Monday, November 5, 2018

"A Broad, Deep, Clerical Conspiracy" and "Bishop Accountability Has Proved a Contradiction in Terms": More Commentary

And there's more: here's another diptych from recent commentary that I want to offer for your consideration — about a totally different topic than the one discussed in the diptych I just provided in my previous posting:

James J. Heaney, "Our Myth, Their Lie":

The structure [i.e., Roman Catholic clericalism] I have just described could hardly be better at catalyzing abuse. Look at Cardinals Egan and McCarrick. One was considered conservative, the other liberal, but both were notorious on abuse—and St. John Paul gave both the red hat. How about Cardinal Mahony and Cardinal Pell? Archbishops Finn, Wilson, and Bruskewitz? Or Cardinal Law, the great conservative prelate whose punishment was promotion? The same story unfolds today in Honduras, Chile, and Australia. Now we’ve learned from Pennsylvania that dozens of bishops, perhaps a cardinal, are implicated in a broad, deep, clerical conspiracy—a conspiracy that was well established years before my old scapegoats, Vatican II and the sexual revolution, were around to take the blame. This crisis was not caused by Marty Haugen tunes and the Land O’ Lakes statement. At the root of this crisis is structure—the particular way church governance has calcified in the past couple of centuries. That structure has to go.

Jenn Abelson, Thomas Farragher, Jeremy Roebuck, Julia Terruso and William Bender, "Catholic bishops promised reform in sex-abuse scandal. But they didn’t look at their own misdeeds": 

Bishop accountability has proved a contradiction in terms; resistance and indifference remain all too common. Even some of the bishops who wrote the 2002 reforms would themselves be accused of enabling or ignoring abuse. And the chairwoman of the new civilian board overseeing compliance with the reforms quickly despaired of the seriousness of the bishops' commitment, saying, in a 2004 letter not previously reported, that their pledge to change "appears to be nothing more than a common fraud." 
In short: The price of reform has been paid, visibly, by parish priests. Their bosses, however, have been largely spared.

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