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Catholic priest scandals...

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Forgive me (haha...), but I didn't see this topic listed anywhere else. If it is and I overlooked it, feel free to close this redundant thread.

What's the thoughts and opinions among the gang here, regarding all this nasty "priest molesting little boys" stuff we're hearing so much about lately?

I have some very strong opinions on it and am pretty disgusted/amazed that there seems to be this whole weird half-ass "debate" in the church.

I mean, did these Cardinals have to fly all the way to Rome and hear it from the Pope himself to figure out that diddling little kids isn't cool?

What other profession out there could you fondle and molest children and NOT be imediately fired, arrested, etc.? Could any of us here do this in OUR lives/jobs/neighborhoods?

But some prick in a frock puts his hands down an 8-year-old's Fruit of the Looms, and everyone just wants to look the other way, make excuses and shuffle him off to another unsuspecting community.

Cardinals Law, Mahoney and the others who assisted in covering up and simply moving pedophile priests from one area to another and not reporting them are all equally to blame here.

I'm not Catholic, but I don't think one HAS to be in order to see the evil and wrong here.



What does everyone think/feel about this subject and all that's going on right now?

Some of you, I just can't WAIT to read your drawn-out, pointy-headed handwringing and excuse-making...don't let me down now!
post #2 of 31
For once we are on the same team here. Sorry.
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post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 
Oh hell...there goes the neighborhood. Seriously, "sorry"?

Please...



"Yes, normally I'm all for dirty old men groping little leaguers, but on this one, pscates, I got your back! We're on the same page!"

post #4 of 31
I think it's fine, really. I mean comeon, they're not supposed to be married, so where else are they going to get a little nookie if not from little boys? Lighten up, people - give the priests a break!
post #5 of 31
I'm Catholic, the situation is ridiculous, and I hope these priests get what they deserve (innocent until proven guilty of course). Otherwise, the whole debate about the vows of celibacy seems inane because IMO any person who likes to molest little boys and girls is f-ed up anyway and has nothing to do with consentual adult sex. I seriously doubt removing the celibacy vows would change anything with those freaks, but to those who think that'll fix things, hey, go for broke. Those vows are archaic anyway.
post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 
At the very least, doing away with the celibacy stuff might result in an influx of fresh blood and perhaps a rebuilding of a healthier, more well-rounded priest population. You know, priests with a true appreciation, and knowledge of, marriage, relationships, sexuality, etc.

I mean...

:confused:

I heard that the celibacy stuff isn't an actual "from the Bible" thing. Is that so? Is it a man-made sort of stipulation, one from a time/place that no longer figures in or has any relevancy?

I don't know...I'm asking.
post #7 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by pscates:
<strong>Oh hell...there goes the neighborhood. Seriously, "sorry"?

Please...



"Yes, normally I'm all for dirty old men groping little leaguers, but on this one, pscates, I got your back! We're on the same page!"

</strong><hr></blockquote>



No. More like "Sorry Scates. I´ll fight you to the death on US current foreign and domestic policy but when it comes to this who can disagree?".

Well BRussell disagrees but I think my sig goes for him as well in this thread.
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post #8 of 31
Well, the Catholic Church is the whore of Babylon depicted in Revelations, so this fits in perfectly...

kidding kidding

*runs away from the fast-advancing popemobile*
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post #9 of 31
[quote]...doing away with the celibacy stuff...<hr></blockquote>

Don't you have to BE celibate in the first place to STOP being celibate?

I guess they're not counting flings with 12 year old boys as sex...

post #10 of 31
This is turning into a really stupid thread really really fast.
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post #11 of 31
You're pretty much right, pscates, the Church (notice the caps) is an institution unto itself with its own little, uh, "quirks" like celibacy. Frankly, I have no strong opinion one way or the other with regard to celibacy. on one hand, I do find it an anachronism, on the other, it's such deeply rooted tradition that's a central part of one's identity in the church for priests and nuns.

I just think the suggestion (if not declaration) by some people that removing the celibacy vow would somehow prevent these sickos from hurting kids is just ludicrous! Celibacy doesn't drive people to molest kids unless there's something else already really wrong with them. It's just stupid to think this has anything to do with the Church's or these people's real problems.
post #12 of 31
Thread Starter 
Yeah, I don't think celibacy is linked to pedophilia at all. I was just saying that maybe it's a good idea to consider phasing out that particular rule or whatever, just in the interest of getting new priests, some different priests, some priests with true, real-world experience, etc. That's all.

No, a twisted, perverted pedophile is a twisted, perverted pedophile...not connected to celibacy. Never meant to suggest I believe that!

post #13 of 31
I looked up some info on the celibacy issue a few weeks back when this was big in the news.

