I left the Catholic Church more than a decade ago. There were several reasons. For one, I simply grew weary of the chronically uninspired and poorly crafted sermons. I mean, it was god-awful boring. Thank you Episcopal Church for showing me the face of good sermons. (Paul man, you were great. Really.) Thank you Quakers for showing me that silence is often times better than any sermon at all.
But seriously, I left because I just got fed up, disgusted, outraged. When something hits outrage mode, that’s when I get up and get moving. All those hundreds of thousands (millions?) of abused, raped and tortured children. And then the infantile, self-serving, cowardly denials and cover-ups. And now Pennsylvania.
There’s an editorial in The Washington Post today by Megan Mcardle titled “The church has betrayed Christ.” I can’t tell you how many similarly titled pieces I’ve read over the past 10 years. Too many to count. It starts out like this…
Anyone who welcomes one little child like this in my name welcomes me,” said Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew. “But anyone who is the downfall of one of these little ones who have faith in me would be better drowned in the depths of the sea with a great millstone round his neck.”
In this latest chapter in the sadly continuing saga of the Church pedophile priests scandal, it turns out the extremely lame, heartless and tin eared Church hierarchy protected more than 300 accused predator priests who were alleged to have molested (nice word for rape) at least 1,000 children. The hierarchy covered up the sexual assaults (nice word for torture) and transferred the priests to new parishes.
Ah, that’s great, isn’t it. New parishes and fresh, unsuspecting victims. “They maintained a conspiracy of silence that allowed the abuse to go on, and on, and on, world without end.”
This latest revelation would be gruesome enough. Enough in my book to justify the banning of the Catholic Church as an institution even if it were an isolated case. But, as we all know by now, it’s NOT an isolated case, but rather part of a broader culture of appalling depravity and corruption… and it cannot be cured. The sickness is too great. It’s one of those things that should not be allowed to stand. I mean, how many more children are we willing to sacrifice to such a sick institution?
The institution is like a cancer. It should cease to exist.
What would Jesus of Nazareth think of such unpardonable wickedness. Yeah, I don’t think he would be in much of a pardoning mood. Not even Jesus could find it in his heart to forgive such evil. So downright evil. Yes, the “innocence of the children was stolen.” That’s horrid enough. But, more to the point, their lives have been utterly destroyed.
What penance would suffice for this kind mortal sin? How many Our Fathers and Hail Marys would suffice? The answer is none. They should all be locked up for life, including those who enabled the crimes. Oh, I’m pretty sure I’ve changed my mind about the death penalty now.
As Mcardle noted, “the church hierarchy in Pennsylvania and beyond has already denied Christ’s gospel three times:”
once when it sheltered predators in silence; once when it failed to remove everyone who was involved in covering up any crime; and again when two of the six dioceses involved tried to shut down the grand jury investigation that produced the report.”
Jeez, I’m so glad to be out of that madhouse, that den of thieves. I can’t tell you. It is amazing to me that Catholics can still go and sit in the pews on Sundays. The only logical reason to remain would be to try and change things from the inside. But I think it’s hopeless. The disease is too chronic, too deep and ingrained. I want nothing to do with it. My hands are nice and washed.