When I tell someone I'm Catholic, I immediately follow up by defending myself with examples marking my liberalism. I'm pro-choice. I lived with my husband before we got married. I recently spoke with Father Tom Reese, a senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University, former editor of the Jesuit magazine America, and a contributor to the Washington Post's On Faith blog. He speaks and writes openly about the problems the modern Catholic Church faces.
He gets it. The human is a questioning animal by nature, he explained, and will, of course, disagree with the hierarchy from time to time.
"That's what we call conscience in the Catholic Church," he said, "and in the Catholic Church, conscience has always been supreme." This notion, that questioning the system is not only expected, but is important, gives me some peace and reminds me that this innate intellectualism is another one of the qualities I admire in the Church.
Link (here) to full The Huffington Post article by Cara McDonough