Mar 10, 2011

Same again, same again...

So there were 21 Catholic priests suspended by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia yesterday.  For being, ya know, kid touchers.

I wish I could say that I was surprised and outraged at the news.  But as it goes with the Catholic Church, I was merely mildly surprised.  Even "surprised" is a bit of a mis-used word there. I just don't know what else to say.  Just that news of these evil mother-fuckers, or new news of them, doesn't seem to raise my hackles the way that news of it used to.  If you know what I mean.

I would never EVER try to defend these men...did I mention that they were evil mother-fuckers?  But I have to wonder how so many kids could spend so much time with these men alone.  My family was and is an uber-Catholic family. My father sang in the church choir, and both he and my mother were Eucharistic Ministers.  They also taught Religious Education and were members of Marriage Encounter.  We had priests and bishops and all kinds of clergy over the house all the time.

But I don't ever recall a time that I was ever alone in a room with a priest.

Never.  EVER.  Maybe my folks knew, at some nuclear core, that being alone with an adult male at that age was wrong on some level.  I dunno.  But it seriously never EVER came up.  I don't know how it would.  MAYBE if I was going to be an altar boy or something.  But how many of those kids are out there?

I guess enough.  Because there is clearly a problem, and there are clearly enough kids out there who have been abused.

It just boggles my mind.  I don't really understand how it could happen or how the Catholic Church could have kept it hidden for so long.

In many ways, I'm still a little child.


Mrs. Hall said...

i just don't get it either. i mean, it makes sense in some ways. if you are a child predator, it makes sense to find a position of power and access to victims.


why is this still happening? not just one but 21???!!!

boogles the mind indeed

Slyde said...

the problem is that so few young people WANT to join the priesthood nowadays, that the sad truth is they will do all they can to keep whoever they can get.

the solution is to let priests marry, but ive been ranting that for years...

hello haha narf said...

celibacy for life is not natural. expecting grown men to not have sexual urges is ridiculous. the church should be encouraging adult relationships and severely punishing those who harm children. i mean, who better to give marriage counseling than someone who has been through it?

and while we are at it, the church should encourage women to be priests (who are less likely to be pedophiles anyhow). so there!

Mrs. Hall said...

yeah. see. i don't believe the solution to this problem is letting priest marry. if the pedophiles were interested in adult women then they wouldn't be sexually assaulting children

i see it more as means and opportunity. again, pedophiles choose a target rich environment.

so again, SCREENING ANYONE? bah.

hello haha narf said...

mrs. hall,

i think some of us are saying priests should be encouraged to marry (or be women!!) because it would bring more people to serve the church and as a result the church wouldn't be so desperate to hang on to any and all who chose the priesthood. we aren't saying that married people are not pedophiles.


Jimmy said...

Sadly it's not just just the catlicks that are kiddy fiddlers these days. Case in point is the latest cult of pederasts that has been discovered in Wales (UK).

If anyone truly deserved a painful death...

Water Logged Clergy said...

Has anyone considered that these young men were asking for it?

Verdant Earl said...

Holly - They do have some pretty intense screening. I don't know what it is, but it's obviously not enough.

Slyde - I don't know if letting priests marry is the solution. A pedo is a pedo is a pedo.

Becky - The Church REALLY needs to punish these fuckers. Their bait and switch tactics of moving them around is evil.

Jimmy - No, the Catholics don't own a monopoly. But they sure have the spotlight.

Doggie - And there it is...

sybil law said...

Ugh- it definitely burns me up, but you're right - it's not even surprising, anymore - which is WORSE, I think.

RW said...

There seems to have been a kind of Greco-Roman culture within the Catholic priesthood for some time, not just being manifest recently. I'm in my 50's and many of the victims through this history are men closer to my age first now coming forth - as well as the recent incidences, of course.

That said we're forgetting that there is, sadly, an historic context in this kind of male society that comes out of ancient Greece and Rome whereby men were "caretakers" of younger men and boys in a collegiate setting. And the practice is merely extended into the modern age. You could look this up.

But the thing is this collegiate caretaking thing was and is barbaric. It's not a justification TO do it, but a justification NOT to do it. Apparently, and I wish I could find this article, it had been an unspoken thing amongst men going for the priesthood (not sanctioned by the Church of course, but seemingly tacit) that they are all just doing what the ancients did. Anyway that was the start of it, I'm told, and it was a subtext since forever.

I think the Popes and Bishops and priests and monks of hundreds of years ago were more honest about it - they just kept their wives and/or girlfriends "on the side."

I think celibacy is ridiculous. But I'm not sure it's the cause of the pederasty any more than having this historic thing in the culture of the priesthood, spoken or unspoken. Maybe a bit of both? Or others as well? I remember years ago as a young man having a friend of mine who was considering the priesthood tell me that (sorry, it's just that we're on the subject) masturbation is still within the bounds of celibacy. If you're so horny that you're front end heavy and loaded, just whack it off and you're still in bounds.

I don't know if he was told that or thought of it himself. But it's obvious - being such a comment - that it's heavily thought of as part of the consideration.

I also now know a priest who makes sure there is always a parent with him whenever he does his rounds now, so as to not be accused wrongly in the future. It's sad and so very stupid to ask men to be this way when they always found a way around it anyhow.

Bruce Johnson said...

This outdated dogma of the Caltholic Church is just soooo ridiculous. Sex is a bodily function. Life has taught me too things. If women don't bare children, they get pretty funky around the ate of 35 to 40. I know I have worked with them. The same is true about Catholics Preists, no sex for 40 years is seriously going to mess up your body chemistry. Jesus Christ, let the poor guys will save a lot of innocent young boys.

Verdant Earl said...

Sybil - very sad.

RW - I wonder if the historic thing is something that is still going on. I'd find it hard to believe, but then again I find it difficult to fathom diddling a little kid.

Lotus - A bunch of you here seem to find a link between the celibacy vow and touching the kids. I'm not convinced that it's that simple.

sybil law said...

(I'm just now seeing RW's comment.)
I dated a guy whose uncle was a priest - and regularly lived with and took sabbatical to Ireland every year- his "friend", Bob. Very obvious that they were together. They were a total, blatant couple. It was shocking to me then (1995?), but it was definitely not a secret.