Monday, January 07, 2008

Who are we praying for again?

Kudos to Big Heathen Mike for the catch.

Obviously, I'm not a fan of the Catholic Church. Part of the reason I'm not a fan, despite having been Catholic, is their laughable response to paedophilia accusations and molestation charges. However, in the absence of other evidence, I assumed that their quiet stance meant that they might have recognized the severity of the problem and were maybe trying to implement safeguards. As with other Catholic issues, I was sorely disappointed.

For, you see, the Catholic powers that be have come up with a new plan.

Pope Benedict XVI has instructed Roman Catholics to pray “in perpetuity” to
cleanse the Church of paedophile clergy. All dioceses, parishes, monasteries,
convents and seminaries will be expected to organise continuous daily prayers to
express penitence and to purify the clergy.

Yeah. That'll work. NOT!!!!
I would be a bit more tolerant had the Pope instructed RCs to pray for the people who'd been molested or develop some sort of reporting system that actually did something. Pope Benedict can't even claim, as some pontiffs might, that he isn't aware of the scope of the situation - since HE was the person in charge of gathering information on pedophile priests during John Paul's reign. And, let's just point out the obvious: If the supreme, earthly leader of your religion gives a mandate for all clergy and members to pray to rid the church of sexual crimes against children, then I'd think twice about dropping my child off for CCD at Father McTouchy-Feely's house.

Vatican officials said that every parish or institution should designate a
person or group each day to conduct continuous prayers for the Church to rid
itself of the scandal of sexual abuse by clergy. Alternatively, churches in the
same diocese could share the duty. Prayer would take place in one parish for 24
hours, then move to another.

How about designating an attorney for all of the children abused? How about designating someone to make sure that shit doesn't happen anymore? Prayers aren't going to help Little Billy when he's taken special lessons from Brother Chester the Molester. But, it is rather posh of them to concede that churches in the same parish can slack off and just appoint ONE person to do the praying. Wouldn't want to waste precious time and limited resources on redundancy...oh, wait. Never mind.

Vatican watchers said that there was no known precedent for global prayer on a
specific issue of this kind. There are about one billion Roman Catholics

Oh, I think there's plenty of precedent! Think of the prayers of the College of Cardinals and Bishops who have been praying for the last three centuries to avoid these accusations and dodge lawsuits.

The instruction was sent to bishops by Cardinal Cláudio Hummes of Brazil, head
of the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy. He told L’Osservatore Romano, the
Vatican newspaper, that he was acting in the Pope’s name. The Pope wanted
Catholics to pray for the “mercy of God for the victims of the grave situations
caused by the moral and sexual conduct of a very small part of the clergy”, he

WHAT. THE. HELL? I don't think it's the victims who need mercy from a deity who doesn't seem to give a shit about the atrocities that are committed under his authority. Call me crazy, but I think we should pray for stricter rules when it comes to leaving the kiddies with the priests. I think, if we're going to pray, we should pray for tougher punishments for pedophile priests. Most of all, I think we should stop praying and start holding the Catholic Church accountable. It's not the "small part of the clergy" that has me's the part in their pants.

Officials said that the prayers were in addition to support for legal action
against paedophile priests by their victims and a code adopted two years ago by
the Vatican to try to ensure that men “with deep-seated homosexual tendencies”
do not enter seminaries to train for the priesthood.

Is that the legal support wherein victims are given the run-around for ten years and then the Church takes money away from the little nuns living in a shack to fund the pittance of money awarded to the victims? And, call me crazy, but...wouldn't just allowing people to be what they are, homosexuals included, weed out the people who were joining the clergy because of their homosexuality - which, I'm quite sure, is a pretty small number anyway, SINCE HOMOSEXUALITY IS NOT A CRIMINAL ACT AND PAEDOPHILIA IS. Homosexuals don't get off on the power trip of making a twelve year old bend over and take it in the ass. Sorry to be graphic, but the level of stupid is just baffling.



John said...

Thank you for covering this story.

I was raised in the Parish that was featured on PBS's Frontline progam, "Hand of God", and I know several victims. I was being groomed for future use by that priest.

The Church has not done anything to really rectify what these priests have done.

