Thursday, July 21, 2011

Enda Kenny proclaims the Irish Act of Supremacy over Rome



He didn’t issue an edict for the dissolution of the monasteries, and he didn’t quite assert ‘The Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this realm of (Ireland)”. And neither did he proclaim: ‘No foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate, hath, or ought to have, any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence, or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this realm.’

But he might as well have done.

Speaking in the Dáil yesterday (text and video), Enda Kenny said he was outraged by the Cloyne Report , which documents how allegations of child abuse by 19 priests in Cork (yes, 19 – in just one county) were purposely covered up by the Roman Catholic Church. In one instance of obvious deception, a bishop drafted different reports for Rome and diocesan records in order to protect a paedophile priest. And this wasn’t 30, 40 or 50 years ago. It wasn’t during the immediate post-Vatican II era when we are told these things were ‘less understood’. No, we are talking about the systematic cover-up of the rape and torture of children just three years ago.

Has the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland learned nothing?

Enda Kenny evidently thinks not, so he has proclaimed the Irish Act of Supremacy: “This is not Rome,” he said. “Nor is it industrial-school or Magdalene Ireland, where the swish of a soutane smothered conscience and humanity, and the swing of a thurible ruled the Irish-Catholic world. This is the ‘Republic’ of Ireland 2011. A Republic of laws, of rights and responsibilities, of proper civic order, where the delinquency and arrogance of a particular version of a particular kind of ‘morality’ will no longer be tolerated or ignored.”

Gosh.

Setting aside the inconvenient fact that the Irish Republic is more than content to submit to the immutable precepts of the Treaty of Rome; bow the knee to foreign princes and persons in Brussels; and obey ‘the delinquency and arrogance’ of the EU’s version of a particular kind of secular morality, Enda Kenny appears to have been possessed by the spirit of Dr Ian Paisley. In fact, if you replace ‘Republic’ with ‘Kingdom’ and ‘Ireland’ with ‘Britain’, Dr Paisley could have made much of the speech. Enda Kenny unequivocally condemned the Roman Catholic Church for the ‘horrors it perpetrated, hid and denied… In the name of God. But for the good of the institution’. He denounced the ‘attempt by the Holy See, to frustrate an Inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic’. And he thundered against clericalism, which ‘has rendered some of Ireland’s brightest, most privileged and powerful men, either unwilling or unable to address the horrors’ of paedophilia. “The Cloyne Report,” he said, “excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism, that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day.”

That’s good. That’s very good.

The Chairman of the Fine Gael parliamentary party, Charlie Flanagan, has demanded the expulsion of the Papal Nuncio. The Irish Parliament has issued a motion ‘deplor(ing) the Vatican's intervention, which contributed to the undermining of the child protection frameworks and guidelines of the Irish state and the Irish bishops’. And, laying down the law, they now ‘require confirmation from the Vatican that they do accept, endorse and require compliance by all Church authorities here with, the obligations to report all cases of suspected abuse, whether current or historical, to the State's authorities in line with the Children First National Guidance which will have the force of law’.

It is a classic ‘Pope or Parliament’ spat, of the sort we are very used to in England but which is a first for the predominantly Catholic Republic of Ireland. This is a country in which the church owns most schools and quite a few hospitals, and state-run broadcasters still issue a twice-daily call to Roman Catholics to fall on their knees and pray (a call which must be immensely vulnerable to challenge in the European Court of Human Rights). The present tension is between Canon Law, which permits priests accused of child abuse to appeal their cases to the Vatican, and Irish law, which demands that all suspects be immediately reported to the police. A confidential 1997 Vatican letter instructed Irish bishops to handle all allegations of child abuse strictly in accordance with Canon Law. It warned bishops that their child protection policy, particularly its emphasis on the need to report all suspected crimes to police, violated the Church’s law. The Cloyne Report reveals how one diocese in County Cork run by Bishop John Magee, a former private secretary to three popes, suppressed evidence of child rape and molestation as recently as 2009. It concludes that the Vatican was complicit, encouraging Irish bishops to collude and cover up all new crimes.