Celibacy hasn't always been a requirement - it started in the 12th century. Before then, popes and priests were married. And the disciples were probably mostly married. And some theories are that even Jesus was married. The Jewish tradition is for Rabbis to be married.

Currently there are lots of married priests, and priests that get married after they become priests seem to be OK.

Why did celibacy become a requirement? One theory is that priests would leave their estates to the church, but if they were married and had children, the family would compete with the church for the estate. So the church decided to make all priests remain unmarried to prevent that conflict. There are other theories, too.

Then there's the whole issue of a male-only priesthood, which is also not set in stone anywhere.
post #14 of 31
One word. Ewwwww. Those priests are messed up if this is true. <img src="graemlins/oyvey.gif" border="0" alt="[No]" />
NoahJ
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #15 of 31
Thread Starter 
BRussell, that's what I've always kinda heard. Especially lately. That some of these things were more legal/political in nature than truly coming from the Bible or God's word or whatever.

I've often wondered why some of these things are still in place when the world is so different now. And, like I said, I also often wonder if the influx of new, different (married) priests might be a good, positive thing?

All interesting. I think something is going to have to give before too long.

Think about it: if you're a Catholic with strong beliefs and moral convictions, all this stuff going on HAS to disgust and outrage you. I'd like to believe that the average Joe, rank and file Catholic is as pissed off about all this nonsense as I, and others, am.

Like politicians and celebrities, it seems to mostly be the power structure and the "inner circle" that seems intent on the hushing, hiding, etc.

In the same way that most liberal Democrats didn't get pissed off at President Clinton's antics (but would've thrown a fit if Newt had gotten under-the-desk hummers from an intern half his age), or that most conservatives thing that Rush can do/say no wrong, the leadership/higher-ups within the church probably exists solely for the power, pull, prestige, etc. and are, at this point, more concerned with covering each other's asses, keeping their power/status, downplaying their shortcomings, etc.

Like I said, I think the thing that REALLY bugs me the most is the fact that all these idiots have to fly all the way to Rome to hear the feeble, hunched-over, probably-isn't-fully-conscious-of-what's-truly-going-on Pope give them a verbal reaming. As if suddenly the light just went off in their collective heads!

And then the media: breathlessly reporting "the Pope says there's no place for pedophilia and child molestation in the Catholic church...".

Well, no shit Dan. Gee, thanks for letting all of us unsophisticated, mouth-breathing types in flyover country in on that big huge secret.



People are going around acting like "wow, that was sure a strong, important and ground-breaking statement...". OF COURSE YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO FONDLE CHILDREN, ASSHEAD! Thanks for clearing that up, because most of us were looking to Rome for some confirmation on that.

Jeez...

post #16 of 31
First of all, we are not talking about little kids for the most part. Most of the cases involve teens, who are in or gone though puberty. There is a difference between handling an 8 year old and a high school kid.

Second, the idea behind celibacy is so that priests can dedicate their whole lives to the Church and not have to worry about caring for a wife or children. The only "person" they should be concerned with is God.

Personally I'm appalled by the way it has been handled. I grew up a Catholic but a few years ago began to "stray" from the Church. What special rights to priests have? All cases should go right to the court and priests found guilty should go right to jail (or whatever punishment). Same goes for any other person in the Church involved in scandal or coverups.

The meeting in Rome was such a joke. Please, do you really need all those people to come together just to say what we knew: "sexually abusing kids is a crime"

what a joke... maybe i'll just become a Buddhist
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post #17 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by Dogcow:
<strong>First of all, we are not talking about little kids for the most part. Most of the cases involve teens, who are in or gone though puberty. There is a difference between handling an 8 year old and a high school kid.</strong><hr></blockquote>Where do you get this? Most of the cases I've seen, like Geoghan, almost exclusively involved very young children.
post #18 of 31
What's to discuss? The Pope shouldn't have needed to call the American bishops to Rome for them to get their act straight. He seems to have really brought the hammer down and I'm glad at least for that.

The celibacy issue is another matter entirely and has nothing to do with this scandal. I don't know why it seems to be the first thing people bring up.
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post #19 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by Dogcow:
<strong>Personally I'm appalled by the way it has been handled. I grew up a Catholic but a few years ago began to "stray" from the Church. What special rights to priests have? All cases should go right to the court and priests found guilty should go right to jail (or whatever punishment). Same goes for any other person in the Church involved in scandal or coverups.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I agree, up till now it has been handled the worst way possible. When this came up and investigation should have been launched and then the appropriate action should have been taken.

