Saturday, March 13, 2010


I'm an atheist from a Protestant background. Still I can see the good works of the Catholic Church. I've known priests who were good men. The Church gives comfort to many people, including loved ones.


Guilt for the child rape scandal pervades every level of the Catholic hierarchy, up to and including the pope. In practically every diocese where there has been sexual abuse by priests, their monsignors and bishops have covered it up, many by acts of commission. The higher priests, even if not pederasts themselves, have looked first and last to protect their fellow priests, rather than the children in their charge. Far from being punished and defrocked under canon law, the enablers in the hierarchy - I'm thinking of Bernard Law, formerly archbishop of Boston and still Cardinal - have been protected.

The church authorities - to put their own best spin on it - were concerned about the damage to their institution that revealing priests' misconduct would have done. Instead, they have allowed it to rot from within, and this belies all their claims to special knowledge of and access to god.

The doctrine of papal infallibility was obviously self-serving bullshit in the first place, but this ought to put the last nail in its coffin. If the holy spirit will protect popes from all doctrinal error when they merely say they're serious, don't you think it would at least protect the church from conspiring to put thousands of children at risk of being raped? It might be beyond the power of god to keep the first child safe in god's own house, but a god, supposed to be all-knowing and all-powerful, that would permit the second child to be raped is no god I could ever respect, much less worship.

And if he has a problem with that, may he strike me dead.

Update (3/15): Judging god:

[Eva Wankerl, 61,] also said it was time that the church stopped hiding abuse cases and questioned why priests seemed to be held to a less strict standard of morality than ordinary parishioners. “If you get divorced and remarry you can’t take communion, but someone convicted of molesting children can celebrate Mass for the rest of his life,” she said.

1 comment:

David said...

Excellent post.