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31 March 2010


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John Minnerath

Yes, it's long past time for change.
Our family was a long time follower of that faith, documents in our possession from the early 1500's from what is now modern France show they were at least that early.

The Churches demand that Priests, Nuns, and other such persons practice celibacy is a totally archaic and idiotic idea and a leading cause of attracting some of the social deviants we see.

It's no wonder so many want to disassociate themselves from such a religion!


Col. Lang:

Yes! Change the should to must and I think you've got it.

Maureen Lang

"Pope Benedict and the bishops should start listening to the people of God. Massive reform, not in teaching, but in practice is clearly needed."



You mention the "priestly image among the laity"

I recall how such manly actors as Pat O'Brien, Spencer Tracy, Bing Crosby, and other strong types with strong five o'clock shadows were cast as priests.


As a Catholic, I completely agree with you on everything.

Additionally, the currently leader of the Church (does not deserve to be called anything else) must go.

College of Cardinals must also purge itself of this abomination to restore credibility.


Here in Germany Ratzinger is long rumored to be gay himself. It is not know how old he likes his companions. But it is obvious that he is part of the problem.

The solution?

No idea.


I agree that the Church is in need of reform. Some of that might be revisiting the dogma of celibacy and allowing the "western" rite to marry, like it's eastern rite does. I believe we are getting there, though slowly. We have already allowed Protestant Ministers, mostly Baptists, who have converted and who are married to become Catholic Priests where the need for Priests is greatest here in the States.

However I also believe that the Church has become way to risk adverse and the Bishop's are allowing to much control to the lawyers rather than God himself in these matters.

I also believe that the Catholic Church is being attacked by the anti-catholic crowd. Yes we deserve some of it but what is not mentioned is all the great deeds the Church does worldwide. Not to say that makes its crimes any different. But lets not just hammer the bad sides.

But to break the problem down to two words. " Godly Leadership" or lack there of is the biggest problem we in the Church face today.

Patrick Lang


Perhaps that explains the red shoes.

Over here we have many bishops and up who are known to be gay. That was excusable in an envirnoment in which one could believe that they were not sexually active, but, now... No. Since it is Church teaching that homosexual behavior is "disordered" in terms of natural law, they are shown to be hypocrites.

I gather that you do not subscribe to the PC cant over here that this is a pedophile problem and not a matter of homosexual rape? pl


is a Reformation every half-millenium or so too much to ask?


In total agreement -- the Church needs to come clean on pedophilia and sexual abuse and yes, reform many moldy dogmas - no women in clergy, contraception ban, etc.

This pope must be quite deeply entangled in this mess because his whinny, non-leadership (hiding behind the cloak claiming conspiracies and rumors and stonewalling) has a self-serving and guilty whiff.

This pope (who was previously the Church's Head Inquisitor)most definitely used knowledge and info on these scandals to attain leverage in pursuing his current position. Of course he knew, it was his job to know!

But what comes next? Would the EU and/or US detain and arrest the Pope? Will the Pope cooperate with gov authorities (cop a plea) and deliver the (other) corrupt parties to the authorities?

This is taking on a Tiger Woods-like trajectory with now so many accusers and intl media coverage -- how will this scandal break?

I will not defend this pope, but will say a sensationalistic feckless media and corrupt politicans from bankrupt governments investigating the church elites doesn't inspire much confidence.

I hope this will not become an exercise in throwing the baby out with the dirty bathwater. What justice will be mete down to the former inquisitor by these new inquisitors. Only way out -- the Church must renew itself NOW with massive reform (and a new pope).


"I gather that you do not subscribe to the PC cant over here that this is a pedophile problem and not a matter of homosexual rape? pl "

That is likely not a black and white issue. There are a lot of degrees between want, touch and feel games and rape.

And that catholic church problem is not only restricted to men. My mother, when under influence, could tell some juicy stories from here youth time in a catholic residential school which was operated by nuns.

And from my youth I am pretty aware that the really friendly Capuchin monk I ministered and gardened for had an intimate relation with his female live-in housekeeper.

It was all this hypocrisy that eventually led me away from the church.

Charles I

"a sensationalistic feckless media and corrupt politicans from bankrupt governments . . .'

You gotta go with what you have, apparently the guardian reports the rest. .


As a life long American Catholic, I can say I have a newly brewing distrust for the Vatican and their ability to take the high moral ground on any issue going forward. The only solution that makes it resolvable is for Benedict to step down and to have a minor "witch hunt" in the ranks (preferably one conducted by an independent/law enforcement group.) This fish is rotting from the head down, as long as the Pope is embroiled in his own coverup, how can he ever command authority on this issue?

Green Zone Cafe

The Church is dying. It deserves it after the way they have covered up these horrible abuses. Nothing lasts forever.

I was in Rome not too long ago and remarked to someone I was with in St. Peter's Square with that the basilica had been built at the cost of the blood of slaves in the New World.

Oh well, they had a good run.

I was raised a Catholic and stopped going to church in my teens. I was "corrupted" by the secular classical education given by a bunch of WWII and Korea veterans- turned teachers, and by my own emerging desires, which I didn't regard as very sinful.

