Monday, December 28, 2009

Irish Op-Ed Trashes Pope and Suggests Benedict XVI Resign

Things in Ireland appear to be increasingly volatile and something that would once been unheard of is belatedly being said - such as Benedict XVI is guilty in the sex abuse scandal and should resign. The column also calls for a new method of selecting future bishops and giving power to the laity. One can but hope that this trend continues since I have zero faith in a reform of the Roman Catholic Church from within the hierarchy. American Catholics need to likewise wake up and simply say "no more" by walking away from the Church or at a minimum, withdrawing all financial support until change occurs. More than anything else, the Vatican loves money. Here are some highlights from this surprising column in the Irish Independent:
GIVEN the scale of what is happening in the Irish Catholic Church, debating the departure of five auxiliary bishops has all the rich, ripe irrelevance to the gravity of the situation as had Taoiseach Brian Cowen's axing of five junior ministers. The only meaningful departure would be that of the Pope himself. As Cardinal Ratzinger he was probably the best informed man in the Vatican, being both Prefect of the powerful Congregation of the Faith and Dean of the College of Cardinals. These offices mean that he was privy to the ever swelling tide of reports on clerical sex abuse which poured into the Vatican during his tenure in office, from every diocese in the world. Even non-Catholics are free to access the vast accounts of clerical abuse, available on the web, like a vast open sewer.
Instead of arguments over whether or not a handful of bishops should be hung out to dry, the Irish public should be concentrating on how they, the people -- who in the end pick up the tab for all that is happening in both Church and State -- could develop a mechanism whereby the laity would henceforth have a say in the selection of bishops. I would strongly urge our Government to tell Rome that, henceforth, a small but experienced lay panel be appointed to vet any shortlist prepared to fill Episcopal vacancies.
Second -- as a direct response to the arrogance and tardiness of the Nuncio in dealing with the Murphy inquiry -- that we close down our embassy to the Holy See and henceforth deal with the Vatican through our embassy in Rome. These are not matters of faith. The question of clerical sex abuse has serious financial, educational and emotional implications for an Irish society . . .
The plain fact is that the present crisis has arisen because bishops, appointed solely by Rome, were formed and operated in a culture in which the Vatican policy was Pass the Parcel. Under infectious diseases legislation there are severe penalties for failing to report certain serious illnesses to the authorities. But under the Pass the Parcel policy, what most of us would call an appalling disease -- that of paedophilia -- was covered up and the infectious one deliberately sent off to another parish to abuse trust and children in a manner which had, and has, life-long consequences.
The Church's strange, foetid attitude towards sex came about for two reasons. One, a view that if married priests had sex it meant that he approached the altar with "soiled hands". Second, but more importantly, to save money -- as priests' dependents could have a claim on Church property. In Ireland, clerical preoccupation with sex and contraception veered from the ludicrous to the horrible. On behalf of the hierarchy, Archbishop McQuaid once informed the government that tampons should be banned because they might stimulate young girls to sexual activity and thus lead to contraception.
If bishops are to be accorded a place of authority in Irish society, then Irish society must demand the right to check on their credentials before they are given that authority.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Michael:

I came across this great link the other day:

Even though I'm in Canada, I'm going to make the request. Let's get those numbers up!

And, like you said, walk away from this corrupt institution.