“Accept the things I cannot change.” in the Church


At my last reconciliation the priest gave me a penance of reciting 7 times the Serenity Prayer. Since I don’t really know it I looked it up on-line. “Accept the things I cannot change.” That is very difficult for me and for a lot of people. It seems that the hierarchy, priests and some people are so entrenched in covering up or denying the abuse issue in the Church that no none can change it. Billions of dollars used to settle cases of abuse have not changed the culture in the Church so what makes me think they will listed to a lone voice in the wilderness. (John the Baptist had his head cut off.)

I have experienced or witnessed many priests lie, some of them about criminal enterprises that do not involve abuse. That some priests lie and do it so easily is diabolical. “Accept the things I cannot change.” There are devils in the Church and I cannot change that. Someone sent me a copy of a talk that the exorcist, Father Ripperger gave. He did say in it, the Church, was in even in worse shape than we know. He also said not to get wrapped up in the bad we are seeing in the Church…“Accept the things I cannot change.”

I cannot change the consciousness of the bishops, I cannot change the consciousness of fellow priests, I cannot change the consciousness of the people inside or outside of the Church and I cannot change the fact that I was sexually abused. I must accept the fact that things are the way they are in the Church and that the evil is even deeper and more deeply rooted than I imagined.

On the first Grief to Grace retreat I went on I tried to conceal that I was a priest. It didn’t last long. Everyone there said that they tried to see their bishop and were rebuffed, Crying, I revealed that I was a priest and that unlike all of them I could at least get my foot in the door with the bishop’s office. Unfortunately that was all I could do, I could not make him take any action.

“Accept the things I cannot change.” It is all a lot to digest. The evil is too entrenched, I know that now. Everyone is responsible for the salvation of their own soul…and the Catholic Church which should be in the forefront of helping with the salvation of souls is not. That is a harsh reality, (I care about souls.), but I must, “Accept the things I cannot change.”

This whole blog seems to be a big downer but really it has been freeing for me, at least for now. It also says in the Serenity Prayer, “Accepting hardships as a pathway to peace.” I am not good at that either.

The whole Serenity Prayer on line is not the edited version of the prayer used in AA. Trust in God and surrender to His will. Easier said than done. And as Father Ripperger emphasizes, not God of my making. So let us all pray to know the real one true God and not the God of our making.

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Abortion and Church sexual abuse


In 1973. when I was nine, Roe v Wade was passed by the Supreme Court making abortion legal in some cases and up to a certain point, across the country. At that time there were a plethora of photographs of aborted fetuses. No one can claim ignorance as to what abortion really is. Fast forward to my seminary days at Seton Hall University, Immaculate Conception Seminary. There was a pro-life celebration and there were banners with photographs of aborted fetuses all over campus. To my utter amazement one of the seminarians who is now a priest voiced his disgust at such a crass display. WHAT? Luckily the moral theology teacher was present and offered the real life story of a young lady on campus who changed her mind about aborting her child after seeing those photographs Fast forward further. In an article about use of the abortion pill the story was told about woman in great pain and traumatized upon gazing on their dead baby. Again, WHAT? Abortion is often called murder because it is. The photographs prove it.

There are some people who regard those who have been abused by priests as being aborted too. The less extreme settle on the term soul murder. True there are some of us who have killed themselves because of the abuse suffered. Some have turned to self medication via drugs and/or alcohol. And there are some who try to stumble on in life. I myself never wanted to give up control by being drunk or high so the demons I battle are real and not those often found in an altered state.

Maybe that is what the bishops and priest who dismiss or misunderstand what our lives are like need to know. There are a plethora of demons we are battling that we never invited into our lives. I resist this temptation but there are times I just want to smack them for their self-righteous indignation. Here’s indignation for you. I WAS SEXUALLY MOLESTED.

Bishops are still covering for priests all around the world. Some bishops have admitted to being abusers themselves. How many are out there for every McCarrick that is caught? Where is your indignation now?