I am beyond furious that the priest in my parish who knew what was going on, is now a bishop in good standing.

If a just God were to answer the Pope's prayers, I don't think the Pope would be pleased by God's answer.

Anonymous said...

"uncle" molests 12yo boy: Goes to prison several years, permanently listed as a sex offender.

"father" molests 12yo boy: Sent to third world country, criminal charges never happen.

fdqpink said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Berlzebub said...

Well, how else are they going to keep their followers from thinking?

Think about it. If they just implemented the safeguards, it wouldn't have as much of a PR effect as first having their followers pray and then the church implements the safeguards.
They may even already have the safeguards ready to put in place, but they want to wait until they can say that "Your prayers have been answered."

It's the same thought process as a certain commenter of yours. If you pray for it, and something happens, then it must have been an answer to the prayers. However, if it doesn't happen, it's (the) Gods(') will. So, to keep their deity from supporting peadophilia, they'll implement the safeguards afterward.

Of course, Poop Beinadick could actually think that prayers will do all the work, but that's a possibility that I fear too much to think about.

Berlzebub said...


"to keep their deity from supporting peadophilia" should read "to keep their deity from supporting paedophilia".

Natasha Yar-Routh said...

You know I would become a believer and convert to catholicism if god would get old testament on the people responsible for the crimes and their cover up. All boils and plagues of locusts but as I don't think there is much chance of fire and brimstone raining down on Vatican City any time soon I guess I'll just have to remain an atheist.

Mephitis said...

The RC church's conflation of gay men and paedophiles here is just mind-boggling.

Mephitis said...

Apart from all the other things that are mind-boggling about the whole thing.

Jim said...

Yeah, if you believe the OT you'd have thought that there'd be some serious smoting going on by now.

Anonymous said...

Berlzebub: Much easier to spell in American English.

Country Wife said...'s like that episode of SouthPark, isn't it? You know, the one titled "Red Hot Catholic Love"? yikes.

Karen said...

... but the level of stupid is just baffling.

The level of stupid is intentionally sought-after. It reeks of I-don't-wanna-think-about-this, of
equally-evil, of wishing-really-
hard-will-make-it-go-away. Close eyes really tight and WISH. Or pray, same difference.

Quite honestly, even with as big an ego as Benny the Hex (aka Joey the Ratz) has, if he thought clearly about the problem it would terrify him. The obvious solution is to not think clearly.

Nice and Blue said...

Indeed lets pray for pedophilia to be eliminated, that'll do it.

I find the entire situation of this mess a manifestation of the utter foolishness of Catholicism.

I agree with Jim that if God were around there would be some serious smoting happening by now.

Karen said...

Natasha Yar-Routh: ... but as I don't think there is much chance of fire and brimstone raining down on Vatican City any time soon ...

Probably not, but Italy is a fairly volcanically active place. It isn't unreasonable to think a pyroclastic flow (a high-temperature, hurricane-fast, ground-hugging flow of hot gas and ash from a volcano) might take out Vatican City someday. While "brimstone" is traditionally translated as "sulfur", I'm convinced the whole "fire and brimstone" scenario was a description of a pyroclastic flow. A few have been caught on film. They're terrifying. The few modern victims of such a flow usually need to be identified by dental records; the heat is intense enough to cook flesh beyond recognition.

Italy has vast deposits of a rock called "ignimbrite" that is composed of volcanic ash, so hot that it fused on contact with other ash.

It isn't likely to happen in our lifetime, and I hate to think of Romans outside Vatican City being attacked by a volcano... but as an ex-catholic, I like the idea.

Bad Karen. Serious lack of compassion. Yet, in the greater scheme of things...

Joe said...

I wonder why our government hasn't applied the RICO act to the Catholics yet? This just occured to me and I've not seen it mentioned anywhere else. Ideas?

Chakolate said...

The obvious answer is that there are so many more priests involved than are known that defrocking the pedophiles would leave the church nearly priestless.

I suspect the pedophilia going on is so pervasive that even allowing priests to marry wouldn't change the prevailing culture.

BrutalGourmet said...

I find it telling that he is not even calling for prayer to solve the problem, but to rid the church of scandal.

"Can't we just go back to where we did this and nobody talked about it?"