It appears, in Catholic Ireland, clerical hierarchy still rules. This is the fourth such report in the last six years to detail Rome’s attempts to conceal sexual abuse by Irish priests. The fact that the Vatican appears to be indifferent to their findings and reluctant to reform is causing potentially irreparable damage to relations between the Irish State and the Holy See: “The revelations,” Mr Kenny says, “have brought the government, Irish Catholics and the Vatican to an unprecedented juncture.”

It beggars belief, with the worldwide incidences of child rape, with new cases emerging almost by the week, that the rape and torture of children are, according to the Taoiseach, ‘downplayed or “managed” to uphold instead, the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and “reputation”.’ The inverted commas around that final word evidence Mr Kenny’s view of his church: it is devoid of humility, truth and contrition; its ‘reputation’ is tainted, if not worthless. The Vatican has adopted a ‘calculated withering position’ on clerical abuse, which he said was ‘the polar opposite of the radicalism, the humility and the compassion upon which the Roman Church was founded’. The church's leaders have repeatedly sought to defend their institutions at the expense of children and, in a delicious phrase almost worthy of Shakespeare, he seethes: “Far from listening to evidence of humiliation and betrayal with St Benedict’s ‘ear of the heart’, Vatican’s reaction was to parse and analyse it with the gimlet eye of a canon lawyer.”

The gimlet eye?

That's good! 'Gimlet eye' is good.

And not only that: the Vatican initially said they did not intend to make any specific response to this new report, and Father Federico Lombardi directly contradicted its findings, saying it was ‘somewhat strange to see the Vatican criticised so heavily’. You’ve got to admire his sense of priorities. He went on to talk of the problems of ‘mandatory reporting’ which give rise to ‘serious reservations of both a moral and a canonical nature’. He’s talking about the sanctity of the confessional, of course. Hitherto, Roman Catholics have been secure in the knowledge that they can confess their lies, lusts, greed, fornication, adultery and even murder to their priest, and it would go no further. Paedophilia, however, appears to be of a different order. His Grace can see the problem: either the confessional is confidential, or it is not. And if it is not, the sinner may think twice before unburdening himself (or herself) to the priest-informant.

But Fr Lombardi (not for the first time) fails to grasp the primary concern. In light of his astonishing arrogance, not to say public relations disaster, it comes as no surprise that Enda Kenny had no choice but to assert the primacy of the Irish Republic. The Vatican’s ‘particular kind of “morality”’ can no longer be tolerated. And, unfortunately, but quite understandably, he sets his sights firmly on the man who has probably done more than any of his predecessors to clear out the filth:
Cardinal Josef Ratzinger said: ‘Standards of conduct appropriate to civil society or the workings of a democracy cannot be purely and simply applied to the Church.’

As the Holy See prepares its considered response to the Cloyne Report, as Taoiseach, I am making it absolutely clear, that when it comes to the protection of the children of this State, the standards of conduct which the Church deems appropriate to itself, cannot and will not, be applied to the workings of democracy and civil society in this republic.

Not purely, or simply or otherwise.
Although Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, is quoted out of context, this declaration is seismic. Indeed, the whole speech is one of the most important in Irish history, if not one of the most significant in two millennia of Europe’s contorted church-state relations. This is not 1054, and neither is it quite 1517. But there are distinct undertones of 1534; of powers once exercised by popes being appropriated by kings; of politicians cutting a few more of those keys bequeathed to St Peter. If not quite passionately delivered, it was brilliantly written and ensures that Enda Kenny’s place in history will not be defined by bailouts or confined to economic oblivion. Brilliantly, by denouncing the Church of Rome, this Taoiseach may sufficiently deflect attention from the Treaty of Rome, whence emanates the true ‘dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, and narcissism’. Canon Law is one thing. But Community Law is quite another. On the correlation, His Grace will quote the wise observations of Lord Shore of Stepney, from his book Separate Ways:
…no one who has been engaged seriously in the business of examining draft EC laws and treaties can have any doubt about their quite extraordinary – and deliberate - complexity. Every new article or treaty clause is, with reference to articles in earlier treaties - generally to be located in a separate treaty volume. Indeed part of the whole mystique of Community Law is its textual incomprehensibility, its physical dispersal, its ambivalence and its dependence upon ultimate clarification by the European Court of Justice: and the Brussels Commission and their long-serving, often expert officials are, in interpreting and manipulating all this, like a priestly caste - similar to what it must have been in pre-Reformation days, when the Bible was in Latin, not English; the Pope, his cardinals and bishops decided the content of canon law and the message came down to the laymen, only when the Latin text was translated into the vernacular by the dutiful parish priest.
In the words of Qoheleth, “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.”

