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February 27, 2004

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Comments

Father Wilson

And these figures report only accusations against diocesan priests; we have yet to hear, if we ever will, from the religious communities.

Accrding to my 2002 National Catholic Directory, in that year there were 30,429 diocesan priests, 15,244 religious order priests in the USA.
FrW

Patrick Sweeney

Bishop Bruskewitz of Lincoln Nebraska also refused to cooperate with the submission of data to the study.

John M. Esparolini

Bishop Bruskewitz of Lincoln Nebraska also refused to cooperate with the submission of data to the study.

WHAT???? That's appalling! I thought he was one of the good guys --orthodox, faithful to the Magisterium, etc.

What reason(s) did he give for refusing to cooperate?

Grant Gallicho

There is no good reason not to cooperate with the study.

Christopher H.

Tragic. Let us all pray for repentance by all involved and that we will emerge from this scandal a holier church.

I would like to say that we DESERVED better from our priests and bishops. But I can only say that we EXPECTED better. And rightly so.

As a layperson, I'd just like to say further: before we proceed on a damning thread here, it is lent, we should be looking at ourselves first. Just remember that when you comment.

The clergy must do the same and we should demand that they do so, but not with malice.

David

"But in a statement explaining his reasons for not participating in the church abuse study, the bishop [Bruskewitz] said it was likely to be slanderous.
Also, he said, "the reporting of the study does not promise to place into context the number of priests who did not commit sexual abuse of minors."

http://deseretnews.com/dn/view/0,1249,590039882,00.html

Grant Gallicho

How strange. Simple math would tell him that.

David

Also from that article:

" The bishop contends the study will be flawed because it relies on self-reporting by dioceses. Bishop Bruskewitz also fears the report will include inconclusive and anonymous allegations, and he noted many of the accused are dead and cannot defend themselves, Huber said. The bishop blames divergence from Catholic moral teaching for the abuse crisis."

Rich Leonardi

From the article: "But the John Jay researchers differed, saying in an interview that they have no data on sexual orientation of the perpetrators and that the more likely explanation is that sexual abuse is a crime of opportunity and priests had more unfettered access to teenage boys than to teenage girls."
---------
That's just laughable. Every survey, including Laurie Goodstein's report in January '03, has indicated that somewhere north of 80% of these cases involve homosexual contact. Philip Jenkins estimates that there is a disproportionately high number of homosexuals in the priesthood when compared to the general population. An overwhelming amount of anecdotal evidence supports Jenkins' observation. Yet there are still those who won't see the proverbial elephant in the living room.

Peggy

I guess I will need to read the reports. I don't understand the context of the 4 percent over 52 years v. the comment about a peak of 10% of those ordained in 1970. Does the 4% mean that over the course of 52 years, only 4% of all men who have been priests (at some time during that period) were found to have committed some sexual abuse? Or does this mean that, 4% or more of priests who were ordained in a given year, would go on to sexually abuse a child? This is not clear at all from the NYT article.

--I suspect that the first thing I wrote is correct w/r/t the 4%, but they are also noting that the '70 ordained men were really bad compared to other years.
--I note that the review board has not shied away from the problem of the homosexual culture in the priesthood.
--Why do only half the accusations involve..oh, gee, I hate to type this...oral sex or some form of "penetration"? The article says, however, that few cases had to do w/inappropriate comments or touching. Was kissing big, then?
--I know that not all dioceses have presented data or participated, but lets assume that only 4% of all the men who have been priests at some time since 1952, that number does not signify a widespread epidemic of pedophilia in the priesthood. [I know I will catch heck for saying this, but 4% is statistically pretty darn small as far as the number of priests who have done such horrible things. I also know that it is possible that this # is understated since not all files were open to investigators. I'd think that victims would be encouraged to come forward, enabling the investigators to include their cases as well in their analyses.] Nonetheless, it is horrific that so few men, aided and abetted by irresponsible bishops, have wrought immeasurable harm and damage to so very many poor young children. I shudder to think of the damage if any significant percent of priests were doing such horrid things.
--I was also alarmed that so few of these accusations that seemed to have legs were turned over to police authorities to investigate. That would have put a stop to things right quick.
--It would probably be useful to look at certain eras or decades to enable us to examine whether there are statistical correlations w/causes and effects.

