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BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)

GUEST,Peter Laban 23 Dec 10 - 05:40 AM
Joe Offer 23 Dec 10 - 05:49 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 23 Dec 10 - 06:24 AM
Smokey. 23 Dec 10 - 12:36 PM
Smokey. 23 Dec 10 - 01:08 PM
Joe Offer 23 Dec 10 - 05:38 PM
Ed T 23 Dec 10 - 06:16 PM
Smokey. 23 Dec 10 - 06:56 PM
Joe Offer 23 Dec 10 - 08:06 PM
Smokey. 24 Dec 10 - 05:44 PM
Joe Offer 24 Dec 10 - 05:53 PM
Smokey. 24 Dec 10 - 06:11 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 24 Dec 10 - 06:11 PM
Smokey. 24 Dec 10 - 06:23 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 25 Dec 10 - 07:19 AM
Ed T 25 Dec 10 - 07:33 AM
Jim Carroll 17 Jan 11 - 06:50 AM
mg 17 Jan 11 - 09:01 AM
GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser) 18 Jan 11 - 05:16 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 18 Jan 11 - 06:19 AM
Jim Carroll 18 Jan 11 - 12:27 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 18 Jan 11 - 01:18 PM
GUEST,mg 18 Jan 11 - 01:59 PM
GUEST,Peter Laban 18 Jan 11 - 02:11 PM
GUEST,mg 18 Jan 11 - 03:19 PM
GUEST,Peter Laban 18 Jan 11 - 04:43 PM
GUEST,mg 18 Jan 11 - 08:16 PM
GUEST,JB 19 Jan 11 - 10:36 AM
DMcG 19 Jan 11 - 11:11 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 19 Jan 11 - 12:26 PM
GUEST,mg 17 May 12 - 06:59 PM
ollaimh 18 May 12 - 12:53 PM
GUEST,mg 18 May 12 - 02:32 PM
Jim Carroll 19 May 12 - 05:19 AM
Joe Offer 19 May 12 - 09:12 AM
GUEST,mg 19 May 12 - 12:05 PM
Ed T 19 May 12 - 02:18 PM
Joe Offer 19 May 12 - 11:00 PM
GUEST,Allan Conn 20 May 12 - 01:21 AM
GUEST,mg 20 May 12 - 02:37 AM
Ed T 20 May 12 - 10:20 AM
Musket 20 May 12 - 12:06 PM
Penny S. 20 May 12 - 01:06 PM
Stringsinger 21 May 12 - 11:32 AM
mg 22 May 12 - 11:27 AM
Joe Offer 22 May 12 - 12:55 PM
MartinRyan 22 May 12 - 01:03 PM
GUEST,mg 22 May 12 - 03:07 PM
Joe Offer 22 May 12 - 04:14 PM
GUEST,mg 22 May 12 - 04:30 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 05:40 AM

Stop asking the question why the victims didn't report the abuse, as if they were at fault. It doesn't seem hard to grasp that rural and working class children and their parents didn't get their concerns considered credible, or considered at all. I am still not sure at all you fully grasp the might of the church in Ireland that lasted well into the nineties (and one can wonder to what extend it has gone away).


Why didn't people come forward? Because they were threatened with eternal damnation and suffering in the fires of hell? Because the guards wouldn't go against the church? Because the victims were ostracised when they tried to speak out?


I remember well the furore when Annie Murphy spoke publicly about her son, fathered by Bishop Eamonn Casey (and supported by church funds). 'That woman' had dared to speak out and ruin a good man. That was the atmosphere. As the song has it 'sure god love them, they're only human'. And that wasn't by far as difficult a matter as an abuse case would have been at the time (early nineties).


Other cases. Like the Brendan Smyth one? The industrial schools? Aren't the patterns of cover up and evasion we've seen there well enough established to warrant the questions asked about the complicity of Hierarchy, and asked again with regards to the Walsh case? These questions should be asked again and again, certainly as long as the Vatican considers it an insult when they are asked at all.

I believe and agree with you there was an element of inexperience, incomprehension and pure dumb inability to deal with these matters at the time. But only an element, and only up to a point. Cover up and damage limitation to the extend they occurred are unforgivable and deserves further scrutiny. And those responsible for the cover ups should be held accountable. First of all to do right by the victims to allow them justice and vindicate them for their suffering and secondly to avoid this shielding of crimes and protection of evil doers to re-occur.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 05:49 AM

Ah, Peter, it's not wise to stop asking questions. If you don't ask the questions, you don't learn the answers. I did not place any blame on anyone for not reporting the crimes - I just wanted to know why they were not reported, what conditions made it difficult for the crimes to be reported. You gave a pretty good answer, but I had to ask the question several times before I got an answer that began to satisfy me. And still, I think there's more of an answer to be had.
I am imagining that many a good parish priest did listen, and did try to do the right thing - only to have the matter hushed up at a higher level.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 06:24 AM

""How would YOU handle a child who came to you about a situation like this? How would YOU respond if you were accused of failing to handle the child's complaint effectively? Can you or I honestly say we would have done better?""


Here's the bottom line Joe, and you just gave the answer.

Yes, I can honestly say I would have done better,...much better!

I would have followed your advice, and handed the investigation of the complaint over to the authorities who have the requisite investigative skills.

I would have called the police!

I would not under any circumstances have placed the good name of my organisation above the welfare of a possibly abused child, and in this way I would have been preserving that good name by upholding its highest moral values.

