Friday, October 29, 2010

Clerical silence

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Causes of the Unfathomable Clerical Silence on Clergy Sex Abuse
By Vinnie Nauheimer © all rights reserved

Edmund Burke said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing” Living proof of this quote comes from the clergy of the Roman Catholic Church. The act of raping, sodomizing and molesting children is intrinsically evil. Yet the clergy, as a whole, has remained incredibly silent about these deplorable crimes. In doing so, the evil of sexual abuse has triumphed at all levels of the clergy. There is no better quote to describe the excruciating pain caused by the global silence of the priesthood, bishops and cardinals regarding the vile sexual crimes committed against children. Or is there?

“Show me the leaders and I will show you the troops,” speaks volumes too!

There are one-hundred eighty-five cardinals. Not a single cardinal has ever publicly spoken out about the pope’s woefully inept handling of the clergy abuse scandal. Neither a cardinal nor a pope has ever removed a bishop from office for their sexual abuse of minors or for protecting priests who have sexually abused minors. This is a travesty of justice as well as a mockery of Jesus Christ and his teachings. Not one cardinal out of one-hundred-eighty-five cardinals can be called a survivor’s advocate. This fact alone confirms all-encompassing grip of evil on the higher echelons of the church. The triumph of evil is crystal clear at the cardinal level of the Roman Catholic Church.

Worldwide there are roughly five thousand bishops. Out of the five thousand bishops, there are only two bishops who are vocal critics of the Roman Catholic Church’s handling of the clergy abuse scandal. Both are retired, Bishop Gumbleton of Detroit and Bishop Geoffrey Robinson of Australia. Not only are they critics, but both are advocates for victims of clergy abuse. They have both been banned from speaking in many dioceses as well as suffering numerous other indignities at the hands of cardinals and their fellow bishops. Robinson said the following about clergy abuse, “Sexual abuse is all about power and sex, so to counter abuse, we must be free to ask serious questions about power and sex in the institution of the church. Without this freedom, we would be attempting to respond to abuse while handcuffed and blindfolded.” Noteworthy also is the Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin. Not only has he apologized to survivors, but he also demanded the resignations of several bishops steeped in the clergy abuse scandal. Recently, two of the bishops who sent their resignations to Rome had them refused by the pope making the Archbishop look the fool. At the bishop level, evil has triumphed as the troops mimic their leaders. Two retired bishops and one active out of five thousand is an infinitesimal percentage; once again evil triumphs.

However, there is an area of clergy abuse where we can find a larger percentage among bishops. According to BishopAccountability.org in the United States, there are seventeen bishops credibly accused of sexual abuse. Seventeen out of 425 active and retired bishops totals four percent. That number only speaks to the bishops in the United States! Is it any wonder why silence is golden when it comes to bishops in the United States? Not one has ever been laicized and that includes the notorious Bishop Ziemann who was arrested for having oral sex performed on him, in his car, by a priest who wore a pager in order to be summoned by the bishop for sex. Who protected this bishop? None other than Cardinal Levada, the man appointed by the pope to fill his old position as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith. Once again evil triumphs!

Show me the leaders and I will show you the troops.

The number of priests worldwide is just over four-hundred-thousand. Of these four hundred thousand priests there are only a handful of well known outspoken priests who are survivor advocates. Frs. Tom Doyle and Bob Hoatson are the best known both in the United States and globally. Being overly generous, let’s say there are in fact a hundred vocal priests worldwide. One hundred priests is a miniscule fraction of one percent of the four hundred thousand priests: .00025 to be exact. Sadly, these are the troops.

Any human being with even a thread of humanity understands that the rape, sodomization and molestation of children by clergy or anyone are inherently evil acts. Despite the heinous nature of these crimes, despite the outcry from the victims, despite the outcry from Grand Juries and Special Inquiries, there remains a deafening silence among ninety-nine point nine percent of the Roman Catholic Clergy. There has been a great deal of speculation about the cause or causes of this white collar silence. We will look at three of these causes and the arguments supporting them. They are: The Superiority Complex, The Wet Monkey Mentality and a complete and utter Lack of Faith.

The Superiority Complex

Medieval Kings operated on the principle of Divine Right, which is defined as: “the doctrine that kings derive their right to rule directly from God and are not accountable to their subjects; rebellion is the worst of political crimes.” Other definitions add this phrase, “any attempt to depose a monarch or to restrict his powers runs contrary to the will of God.” Welcome to the centuries old philosophy of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church. Nowhere is this false ideology of Divine Right more clearly stated than in Vehementer Nos an encyclical promulgated by Pious X in 1905.