Since I am getting angry I am going to stop.

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Wrong


What is wrong with people? Why would you offer to perform oral sex on a person that you just met, someone that you don’t even know? Are you that in need of money that you are willing to debase yourself. (I’m assuming that he would have wanted some kind of monetary compensation.) Did I mention that I’m poor? I thought maybe he had been in prison and that’s the way things work there. Regardless, it was at the very least inappropriate.

That’s what it seems the world has come too at least when dealing with priests. How many people would have jumped at that offer? How many priests would have? Isn’t that a sad commentary on society and on the priesthood that someone would even say that out loud to a priest. Is it because of the long history of sexual abuse? And all priests getting painted with that broad brush of being sexually active is unwelcome and untrue.

When making the promise at Deaconate Ordination to forgo marriage and knowing the Church’s teaching on sexual expression outside of a sacramental marriage why and how could a priest acquiesce to such a proposition? Prayer, fasting, spiritual reading are supposed to be what it is we are about. We are in the world not of the world. Carnal desires and worldly wants are things we need to constantly battle. The more that is given to you, like ordination, the more that is expected from you. Falling is not an option, fighting the enemy is necessary. It’s not easy but it is easier when living the life a priest promises to live.

That was the important part of my last blog. Some people have chosen to focus on the salatious aspects of my the blog and got so wrapped up in the trees that they missed the forest. And the ignoring of the meat of the blog seems to have been mostly done by clergy.

What year is it now? Here is a headline taken from a news website today, October 16, 2022; Chicago priest Father Michael Pfleger facing new sexual abuse allegations, that is what should be the biggest concern in the Catholic Church. New allegations means there are other older allegations. It doesn’t seem like it’s ever going to end. If a priest is proven innocent of abuse charges I support him. I know how bad it is being the abused living with it is a nightmare being falsely accused must be a nightmare too. Not being believed and listened too is isolating and is frustrating.

I remember a time not very long ago when the word ‘transparency’ was all the rage in the Church. Too bad it meant almost nothing. The word transparency has been replaced by two words, dialogue and accompaniment. Well here is the dialogue; ‘God is right and you are wrong.’ , and, ‘unless lives change and conform to scripture and tradition then the accompaniment will be to hell.’ It is true that God will take us where we are but does not want us to stay there. God want’s us to grow in holiness as we travel the spiritual road to him not to grow in sin. Again it is about the salvation of souls and the people who should care don’t seem too.

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Priest’s and propositions


I have good news to report, (in a twisted way). I was asked by a young man, well younger than me, who I did not know if I wanted a . I said no. Believe it or not I was not overwhelmingly triggered. I was triggered but it was less. I guess the passage of 40some years and incredible amounts of therapy has helped me. The same thing happened at my last parish. the difference is that it was a woman, I knew her and that she was a tad mentally ill, we were having a discussion and she blurted out that she, I ignored her and I felt nothing.

Now I must get out there in the universe…that I have been cursed, or blessed, with sooooo much sex-appeal that it just oozes out of every pour of my body all of the time. Add to that add my absolutely devastating handsomeness and you have a recipe for constant sexual harassment. Of course I jest. I’m old and cranky. My goal in life is to become a saint of course but also a curmudgeon, I think they are compatible.

Now my pastor said that in all his years as a priest he has never been propositioned. What was I suppose to say? How was I supposed to feel at that comment? I take it now as not being believed. That is unfair to him because maybe that is not what he meant at all. But because of my damage and because of my past that is where I go first.

What is wrong with people? Why would you offer to perform oral sex on a person that you just met, someone that you don’t even know? Are you that in need of money that you are willing to debase yourself. (I’m assuming that he would have wanted some kind of monetary compensation.) Did I mention that I’m poor? I thought maybe he had been in prison and that’s the way things work there. Regardless, it was at the very least inappropriate.