You can't have it both ways Joe. These bishops knew of crimes committed by men placed in authority by themselves, and instead of instantly reporting said crimes and allowing the proper authorities to do their job, they elected to cover them up.

The proper focus of the Church is the care of mankind's souls. Other agencies exist to handle their bodies. How can the Church pretend to those highest moral values if its representatives become accessories to abuse, and are given a "get out of jail free" card which is not available to the rest of the community?

Don T.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 12:36 PM

These bishops knew of crimes committed by men placed in authority by themselves, and instead of instantly reporting said crimes and allowing the proper authorities to do their job, they elected to cover them up.

They were ordered to 'from above', and faced excommunication if they didn't. Not that that is really any excuse. The 1962 document I linked to above is proof of this, and of the church's complicity.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 01:08 PM

You can assume that all of these church officials are bad, bad people and they need to be punished to scare people into not doing this in the future

No-one assumes that, Joe. The guilty need to be separated from the innocent, then the guilty need to be punished, not only to deter others, but also for the sake of the victims and to protect the public. This would do both the Church itself and its more innocent members a big favour in terms of credibility. Justice must be seen to be done, and if the Church has any sense or conscience, it should be seen to do everything possible to support that.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 05:38 PM

Smokey, I can't find the 1962 document you speak of. I searched this page for 1962, and didn't find the reference. Can you lead me to it?

And still, I insist, the story hasn't been told in a way that makes sense to me. I live near Auburn, California, about 50 miles northeast of where I used to live in Sacramento. Auburn is the site of the motherhouse of a province of the Sisters of Mercy. The sisters came here from Ireland 150 years ago, mostly to serve Irish Catholics who had come to the Sacramento area during the Gold Rush. A steady flow of young Irish women came to the Auburn convent until the mid-1970s, and the convent also recruited a reasonable percentage of American young women. The Irish women came in their late teens, with the understanding that they would never go home again. In the 1970's, Irish priests in Sacramento collected money so that the Irish nuns could visit their families in Ireland occasionally. I'm an associate member of the Sisters of Mercy, and I have come to know a number of these Irish-born nuns quite well. I used to think of them as sweet little old ladies, but I've found that a number of them are brilliant women, full of passion and courage and wisdom. One of these Mercy nuns was recently excommunicated by the Bishop of Tucson for authorizing an abortion for a woman who was in danger of death. As one might suspect, the nuns don't have much good to say about the bishop.

But I've asked a number of these nuns what it was like to grow up Catholic in Ireland, and it was a good experience for all of the women I asked.

When I moved to Sacramento in 1980, I was amazed to find that almost all of the priests in the Sacramento Diocese had been born in Ireland - the "FBI" is what they were called (Foreign-Born Irish). In time, I grew to like these Irish priests, because most of them are pretty good people. Many of them tend toward alcoholism, and they can tend to be short-tempered; but most of them are good-hearted and generous to a fault. Again, I've asked many of them what it was like to grow up Catholic in Ireland, and it was a good experience for every one of them. One of them, who grew up in a poor family in a rural area not far from Limerick, told me, "That Frank McCourt had a reputation as a whiner" (McCourt wrote Angela's Ashes, about growing up in Limerick. McCourt's brothers did not describe their youth in such depressing terms).

I may well know more Irish-born priests and nuns, than many people who are living in Ireland know. And while I have a very good impression of most of them, I also must say that a number of the worst child-molesting priests in the U.S. were born in Ireland. One of the most notorious US child molesters was Oliver Francis O'Grady, an Irish-born priest of the diocese of Stockton, California. http://bishop-accountability.org summarizes his history:
    Convicted 1993. 14-yr sentence. Served 7 yrs; deported to Ireland. $7M settlement. as well as other settlements. Molested as many as 25 boys and girls. Laicized. Documentary released 2006. Disappeared from Ireland 10/06; Suit filed 12/06 includes Irish Archdiocese Settled 12/06 for $3M. New suit 12/07 by woman. Working in Netherlands but returned to Ireland per 4/10 article. Diocese pd $2M 6/10 to 2. New suit 10/10. Arrested for child porn in Ireland 12/10.


I've found one book that gives an excellent insight into the child molestation problem in the Catholic Church in the U.S. It's called Priestly Sins, a novel written by Fr. Andrew Greeley of Chicago. The main character is a young priest who learns that a fellow priest has been raping young boys. The whistleblower goes through hell in his quest to expose the crime, and wins out in the end.

I know a priest who was a whistleblower. He uncovered a pastor who was using parish funds to pay for a home for himself and a male lover; and two younger priests in the same parish were having an affair. He was away from the priesthood for ten years, because his bishop wouldn't give him an assignment. He appealed to the Vatican and won, and was assigned to a neighboring diocese, Sacramento. This priest is a brilliant and talented man and has a lot of people who think he's wonderful, but other people hate him. I think that often he's a pain in the ass, and I've noticed that whistleblowers are often a pain in the ass. I think it often takes that kind of personality to buck the system and speak out for what's right. I've often found that whistleblowers have tunnel vision, and have trouble seeing the full picture. I'd also say that whistleblowers can be deeply flawed personalities, and can often be problem employees themselves.