“It follows that the Church is essentially an unequal society, that is, a society comprising two categories of persons, the Pastors and the flock, those who occupy a rank in the different degrees of the hierarchy and the multitude of the faithful. So distinct are these categories that with the pastoral body only rests the necessary right and authority for promoting the end of the society and directing all its members towards that end; the one duty of the multitude is to allow themselves to be led, and, like a docile flock, to follow the Pastors.”

However, Pious X was not alone in his assumption that priests are on a higher level than the laity. Consider the arrogance of this name: Conference of Major Superiors of Men. Who but arrogant, self-serving, elitists would give themselves a name that proclaims them superiors of men? Not to worry, Mother Superior has her organization too, The Conference of Major Superiors of Women Religious. These groups are made up of all the “Superiors” of the various groups of orders that comprise the religious community other than diocesan priests. One might ask this reasonable question, “Does using the word superior in their title really make them feel superior?” The answer is clear in this passage written about the sexual abuse scandal several years ago by then director of the Conference of Major Superiors of Men, Fr. Ted Keating.

“The days of the pass or station house adjustment for Father or Brother by the Irish cop or prosecutor are over. Either we will learn to become more comfortable in the gaze of the rude and scoffing multitude (depending on our attitude) or we will be dragged kicking and screaming into a new future for religion and religious life”

There are two things to note in this statement. The first is the unequivocal admission by Fr. Keating that priests, who committed crimes, were not arrested by police. The second is Keating’s use of the term “the rude and scoffing multitude.” Using these words to describe the laity is his tacit acknowledgement of Pious X’s statement on superiority. This too is an admission that there are those in the priesthood who believe they are superior to mere mortals. This is the height of arrogance and one has to wonder how the laity would react to knowing they were referred to as the “the rude and scoffing multitude.” The director of the Conference of the Major Superiors of Men has demonstrated by his words that their superiority complex is real.

The irony of the superiority over the rude and scoffing multitude is that is that the believer of this warped philosophy looses touch with his humanity. This one sentence “the one duty of the multitude is to allow themselves to be led, and, like a docile flock,” explains the utter contempt heaped upon victims of clergy abuse and their families by priests, bishops, cardinals, and yes, even popes. This attitude made it easy to transfer sexual felons from one parish to another with because they had contempt for children. This attitude made it easy for bishops to lie to authorities because civil authorities were beneath them. This ingrained cultural flaw allowed them to withhold evidence from the courts. Slavery can not exist unless one group believes they are superior to another group. The act of believing superiority then makes it okay and even easy to use those “less than” however they see fit and treat with utter contempt anyone who would question their decisions. Welcome to the philosophy that has perpetuated clergy sexual abuse over the years.

This fallacious thinking along with the culture that perpetuates it must cease. It will when people realize, of their own accord, that God made them in his image and likeness: Intelligent beings capable of loving, thinking and creating. We were not created to be a “docile flock” led around by our noses by those who purport to speak for God, but who reject his teachings every time the teachings either interfere with or threaten their money and power.

The Wet Monkey Mentality

This theory is often used to describe outdated cultural practices, customs or traditions and the experiment was carried out like this.

Inside a cage containing five monkeys, a banana was hung from the ceiling and a set of stairs was put under the banana. When one of the monkeys tried to go up the stairs towards the banana the remaining monkeys were sprayed with ice water.

Then another monkey went for the banana with same result: the other monkeys were sprayed with ice cold water. After a while when any monkey tried to climb the stairs, the remaining monkeys prevented him from going to the banana by beating him.

Once this behavior was established, the cold water was stopped and still any monkey going for the banana was beaten by the other monkeys. The one monkey was removed from the cage and replaced with a new one. The new monkey upon seeing the banana wants to climb the stairs and eat it. To his shock, the rest of the monkeys attack him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.

Each of the five original monkeys were removed one at a time and replaced with a new one. As the newcomer went to the stairs he was attacked. The previous newcomer then took part in the punishment of the next newcomer with as much enthusiasm as the original monkeys. Every time the newest monkey touched the stairs he was viciously attacked.