Phil Giraldi

My wife and I are both lapsed Catholics who were speculating last night that this scandal could well finish the RCC as we know it.

I for one am a traditionalist who left the church when it abandoned much of its Medievalism after Vatican two and began its drift into folksong masses and handshakes of peace. I would like to see the Latin mass come back and with it some measure of clarity about the respective roles of clergy and laity. I think it is clear that priests should be allowed to marry as the prohibition on marriage comes not from God but from the church as an organization that could not risk having to divide its patrimony among children of clerics. Would marriage solve the problem? Maybe.

I think the pedophile problem has been brewing for a long time. Even twenty years ago some priests would candidly describe seminaries in the US and in Europe that were dominated by homosexuals from top to bottom. As Colonel Lang notes, the pc media is making it appear to be a pedophilia problem distinct from homosexuality, but the two are clearly related even if it makes some people uncomfortable to assert that.

Nobody expects that the sacrament of ordination makes men perfect. Back in the old days when I was an altar boy, I recall lots of priests who drank a tad too much but not a one who ever did anything improper with a child. If they had, there would have been no cover-up and the community would have demanded their removal immediately.

I think it all comes down to instituting a measure of transparency and reestablishing rules that must be obeyed. If homosexuality is a sin it should be incompatible with being a priest. There should be no cover-ups and no second chances. I don't know what would motivate a bishop to reassign a child abuser but any bishop who has done that should resign immediately and put on sack cloth and ashes for the rest of his life to atone for his sins. Sickening.


Never should one have to be ashamed of their Church . . . . But this large and seemingly ever-growing scandal is mortifying beyond belief. Angry, I am!

Patrick Lang


Hmm. A Capuchin is not a monk. He is a friar. They normally live in communal groups. How did he have a housekeeper? pl


If it has nothing to do with homosexuality, then why are most of the victims boys?

People fall according to their nature. Jimmy Swaggart went to a prostitute, not to a child. When our priests fall....

Talk about denying the obvious.

Farmer Don

" Massive reform, not in teaching, but in practice is clearly needed.  pl"

A massive reform is needed all right. A reform in rational people stepping back and seeing all this Faith stuff as a artifact of our ancient tribal life and ignorance.

What there is a need for, is for intelligent people like your self, to finally push out that last vestige of the superstition called religion.

It always amazes me how otherwise rational people still "believe" in this hocus pocus!

People used to believe the sun went around the earth. We now have better information. It's time to stop believing in the super natural, and time to start using the rational part of our brains to confront the truly large problems the human race is facing today.

Green Zone Cafe

Back in the old days when I was an altar boy, I recall lots of priests who drank a tad too much but not a one who ever did anything improper with a child. If they had, there would have been no cover-up and the community would have demanded their removal immediately.

Are you sure, Phil? The Boston Archdiocese and other scandals suggest otherwise. Or, sure, they would have been "removed" to another parish to continue as before.

You were just lucky.

dan of steele

A Capuchin is not a monk. He is a friar

the same word in German (Mönch) is used for both friar and monk. as for the housekeeper, that is not so uncommon over here in Europe.

Nancy K

It does seem the pool for priests consists of asexuals, pediphiles and homosexuals.
There does need to be a shake up in the Catholic church, open up the priesthood to women and married men for a starter.
I'm not sure I believe it is completely a homosexual problem however, as abuse was done also to girls. It would very well be a problem of male control and domination and people afraid to report on or complain about the priests.

I'm not so sure I even believe in an after life, but if there is one the Pope should definetly be worrying.

dan of steele

one other thing that might complicate the issue with Ratzinger. Some time ago when the previous Pope was really ill, my wife innocently asked our Italian neighbor why he didn't resign. At the time he was in pretty bad shape and looked kinda pathetic. Our neighbor answered that there can be only one Pope.

Perhaps a Catholic scholar can chime in and clear this up but it seems there is no procedure other than death for succession in the Catholic church.


Col. Lang,

You have misunderstood why Europe found it "vaguely amusing when this scandal was revealed in the US a dozen years ago. They (Europe) implied in their comments that this was somehow a peculiarly American problem."

We started to find out just how widespread this nasty business was from the late Seventies onwards, first in the UK, then, and much more deeply entrenched, in Ireland. Then elsewhere.

The reason why we are "vaguely amused" is that it took America so long to wake up. That America continued to believe itself "Exceptional".

It's not that we regard you as the first, but among the last, and further proof that you are one of the least informed nations on the planet.



Seems to me unlikely that people attracted to small boys are also attracted to large men. The priests have had access to small boys but not as much access to small girls.

The other branch of the offense is the cover-up. What is it about the ethos or the teachings of the church that makes a man blind to the promptings of a normal conscience and unable to see that the claim that the church never told me to act is not a sufficient excuse?

Case in point:

In his radio interview earlier in the week, Cardinal Brady said that under the procedures then mandated by the church, it had not been his responsibility to inform the police in 1975 that Father Smyth was abusing children. “We had no guidance,” he said. “We were in uncharted territory, and now we have higher standards, thankfully.”

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