Women love this whistleblower priest that I know, and he loves women - a bit too much, for my liking. When he greets a woman he likes, he engages in what somebody told me was a "full-body kiss." I've sometimes said to myself, "It he feels my wife up like that again, I'm going to punch him out." But I don't, because he's twice my size and all muscle - and thankfully, he's no longer in this area.

And still I say, the story hasn't been told in a way that makes sense to me - especially the story of how this scandal has played out in Ireland. I don't deny any of it - the horror of the rape of children by dozens of priests, the beatings and other humiliations suffered by hundreds (maybe thousands) of children in state-owned schools run by nuns and brothers, the coverups by bishops and priests at the highest level of authority in the Catholic Church in Ireland and Rome. It's all true - I don't deny it.

On the other hand, I have Irish priests and nuns who have told me stories of the sweetness of growing up in Catholic families and Catholic parishes in Ireland, so I know it could not have been all bad. While there is much to be deplored, there is still a history of deep spirituality, boundless generosity, and stunning intellectual achievements in the Catholic Church in Ireland. How do we balance the bad with the good and come up with the truth?

So, as I say, the story is yet to be told. It won't be told by the newspapers or by television. It will take a far deeper study to come to the truth.

I'd recommend Greeley's Priestly Sins. It's a good start of telling the tale of the priest child molestation scandal in the U.S.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Ed T
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 06:16 PM

"You'd like the molesters:
Many of the offenders (child sex abusers) are described as "pillars of the community"; some won "citizen of the year" awards in their towns. While a socially awkward stranger-kidnapper occasionally makes big news, what's more typical are these men, many of whom are regular guests in the homes of families whose children they molested".

Most child molesters are likable


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 06:56 PM

It's here Joe. From my post of 21 Dec 10 - 02:40 PM. It's a scan of the original, as you'll see.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 08:06 PM

That's a real problem, Ed. I've interviewed a few child molesters after they've been released from prison and started a new life. They quickly re-establish themselves and, as you say, become pillars of the community. They are very charming and convincing. It's hard to disbelieve their sincerity. You'd never dream that they would ever molest children again.
But they do.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 05:44 PM

Any thoughts on 'Criminales Solicitaciones', Joe?

Merry Christmas to all, regardless of grumptious bantering.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 05:53 PM

Well, Smokey, the document is from 1962, and it sounds like 1962 - another world, another time. I'm surprised that they actually had a policy back then. I admit it was too much for me to read, so I just skimmed through it.

I thought the Child molesters are likeable article that EdT linked to, was very good.

Merry Christmas!

-Joe, more interested in music just now-
We're singing tonight, and there are a couple songs giving me trouble


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 06:11 PM

Think youself lucky; I have to wrap a tricycle.. The molesters will have to wait:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 06:11 PM

That's an eye opener Smokey.

It places the good of the Roman Catholic Church above secular law, and above the interests of the whole of humanity.

That, IMHO, should be tested in court, ....and soon!!

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Smokey.
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 06:23 PM

Exactly Don, and with great precision. I can't find any evidence yet that those instructions were ever rescinded. Also, the secrecy of it all speaks volumes.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 25 Dec 10 - 07:19 AM

""Also, the secrecy of it all speaks volumes.""

What bothers me is that this is an indication that the Church was aware of this problem 48 years ago, and was even then pursuing a deliberate policy of internal investigation and coverup.

I don't like to imagine the number of victims sworn to secrecy, on pain of excommunication, who have never come forward and whose abusers have avoided the proper consequences of their crimes.

This needs more than a few glib words of reassurance from one of those who knew what was happening and did nothing to prevent it.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Ed T
Date: 25 Dec 10 - 07:33 AM

A sad story:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/the-priest-who-abused-deaf-boys-for-24-years-1928743.html


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 17 Jan 11 - 06:50 AM

From this morning's Irish Times - is there any reason the church should ever be trusted again?
Jim Carroll

VATICAN EDICT IN 1997 REJECTED CALLS TO REPORT PRIESTS WHO ABUSED.
PATSY McGARRY
Religious Affairs Correspondent
A 1997 VATICAN directive rejected a recommendation by the Irish Catholic Church that priests who abused children should be reported to the civil authorities, it has emerged.
The disclosure is made in an RTE documentary to be broadcast tonight, which also reports that an Irish bishop described the Vatican directive as "a mandate ... to conceal the reported crimes of a priest".
The Would You Believe documentary, Unspeakable Crimes, is broadcast on RTE One television at 10.35pm.
In a January 1997 letter to each Irish bishop, marked "strictly confidential", the Vatican said it would support the appeal of any priest defrocked by the Irish church in connection with child sex abuse. It did so in a number of cases, leading to a threat of resigation by one Irish archbishop.
At a 1999 meeting in Rome the Irish hierarchy was reminded collectively by a top Vatican official that they were "bishops first, not policemen".
The programme claims the Vatican and Pope Benedict himself failed to apply the norms of canon law to the issue of child abuse, one of the pope's major criticisms of Ireland's bishops. The Vatican failed to do so where two US priests were concerned and the pope did so in 2005 where Fr Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, was concerned.
In his letter to the Catholics of Ireland last March, Pope Benedict said to his "brother bishops" that "you and your predecessors failed; at times grievously, to apply the long-established norms of canon law to the crime of child abuse".
The Vatican opposed a recommendation in the Irish Bishops' "Green Book" guidelines on child protection, published in January 1996, which said all allegations of clerical child sex abuse should be reported to the civil authorities.
The programme, by reporter Mick Peelo, also shows a "strictly confidential" letter sent to Irish bishops by the Vatican a year later, in January 1997, which expressed "serious reservations of a canonical and moral nature" about the mandatory reporting of such crimes to civil authorities.
An Irish bishop confirmed to the programme, on condition of anonymity, that he made a note at the time describing this letter as "a mandate to conceal the crimes of a priest".
The programme also reports that at a 1998 meeting with Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos, prefect of the Congregation for Clergy (1996 until 2006), then archbishop of Dublin Desmond Connell thumped a table in frustration as the cardinal insisted it was Vatican policy to defend the rights of an accused priest above all.
Last month, Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin said that, in the past "most of the Irish bishops felt that dealing with the Congregation for Clergy was disastrous".