When all of the original monkeys had been replaced, the new ones having never been punished with ice water continued to beat up any newcomer that went for the banana. Also after receiving a beating for going for the banana, they became active participants in beating up any subsequent monkey introduced to the cage that went for the banana. No monkey ever again got a banana because as soon as he approached the stairs, he was set upon. Why? Because as far as they knew, that was the way it had always been done in there.

If you substitute truth for the banana, this theory could account for the almost universal silence by the vast majority of the clergy on the subject of the clergy abuse scandal. Speak the truth in public and you were viciously beaten. Could this theory explain the incredible lack of support for clergy abuse survivors by all but a miniscule number of clergy? Yes! Does the Wet Monkey Mentality account for the personal attacks on the person of Fr. Tom Doyle, the first outspoken advocate of clergy abuse survivors, who was accused of heresy, fired from his job as an Air Force Chaplain and declared persona non-grata by any number of fellow priests and bishops? Yes! Can it explain why a Pennsylvania bishop went through extraordinary machinations to find the nun behind the non-de-plume Sr. Immaculata; whose letters to the editor chastising bishops and cardinals were carried in newspapers around the United States. Does it account for the terrible things said about and done to Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, when after retiring; he spoke out against the church and condemned its role in the cover-up of the clergy abuse scandal? Does it account for Bishop Geoffrey Robinson being forbidden from speaking in any Catholic Church or on any Catholic Church property by bishops and cardinals across the United States?

Unfortunately, the Wet Monkey Mentality explains all of these actions taken by the church against these few and those unnamed who dared to challenge the prevailing norms by speaking the truth about the clerical sexual abuse of children in the Catholic Church. These stand-up clergy members were pounded by those with the monkey mentality as a lesson for the rest of the worldwide clergy.

Loss of Faith

Some twenty years ago, while attending a meeting, a young woman told this story. “I have two constant companions, I call them my pets. One is called fear and the other is called faith whichever one I feed is the one that grows.” I never saw her again, but I have survived and thrived remembering her words and while looking at causes for deafening silence of good men about such an evil issue as child abuse her words came back to me yet again. The silence of the clergy is due to their lack of faith in God. The clergy of the Roman Catholic Church is feeding their fear and not their faith! They fear scandal as if scandal could hurt God. Scandal can only hurt men. They fear being found out for the despicable acts they’ve committed, witnessed and concealed; they fear for their material possessions, their power, their wealth and their false superiority.

If priests, bishops and cardinals had unquestioning faith in God, they would not be afraid to speak out against the evil that has triumphed because of their silence. They would not be afraid of losing their jobs, their pensions, their cushy parish, their shot at purple or red buttons and the biggest prize of all, the white hat. In other words, they would lose their fear of naming evil whether that evil is called bishop, cardinal or pope. Their faith would sustain them if they would just feed it. Fear has frozen the voices of the good men in the priesthood because they have lost their faith in the God. A crash course in the Acts of the Apostles might help the remaining good members of the clergy, who wish to serve God and not their superiors, to find their tongues. We can all pray that the Holy Spirit will once again ignite the flame of faith in Jesus and his teachings.

Only men steeped in fear can keep silent about the travesty of justice and the horrors of sexual abuse that are and have occurred in the Roman Catholic Church. It is impossible to believe that out of five thousand bishops worldwide that there are none who remember who they represent. Equally implausible is that there are none who are not appalled by the actions of their fellow bishops, cardinals and the pope relative to the sexual abuse of children by clergy members. The same can be said for the four-hundred-thousand priests. There must be more than a handful who want to drive these despoilers of children and those who protect them from the church.

Those in power have brought the church to the brink of collapse; the triumph of evil. Those that have remained silent have encouraged it! Now is the time to oppose it! Get some gumption from your boss; the one who died on the cross. Let he who has ears hear!

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According to Aquinas’ definition, there are heretics in the Vatican
By Vinnie Nauheimer © All rights reserved

The unmitigated gall along with the exasperating temerity of the Vatican and the pope is nowhere more evident than in the slap in the face that the pope has just delivered to the global survivor community. Just when you thought they couldn’t sink any lower than equating the ordination of women with the raping, sodomizing and molesting children; they do this. The mentality that pulled Cardinal Law out of harm’s way and rewarded him for covering up criminal acts and the criminals who committed them is flourishing in Rome.

In the first place, the ruling elite of the Vatican along with the pope have lost all their integrity if one supposes that they had any in the first place. Acting holy and deliberately disobeying Sacred Scripture, which is the Word of God, and also the Catechism and Canon Law which are the teaching elements of the Magisterium are the acts of heretics according to St. Thomas Aquinas.

