I have been in Houston all week for a work related training seminar. As a result I have been off the radar and not posting on this blog. But tonight, the perfect combination of a stable internet connection at the hotel (who knows how long that will last), prediction of rain and no “homework” from the seminar this evening has allowed me to catch up on the blogs I normally review regularly. One article caught my eye in particular.
A group in the Washington DC area has started a website that is dedicated to “outing” gay Catholic Priests. The site, ChurchOuting.org states that the “site was created to provide you with the opportunity to save LGBT youth from the hypocrisy of priests in the Archdiocese of Washington who are socially, romantically or sexually active gay men, yet stand silent while Archbishop Wuerl and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops increase their dogmatic war against gay families.”
I fully support any effort to arrest the abuse of anyone by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church. Hypocrisy in the church, in whatever form it takes, should be exposed. I think that the Bishops should be held accountable for their actions and for the actions of those who do their bidding. I also think that Bishops are fair game if they are demanding a certain behavior of their parishioners and are not applying that same standard to themselves or their subordinates. I am not fully on board with the idea of outing priests (gay or not) who are faithfully and compassionately ministering to members of their parishes, no matter what the sexual preferences of those parishioners may be. To do so would be the equivalent of inflicting the same emotional, spiritual and physical abuse meted out by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church. I don’t see this as holding the high ground.
I am left looking at the hierarchy of the Catholic church and seeing just how intellectually and spiritually bankrupt they are. Compassion and ministry have gone by the wayside. The church, seems so lost and unwilling to embrace the theology which they purport to preach. The targeting of homosexuals by the church is an abomination. For these “men”, these bishops to sit in judgement of anyone is beyond reason. I wonder how many bishops sitting in the meeting in Baltimore earlier this week are gay. Should that even matter? Whether they are sexually active or celibate, they should focus on their Christ’s message of love and acceptance instead of embracing a policy of intolerance and targeting a segment of their parishioners.
These are the same men who allowed pedophiles to prey on children and protected those predators from prosecution. This is the same church that blamed the pedophile problem on gay priests. These are men who have lost touch with the basic tenants of their own religion and lost their humanity because they have been seduced by the trappings and treasure that come with position and favor.
The Catholic church is on a course charted to its own demise. The spiral will continue as long as these old men are blind to the needs of their flocks. As long as parishioners support these Dioceses that embrace the targeting of any group, the active persecution of those who do not curry favor with the hierarchy will continue.
Is the solution the outing of gay priests? I don’t know. I am thinking that will make headlines, but it will not make headway. Casting that net will catch innocent priests along with those who truly are hypocrites. I am not sure the collateral damage is worth it. I recommend that parishioner let their pastors know where they stand by cutting off the flow of money into collection plates and saying “No” to the annual donation drives sponsored by the various diocese across the country. Cut off the money and the head will die.
Abuse is abuse and there should be no room for church sponsored bigotry in any Christian denomination.
1 thought on “Abuse is Abuse”
Since the Catholic Church considers itself to be the original and universal Church. Is it any surprise that the manner in which priest sexual has been covered up isn’t also universal? You have to give the Church credit for its’ consistent adherence to hierarchy and protocol all over the globe!
I refer this link to an AP article regarding the manner in which priest sex abuse has been covered up in Ireland: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091126/ap_on_re_eu/eu_ireland_catholic_abuse
You could very well remove “Ireland/Dublin” from the article, substitute “USA/Scranton, PA” and recognize the following “universal” key points: (quotes from the article)
“covered up decades of child abuse by priests in order to protect the church’s reputation”
“shows clearly that a systemic, calculated perversion of power and trust was visited on helpless and innocent children”
“the gravest scandal in the history of independent Ireland”
“The report rejected past bishops’ key claim that they were ignorant of both the scale and criminality of priests’ …. the Dublin Archdiocese negotiated a 1987 insurance policy for future legal costs of defending lawsuits and compensation claims”
“archbishops did not tell police about clerical abuse cases, instead opting to avoid public scandals by shuttling offenders from parish to parish”
“police officers that did investigate colluded with church authorities to
“Senior police officers clearly regarded priests as being outside their remit, handing, complaints to the archdiocese instead of investigating them”
“A few (priests) were courageous and brought complaints to the attention of their superiors. The vast majority simply chose to turn a blind eye”