2019 Educational Forums

The Root Causes of the Sexual Abuse Crisis

Rev. Donald Cozzens
Wednesday, April 3, 2019
St. Louis Church, 24415 Crocker Boulevard
Clinton Township, MI

Rev. Donald Cozzens has appeared twice before the Elephants, and is widely regarded as one of the most knowledgeable and compelling of speakers.
Rev. Donald CozzensHe previously spoke to the Elephants on Sept. 18, 2006 concerning the Challenge to Be Adult Disciples, and on Sept. 17, 2014, when his topic was New Pope; New Hope: Out from the Underground.

Fr. Cozzens, as an author and lecturer, urges faithful Catholics to speak up in an effort to help the church they love. While some people try to ignore the fractured foundation of our Church, Father Donald Cozzens calls attention to the cracks in hopes of inspiring enough people to work together to repair the damage.

"I believe the Church is always in need of ongoing renewal and reform," says the Cleveland priest about the structure of the Church.

In his lectures, TV appearances and award-winning books, Father Cozzens confronts controversial topics that many members of the clergy and laity think about but won't address publicly.

He believes secrecy and silence caused many of the problems the Church is experiencing today. Father Cozzens, who describes himself as "a moderate in many ways," has been both praised and criticized for addressing such subjects as homosexuality in the priesthood, the roots of the clergy sex-abuse crisis and the rights of lay Catholics.

When he encourages laypeople to ask questions and challenge Church leaders, his views are rooted in the teachings of the Second Vatican Council. For example, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church says that "the laity are entitled, and indeed sometimes duty-bound, to express their opinion on matters which concern the good of the Church" (#37). Based on the new leadership of Pope Francis, there is renewed hope. His talk is based on his published books, Sacred Silence, Denial and the Crisis in the Church; Freeing Celibacy; The Changing Face of the Priesthood.

A light lunch will be served at noon in the Parish Hall, after which we will move to the Parish Church for the Forum. Please RSVP Tom Kyle at tom.j.kyle.1939@gmail.com or at (248) 987-2223 if you would like to have lunch.

A Woman's Perspective on the Church

Deborah Rose-Milavec
Wednesday, January 16, 2019 1pm
SS. Simon and Jude
32500 Palmer Rd.
Westland, MI


Deborah  Rose-Milavec

Deborah Rose-Milavec serves as the Executive director of FutureChurch. She has more than 20 years of experience working in community and church-based organizations, with a strong background in theology, Church history and Catholic social teaching.

Her professional experience includes serving as Executive director at the Domestic violence Prevention Agency and shelter in Shelby County, Ohio; Program director for the American Friends Service Committee; and prior to coming on the Board for FutureChurch, Vice-President and Project director for Catherine of Siena Virtual College, offering women's and gender studies worldwide, with a special outreach in Africa, China, the Philippines. Thailand, and other countries in Asia.

Deborah holds a Master's Degree in Theology and a Bachelor's Degree in International Studies.

She trained as a lay pastoral minister in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and is an Associate of the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati.

A light lunch will be served at noon—for a lunch reservation, please RSVP Tom Kyle via email at tom.j.kyle.1939@gmail.com or call (248) 987•2223.

Last Updated February 4, 2019

We are an organization of priests of the Archdiocese of Detroit, strongly supported by participating laity, who seek renewal of the Church of Detroit. Our purpose is to offer opportunities for education and creating an open forum for discussion and dialog that will lead to developing and advocating more collegial solutions to the challenges we face. Membership is open to Catholic clergy, religious and laity. We firmly believe these efforts will contribute to a greater solidarity among priests and a renewed Church of Detroit.