Rod Dreher

As a layperson, I'd just like to say further: before we proceed on a damning thread here, it is lent, we should be looking at ourselves first. Just remember that when you comment.

As a layperson who never forced a child to put his mouth on his penis, or compelled a child to submit to anal rape by me by telling the child that God will kill his parents if he doesn't do as I say and keep quiet about it, or covered up for anyone under my authority who did this sort of thing ... I reject this despicable, masochistic line of thinking. It is a strategy designed to protect the guilty, and it's sick, sick, sick.

Carrie

Fr. Wilson, I've downloaded some pages of the report from the John Jay College website. Section 2.3.6 offers two charts that include the religious priests. Section 6.1 also offers information on religious orders.

The most staggering figure is the $657 million spent to date. I'm sure that number will continue to rise.

Table 4.3.2 indicates there were 160 incidents involving children ages 1-5.

The study shows the majority of incidents took place in the 70s, but also makes note of the delay in reporting of abuse. The numbers for later years may still rise.

Incidents of priestly sexual contact with a person over age 18 are not included here. We still have only a partial picture of the extent of immorality in our dioceses.

The overwhelming majority of events involved a male. Maybe now Rod will get his "H" word?

1,483 incidents occurred in church. Do we assume that was in the sacristy or in the sanctuary? Was this just a matter of convenience or was some sort of ritual involved?

Tom Kelty

Do we have information on the heing and sheing that went on during these years? I bet that would bend the needle on the scales.

Jennifer

"...it is lent, we should be looking at ourselves first. Just remember that when you comment."

I think a couple other of the posts' comments threads on this site in the past few days could use that comment too.

Larry Tierney

Just a note on the money paid out. These figures do not incude ant of Boston's $85 million settlements.

This could hit $1 BILLION.

Christopher H.

Rod,

I have, heretofore, respected your opinion on this grave issue even while I disagreed with your approach.

But your comments above, especially your verbal pornography, are completely out of line and contrary to Christianity.

Every reasonable step should be taken to protect people from any form of abuse and to bring justice to the perpetrators! But your pride-filled rants are just that. Rants.

What line of thinking is it that you reject? That we should be looking inward during this solemn season of lent? Lord it's hard to be humble when you're perfect in every way, eh, Rod?

Gerard E.

If you read nothing else concerning this report, look at the graphics on Gerard Serafin's blog. Particularly the one listing the periods in which this activity took place. Greatest amount of activity.....well, surprise, surprise, the 1970s and 80s. Before Pope John Paul II began his project to reform the world's seminaries. Reported activities seem to have stopped abruptly around 1990. Thank you again, Dear Holy Father, for sparing innocent children. As for the U.S. bishops currently in authority....I will let the esteemed Mr. Dreher speak for me.

al

This is insane.

First of all Bruskewitz wouldn't participate in the Study cause he said it was a monumental distraction, as is zero tolerance.

His policy is that all sex abuse should be reported to the police first or while its being reported to the diocese.

Second, the primary revelation in this article is this: "Even the authors of the two reports do not agree on the meaning of the findings. The review board's report mentions that more than 80 percent of the abuse at issue was of a homosexual nature. The report theorizes that the problem reflects a cohort of gay priests, based on their figures that the percentage of male victims rose from 64 percent in the 1950's, to 76 percent in the 1960's and 86 percent in the 1980's.
. . . "However, we must call attention to the homosexual behavior that characterized the vast majority of the cases of abuse observed in recent decades."

This means that the 4% number and all the other outrageous figures are outrageous because they include the sodomite numbers.

The "pedophilia" problem is miniscule, and probably the bishops continuing representations on that are entirely accurate and defensible.

But because there are many who do not want to talk about the simple fact that homosexuals cannot be ordained, the whole priesthood, episcopacy and Vatican are tarred with the brush that they coddled Child Molesters, when the real coddling was of the Sodomites.

Christopher H.

I assume this is the point where others who agree with Rod will join in to rebuke me and call for the heads of the bishops and call me a hypocrit for correcting Rod while calling for inner reflection. I apologize up front for being party to steering this thread in that direction and my own insensitivity. (Jennifer makes a good point) I just wanted people to comment sensibly not with malice. I reiterate my position that the criminals ought to be held responsible and innocents protected. I just don't think they should be burned in effigy here.

Carrie

Larry, I added Boston's $85 million into the total.

