Monday, March 29, 2010

A Time for Contrition

I came across this article from the New York Times which seems more balanced than many I`ve seen. Just thought I`d mention it.


madame evangelista said...

A thoughtful article - thanks for the link.

Discreet Observer said...

The abuse of minors by some priests and religious has quite rightly been condemned as appalling, but what is equally appalling, albeit in a different context, is the rabid reporting that claims that this is solely a problem within the Catholic Church, that virtually every priest is a paedophile, and that Pope Benedict must accept all the blame and consider resigning. It should be a basic requirement of journalists, both in print and on TV, that they check their facts and report the facts, not use the situation to vent their own deep-seated prejudices and bigotry.
It is actually the fact that most of this kind of abuse is to be found in the Protestant Churches (not that this is any attempt to deflect legitimate blame from whoever is responsible but an attempt to introduce some semblance of balance).
The Christian Science Monitor published a report which said: "despite headlines focusing on the priest paedophile problems in the Catholic Church, most American churches being hit with child abuse are Protestant, and most of the alleged abusers are not clergy or staff but church volunteers." The executive director of CMR states that alleged abusers were "nearly 70% among the predominantly Protestant group."
A recent report in The Telegraph stated: "Child abuse has gone on unchecked in the Church of England for decades among a cover up by bishops, secret papers have revealed." Dr Rowan Wiliams, who was at the meeting, has backed the need for a comprehensive review. One victim said: "The Church has persuaded people in the past that they don't have to take it further....There has been a long-standing tendency to just sweep things under the carpet and cover things up and just move priests on." DOES THIS NOT SOUND FAMILIAR?
Why, then, is the BBC not attacking Dr Williams with equal gusto, or even the Queen, as she is head of the Church of England and so she MUST have known what has been going on with every vicar in every parish in her Church, especially when it is centred in such a small island and is not a world-wide Church. Why is the BBC not demanding apologies and resignations from these two heads of the Church - especially when the abuse is clearly much more widespread in their Church.
And then there are the Methodists. Under 'Child sexual molestation by Methodist clergy' my computer listed hundreds of cases with details that have been through the courts.
Apparently, in the USA, figures reveal that about 80% of abuse cases are with males and the great majority are with males between the ages of 10 to 18 years which is not paedophilia but homosexuality. So much for the accusation that celibacy is at the root of the problem.
Let us root out these abusers in the Catholic Church by all means but we must not stand by and meekly accept the rampant bigotry that it exists solely in our Church. This is not trying to deflect the blame from where blame lies but is justifiably rejecting the vicious campaign that the media is throwing at us, and us alone.

Ronan said...

Via Mark Shea, the comments left on this article by one Gerard Nadal are the best I've seen in terms of putting this in perspective - hit ctrl-F and search for his name.

Unknown said...

Good article - Douthat is usually fair.

Very trenchant piece from George Weigel here:

English Pastor said...

I am pleased to see this more balanced article, but it is disturbing to read the comments attached to it which rather dismiss the balance and rertain the anti-Catholic feel of much reporting. I notice in particular that many of the negative comments have high recommendations. It is time the media caught up with abuse in all other institutions, and situate the abuse that occurred within the Catholic Church in a just context. At present, society seems to want to paint this is a specifically or at least predominantly Catholic problem, is is not only false but unjust.

Jack Point said...

Discreet Observer -
'not paedophilia but homosexuality'.

Oh dear.

Do you really think there can be a consensual caring sexual relationship between an adult male and a 10 year old boy?

I think not.

Discreet Observer said...

Jack Point:

I do not disagree with the point you have made. The point I was making, obviously not clearly, was that the media overwhelmingly reports all cases as paedophilia when most are not, in the proper understanding of the word. Paedophilia is usually recognised as an attraction to prepubescent children whereas the great majority of these cases are with older boys and young men up to the age of 18 which is clearly something different. In the end it makes no difference to the abused because it is all vile behaviour but the media, in order to put the worst possible light on the situation, uses the all-embracing term paedophilia because it suits their purpose.
Actually, the entire scenario is so horrific I cannot believe it has happened in the Church I love and is a subject being discussed openly on a Catholic blog.

gemoftheocean said...

Oh, sure, these instigators can make nice-nice after they threw the intial bomb, covering a story they'd covered around 15 years ago and making it seem "new" -- gee, just in time to throw mud and dirt at Eastertime. AS PLANNED. They knew EXACTLY what they are doing. And King Obaminator is eating it up chortling with Pinchy Sulzberger, Jr. Young Pinch was so stupid, even though,as Ms. Coulter says, no matter HOW many left wing Columbia profs. wake up every morning thinking up a new scheme to get their kook ideas into the NY Times, Sulzberger still couldn't get in. An ape must have been able to put up a better SAT score. Even Sulzberger's mistress, couldn't whisper enough sweet nothings in his ear to put brakes on to begin with. But then what does one expect of Kennedys today? It's all "payback" for the church not supported ObamaDeathCare.. two birds with one stone.

michael said...

Dear Fr Michael,
It is with both sorrow and saddest that (I did)read your blog about the poor turn out for your Holy Thursady Mass of the Lord's Supper OF! inspite of all your effords. However, It appears that now today Good Friday it has been removed, may I ask WHY?

A Happy and Blessed Easter to you!

God Bless,

(Jarra Lad)

Fr Michael Brown said...

Michael, that post did not say that there was a poor turnout for the Maundy Thursday OF Mass. In fact it was a rather good turnout. What was bothering me was the anticipated poor turnout for the EF Good Friday service today. Seems that having the EF is not really a very high priority for quite a number of those who claim it is. However in the clear light of morning it appeared to be not such a good post and I removed it. I may write something tomorrow about it all.

michael said...

Dear Fr,
Please accept my apology if I have got the facts wrong! However, I feel I most apologised also for my poor spelling mistakes in my last two comments:
1) wall should read well!
2) saddest should read saddness!
As you must gather by now that I am just a simple Jarra Lad non-academic also! Wherever we are this Easter let us ALL pray fervently for Our Holy Father Pope Benedict XV1 and Our Holy Mother the Church who are being attacked so viciously at present; maybe we are all now living out the true third secret of Fatima! A blessed, happy and holy Easter to You and your Congregation too!

God Bless,


(Jarra Lad)

Helen said...

You people better STOP molesting Children. It's wrong.

Just because your POPE says it's okay. Doesn't mean it's right.

I BEG you to STOP!!

Em said...

1. The pope does not say it is ok.

2. Other people should stop molesting and abusing children too - not just priests but fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, uncles, cousins, aunties, grandparents, nursery assistants, teachers, play group workers, au pairs, nannies.

michael said...

How right you are! God Bless Our Holy Father Pope Benedict XV1, also the nany, Many and MANY good and holy Priests and Religlous who are living out their vocation in these dark and sad times! God bless and strengthen all those good and loyal Catholic Laity too also, I applaud them ALL!
Laudate Jesu Christe, and stick with the Pope! A Happy and Blessed Easter to you ALL. Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

God Blees,


(Jarra Lad)