Compounding their crimes against man and God, they tried to convince the world that ordaining a woman is as grave a scandal to the Body of Christ as the raping of a child by a priest. On top of that, the pope reinstates two bishops who allowed children to be abused because they were spineless as well as being unfaithful to the teachings of Christ. The hypocrisy of the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church knows no bounds. In 2009 the pope said, “Victims should receive compassion and care, and those responsible for these evils must be brought to justice.” The pope cannot reconcile any of his words with his deeds. His lies and hypocrisy have brought untold scandal down upon the church. The English language does not have words to describe such an unprecedented display of contempt for Jesus Christ, his people and scripture. The only two words that come even close to describing this bald-faced act of duplicity are Mysterium Iniquitus.

The job of the Magisterium (the pope and all the bishops) is teaching or interpreting Sacred Scripture. It puts Sacred Scripture on the top after which come all else. For example, if there were a conflict between what Jesus said and what and what a bishop says some five hundred years later, the quoted words of Jesus takes precedent. The Catechism tells us the following in Para. 86: “Yet this Magisterium is not superior to the Word of God, but is its servant.” Direct quotes by Jesus on the single subject child abuse are found in all three of the Synoptic Gospels. Jesus himself tells us how the well being of children is of profound importance to him, but the hierarchy hasn’t listened.

Here are the direct quotes from Jesus condemning the sexual abuse of minors:

Matthew 18:6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

Mark 9:42 And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.

Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.

Matthew 18:10:Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

Matthew 18:14: In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost.

Matthew, Mark and Luke also quote Jesus as saying: “But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.”

The importance of these tracts must be put in perspective. The well regarded concept of the Virgin Birth is in the narrative form which does not carry the same weight as a direct quote from Jesus. Also, it is only found in two of the Gospels whereas admonitions against defiling children are found in all three of the Synoptic Gospels. Jesus stated multiple times that no one should prevent children from coming to him. Yet the hierarchy has steadfastly refused to heed Him.

What does this mean? It means that if the hierarchy had put just half the belief into the words of Jesus concerning child abuse, as they did to the concept of the Virginal Birth, there would be neither the clergy abuse scandal we have today nor those in previous eras of church history. Next is the gravity of their sins. The current hierarchy right up to the pope has knowingly moved pedophile priests around and then covered up for these monsters in direct violation of Sacred Scripture. The perverted culture of the Vatican is and has been responsible for the rape, sodomization and molestation of children. There has been an ongoing, well documented denial of the words of Jesus. In plain English, they have committed gross acts of heresy by refusing to adhere to Sacred Scripture.

Aquinas defines heresy as: “a species of infidelity in men who, having professed the faith of Christ, corrupt its dogmas.” He further states: “Heresy comes from restricting belief to certain points of Christ’s doctrine selected and fashioned at pleasure, which is the way of heretics.” Aquinas says this of the heretics motives: “The impelling motives are many: intellectual pride or exaggerated reliance on one’s own insight; the illusions of religious zeal; the allurements of political or ecclesiastical power; the ties of material interests and personal status; and perhaps others more dishonourable”

If Aquinas were alive today, he would have no problem condemning the current hierarchy for the heretics they are. The hierarchy, men who profess faith in Christ, have created their own dogma which says, “We make decisions for Christ and we will totally ignore anything He has said which will cause us to forfeit our jobs, riches or the priests who make our jobs, power and riches possible.” In order to maintain the allurements of ecclesiastical power, not one bishop has ever been laicized in connection with the clergy abuse scandal. That includes both bishops who have personally abused children as well as bishops who have protected the perverted priests who preyed on children. Now, two bishops that have resigned over their involvement with clergy abuse have been reinstated. Every member of the hierarchy has maintained both their personal wealth and power despite numerous transgressions a la Cardinal Law who was whisked out of Boston to insure he maintained both his power and opulence. In short, they have corrupted the Sacred Scripture, thrown our children to the wolves and for what, to maintain the status quo!

However, this heresy does not stop with Sacred Scripture. The heretics have and continue to ignore both the Catechism and Canon Law making their heresy complete. The following paragraphs are from the Catechism:

2326 Scandal is a grave offense when by deed or omission it deliberately leads others to sin gravely.

2287 Anyone who uses the power at his disposal in such a way that it leads others to do wrong becomes guilty of scandal and responsible for the evil that he has directly or indirectly encouraged. “Temptations to sin are sure to come; but woe to him by whom they come!”

