The hollow authority of the Catholic Church

May 27, 2009 | By | 3 Replies More

Over at Daylight Atheism, Ebonmuse is busy pointing out more hypocrisy of the Catholic Church.  While senior clergy continue to rant about the dangers of atheism, the Church can’t even seem to acknowledge recent revelations in Ireland that Church leaders had been quite busy, for decades, raping and beating thousands of children.

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Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Amadán says:

    Not to minimise the cupability of the Catholic hierarchy and congregations, but you have to remember that almost all the children were in these institutions because the State sent them there. The Ryan Report (please, please read it, Summary available here) shows what happens when a society abdicates responsibility to people who cannot admit they are wrong, either to themselves or anyone else. People of my parents' generation will tell you that they knew there was something very wrong with what was going on, but to question, let alone investigate or protest, was unthinkable.The irony is that the British, from whom we had fought so long to gain independence, reformed their system long before ours.

    That these atrocities happened in Catholic institutions is, perhaps, unsurprising, given the obsession with secrecy, authority and sexuality. But any institution, Catholic or otherwise, that cannot admit that your opinion might be better than theirs is liable to fall into the same morass of denial and self-protection.

    I don't know how Ireland is going to pull itself out of this. But do it we must.

  2. Erich Vieth says:

    Amadan: At your recommendation, I just read the "Conclusion" of the Ryan report. http://www.childabusecommission.com/rpt/04-06.php I know that children are resilient, but not without limit. One can only assume that thousands of these desperate children grew up to be emotionally broken adults. It's ghastly to think of all the children complaining that they were being raped and yet adults in positions of authority (adults other than the perpetrators) did nothing to stop it.

  3. Erich Vieth says:

    Imagine if a large community of atheist adults had been sexually molesting hundreds of the community's children and the widespread abuse came to light? It would be huge news, the prosecutors would be brought in and lots of adult atheists would have been thrown into prison for long term sentences. If the leaders of the atheist community had known about the problem and covered it up, they would have been thrown in prison too. The fact that they were atheists would have been deemed the cause of the problem.

    Yes, the Catholic Church is now taking some big hits on the priest sex scandal, but only a relative handful of priests have gone to prison and the leaders of the Church have skated freely, no matter how much they knew and no matter how rotten their actions were. It's awfully fortunate that they have God on their side, or they would have been treated like my hypothetical community of atheists.

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