Due Date: 2 August 2011
Response to “Doubt”
“Doubt” reinforces my ambivalence concerning the Catholic Church and the priesthood, generally. I am familiar with thewrath of a very conservative priest, and I am also been blessed to have known a very caring and progressive priest during my lifetime. Father Liam Quinn is a very progressive pastor in Sunrise,Florida. He was on the faculty of Christopher Columbus High School (for boys) prior to his tenure in Broward County. In “Doubt,” Father Flynn is a priest who was also very involved in the lives of thestudents at the St. Nicholas School.
In “Doubt,” Father Flynn is very progressive for the time. He exhibits kindness to the students, both male and female. He advises a young girl to be open andexpress her love for a boy at the school. His discussion with the boys, prior to the school dance, evidences his involvement with the students. He advises the boys regarding proper etiquette with thegirls, while keeping their self-esteem in-tact. Father Flynn has a very heated discussion with Sister Aloysius, a very conservative nun, regarding adding a secular music to the Christmas Pageant. Italso appears that Father Flynn is trying to protect Don Miller in the play. The issue in “Doubt” is whether Father Flynn is merely a progressive priest or a pedophile. This question, in my mind,remains unanswered.
My daughter served as an alter girl for Father Quinn for a number of years. His main goal was to inspire the children of the parish to want to participate in the church. He waskind, yet firm. Thus, the children had great respect for him. Father Quinn did not use fear in this teaching methods. This environment resulted in learning the teachings of the Catholic Church,without the “fire and brimstone” approach. Interestingly, the leaders of the Church in Miami did not approve of Father Quinn’s methods.
The play “Doubt” confirms my ambivalence concerning the Catholic...