2353 Fornication is carnal union between an unmarried man and an unmarried woman. It is gravely contrary to the dignity of persons and of human sexuality which is naturally ordered to the good of spouses and the generation and education of children. Moreover, it is a grave scandal when there is corruption of the young. (Emphasis mine)

2389 Connected to incest is any sexual abuse perpetrated by adults on children or adolescents entrusted to their care. The offense is compounded by the scandalous harm done to the physical and moral integrity of the young, who will remain scarred by it all their lives; and the violation of responsibility for their upbringing.

The acts of raping, sodomizing and molesting children, allowing them to continue and then covering them up can safely be assumed to be manifestly a grave scandal. The Catechism specifically points out the evils of adults having sex with children. Strike two, the hierarchy has turned their backs on Sacred Scripture and the Catechism.

What’s next? Next is Canon Law.

The current hierarchy has denied, by their failure to remove bishops, Canon Law applies to them too. As Aquinas points out, they’re simply ignoring this truth because of material interests and personal status

Can. 212 1, Priests and Bishops are also bound by this obedience, in fact more so since they are responsible for passing on to the faithful genuine Catholic teaching. In other words, a Bishop or Priest who dissents from Church teachings is not to be obeyed in that matter, rather all must obey the Magisterium at all times, as Vatican II states.

All along the Canons have applied to every priest, bishop, and cardinal around the world, which includes the pope. The hierarchy is quick to throw out the many comparisons of relative guilt. Why are you picking on us, we’re only human? We’re no worse than other religions; the public schools are infested with pedophiles, etc. etc. Sacred Scripture along with their own Catechism spells out why they need to be held more accountable than others. Can. 2121: “in fact more so since they are responsible for passing on to the faithful genuine Catholic teaching.”

Can. 1369 A person is to be punished with a just penalty, who, at a public event or assembly, or in a published writing, or by otherwise using the means of social communication, utters blasphemy, or gravely harms public morals, or rails at or excites hatred of or contempt for religion or the Church.

By their adamant refusal to justly punish any bishop for their part in the Clergy Abuse Scandal, the hierarchy has gravely harmed public morals, excited hatred of and contempt for the Church along with making it a laughing stock of the world. The hierarchy by their omissions (remaining silent) and their commission (Hiding and shuffling offending priests) promoted evil. The church did nothing about the rape, sodomization and molestation of children until they were forced into action and then only did a grudgingly pittance.

Can. 1389 § 1 A person who abuses ecclesiastical power or an office, is to be punished according to the gravity of the act or the omission, not excluding by deprivation of the office, unless a penalty for that abuse is already established by law or precept.

§ 2 A person who, through culpable negligence, unlawfully and with harm to another, performs or omits and act of ecclesiastical power or ministry or office, is to be punished with a just penalty.

Hard evidence of hierarchal culpable negligence has come out across the globe for the past two decades. Ecclesiastical power has been misused all over the globe and in no place more than the Vatican in their concerted effort to thwart justice. Turning their back on Canon Law completes the blatant refutation of the Magisterium, which is nothing more than heresy.

Is it a sin to call a pope, cardinal bishop or priest a heretic? No, Sacred Scripture, the Catechism and Canon Law call them heretics. The three are there for the world to read; no interpretation necessary because the language is clear. Each one supports the other back to the words of Jesus Christ. No bishop, cardinal or pope can deny or refute them without committing a larger heresy. The hierarchy would have the laity believe that they are above it all, but their own laws tell us different. Most members of the human race don’t need church law to reaffirm what they already know which is: The rape, sodomization and molestation of children is morally repugnant and intrinsically evil. Those who have both covered up these acts and protected the perpetrators are equally guilty.

Can. 748 §1 All are bound to seek the truth in matters which concern God and his Church; when they have found it, then by divine law they have the right to embrace and keep it.

The truth is here from the mouth of Jesus, church law and church history. All three tell us the first two have been totally ignored to the detriment of children and the church. The heresies speak for themselves. Aquinas tells us they are “a species of infidelity in men who, having professed the faith of Christ, corrupt its dogmas.” Aquinas is only mirroring the words of Jesus who said.

Matt.15: 7-9 You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you: ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.”

We can’t deny the teachings of Jesus, but we can certainly deny the authority of those who have ignored and trampled upon his teachings.

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