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: mg
Date: 17 Jan 11 - 09:01 AM

Much as I liked the man, I hope this derails the canonization of Pope John Paul II. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 05:16 AM

Mg, yes, I agree.

Jim, I take your point but the interesting thing here seems to me that the Irish church seems to have been trying to move towards more accountability only to be prevented from doing so by the Vatican. That doesn't let the Irish church off the hook by any means but it suggests that in this particular instance perhaps they weren't the bad guys.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 06:19 AM

The Would you believe programme mentioned in the Irish Times article Jim posted above can be seen here for another twenty days. Highly recommended viewing for the insight it provides in the background of the cover-up of clerical child abuse.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 12:27 PM

Chris:
"the Irish church seems to have been trying to move towards more accountability"
I suggest that the 'move towards accountability" is more of a fight for survival than a change of heart.
The abuse disclosures haven't by any means run their course yet - Northern Ireland stands to be examined next, and one of these days the Magdalene girls will get a hearing (unless the church and government succeed in their efforts to wash their hands of them).
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 01:18 PM

Nah, they'll just die of old age


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 01:59 PM

Wasn't Sinead O'Connor a Magdelene survivor, or perhaps something similar. Anyway, she had personal experience with this sort of thing. And speaks out. And writes well-published open letters to the pope, plus is an ordained priest by supposedly a bishop with the ability to make her so, but I could be wrong. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 02:11 PM

Better leave that one out of it.

O Connor is none of those things. Her mother was 'a violent abuser' but it was a nun, who ran the   reform school SoC ended up in, that recognised an interest in music and got her guitar lessons.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 03:19 PM

What part is not true

http://ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2010/03/26/to-sinead-oconnor-pope-benedicts-apology-for-church-sex-abuse-rings-hollow/

From Anderson Cooper website...I presume he checks stuff..not sure.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 04:43 PM

O Connor said about her time in Reform School:

"While it was very traumatic, it was the best thing that ever happened to me actually,"

"They were good to me. They were nice people. The nun that ran the place was the person that bought me my first guitar."


Which makes the 'Magdalene survivor' sound utterly misplaced. She has no personal experience of clerical abuse as far as I can see. She is very vocal about it though.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 08:16 PM

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/25/AR2010032502363.html

Not sure what you are saying. I meant she had experience in a Magdalene laundry or something similar and it turns out it was a Magdalene laundry. There were nice nuns mixed in with mean nuns everywhere..I knew both, but I will say the ones I had in grade school were almost uniformly nice..could throw chalk with the best of them and teach 50 to maybe even 60 kids at a time..mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,JB
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 10:36 AM

Tried connecting to link provided by guest Peter Laban, but it doesn`t seem to work. The message reads:

"Not currently availabe for viewing as it has either expired, been removed or restricted to another territory".

Did anybody else have any luck in connecting up?

BTW have also tried You Tube.

Any tips appreciated.

Thanks

JB


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: DMcG
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 11:11 AM

There's a copy of the letter here; it may be in one of the links above, but I didn't see it.

Maybe it was clear to the bishops who received it, but it is pretty opaque to me. "For these reasons and because the abovementioned text is not an official document ... the procedures established by the Code of Canon Law must be meticulously followed under pain of invalidity of the acts involved if the priest so punished were to make hierarchical recourse against his Bishop" is hardly an example of clear English. It *seems* to be saying that the Bishop must follow Canon Law meticulously otherwise any punishments imposed the priests may be overturned *by the Church heirarchy*. That's not the same thing at all as whether the priest is punished via the State Law, or whether it permissible to report offences to them. Of course, following Canon Law would make it extremely difficult for the Bishop concerned to reveal anything given in the confidentiality of the rite of Penance, and the Law (in most cases) accepts that. But it is not a blanket ban on such reporting. Or so it seems to me. As I say, the author could have been much clearer about what the letter actually means. It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that it is deliberately obscure ...


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 12:26 PM

Guest JB,

The link is valid and live but apparently the programme is not available to all countries outside Ireland


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 17 May 12 - 06:59 PM

more going on today about this Monsignor Lynn, on trial in Pennsylvania I believe.
------------------------------------
thought it might be wise to offer you a summary of these difficulties," Monsignor John Graf wrote to Krol in 1987.

"I do not want to burden you, ... " Graf wrote two years later to Bevilacqua, who had succeeded Krol. He reminded the cardinal that one active priest was a diagnosed pedophile who'd been labeled "a powder keg" by a church therapist.

Lynn's list detailed whether the abuse occurred within the past five years - or if it was beyond the statute of limitations for the accusers to file civil suits.

