Authoritarianism On Display April 1, 2010Posted by Dwight Furrow in Dwight Furrow's Posts, religion.
Tags: authoritarianism and religion, Catholicism
The revelations regarding the Catholic hierarchy’s involvement in protecting pedophile priests is disturbing but unfortunately predictable.
The future Pope Benedict XVI was kept more closely apprised of a sexual abuse case in Germany than previous church statements have suggested, raising fresh questions about his handling of a scandal unfolding under his direct supervision before he rose to the top of the church’s hierarchy.
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future pope and archbishop in Munich at the time, was copied on a memo that informed him that a priest, whom he had approved sending to therapy in 1980 to overcome pedophilia, would be returned to pastoral work within days of beginning psychiatric treatment. The priest was later convicted of molesting boys in another parish.
An initial statement on the matter issued earlier this month by the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising placed full responsibility for the decision to allow the priest to resume his duties on Cardinal Ratzinger’s deputy, the Rev. Gerhard Gruber. But the memo, whose existence was confirmed by two church officials, shows that the future pope not only led a meeting on Jan. 15, 1980, approving the transfer of the priest, but was also kept informed about the priest’s reassignment.
These revelations come on top of another scandal involving the Vatican.
Top Vatican officials — including the future Pope Benedict XVI — did not defrock a priest who molested as many as 200 deaf boys, even though several American bishops repeatedly warned them that failure to act on the matter could embarrass the church, according to church files newly unearthed as part of a lawsuit.
The internal correspondence from bishops in Wisconsin directly to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future pope, shows that while church officials tussled over whether the priest should be dismissed, their highest priority was protecting the church from scandal.
This is predictable because all authoritarian institutions tend towards corruption.
The charges are disgusting enough but the cover up is becoming more disgusting each day. In the face of media reports, the apologists are out in force making excuses that are logically lame and morally despicable. Here is one singular example from a blog post by Archbishop Dolan of the New York Diocese:
What adds to our anger over the nauseating abuse and the awful misjudgment in reassigning such a dangerous man, though, is the glaring fact that we never see similar headlines that would actually be “news”: How about these, for example?
– “Doctor Asserts He Ignored Abuse Warnings,” since Dr. Huth admits in the article that he, in fact, told the archdiocese the abusing priest could be reassigned under certain restrictions, a prescription today recognized as terribly wrong;
– “Doctor Asserts Public Schools Ignored Abuse Warnings,” since the data of Dr. Carol Shakeshaft concludes that the number of cases of abuse of minors by teachers, coaches, counsellors, and staff in government schools is much, much worse than by priests;
– “Doctor Asserts Judges (or Police, Lawyers, District Attorneys, Therapists, Parole Officers) Ignored Abuse Warnings,” since we now know the sober fact that no one in the healing and law enforcement professions knew back then the depth of the scourge of abuse, or the now-taken-for-granted conclusion that abusers of young people can never safely work closely with them again
Not only does Dolan ignore recent cover-ups of child-abuse. He seems oblivious to the fact that the church is supposed to be the highest of moral authorities. Yet when confronted with the church’s complicity in abject evil, the best he can say is “everyone else is doing it”.
These pompous assholes run around in their poofy robes and dresses shaking smoke-filled decanters with important expressions on their faces and pretending to great insight about grace and humility, but here we have the head of the largest Diocese in America teaching his entire congregation that when caught committing a terrible sin, the appropriate response is to blame the media and pull the “All the other kids were doing it, too!” stunt!
Apparently, having the moral compass of a 6th grade school yard bully is sufficient qualification to be a Bishop these days.
The corruption goes to very top of the Catholic hierarchy. And it is a lesson in how corruption will effect any organization that shields itself from moral criticism by appealing to some higher power.
I’m not Catholic but many people I care about are; they must be suffering to see what has become of the institution in which they have become so invested.
The fact that the Pope continues to spout nonsense about the moral relativism of modern society is nauseating.
For political commentary by Dwight Furrow visit: www.revivingliberalism.com