Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Psychologist Kathy Galleher on U.S. Bishops' Attack on Nuns: "Looks Like a Distraction"

At National Catholic Reporter, therapist Kathy Galleher draws on her experience with clients who are "stuck" in a blame-game that fails to see their own complicity in producing conditions that upend their lives.  She proposes that in attacking the Leadership Conference of Religious Women, the U.S. Catholic bishops have mounted a blame-game fight that, to her as a trained therapist, "looks like a distraction."

Galleher's argument:

The church hierarchy seems to be stuck and they are blaming and lashing out. They have started a fight with LCWR and the women religious. In the doctrinal assessment, they have accused the women of the church of betraying the core values of the church, of causing scandal and leading the faithful astray, and of not being sufficiently trustworthy to reform themselves. They have ordered the women to be closely supervised. These accusations seem more rightly to belong to the sexual abuse scandal rather than to the actions of LCWR. It was the bishops who, by protecting sexual abusers, betrayed core values of the church and caused scandal to the faithful. It is the institutional church that appears not to be able to reform itself and to be in need of outside supervision.

I think Galleher's exactly right, and I applaud her cogent and insightful analysis of the psychological dynamics undermining the U.S. bishops' misplaced, lamentable attack on American nuns

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