure the priest is aware that he will be putting in more work than he usually does. These are some of the things that a Neocatechumenal priest does:
- In addition to celebrating the regular Mass, he also has to celebrate the Mass of the Neocatechumenal Way, which takes approximately two hours.
- The priest may also celebrate the Word on either Tuesday or Wednesday with the community.
- In addition to the Easter Vigil in the regular parish, the priest would also have an Easter Vigil in the Way, which usually lasts about six or seven hours long.
- The priest would also do missionary work by going in two by twos.
- The priest will also have a monthly convivience with his community.
- The priest would also have reconciliation with his community four times in a year in addition to reconciliation in the parish.
So, yes, the RMS priest has his work cut out for him. Therefore, is it not possible that the real reason some priests and bishops are against having the Neocatechumenal Way in their parish is because it entails more work for them? In my last post, I quoted Father Dougherty who stated that Protestant churches are more open than Catholic Churches. Protestant pastors were more willing to visit people in their homes than Catholic priests. In the last World Youth Day, Pope Francis criticized the Brazilian church leaders for the mass exodus of Catholic members in their Church, but this problem is not found only in Brazil. It is found also in the United States, many Latin American countries, and in Europe.
We know for a fact that the Jehovah Witnesses and Mormons have been going door to door evangelizing. When was the last time you've had a Catholic knocking on your door to spread the Good News? I can tell you that I've had many Jehovah Witnesses knocking on my doorsteps and not one single Catholic ever came by.
Are Catholic priests not supposed to get out of their parish church and go out into the village, getting to know their people in the village? Are they not supposed to go on missionary work in two by twos? Why is it that the Jehovah Witnesses, Mormons, and Pentecostals are doing what Catholics have been called to do by Christ more than 2000 years ago? Were the priests and bishops not commanded by God to go out and baptize the nation, and not wait for the nation to come to them for baptism? Are they not there to serve God and His Church?
On the other hand, I have seen how happy and contented the RMS priests of the Neocatechumenal Way are. They don't find themselves alone. The priests who celebrates with a community finds himself strengthen in his vocation to continually serve his parish. A priest is married to the Church, and through the community, he has come to know his Church members very well. He grows with them spiritually as he serves them.