Bevilacqua ordered a top aide to shred Lynn's 1994 list of 35 problem priests, although a copy surfaced at the archdiocese this year, days after Bevilacqua died.

Other documents recovered from locked safes at the archdiocese contain
---------------

Doesn't that make you furious? The Monsignor Graf does not want to burden the cardinal. Now, if you can not burden a cardinal about a child abuse situation, and one was called a "powder keg" by a therapist, what can you burden him or her about? What is the point of having these religious leeches? How dare they pass moral judgement on the rest of us, who are not burdened with canon law that allows us to wash our hands of the most horrible crimes...Again, I am sympathetic to the priests and bishops and cardinals if they are the abusers, but if they do not have those sick tendencies, they will have to answer to GOd of course, but they had better start answering to the rest of us. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: ollaimh
Date: 18 May 12 - 12:53 PM

you would have to catch a preist raping a child on mudcat to satisfy joe offer. however for those in the real world there was just a few days ago former bishop leahy from nova scotia defrocked for his child porn possession--just a couple of years ago, and his long history of rapes. all interfered with by the higher ups in the catholic church.

in addition there is cardinal bernard law who onastructed the investigations into child rape in boston and was charged with obstruction . he fled the jusridiction and lammed it to vatican city where he has politica asylum. if you want any further proof that the highest levels of the catholic church condone and protect their multiple child rapists there it is. if you obstruct dozens of investigations then you will get political asylum at the vatican. ghere are manu many many more.

i dom wich to pint oput the other major christian denominations have the same probl;ems. especially in regard to native children, in the canadian genocide(and the chair of the truth and reconcilliation commission--a suprem court judge--called it genocide) our lovong churches raped beat and killed thousands of native children. over the course of a hundred plus years half the children taken into the residential schools died there. form neglect of health care and nutrition mostly. the medical supivisor , dr brye , wrote a report calling the actions "criminal" back in 1097 and nothing was done, except to drive him from the cuvil service and then from the medicl profession. so they all have much blood on their hands. more than any other segment of society.
finally, joe offer you are a despicable coward! you watched children being beaten and did nothing? you despicable coward. several times in my life i saw violence against sdmaller and weaker people and went over and offered a real fight. i never had to land a blow. bullyies are not that brave. i had a dodge a couple , but again with cowardly bullyies that's nit hard. when i was young i worked with miners driller sand blasters. they were fucking tough as rocks guys. they cols hurt anyone. hey only did wityh other tough guys.its weak guys who beat children and small women and they back down quickly. once when a couple of us guys went into an bullyies house he did call the cops. i supose it was a home invasion but when the cops arived they had dealt with hin dozens of times and we all were clean of criminazl records. he stopped beating my friend however, and soon left.most of my confrontations were about small women. again i never had to actually land a blow i just had to show up and let it be known there was someone willing to go a few rounds. then a couple of times a drunk will swing but after a few misses those kind of drunk cowards get winded and i just pushed them over. now i'm sixty and would take a hardy young guy now--then i was under fifty(the last time). zs i said the really tough guys i knew never behaved like that.

what the goddamn hell is wrong with you joe, you just had to call the cops, yopu should have confronted the guy but you didn't even call the cops. that's despicable cowardly and repulsive. i see now why you defend nazis and class bigots among your folk cronies. you'd fit right in with the hierrarchy of the catholic church wringing their hads and signing with grief. when a lot of abuse ends immediately with direct cinfrontation


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 18 May 12 - 02:32 PM

THere is such psychopathology in these bishops and cardinals and undoubtedly the pope. People who do not have a dog in this hunt, either to protect the good parts of the church they respect, or who have an anti-Catholic bias in general, need to figure this out..or maybe they have and I have not found it. But what makes someone who puts him or herself as some moral leader not be able to deal with some of the most serious abuse of all..why do they protect it? We can go back to having Mass on the rocks or under the hedges..we don't need fancy churches..we need more priests undoubtedly, but they should be married, gay, women..everyone who is qualified and does not cause harm. There is nothing sacred about the male anatomy (any more than female)that needs to be the cornerstone of a religion...no offense gentlemen. We need to have psychobiologists weigh in here and we need to figure this out..not why people abuse but why others protect them, break the laws of the land and perpetuate this sickness. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 19 May 12 - 05:19 AM

A sad story from this morning's Irish Times
Jim Carroll

SPURNED PRIEST WHOSE TRUTH COULD HAVE CHANGED HISTORY
The Norbertines cast out Bruno Mulvihill as resolutely as they shielded Brendan Smyth – If Sean Brady, like Mulvihill, had taken moral responsibility, nobody would know who Brady is today.

