Thursday, March 10, 2011

Quote of the Day

. . . To be clear, the entire reputation of the entire American hierarchy, and that of the officials in the Vatican, is being weighed in the balance [by events in Philadelphia]. There is nothing that has been done or said by SNAP, or by victims’ attorney Jeff Anderson, or by any of the Church’s critics that comes even close to the damage to the Church’s reputation inflicted by Cardinal Justin Rigali.

All of the warnings from SNAP about the lack of independence by the independent review boards have been confirmed. The Vatican must remove Cardinal Rigali and remove him now.

On a New Orleans radio show the other day, Archbishop Gregory Aymond said, “What has happened in Philadelphia, quite frankly, is embarrassing to us.”

That is putting it mildly, although Aymond gets credit for breaking the unwritten rule that no bishop criticizes a situation in another diocese. What has happened in Philadelphia eats at the very heart of the credibility of the American bishops as a whole.

If they can’t get the clergy sex abuse mess right, after all their protestations that they had taken steps to deal with the problem, and all their claims that the Catholic Church was now ahead of the curve on the issue, that our policies were such that the Catholic Church was the safest place for a child to be, nothing else matters.

The New Evangelization? Forget about it. Pro-life activities? Not a chance. Advocacy for the poor? It rings hollow. If the leaders of the Church cannot be trusted to keep their most solemn pledge to protect children, they cannot be trusted at all. If they fail to see this, their moral sensibility is not merely skewed, it is dead. It is not only that they cannot be trusted, it is that they should not be trusted. . . .

– Michael Sean Winters
"The Crisis of Episcopal Governance in Philadelphia"
National Catholic Reporter
March 9, 2011

See also the previous PCV post:
The Scandal of Sexual Abuse

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