It has been nine years since the Archdiocese of Boston clergy sexual scandal hit the consciousness of the world. That wickedness reveled was the spark that set fire to the entire world of Roman Catholicism…nine years. In the interim the US bishops have met and allegedly tried to cover their own butts in the future by implementing a child protection protocol. All of this while fiercely fighting to hold on to assets and blaming everyone else for this insidious scandal.
And then we have Kansas City and Bishop Finn who has been indicted for failure to report suspected child abuse. Bishop Finn acknowledged that he knew of child pornography photographs last December on Rev. Shawn Ratigan’s computer but did not turn them over to the police until May. During that time the priest is said to have continued to attend church events with children, and took lewd photographs of another young girl. So much for child protection, at least in Kansas City.
Are these bishops and other clergy in the hierarchy delusional? It is not the 30’s or 40’s or 50’s when the public perception of the Church was paramount and law enforcement and other agencies were willing to look the other way to protect the reputations of clergy. (For the record that too was a bad time.)
I keep telling the people who are coming to mass on Sunday that it is for God and for God alone that we worship. (Of course this seems like I’m preaching to the choir.) Maybe they will take the message back to the people they know that have left the Church. A priest, bishop or deacon can be a total pig, (my apologies to the farm animals), but that does not affect the truth of God. God’s truth never changes even if God’s instruments are pigs. God’s truth NEVER changes.
The history of the Catholic Church is pocked with scandal, schism and bad behavior. That is because man is sinful not because God’s truth changed. Doing nothing, ignoring the scandal publicly, living in the fantasy that all is well on the western front is not going to make this go away no matter how hard clergy wish that to be true.