In last week's Anglo-Celt report on past teachers of St Patrick's College in Cavan, the former priest, Sean Brady, received little attention. Some former students, however, recalled a contentious, dedicated teacher before he was laicised (and ostracised) in 1977, for challenging his bishop's authority over an affair now as forgotten as he is.
Little is known about his life today. Some claimed he survived by selling encyclopaedias, but all agreed his suicidal breach of discipline ended a career that once promised high office. One interviewee said he reminded him of the MUTV pundit Bertie Ahern, who likewise seemed destined for high office before destroying his career in 1986 -expelled from Fianna Fail for questioning his taoiseach about blank cheques.
The above paragraphs are what historians call counterfactuals: exploring alternative outcomes of past events. Today Sean Brady is a cardinal, and I hope he enjoys a long retirement when his superiors deem it expedient to remove him from his untenable position.
The Norbertines removed the title "Reverend" from Brendan Smyth's gravestone, but they should erect a memorial to the priest they ostracised with the same resoluteness as they shielded Smyth: Fr Bruno Mulvihill, who fought his superiors, here and abroad, to maintain the integrity of a once great order.
A devoted priest and brilliant scholar, Mulvihill should have soared in the ecclesiastic firmament. Instead, ostracised by his order, he wound up - like my factional Sean Brady - in London selling encyclopaedias to survive.
Norbertines were encouraged to write to Brendan Smyth in jail, but forbidden to contact Mulvihill who, his superiors-felt, had committed the greater sin. Child molester is a new term in our psyche.
We have many terms for what made Mulvihill more despised than Smyth within his order: grass, informer, whistleblower. As a 19-year-old novice in 1964, Mulvihill realised Smyth was abusing children. His superiors told him to stop imagining things. Repeatedly he confronted them with the reality of Smyth's abuse, becoming such a nuisance for telling in truth that by 1985 he was disciplined and eventually left with no option but to resign. He was an honest priest sacrificed to protect a monster and the order's reputation.
Mulvihill's fate awaited anyone who told the truth. As portrayed by Spencer Tracy in Boys Town, Ballymoe's Fr Flanagan was feted when he arrived home in 1946, famous for establishing an institution that treated destitute boys with dignity.
He returned to America reviled as a stool pigeon for making a speech exposing Irish industrial schools as "big factory-like places ... where little children become a great army of child slavery in workshops, making money for the institutions which give them a little food, a little clothing".
He unified Irish politics, with Fianna Fail's Gerry Boland and Fine Gael's James Dillon condemning his "offensive and intemperate language" as "a grave injustice ... to the decent, respectable, honest... Irish Christian Brothers."
The young Jesuit, Kenneth McCabe, got a truthful report about Irish industrial schools to Donough O'Malley in 1967. The minister was sufficiently shocked to establish a committee that abolished these lucrative sweatshops, but at the last minute McCabe was excluded from the committee. Tainted as a whistleblower, he resigned from the Jesuits and went to work as a priest with deprived London children.
I don't know how many priests were shunned for trying to do what people feel Cardinal Brady should have done in 1975, when, as a minion apparatchik, he was ordered to ask a traumatised child invasive questions and bind him to silence.
But if he had taken moral responsibility by contacting parents and authorities - and not placed blind trust in his untrustworthy line manager, Dr Francis McKiernan - he would never have been allowed hold any senior church position.
Today nobody would know who Brady is. He made the devil's bargain made by junior figures who realise that, only by not questioning their superiors' failings, will they reach positions of authority where they can effect change, even if compromised along the way.
Gary O'Toole, a swimmer of huge moral courage, did what Sean Brady didn't do: he went to parents of children trained by an abusing coach. Most parents listened politely, but confronted by the truth preferred to ignore it. It is easy to say that Sean Brady negated his moral duty in 1975 by not bypassing his superiors. Not everyone is cut out to be a Bruno Mulvihill and sacrifice everything for the truth.
I'd like to think I'd have Mulvihill's courage, but I can't say. Priests lead lonely, difficult lives. Maybe I'd have been a moral coward like the other Norbertines or hoped the matter was dealt with by someone else, like Sean Brady did. He needs to stand aside. But I cannot say what choice I'd have made between being a coward or a total outcast, because like most of us I've never had to make that stark choice.
Dermot Bolger.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 May 12 - 09:12 AM

ollaimh says: you would have to catch a preist raping a child on mudcat to satisfy joe offer.

I think those proven to have committed crimes should be punished. In situations where there is reasonable doubt, the persons should be removed from contact with children - but punishment should be given only if there is solid evidence. Also, it's up to the State to do the punishing, not the church. People scream because the Catholic Church doesn't usually defrock priests for child molestation. Well, defrocking isn't what's done in such cases. If a person commits murder, you don't take away his driver's licence and his high school diploma - those things remain, even though he has committed a horrible crime. "Defrocking" is done rarely, and generally for theological reasons and not for punishment.

The job of the church should be to remove the person from ministry if the accusations are reasonable, and at the very least to remove the person from contact with children until the accusations are resolved beyond a reasonable doubt. Whether the accusations are reasonable or not, all information should be turned over to civil authorities for criminal investigation and prosecution and punishment - and it's clear to me that church officials are criminally responsible for failing to do this on many occasions.

I don't think it's fair to paint the problem with such a wide brush, and to accuse all priests and bishops of misdeeds simply because they're priests. Where there's evidence, investigate and prosecute. If no crime can be proved but there is still reasonable cause for suspicion, then the person should be removed from contact with children.

...and that's what Joe Offer really thinks.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 19 May 12 - 12:05 PM

if it is up to the state to do the punishing, then material must be provided to them and not hidden in vaults with alarms etc. as in Pennsylvania. A rational honest normal pope needs to issue a fatwah clearly stating this out of both sides of his or her mouth. We need to admit that despite very good people and very good priests and nuns and most bishops and cardinals, there is something rotten in the administrative at least core. None of us should ever assist in enabling coverups and we should not make apologies for those who do. Get rid of the coveruppers and the problem is half solved. Prosecute them. We need to understand why they still do it and it can not be ..if they think rationally..that they are protecting the church. Every eye practically around the world is on them and the jig/gig is up. Catholics arise. Put a note in the collection plate along with your money..especially if you are in the jurisdiction of a coverupper. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Ed T
Date: 19 May 12 - 02:18 PM

""If a person commits murder, you don't take away his driver's licence and his high school diploma - those things remain, even though he has committed a horrible crime. "Defrocking" is done rarely, and generally for theological reasons and not for punishment.""

