Who Are These People And What Have They Done with Our Church?

Below, Kathy Kane shares her observations of the EWTN coverage of the Bishops’ Conference. If this is who is at the helm of our Church and this is how they think, I’ve all but completely lost hope for the faithful. We need a miracle.

Day 1:

There were times I felt like I was watching a Saturday Night Live skit. Today they offered the initial presentations of the various committees. Bishop Cupich spoke about the findings and some revisions to the Charter For Protection of Children. Good news! The charter works – this is what they found!!!!

A few Bishops asked questions of clarifications on some revisions and spoke in what may as well have been a foreign language. One bishop asked for a clarification about removal from ministry when an allegation is made vs. removal from ministry when an allegation is found credible. Bishop Cupich was then going to refer to the canonical attorneys for an answer to that question. The last Bishop who asked a question was elderly and shuffled to the microphone to ask if we are a “Church of forgiveness and has there been any thought given to forgiving the abusive priests and returning them to full ministry.” Thats right forgiveness will keep kids safe and a simple confession can negate the jail time that the rest of society who commits heinous acts against children must adhere.

Day 2:

The coverage today of the Bishop’s conference was even worse. Cardinal Szoka protested that the wording stating that the Bishops were “obliged” to report sexual abuse claims was too strong. He felt it would be better to say they “should.” He did not feel “obliged” was appropriate. Cardinal Cupich responded that although there is no canonical obligation to enforce the charter there is a moral obligation. This would have been the perfect time for a power point presentation to be given to teach the Bishops what a moral obligation entails. A moral obligation means someone has a heart, a conscience and the desire to protect children.

Archbishop Hurley again stated today that he believes that because we are a Church of forgiveness we need to include reconciliation to embrace the abusive priests in the process. This whole idea of reconciliation with no consequences for criminal acts is news to me.When I went to confession I didn’t realize that I could confess losing my temper, taking the Lord’s name in vain and child rape all in the same category.

17 thoughts on “Who Are These People And What Have They Done with Our Church?

  1. The whole psychology associated with group thinking and behavior is key. After awhile the real issue (child abuse)is forgotten and the group behaves by starting to protect itself against the external environment. Dahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!! What happened to servant leadership???????

    1. Dr. Nick:

      Now that we’ve thought about how “groupthink” sabotages the critical thinking skills of U.S. bishops, if not the entire priesthood, let’s look at another phenomenon that seems to pertain to them.

      Google “Stanley Milgram’s Experiment on obedience and authority.” In his study, he expected that 1-3 percent of the volunteer-shockers would follow the instructions from authority figures to inflict increasing stronger shocks on the shock-volunteers but, in instead, a whopping 65 percent followed the “voices of authority”!

      The Milgram Experiment brings new meaning to the Vow of Obedience.

  2. sigh….. such an insulated view. I agree, Susan… it is hard to find hope in this kind of leadership.

  3. Nick
    I agree.The technicality with which they discussed the Charter was bizarre – it was if they were discussing church finance or church doctrine.There was no passion,no emotion.The main concern became whether or not Archbishop Hurley had the right to suggest an amendment because he is retired. Archbishop Dolan and Bishop Cupich assured him that although he could not propose an amendment,his “sentiments” would play largely into the conversations and debates.They were more concerned with the process than than anything .
    Hurley was adamant that the Church must be stronger defending itself.He said he knew this would stir things up and upset groups such as SNAP but stated “so what”
    Not one Bishop stood and spoke against what Bishop Hurley expressed. I am thinking that an entrepenuer in Seattle is busy making t shirts that say “Team Hurley’ to sell to the Bishops in the hotel gift shop.

  4. “When I went to confession I didn’t realize that I could confess losing my temper, taking the Lord’s name in vain and child rape all in the same category.”

    Great point Kathy! I would include missing Mass in that list. Now I do attend Sunday Mass regularly and also attend weekday Mass at times but can these bishops continue to claim missing our “Sunday obligation” is a mortal sin, thereby on the same level as child rape? Oh yeah, that’s right, they don’t seem to understand that they have an obligation to report child rape like we the laity have an obligation to attend Sunday Mass.