That’s what it seems the world has come too at least when dealing with priests. How many people would have jumped at that offer? How many priests would have? Isn’t that a sad commentary on society and on the priesthood that someone would even say that out loud to a priest. Is it because of the long history of sexual abuse? And all priests getting painted with that broad brush of being sexually active is unwelcome and untrue.

When making the promise at Deaconate Ordination to forgo marriage and knowing the Church’s teaching on sexual expression outside of a sacramental marriage why and how could a priest acquiesce to such a proposition? Prayer, fasting, spiritual reading are supposed to be what it is we are about. We are in the world not of the world. Carnal desires and worldly wants are things we need to constantly battle. The more that is given to you, like ordination, the more that is expected from you. Falling is not an option, fighting the enemy is necessary. It’s not easy but it is easier when living the life a priest promises to live.

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Church Swamp


The arrogance is disheartening. At first I could not believe how many people left the Church because of the sex scandal. So many of them were blaming God for the scandal. Then the realization that a majority of those who left were just looking for an excuse to leave. Sadly the reaction and lies of the clerics in charge, who did very little or nothing at all, exacerbated the great exodus. Some of those who left are never coming back. At the last judgement those do nothing clerics will have to give answer to God. Very few of them take that into consideration in their hardness of heart.

Bishops and their chancery staff do everything in their power to make things go away. They are the ones looking for excuses, like the laity, to do nothing or shift the blame on to the laity. They make things that are relatively easy to fix much more complicated than they need to be. Unfortunately there is hardness of heart there.

Here is some free advice; fix the damn problem, stop looking for excuses to prolong the issue, and STOP looking for excuses and justifications to try to justify your own hardness of heart. In other words DO YOUR DAMN JOB!

Unfortunately, everything is political. “If I run my diocese smoothly, in appearance at least, then maybe I will be promoted to cardinal and get a bigger archdiocese”, they think. Or for those working in the chancery who are not bishops but lusting to be bishops, lies and treachery are the norm. Doing nothing is safer than taking action that could derail their career. All that seems to matter is climbing that career ladder and everyone and everything else be damned. If they continue in their hardness of heart they will be the ones to be damned.

In the political system in the U.S.A we keep hearing the phrase Drain the Swamp. It is not easy. The Church also needs to drain the swamp which is apparently even more difficult.

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Church Militant


Church Militant has been criticized by many in the Church as being divisive. Teachings of Jesus Christ were also considered divisive. In fact they got him executed. Sticking up for the teaching of the Catholic Church is in no way divisive. The “enlightened” bishops, theologians, priests and others who are teaching things that are contrary to the Church are the divisive ones. The laity deserve truth not the lies that are trying to be passed off as truth.

You hear thing said ad nauseam that we need to dialogue. Okay…Jesus is right and you are wrong! There you are…dialogue. Another big catchphrase is accompaniment. Admittedly God takes us where we are but does not want us to stay there. If the false teachings that really have nothing to do with God are followed by the un-catechized, poorly catechized or those looking for an excuse for their sin the proponents of false theology are going to accompany people to hell. As Saint Paul says, “God never changes.” And God certainly does not contradict himself.

Understanding that truth unfortunately leads us to the realization that the Priest Sexual Abuse Scandal and the horrific cover up had absolutely nothing to do with God and His teaching. Yet people left the Catholic Church en mass blaming God. It is not God, it is perverted priests and twisted bishops. That should be obvious but when Church Militant brings it up or investigates it they are excoriated.

A priest I know told a friend of mine, “…not to roll on a friend.” It made my blood run cold. How many priests think that even immorality and crime of others should be protected? How many priests think blind obedience to a bishop is a virtue even when ordered by the bishop to do something immoral. I do not understand and will never understand.

God bless the Boston Globe for bringing this to light and God bless Church Militant for continuing to bring these things to us. God always wins. The light always dispels darkness…there is no darkness in God. Stick with God.

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For bishops, pastors, clergy and Church wotkers


Let me first admit I have absolutely no idea what a diocesan bishop does. I have stated that many times before. That said let me double down on my thoughts that bishops are not doing what it is that they need to do for the salvation of souls.