That's an apples and oranges argument, and a red herring indeed. Those in positions of authority, especially over children, should be held responsible and removed from those positions if found guilty of a crime. If a police chief, a police officer a teacher or a school principal commits a crime against a child, such as rape, they would be punished by the law and would likely loose their jobs. A neigbour of mine recently was stripped of his teaching license for slapping a mentally challenged child in class, after being found guilty in a legal proceeding of assault.

a
It seems that the RC Church is finally "geeting it" (especially in regards to this fellow, and it's about time, regardless of the likely reason why.



A recent case


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 May 12 - 11:00 PM

Well, Ed -
When priests are ordained, the statement is made: "You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchisedek." Ordinarily, ordination is removed only if there is some doctrinal impediment to the validity of the ordination. If an ordained priest is removed from ministry, he is no longer able to function as a priest (he no longer has "faculties"/license to function as a priest), even though his ordination is still considered valid. There is no question that a priest who molests children must be removed from ministry immediately and permanently.
Same goes for a Doctor of Medicine who abuses or molests patients - his/her license to practice medicine should be revoked immediately and permanently. But is it appropriate to revoke his/her doctorate? I think not.

Apples and oranges? I think not. I think the appropriate action is removal from ministry and referral to criminal prosecution by civil authorities, not "defrocking." The problem is, that many priest-molesters were NOT removed from ministry and were NOT referred to civil authorities.

There was a time when the Catholic Church thought it was its duty and responsibility to punish errant priests. We can see in this current scandal, that was a mistake. Far better for the church to take administrative action against such priests and remove them from ministry, and to assist civil authorities who should be the ones to handle the investigation and punishment of the crime.

And yes, I acknowledge that some priests convicted of crimes against children, have been "defrocked." There is a provision for "defrocking" priests who have been found guilty of notorious conduct. Still, I think that criminal investigation and punishment by civil authorities is far more appropriate - child molesters should be sent to prison, even if they're ordained. A priest-molester should be punished like any other child molester. In a way, "defrocking" could be seen as a way for the Catholic Church to disassociate itself from the molester, thereby denying that the church is partially responsible for the misconduct of its priests. Is that what you want? As long as an offending priest is removed from ministry and criminally prosecuted and punished "to the full extent of the law," what difference does it make whether or not he is "defrocked"?

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,Allan Conn
Date: 20 May 12 - 01:21 AM

"what difference does it make whether or not he is "defrocked"?"

It'd would show that the institution takes the matter seriously and totally condemns a person for what is a grievous crime against innocents. The priest for life thing is a surely a red herring? You admit yourself that priests are defrocked for other non-criminal reasons. I think many people would find the idea that holding a different opinion over some doctrine warrants defrocking whilst abusing children within your care doesn't quite bizarre!


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 20 May 12 - 02:37 AM

We have to really think about this...what are they protecting? It can not be at this point the reputation of the church..that is sullied for a good long time. Nor the physical assets..they are targeted. Is it, could it be, that they ars e protecting the very culture of that activity? I mean, something does not compute and something goes to the very top. Why was this pope elected? Why are dissenting priests thrown out on their ears and molesting ones kept around? It does not make sense. I do not know what will be left when the rot is excised and I don't know who I trust to excise it but it had better be done.   mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Ed T
Date: 20 May 12 - 10:20 AM

""As long as an offending priest is removed from ministry and criminally prosecuted and punished "to the full extent of the law," what difference does it make whether or not he is "defrocked"?""

You still don't get it Joe. I have come to the conclusion that maybe you never will and posters repeating the same - "the problem with the RC church's approach in addressing the sexual abuse priests stuff" - is no more than "blowing smoke" (no pun intended).

It indeed makes very much difference to many as to the credibility of the organization. In IMO, the RC church has an obligation, beyond civil matters, to right a wrong committed "on it's watch and by its agents" to the innocent people wronged. Ask some of those vulnerable victims how they feel when abusing priests are allowed to remain in the priesthood by the organization they totally trusted. For many who trusted in this church, righting that wrong goes far beyond civil punishment.

""When priests are ordained, the statement is made: "You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchisedek'   ""

Well, I suspect that is the crux of the problem faced by the RC church. Until they shake itself from this archaic approache to the priesthood, historically common to monarchies and Kings, from their "holy orders." I suspect that this church will never be free of this philospophy that seems to be at the bottom of some of problems it faces now.

One thing I give you Joe, you always have an answer, whether it involves ignoring inconvenient aspects of the church that you don't like, or strongly adhering to other aspects that don't seem to make much sense to many here. It is an approach that seems very inconsistant to me. Personally, I would find the it very troublsome to maintain.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Musket
Date: 20 May 12 - 12:06 PM

Of course, if they allowed women priests, would the incidence of child rape be similar?

Who knows..

There is a serious side to that flippant observation though. If religious organisations point to work in the community as a sign of their relevance, then putting men AND women in such positions of trust can only serve to lower the risk of such abuse.

But buggering men are, in the eyes of God, of a higher order than trustworthy women. Bit of a bugger for the many many trustworthy men then.