Carrie

Gerard, you are assuming that all victims have come forward. The report assumes that they have not.

T. Marzen

It is interesting to note that 1970 was the peak year for offending ordinates. If priests were at minimum 26 years old when ordained (most were probably somewhat older), then the latest peak birth year for these priests was 1944, with most probably born earlier than this. They were the earliest Baby Boomers, if they were Boomers at all, and they were raised in the pre-Vatican II Church past high school years, Latin Mass and all, all the way through high school.

The report suggests that the rate of (pre-Boomer) child abuser rates were increasing up to 1970 and that they declined as the true Boomers (post-VII) guys began to enter the seminaries in higher numbers later. So what was going on in American families, culture, and the Church in those Good Old pre-Vatican II Days of the 30's, 40's, and 50's that might have had something to do with producing this phenomenon in priests raised during those years?

Patrick Rothwell

Obviously, the pre-Vatican II church wasn't all sweetness and light, but I think the Review Board Report was onto something when it suggested that the whirlwind nature of the changes that took place at the time of Vatican II itself had a lot to do with it. There was a complete breakdown of law and order in the seminaries which reflected the times in society and the Church.

On the other hand, I have heard many whispers that there was much sex abuse in some of the pre-Vatican II orphanages in the United States. There would probably be few records, few complaints, and few offenders alive and victims still alive or sentient enough to make credible claims to be able to verify this. Of course, so many orphanges, whether run by the Church or by someone else were hell-holes with sick and vindictive staff.

David Kubiak

The comment of T. Marzen is off target. I think it is likely that there has been for a long time a disproportionate number of homosexually inclined men in the priesthood. But the pre-Vatican II Church was better able to keep a lid on them, not perfectly able to be sure, but better able. The collapse of all the supporting structures of faith and morals in the late 60's and 70's allowed these people to succumb to temptation much more easily than they would have in 1955. It is still entirely appropriate to blame the post-Conciliar Church for our problem with degenerate clergy.

And the reason Bishop B. refused to cooperate is in my view that he has something like contempt for the rest of the American episcopate.

Patrick Rothwell

For what its worth, this was a very fine report. It goes to show that the presence of Bennett, Burke, and Panetta were not the disaster that certain fire-eating "defenders of the magisterium" made it out to be. I disagree with several statements and I thought that there were a couple of cheap shots directed at Cardinal Law and the Bishop of Lincoln in the footnotes, but on the whole, the recommendations were good, and they took on a number of controversial matters in a responsible manner.

The one thing that infuriated me, as a lawyer, was that some lawyers actually advised the diocese not to dismiss predators from the priesthood because the canonical proceedings involved might be subject to discovery with possibly damaging results in the litigation. It may very well be true that, in some instances, information would come to light that would be damaging to the diocese because, presumably, the diocese gave the priest one or more chances to straighten up and fly right. The lawyers (and the diocese as well perhaps) were only thinking of putting the specific piece of litigation behind them and forgot that, by not paying the piper now, that the exposure to liability would increase dramatically down the road if the priest were to ever offend again (not to mention the potential harm done to other people.)

Christopher H.

David:

That last comment is very interesting. I don't know anything about Bishop Bruskewitz. But if he is as good a Bishop as has been suggested on this site, and if he is taking better steps to deal with the problem or truly doesn't have much to reveal, then I could see that he might want to separate himself and his diocese from the report as a whole.

Mind you, I have no idea whether this is the case, just a speculation on what his motives COULD be. Anybody else have information on his diocese regarding this subject?

Gerard E.

Carrie- I don't, under any circumstances, assume that all victims have come forward. Silence is still a powerful weapon in the perps' favor. I only note that it appears that the vast majority of reported cases happened during The Crazy Years of U.S. Catholicism. Clearly these attacks were the worst aspects of those years.

Sulpicius Severus

T.Marzen: The worst offenders were formed in seminary when the modernist spirits of Vatican II held sway. If you're going to make this a pre- vs. post-VII thing, please inquire as to:

1. The pre- vs. post-VII screening of seminarians;
2. The pre- vs. post-VII curricula in the seminaries;
3. The pre- vs. post-VII culture of the seminaries;
4. Culpability of pre- vs. post-VII (Traditional vs. "reform-minded") bishops.

