Late Cardinal Calls Catholic Church ‘200 Years Out of Date’

Posted September 1st, 2012 at 5:20 pm (UTC-5)
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The former Archbishop of Milan, a one-time candidate for pope who died Friday, said in his last interview that the Catholic Church is “200 years out of date.”

Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini died Friday in Milan at 85 after suffering from Parkinson's disease.

His last interview was published Saturday in Italy's Corriere della Sera newspaper, in which he had a regular column.

The cardinal noted that churches are “big and empty” while the church bureaucracy grows and the rituals become “pompous.” He accuses the church of failing to keep up with the times.

Cardinal Martiini says the recent child abuse scandal obliges the church to transform itself by admitting mistakes and beginning a radical change, starting with the pope and bishops.

Cardinal Martini was regarded as one of the most progressive voices in the church. He held relatively liberal views on such issues as contraception, celibacy for priests, and abortion.

Vatican liberals pushed the cardinal as a candidate to succeed Pope John Paul in 2005 before the more conservative wing prevailed with Pope Benedict.