Monday, January 28, 2002

ROD DREHER IS FIGHTING MAS ABOUT THE CHURCH'S KIDGLOVE TREATMENT OF A MOLESTING PRIEST
And I have to say, I am too. Dreher's anger has a dimension mine doesn't, since I don't have children, but the whole thing is just raises my blood pressure.

First, and most importantly, hundreds of children were molested, and this could have been prevented if people in the know took even ractive steps. This is unconscionable.

Second, it's a black eye on the Church, and severely weakens its voice when it speaks out on social issues. Who can believe that the Church is fighting for social justice, when it can't take the simplest action to prevent injustice at the hand of one of its own clerics?

When people attack the Church for having molesting priests, I want to bleieve that it's just an ugly stereotype. That a few isolated cases are being blown out of proportion. But when bishops fail to recognize a problem when it pops up, it makes such a position indefensible.

The bishops' desire to help Rev. Geoghan through his apparent illness is understandable but inappropriate. It is admirable that they can see past such a thing to other good works this priest has done. But the bishops are responsible for shepherding the whole Church, not just the clergy. The best, in fact, the only way to do that would have been to remove Rev. Geoghan rom ministry with children.

If the Church continues to fail to address these problems, it will continue to see its voice diminish in power, and will find itslef unable to get any traction in a culture that runs counter to the Church's message. The Church simply can no longer afford to be tainted by cover ups of activities that hurt children.
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