Let us circle back to the woman I know who has a love/hate, (my words), relationship with her current bishop. No matter what he believes about her, no matter what he has been told about the situation he has the obligation as her bishop to get to the truth of the situation. He took the job he needs to step up.The fact that this could be uncomfortable for him personally does not matter one iota. it has been personally uncomfortable for this woman.

It is this kind of spinelessness that has infiltrated the Church at every level imaginable. The fallout from the clergy sexual abuse scandal is still palatable. Because of that other forms of abuse have become commonly known and it is still churchcentric. The evil is perpetrated by clergy, yes, but also by lay staff who have created their own little fiefdom in the Church. Unfortunately that idea of their own little fiefdom pollutes the sitting bishop his ideas and his work. All of the clergy working for him have already carved out their fiefdom and do not want to relinquish power back to him. He needs to insist it come back to him. This is true on a parish level also. It is not an answer and really it is an abdication of power to claim that the abdication of power is due to needing to run the diocese or to run the parish. It is true that most people will grumble about the injustice of these situations and do nothing. Does it need reach critical mass, like the clergy sexual abuse crises did, before anything is corrected, before any justice is served. (The whole clergy sexual abuse crises is still a nightmare that lives.)

Good and holy people are being forgotten or worse sacrificed for convenience or being uncomfortable. Salvation of souls, salvation of souls, salvation of souls is paramount not casting souls out into the darkness where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth.

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The Church and its alternate reality


This will be a brief entry. In a recent correspondence with someone I care about she marveled at the fact she did not know I had a blog. The blog is primarily for my own edification. if someone gets something out of my blogging then that is just gravy.

A very long time ago, maybe it was in the blog, I did address the absolutely infuriating and saddening reality that Mr. & Mrs. Smith taking up room in the church pew do not in any way want to know or hear about any unchurchly behavior in the Church perpetrated by some member of the clergy or by any of those laypeople who work for/in Church. Grow up! Some people live in an alternate reality and like living in obliviousness or they have their heads hiding in the sand or firmly shoved deeply up their own behinds. Anything they need to do to cling onto a Church that doesn’t exist. Reality is sometimes too painful to address. Of course if it doesn’t get addressed it can never be fixed. Abuse and trauma is the same, it has to be addressed and embraced to engender healing. It is painful though, I’m not going to lie. However it is necessary.

That of course brings me back to my circumstance. What do you do, how do you act, when you are re- abused over and over again? Full and complete healing is very difficult to achieve. By abuse in this context I’m referring to the constant lies and slander and hostility I have had to endure from both clergy and non-clergy alike. Unfortunately, I am not unique.

As long as the men who run things continue to lie and deny, avoiding the truth, then the Church will NEVER be trustworthy for a lot of people.

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Bishops as white knights…please.


A moment of clarity happened for me. It doesn’t happen nearly enough but when it does I am overwhelmed. When people pleasers are abused and they are in recovery they desperately, painfully try to please those in authority over them even though they have deep trust issues.

I’m going to use a friend of mine, without her permission, as an example. Then of course I will use my own horrible, but getting better, life. Over and over again my friend, who is very orthodox, keeps desperately trying to befriend her bishop. one of the reasons for this is to reverse the wrong perception that her diocese has of her after she turned in a priest who mentally and spiritually abused her. Of course since the modus operandi of the Church is to lie, and of course that is what happened, she is screwed with the new bishop. She needs, or think she does, the chanceries approval for the start of a new ministry. I say do an end around, if God wants it it will happen. This woman would also like an apology for all the lies and slanders hurled at her by several priests. The likelihood of that happening are pretty slim.

She has engaged the new bishop on several fronts. They have been successful because they really have nothing to do with getting an apology from the diocese or a new ministry. When those topics are broached the bishop, like so many other bishops, is not only weak but an ass not caring one whit about the salvation of her soul. She cannot understand why he does not seem to care about his own soul or the souls of the other people involved let alone her’s. This is my cynicism talking but I say he is a lost cause. Pray for him and leave him to God.