[quote]<strong>The meeting in Rome was such a joke. Please, do you really need all those people to come together just to say what we knew: "sexually abusing kids is a crime"

what a joke... maybe i'll just become a Buddhist</strong><hr></blockquote>

Really! you were there? What did the pope say?

We have no idea what really went on at the meeting in Rome. The Pope could have done many things that you, me and the media will never find out about. Before you write it off, know what happened.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #20 of 31
Scates, I didn't mean to say that you implied some link between celibacy and molestation. It's just come up so damn often on TV and here at home. It's at least good to see people here have the issues sorted out. Sorry, if I came off in an accusatory tone.

There was nothing wrong with what they said in Rome, but the occasion shouldn't have been needed in the first place.
post #21 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by NoahJ:
<strong>

Really! you were there? What did the pope say?

We have no idea what really went on at the meeting in Rome. The Pope could have done many things that you, me and the media will never find out about. Before you write it off, know what happened.</strong><hr></blockquote>

To clarify i was going by what has been told to the public. So i really dont know, but people make opinons on what information they are given. Some of the people at that meeting are the cause of the problem in the first place. How can people that caused this mess really fully fix it?
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post #22 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by Dogcow:
<strong>

To clarify i was going by what has been told to the public. So i really dont know, but people make opinons on what information they are given. Some of the people at that meeting are the cause of the problem in the first place. How can people that caused this mess really fully fix it?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Maybe they were not there as ones to fix the situation, but as ones to be fixed? Whatever the case, the whole situation stinks terribly. I hope that whatever was said/done repairs the problem and quickly.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #23 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by roger_ramjet:
<strong>The celibacy issue is another matter entirely and has nothing to do with this scandal. I don't know why it seems to be the first thing people bring up. </strong><hr></blockquote>Are you certain they're not related? Sure, the main issue in this scandal is probably the institutional reaction rather than the individuals acts of priests. But I'm not so sure that there's no relation between celibacy and the child abuse itself.

I don't know of any direct evidence that they are related, but I'm not as certain as everyone else here seems to be that they're not. Celibacy is a pretty tough requirement, so who knows what it does?

For example, celibacy may suppress natural urges that want to come out, and so come out in inappropriate ways. Celibacy also may influence the type of sexual abuse that priests engage in compared to the rest of the population - priests may be more likely to molest boys, whereas most sexual abuse victims in general are girls. Maybe preventing marriage attracts a disproportionate number of homosexual men.

Again, who knows? But it doesn't seem so out of the question to me to think about a possible link between the two.
post #24 of 31
The problem of pedophilia of priest is (unfortunately) not specific of the catholic church hierarchy.

But the Catholic church was wrong in the managements of this deviants behaviors : displace the deviant people and not denounciate it to the justice. This way of acting is the root of the problem. The principle of the confessional's secret should not apply for this disguting acting, the future of our kids are more important in a moral point of vue than the confessional's secret. There was the same problem in France, aka a bishop who have just displaced a deviant priest. French justice has decided to sue the bishop. Church is not above justice. As a doctor there is a professional secret but it did not include pedophilia or violence against kids.

Concerning pedophilia, i will add that many deviants persons are married and have kids. You can find many of these people practicing sexual tourism in asia. This problem as nothing to do with the celiba which is an another problem.
post #25 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by BRussell:
<strong>
For example, celibacy may suppress natural urges that want to come out, and so come out in inappropriate ways. Celibacy also may influence the type of sexual abuse that priests engage in compared to the rest of the population - priests may be more likely to molest boys, whereas most sexual abuse victims in general are girls.</strong><hr></blockquote>

You seem to be suggesting that celibacy might cause a heterosexual man to become a homosexually oriented pedophile - a crackpot idea if I ever heard one.

If we were talking about priests and nuns getting it on, then I'd agree with you about celibacy being relevant. But we're not and it's not.

[ 04-25-2002: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</p>
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post #26 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by roger_ramjet:
<strong>You seem to be suggesting that celibacy might cause a heterosexual man to become a homosexually oriented pedophile - a crackpot idea if I ever heard one.</strong><hr></blockquote>No, you left out of your quote the last sentence of my paragraph: "Maybe preventing marriage attracts a disproportionate number of homosexual men." If that's true, it may influence the type of victims sex-abusive priests select.

But that's a separate issue from whether celibacy increases the overall rate of child sexual abuse. You seem convinced it does not, but I'm not so sure. I believe that sex is a pretty basic human motivation, and we don't really know what a life-long stifling of that motivation could do.
post #27 of 31
Like I said, you have to be pretty f-ed up to begin with if celibacy leads to pedophilic tendencies. Celibacy perhaps exposes those tendencies, but it is not a cause IMO. I've known enough decent priests, nuns, whoever who are or have been celibate without this kind of thing happening. The fact that, despite the hype, far more Catholic clergypeople are not pedophilic nuts is proof enough.
post #28 of 31
Oh boy.

