Two different and opposing ideas are doing combat in my mind at this time rendering me near useless and fast approaching the wrong side of sanity. What is it that bishops do, besides riding the Confirmation circuit I mean? Shepherding the flock, that would be the faithful, in their own dioceses. That cannot be easy when there are so many many people who say dumb things like; I love/believe the Catholic Church but they need to change (add your issue here). Then they proceed to eviscerate the core beliefs of the Church rendering it Protestant or even non-christian. It cannot be easy dealing with that all of the time.
The other thought doing battle in my brain is; As bishops you are not shepherding, you are not correcting error within the flock, (clergy and laity), you are not correcting mortal sin or even calling it what it is…you are all coming across as spineless.
Of course that isn’t even addressing business and/or money issues within a diocese.
Looking at a myriad of issues like abortion, euthanasia, divorce or contraception we get reactions from the bishops that span absolute silence to parroting new age, new wave rubbish as, ‘decide based on your own conscience’. (Hello, mortal sin.) There are a few brave exceptions.
Then we have the issue of clergy sexual abuse. First there was denial that any impropriety, (read molestation), happened because no priest would ever do that. Of course we found out that a deliberate lie was told because the bishops knew about a myriad of accusations made against molester priests. (…and the shepherding was where…?)
When those lies were not enough to contain the mess that had been born of secrecy then a new strategy emerged from the slime and lies. It is universally known as the ‘blame game’. All that strategy accomplished was to drive a wedge between separate factions within the Church. The bishops still came off looking weak and dare I say clueless. Pope Benedict XVI, God bless him for his shepherding said that enough is enough and stop placing the blame outside of the Church. (…and the bishops’ shepherding was where…?)
Blessed silence for a while…
The new assault started attacking the amount of time that passed for the individual cases of molestation and the conclusion that people are only “in it” for the money. (Where is my money? I’d give it all to Grief to Grace anyway.) Yes, living the tragedy and horrific trauma of child molestation, especially at the hands of a priest, does have a predetermined monetary value. (Sarcasm.) More lies and blame the victim mentality ensued. (…and the shepherding was where…?)
O.K., I get it, money, being universally liked, money seem to be the important things to bishops in the running of their dioceses. (Where does that come from by the way?) Sooooo, we all need to fast and pray for bishops, that they they are freed by whatever force has an ungodly grip on them so that they can do the right thing in every incident.