It's conceiveable (and probable) that young men pre-disposed to Holy Service were undone by post-VII seminary formation. Further conceivable that evil men were not screened out of post-VII seminary formation, and that post-VII seminary formation nurtured their evil dispositions into full-blown diabolism. And even further conceivable (and factually shown) that post-VII church allowed evil diabolism to flourish. Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us. UIOGD,

Cris Rapp

This is so disheartening I am sick to my stomach.

Jim

A summary of the report: garbage in, garbage out....as unreliable as any self-reported study.

A similar thought for the seminary formation teams: if you admit perverts to your programs, you will wind up ordaining a certain number of pervert-priests.

No surprises there.

Paul Pfaffenberger

"But the pre-Vatican II Church was better able to keep a lid on them"

The church did a much better job of keeping a lid on the victims and on the information, not so much on the deviancy of the priests. The abuse "crisis" is actually an "abuse era" that, by my experience, pre-dates VII and continues after seminary reform of the late 80's.

Sulpicius Severus

I should add to my above post that "pre- vs. post-VII" is somewhat misleading, as men, ideas, and ideologies contingous with, and responsible for, the VII Council were also men, ideas, and ideologies in the seminaries and chanceries at the time of the Council, leading into the "post-VII" years. So, T.Marzen, please examine pre- vs. VII+post-VII to get a complete picture. UIOGD,

Paul Pfaffenberger

The 20-30 year delay between abuse and reporting has more to do with the apparent increase of cases in the 70's than any societal factors, IMHO

al

Christopher,
I gave it above. Bruskewitz's already doing more than the rest of the country, and this study is fraught with errors.

Paul Scheibmeir

I usually differ with Rod on this issue, especially when it comes to examining the Vatican's culpability.

I do think Rod's sentiment is entirely valid and appropriate when we are discussing the issue within the context of the American Church.

I think Rod's outrage is entirely congruent with a "It's the culture mentality" when we are discussing a report about the American Catholic Church, especially when that report fails to acknowledge the role of the culture. These folks (episcopal report writers) still don't get it.

The seminaries of the 1970's, although a contributing factor, were not the root cause of priestly abuse; they were a symptom of a much greater issue. The seminaries of the 1970's reflect the condition of American Catholic Culture at large during that time period.

The Bishops and the rest of the Episcopacy are a part of our American Catholic Culture and as lay people, it is our duty to inform others that we still smell a rat.

The American Catholic Church does not need another coat of paint. The American Catholic Church needs foundation repair.

al

I am entirely indifferent to whether the criticism is leveled at the Bishops, the Vatican, the Clergy generally or the Culture.

The problem is those who would ordain homosexuals and foster their numbers in the priesthood. That is the whole problem, and nothing but that is the problem.

David

There are, however, other powerful institutions in our culture that have individuals in them that try their darndest to keep reports about what went wrong from ever seeing the light of day.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A10792-2004Feb26.html

T. Marzen

Sulpicius Severus:

You don't (or won't) get it. Of course, the open breakdown in seminary life (and cultural life as a whole) during the '70s and '80s brought a lot out into the open and/or contributed to progressive degeneracy.

But the point is that the leading priests/bishops involved were products of pre-VII culture and had been raised in pre-VII Church and attracted to a pre-VII priesthood. Neither pedophiles nor homosexuals usually decide that's what they are as adult priests, but were introduced to or conditioned in such a way as children and adolescents -- children and adolescents who lived and were trained in a pre-VII Catholic milieu. So, what was going on in that milieu, which was the seedbed of the scandal? You can't blame this crucial part of the equation on VII.


Kirk

Regarding Carrie's assessment that the "most staggering figure" is $657 million spent to date, I disagree.

The most staggering figure(s) are Cardinals Law, Egan and Mahony and the bishops that served them.

The most staggering statement from the report (in my mind) is the one Amy highlighted:

"The review board's report on the causes of the
crisis said that board members could not find a single expression of outrage in church correspondence from a supervising bishop about any priest that the bishops knew had been accused of abuse."

That, my friends, is STAGGERING. Not a SINGLE EXPRESSION OF OUTRAGE!

These men think THEY are the shepherds and WE are the flock? We are supposed to follow THEM? Are they leading by example?