A thread in which everyone can agree. err... no fun

Molester = bad. Even I get that. There's nothing especially interesting about that part of it.

However, the church's ability to shield clergy from prosecution has very interesting historical weight. Now my history is pretty (very) bad -- terrible phobia of dates and names -- but at many times in England and Europe, clergy (in the clerical sense: not really priests, but also scribes, monks, basically any literate person in the employ of a church) had access to trials under a different court than the rest of the population. This was a good thing, because offences that could get you killed in a secular court, might not bring much punishment in a clerical court. (I forget ALL the titles, sorry. You can check two sources though -- Any complete history of the English language, as this influenced the way legalease were imported into English, and any general History of Britain, as the back and forth Norman, Francien, Anglo-Saxon bickering swung this situation around a few times for obvious political reasons.

It has for some reason continued that churces and untill very recently 'Universities' in many western countries have a 'state-like' autonomy.

The university story is in Canada quite an interesting one. In 1975 (or is it 77, the dates and names phobia strikes again) a bunch of York University students got busted for producing Narcotics. They all got off because the police didn't have the proper authority to search/raid their operation. They didn't need the permission of a judge, they needed the permission of the dean! They didn't have that. No one would have really assumed that such archaisms were still respected. However, the defence lawyer did!

After that, things were ammended as far as universities go. I'm not sure if the Universities have to spell out their future co-operation with legal authorities (in a constitution or government bill) so that any law enforcement agencies who have legal approval have the tacit co-operation of the university by default. I don't know. I had a prof who was involved with this (now retired) Maybe I should e-mail him and find out?

Churches, however, continue to offer asylum. Here in Toronto a Chinese woman who was ordered deported 3 years ago, has remained holed-up in a church while relatives and community leaders petition for a new hearing.

It is a very interesting situation of deply rooted autonomous practice. As you'll note, the Church basically still has to agree to hand over priests. Even if those molesters are the worst bastards immaginable, they won't do this easily or quickly because the fear the precedent it sets -- not that crimes go punished, but who gets to do the punishing.
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post #29 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by BRussell:
<strong>No, you left out of your quote the last sentence of my paragraph: "Maybe preventing marriage attracts a disproportionate number of homosexual men."</strong><hr></blockquote>

I left it out because that's a seperate issue from the idea you presented that celibacy might distort one's sexuality. It's well worth considering whether or not the priesthood attracts a disproportionate number of homosexual men. But again, that doesn't seem very germane to the pedophilia issue unless you believe that homosexuals are more likely to be pedophiles than heterosexuals.

BRussell, check your messages.

[ 04-25-2002: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</p>
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post #30 of 31
&lt;atheist rant&gt;This just proves that this form of religion (that 'ol time religion...Catholic) is old. As old and decrepit as the Pope itself. When will we all learn that we all have to grow up and face reality? Face each other? Faith is within ourselves. Let's get real for a change.&lt;/atheist rant&gt;
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post #31 of 31
[quote]Originally posted by pscates:
<strong>Forgive me (haha...), but I didn't see this topic listed anywhere else. If it is and I overlooked it, feel free to close this redundant thread.

What's the thoughts and opinions among the gang here, regarding all this nasty "priest molesting little boys" stuff we're hearing so much about lately?

I have some very strong opinions on it and am pretty disgusted/amazed that there seems to be this whole weird half-ass "debate" in the church.

I mean, did these Cardinals have to fly all the way to Rome and hear it from the Pope himself to figure out that diddling little kids isn't cool?

What other profession out there could you fondle and molest children and NOT be imediately fired, arrested, etc.? Could any of us here do this in OUR lives/jobs/neighborhoods?

But some prick in a frock puts his hands down an 8-year-old's Fruit of the Looms, and everyone just wants to look the other way, make excuses and shuffle him off to another unsuspecting community.

Cardinals Law, Mahoney and the others who assisted in covering up and simply moving pedophile priests from one area to another and not reporting them are all equally to blame here.

I'm not Catholic, but I don't think one HAS to be in order to see the evil and wrong here.



What does everyone think/feel about this subject and all that's going on right now?

Some of you, I just can't WAIT to read your drawn-out, pointy-headed handwringing and excuse-making...don't let me down now! </strong><hr></blockquote>

I think the whole situation is absolutely hilarious. I hope the public sticks it to the cathlolic church just like those priests stuck it to those little boys...

I mean no disrespect to the victims of these terrible acts committed by these alleged purveyors of godly truth (wow try saying that with a straight face!).
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