If a priest means being someone in a position of trust and they abuse that trust, then they are no longer priests. Melchisedek is irrelevant. If you cannot be trusted to do the work, you are not the worker. Regarding UK abuse, as opposed to Irish, if it were any charity other than a church, they would have their charitable status removed unless and until they can prove they have removed such people from their ranks.

Sadly, our government are spineless, as the many people who make excuses for such criminals also get a vote, and as we have found, the Catholic church are not beyond asking children to sign petitions to change government policy when it interferes with convenient bigotry.

Despite the strong links historically in Ireland between priests and politicians, not to mention the law.. Ireland is beginning to get it, and the bubble is beginning to burst. it is a long way from freedom from repression and influence of disgusting old men, but it does take time for superstition to lower enough to ask yourself why you trusted them in the first place.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Penny S.
Date: 20 May 12 - 01:06 PM

I wonder if something could be made of the order of annulment about being ordained to the order of Melchisadek. A marriage can be annulled, can it not, if it can be shown that at the time of the wedding, there was some fault in the process, if one of the participants did not fully understand, or commit themself or intend to commit themself to the sacrament?

Surely, if a man, after ordination, then goes on to behave in the manner of the abusing priests, he has not fully grasped or committed himself to what that ordination meant. Surely he has, at a very deep level, not become a priest.

(As an aside, I've just read one of Andrew Greeley's novels, which did mention this issue in passing, while making some interesting comments about what priesthood entails, and I am wondering just how he manages to be kept persona grata in his Church. His Catholic Church is so much more attractive than the one we are discussing.)

Penny


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Stringsinger
Date: 21 May 12 - 11:32 AM

Joe, one way to solve this problem is for the Church to have more transparency and less
hiding. As a Catholic, I know you personally, don't support child molestation but you have to admit that the senior officials in t,he Church have been less candid in investigating or coming forth on this issue. Sweeping this problem under the rug will not solve it.

I don't believe in Catholicism but I won't paint all Catholics with the same brush. I'm sure that many are appalled at this behavior. This is a dysfunctional aberration that could be curtailed if there was more honesty about it in the hierarchy of the RC.


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: mg
Date: 22 May 12 - 11:27 AM

I have put a name to it and googled it and I think others are thinking these same thoughts..religious narcissism. It is a term I came up with for my mother who could pass for the most saintly person ever but was a monster at home. They think they are above the law, the ten commandments, that whatever they do is right because they do it, that everyone else is wrong and deserves eternal punishment, and they will take whatever is unhealthy about a religion, enforce it on others, and cling to it for dear life. Read harpy mom on google, read up on religious narcissism and see if it applies. We need to label good and bad correcdtly, and not how it suits narcissistic personalities...mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 May 12 - 12:55 PM

You're right, Frank. There hasn't been adequate transparency on the part of Catholic bishops. I have read everything that I could find about this child molestation travesty. I've picked up a lot of information, but there is one piece of the puzzle that is missing - why was there such a widespread coverup? I've seen apologies, I've seen extensive (and pretty good) plans for preventing the chance of this happening again, I've seen detailed descriptions of offense after offense.

But I have yet to see one bishop speak up and explain why priests were simply transferred instead of being suspended from the priesthood and referred to the police for prosecution.

As the risk of incurring the wrath of some here, let me say it seems to me that compensation has been excessive - the going rate of compensation is over $1 million, and that has forced several dioceses into bankruptcy - even some where there were no coverups. I suppose that in speaking to the press with honesty, a bishop (even one with the best of intentions) could expose himself to more financial loss and even possible criminal prosecution. So, I suppose, survival trumps the need for honesty.

That may be an insight into our society. Maybe people can't afford to be honest any more, because the consequences of honesty can be devastating, far in excess of what the consequences should be. The trouble is, without transparency and honesty, the root problem of child molestation can continue.

Still, as a lifelong active Catholic, I think I should have a right to know why this all happened, and what has been said by the bishops doesn't satisfy me.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: MartinRyan
Date: 22 May 12 - 01:03 PM

Come on, Joe - it was done "to protect the Church from scandal". All it did, of course, was store up the "scandal" for generations and magnify its ultimate impact.

What depresses me most about Cardinal Brady is that I am quite sure he KNEW that this was the function of the enquiries in which he took part as a young canon lawyer - he was essentially in training. His apparent continuing self-deception is an indication of how well he was trained, I'm afraid.

Regards


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 22 May 12 - 03:07 PM

I think I have cracked the code on this. Please everyone with a sociobiological background (hopefully there are some..I studied it in graduate school but am no expert)...read up on narcissistic behavior and see how it applies to the whole institution...they can not at this point think they can get away with it..if they are normal..but Cardinal Brady and others still think they can...mg


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 May 12 - 04:14 PM

I dunno, Martin. "To protect the Church from scandal" just isn't an answer that makes sense to me. I want to hear a couple of bishops tell their story with blunt honesty - and I haven't heard that yet.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: And yet more abusing priests (Ireland)
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 22 May 12 - 04:30 PM

It does not make sense at this point. Unless they are trying to protect themselves somehow. Some bishops and cardinals and popes must have the pathology we are talking about. BUt we were always told to stand up and be counted and how few are....we have to look on it as institutional pathology and go from there. Twisted monstrous thinking. Cut out the cancer and see what we are left with. mg


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