And did I read praise of the Pope's leadership in these comments? The Vatican has been out to lunch on this and still doesn't want to admit that the problems that exist in America are widespread around the world. We just have a modern legal system that discovers these crimes (albeit later than they should). We know that priests violate their vows of celibacy on every continent on earth -- some quite openly in Latin America and Africa.

Joe McFaul

Not only that, there is a long history of clerical sexual abuse dating back to St. Peter Damien in 1015 when his terrible treatise on the vices of the clergy, the "Liber Gomorrhianus" detailed the same problems we are facing today.

Anybody who thinks this is a problem that arose only during the 20th cntury should look up the definition of "nephew."
The Church, for various reasons, has not been able to get a handle on clerical sexual abuse for many centuries.

Nor is it a matter limited to the US. Similar outbreaks have occurred in Canada, England, Australia, Poland and Africa.

Why blame it on Vatican II? It's just as helpful to blame it on Trent.

Bishop Bruskewitz blames divergence from Catholic moral teaching for the abuse crisis." So did Peter Damien--about a thousand years ago. Thank you, bishop, for stating the obvious.

Patrick Rothwell

"That, my friends, is STAGGERING. Not a SINGLE EXPRESSION OF OUTRAGE!"

It's not staggering in the slightest. It does not follow that, because no statement of outrage exists in any predator priests' personnel file, no bishop was outraged by their acts.

John P Sheridan

There's a panel discussion on EWTN tonight at 8pm (Eastern). I believe a few bishops will participate.

You know I can understand how some perverts could have slipped into the seminary and then the priesthood. I can even understand how people of good will could have supported loosening seminary screening and formation-- even though in retrospect the new laxity was obvioulsy a disaster of immense proportions. What I can't understand is how bishops could do absolutely nothing once the beginnings of the disaster became apparent. In fact, to some extent I can EVEN understand how the bishops were relcutant to publicize the problem by going to the press or to the courts. But even if they wanted to take care of the problem "in house," then why in HELL didn't they TAKE CARE OF IT?? (E.g, create a monastery in Nome, AL for these priests). It appears they (or most of them) did absolutely nothing, and simply went on with life as if victimizing young men was a cost of doing business. Why weren't htey horrified and outraged? Is there something we're missing here?

Patrick Rothwell

"But even if they wanted to take care of the problem "in house," then why in HELL didn't they TAKE CARE OF IT??"

This is, in my opinion, what has angered me about many responses to this problem. Some bishops or superiors did "their best" but their best wasn't good enough. Others did far less than their best, and still others were recklessly neligent to the point of not giving a damn. Only a few bishops acquited themselves completely.

I certainly do not want bishops to become the arm of civil law enforcement in the United States. I'm not interested in changing church teachings, changing the celibacy requirement for priests and bishops, mass sacking of gay priests and seminarians, or abolishing the monarchical episcopate. On the other hand, I expect far better quality judgment from our bishops and our religious superiors than what we have, on the whole, received. That's not too much to ask for.

Patrick Rothwell

"But even if they wanted to take care of the problem "in house," then why in HELL didn't they TAKE CARE OF IT??"

This is, in my opinion, what has angered me about many responses to this problem. Some bishops or superiors did "their best" but their best wasn't good enough. Others did far less than their best, and still others were recklessly neligent to the point of not giving a damn. Only a few bishops acquited themselves completely.

I certainly do not want bishops to become the arm of civil law enforcement in the United States. I'm not interested in changing church teachings, changing the celibacy requirement for priests and bishops, mass sacking of gay priests and seminarians, or abolishing the monarchical episcopate. On the other hand, I expect far better quality judgment from our bishops and our religious superiors than what we have, on the whole, received. That's not too much to ask for.

Mel

T. Marzen

I'm not so sure that Sulpicious isn't correct- at least to a degree. The problem wasn't the council itself (although SS may disagree with that point,I don't know)- but it's the tendencies of many in the hierarchy in the past 100 years towards the heresy of modernism. I am a post VII baby- and I don't have a problem with the Norvus Ordo. It's the underlying theories of many in the clergy that have been a problem.
Yes, many of those people were educated in the pre VII church- but don't think for a moment that they were attracted to the pre-VII priesthood. If that were the case, why did so many just on the Jungian/Maslow bandwagon as soon as the opportunity presented itself. Something similiar (IMHO) to those who want women "priest". They really aren't attracted to the priesthood as it is, (the fact that they want to be priest shows
that they don't even understand it)- but they want the church to CHANGE. It wasn't as if a switch was flipped and suddenly there were all of these libertine clergy. What happened after VII was a symptom, not the cause- but don't doubt for a moment that it is related.

pax
Mel

Christopher H.