    God help us.

  5. I find myself so disturbed in church these days. I absolutely cannot go to my own parish so I’ve found a pastor in a neighboring parish who, at times, acknowledges the “priest abuse crisis.” I’m so disturbed at how the hierarchy has mishandled and continues to victimize in their mishandling that I’m seriously considering looking around for another church – NOT Catholic. I find I cannot be there in church and worship/praise God happily. I need to find another church…

    1. I could have written this myself, Maureen! I hope you are able to find a place to be peaceful and spiritually-filled.

  6. At what point does the ‘pew catholics and the supporters of the rcc’ realize that only the LAW will institute CHANGE, to me all this ‘review board and the charter discussion is about as effective as the captain of the Titanic ordering the crew to re arrange the deck chairs !!!!!!!!!!

    1. I absolutely 100% agree. Susan and I have connected with a group of advocates that is working towards the passage of the Pa. House Bills that will better protect children and expose perpetrators of abuse.We will post info on the site so that everyone can lend support to the passage of these very important legislative actions.The Church won’t change- but the laws can.

  7. As I understand it, a lay person would be fired immediately—-forever, and they should be. Any background check(if conducted) would reveal that they were fired and why. Chances are that they would not be hired by the church again, in any capacity. It seems the priests get to “play” by different rules than the rest of us.

  8. ‘There were times I felt like I was watching a Saturday Night Live skit.’

    I believe you are being too kind. . . the bishops have just produced another episode of the ‘Jerry Springer Show.’

    . . . add this one to the recent $1.8M John Jay study that blamed the abuse crisis on the ’60’s that was only good for fishwrap.

  9. This is ludricrous!!!! These priests and bishops think they are above the law. What gives them this right? Why should we forgive men who are NOT sorry and continue this immoral act?

  10. The bishops must live in a parallel universe if they think the Charter has been successful. Do they know what has happened in Philadelphia, Kansas City, Charleston and more cities?

    One bishop takes issue with the word “obliged” in relation to reporting child sex abuse. Many of the faithful take issue with bishops who take issue with reporting child abuse. We take issue with the rape of children and the cover up. We take issue with the lack of accountability and transparency. We take issue with the lack of moral leadership. We take issue with the hypocrisy.

    Since when are forgiveness and punishment/protection mutually exclusive? God may forgive the pedophile priests but we can still make them accountable to civil authorities and keep them far away from children. I urge EVERY CATHOLIC to print out the grand jury report in duplicates and ask every Catholic friend to read it. I beg EVERY CATHOLIC to defend their faith against this ignorance and arrogance. Please don’t go quietly. Make sure the Vatican hears your voice.

  11. The church hierarachy live in the elite world of “clericalism!” Only the voice of our church laity can force the chruch hierarchy to understand that we need REFORM, CHANGE and to follow the word of Christ, not he word of Rome!

    Speak up and work to build our church so it is the living faith of Jesus Christ!

  12. Following is an extract from the below-mentioned link: http://www.mapsofindia.com/personalities/gandhi/civil-disobedience.html

    In the Civil Disobedience Movement led by M K Gandhi, in the year 1930 … The Indians learned how apparently philosophical tenets like non violence and passive resistance could be used to wage political battles. … While the Non-Co-Operation Movement was built on the lines of non violent and non co operation, the essence of The Civil Disobedience Movement was defying of the British laws….

    Clericalism is political in nature, with all the perks of title, status, prestige, wealth and power. Perhaps the Roman Catholic masses need a Gandhi-style movement of non violence and passive resistance against the Roman hierarchy. If Gandhi could defy the mighty British Empire, can we not get Rome’s attention by participating in a global religious-disobedience movement of not ‘paying, praying or obeying’. We need not abandon our personal relationship with God or our prayer-life and there is a possibility that home-churches may flourish.

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