Gary Wills interviewed in The Atlantic several years ago:
You make the case for the importance of “loyal opposition” to official church positions that are nonsensical, unethical, or backward. “The job of a loyal Catholic,” you write, “is to give a support that is not uncritical, or unreasoning or abject, but one that is clear-eyed and yet loving.” What does that imply for a lay Catholic? Is simply continuing to attend mass and remaining part of the community while quietly disagreeing with and disobeying certain objectionable dicta (like the ban on contraception) enough?
That’s what it did imply until recently. Most of us Catholics have an experience of the faith at the parish level that’s very comfortable. We’re generally happy with our fellow believers and our priests and the lay assistants (who are very important these days in parishes). But now we find out that our children are being abused and that the hierarchy has protected this crime. So it’s not enough anymore to say, “Well, we’ll just ignore the Pope on issues like sex about which he’s totally ridiculous.” We have to intervene and protest and become active. And that’s what’s happening.
(h/t Andrew Sullivan.)