I think I'm Picking up another theme from all of your comments:

The report determines, as most of you all have full-heartedly embraced, that the CAUSE of all the abuse has been homosexuality in the priesthood brought on by a steady relaxation of seminary AND pastoral faithfullness to church teaching.

It seems to me that the COVERUP is almost exclusively a product of not wanting to expose the Homosexuality for a number of reasons. Like today, it is as if the Bishops went out of their way to treat the homosexuals with kid gloves lest they be "insensitive" to them.

This also leads me to wonder whether, if this scandal had truly been about "Pedophilia" instead of "Pederasty", it would have been dealt with much more severely and swiftly.

Does this seem elemental to everyone?

Elaine F.

I read months ago in either the local newspaper or the Tidings that Cardinal Mahoney said that the attorneys of priests accused of abuse had presented court orders restricting him from handing over personal records. However, recently those records were handed over to the district attorney.

Elaine F.

I read months ago in either the local newspaper or the Tidings that Cardinal Mahoney said that the attorneys of priests accused of abuse had presented court orders restricting him from handing over personal records. However, recently those records were handed over to the district attorney.

Elaine F.

I read months ago in either the local newspaper or the Tidings that Cardinal Mahoney said that the attorneys of priests accused of abuse had presented court orders restricting him from handing over personal records. However, recently those records were handed over to the district attorney.

Elaine F.

I read months ago in either the local newspaper or the Tidings that Cardinal Mahoney said that the attorneys of priests accused of abuse had presented court orders restricting him from handing over personal records. However, recently those records were handed over to the district attorney.

Elaine F.

I read months ago in either the local newspaper or the Tidings that Cardinal Mahoney said that the attorneys of priests accused of abuse had presented court orders restricting him from handing over personal records. However, recently those records were handed over to the district attorney.

Christopher H.

Oooh. Big time Deja Vu.

chris k

Yes, I tend to agree with T. Marzen's questions re: the culture during all those pre VII years. If one is honest one has to admit that there was not much zeroing in on the homosexual personality until even, say, the late 80s. And prior to the sixties and even into the sixties there was practically an hysterical reaction to discussing sexual matters out in the open within the church. If people had sexual problems which they didn't even understand themselves, they were told to confess or see their family doctor. The clergy was as uneducated about this closed in world - when it WAS in the closet - as most others in the culture who truly didn't know what to do with such personalities. They didn't have any analyzed classification unless there was some individual with a personal in-depth interest which was rare. Most in the norm were just not going to venture into such closed closets as some regular approach. There was a lot of suppression and repression, and, ...those who were struggling with unnatural feelings just had to suppress them - better of course than acting out - but then there weren't knowledgable treatments or therapies BEFORE habitual action formed. Remember the response to most alcoholic priests - and they were big problems pre VII - they were relegated to some country church because AA treatment had not come into its own. People believed that sheer will power could win over. Just within the last couple of years is there a discovery in the scientific community that pedophilia isn't treatable ...for now anyway. There is only now therapy for families who discover certain personality traits in their children early enough for them to learn how the father can still form a bond with such a son and the mother bond can be broken at the proper age. So, when the so-called windows of the Church were thrown open - practically overnight - everyone was caught with just a bit too much freedom and not knowing where to turn nor schooled too much in common sense since they had always had rules to follow before without having to think too much. When those sick numbers discovered that there were no real threats to their activity within this new confusion by all, they influenced others to move in as well to such an ignorant and "innocent" institution. If it were NOT for JPII, we'd probably be ordaining our own bishops Robinsons. B. Bruskewitz acknowledges that sure action against such sick people should have been the action taken, but he probably also realized that the whole history and reality would not be considered within its proper perspective in such a "hind-sight is 20/20" report.

ken

The clergy was not 'uneducated' in the least. They studied St. Thomas for one, who is more than specific in his understanding of sin and the objective nature of reality.

That people, priests and bishops especially, choose to ignore the truth, should be held to their blame.

Grace can be ignored, but that does not call for a pastoral response which negates it's reality.

Ken

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