My story is a little different since I am a priest and was sexually abused by a priest. Our last bishop was and still is an ass. I, being naive, wanted desperately to trust him. Although it is hard for those of us who have been abused to trust those in authority we want too. It is akin to believing in a white knight who is going to save us. I am just going to share one issue but the are legion. Somehow I thought that being an orthodox priest who believes in the truth and so speaks the truth I would score points. When you are dealing with a deceitful ass truth does not matter.

I gave a homily about life issues. A woman left. She later wrote me a letter and signed it but did not put down a return address. Not being an idiot I was able to find her address. I wrote her back. She was angry as a hornet that I got her address. It is my humble opinion since she does not believe in life issues she should leave the Church. A friend of mine pulled her up on Facebook to show me what she looked like. But I digress.

(I had to take a break.) The priest personnel director, also an ass, came to berate me. I took none of it. He held up a copy of the letter I sent and said its the most hateful thing he has ever read. I replied by saying, ‘Your’e such a liar.’ Needless to say he was not expecting that and had no idea what to say. The meeting degenerated into a shouting match. Then he left.

How did he get a copy of the letter I sent, you ask? I sent a copy to the bishop. Why? A desire for praise for my standing up for the truth. Instead of a white knight I got a dark lord. That deceitful bishop is gone. AMEN! That deceitful priest personnel director is also gone. Double AMEN!

As for the new bishop…he does not seem like a bad guy and my interaction with him has been positive. Time will tell. White knights are few and far between. And they do not seem to be in the ranks of the bishops.

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It all circles back to the bishops


I keep thinking about this and that leads me to praying about this. Since not only has there been sexual scandal within the Church and not teaching the tenants of the Roman Catholic faith for decades the Church and the world are in upheaval. What has happened? One of the definitions of weak is: liable to break or give way under pressure . It is very telling that give way under pressure is exactly what is happening in the Church and in the culture.

I think it is safe to say that the Church has given way under the pressure of the culture. Bishops have been weak. In turn, the members of the Church have become weak. The result has been that a lot of sin is now looked upon as acceptable. The Church has never taught that cohabitation is acceptable, the Church has never taught that sex before marriage or outside of marriage is acceptable, the Church has never taught that same sex relationships are acceptable or that receiving the Eucharist while in a state of mortal sin is okay. Also some of the more mundane, things like confession/reconciliation, going to mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation, stealing, (even little stuff). Of course this is not an exhaustive list.

Where have the bishops and priests been? Where have the good sisters been? Why is no one teaching these things? Today you hear a lot about Re-Evangelization except that there hasn’t been any real evangelization for the past 50 years since Vatican II. It is not Vatican II’s fault. It is my opinion that is why the state of the country and the culture itself is in total dysfunction and disarray. Even some Catholics buy into the insanity that has engulfed the culture.

Is it any wonder that bishops shuffled around abusive priests from parish to parish and sometimes to other dioceses.? Is it any wonder that the sin that is sexual abuse was whitewashed like a tomb filled with decay and corruption? And of course there is the issue of money to be considered. When did people and the salvation of souls stop mattering to the Church? When did the definition of loving someone become allowing them to do whatever they feel is right for them and disregard, “loving”, meaning caring for eternal souls and so pointing out erroneous thinking and error which is sin. There are a lot of people that are going to “ACCOMPANY” ,(a new catch word), others to hell.

If anyone wants to even talk about it they are considered hateful. And when did it become verboten to talk about politics when it opposes Roman Catholic beliefs and teachings. Weak bishops also try to silence any priest who dares to point out the dichotomy between religion and politics. Is it any wonder that the Church is a mess and it seems very few know the truth?

The truth is the truth is the truth even if a majority of people in the Church and in the world don’t want to embrace the truth.

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