But the problem the Vatican has is that, for as long as it is giving refuge to Cardinal Bernard Law within its sacred precincts, it is simply not credible for the Pope, Fr Lombardi or anyone else to assert that the Vatican is prioritising the needs of the children. If His Holiness were really prepared to do 'everything possible' to heal this appalling wound, he would not only remove Cardinal Bernard Law from his Vatican sinecure, he would also remove his cardinal’s hat and hand him over to Boston's police department, in order that those boys who were tortured and raped on his watch, while he stealthily shuffled his paedophile priests hither and thither and lied to the authorities about their conduct, might experience justice.

Until then, we need a few more like Enda Kenny, who remind us, however imperfectly, in the spirit of Josiah and Luther, that reformation is not a monument to an event in time, but a perpetual movement of living faith.

102 Comments:

Blogger The Thirsty Gargoyle said...

It's a shame, then, and I say this as a lifelong Fine Gael voter, that in saying that the Vatican had attempted to frustrate the Inquiry into Cloyne, Enda lied to the Dail, and he was allowed to do so.

The Report doesn't say anything to that effect. Section 2.11 says that the Nuncio said it didn't deal with abuse cases (which is true), that the Diocese would have all the relevant information (which it did, including privileged copies of everything it had sent to Rome), and that the Diocese was obliged to comply with national laws and regulations (which it did). And indeed section 2.12 goes on to say that the Diocese handed over everything of relevance, even if it was privileged. How, by any definition, could this be construed as a failure to cooperate with the Inquiry, much less an attempt to frustrate it?

Even the now notorious 1997 'intervention', as the Tanaiste has called it, wasn't an intervention so much as a straightforward reply! The bishops had sought approval for a document they'd drawn up in 1996, and didn't get it as the Vatican congregation responsible felt it'd conflict with existing rules such that if any abusive priest were to appeal against decisions made under the Framework document, they might well get off on procedural grounds! That 1997 reply went on to say that the canon law rules had to be followed 'meticulously'. Canon law wasn't followed in Cloyne, so even claims that the Vatican's reply had encouraged those who didn't want to follow the Framework Document don't hold water. They weren't going to play by any rules at all.

Seriously, people should pull up the pdf of the report and do some searches for 'Rome', 'Vatican', 'Nuncio', and 'Congregation'. They'll soon see that a huge amount of what's being claimed about the Report is complete nonsense.

The Cloyne Report shows only one thing, which is that the best procedures in the world are meaningless if people aren't willing to follow them. It recognises that the Irish Church's procedures and safeguarding policies and systems for monitoring are far better than those of the State, and it makes all too clear that one his bishop and one monsignor were unwilling to follow them.

Enda's just using child abuse as a political football, trying to distract people from the fact that the Government's already proving a huge disappointment -- all the headlines just a week ago was about how badly things were going for it.

21 July 2011 10:37  
Blogger Trisagion said...

I heard Kenny's welcome speech to Obama in Dublin and thought to myself, 'Here's a demagogue who could out Obama Obama.' I've just listened to his speech to the Dail and see no reason to reconsider my judgement. His speech, like the rest of the largely synthetic outrage being whipped up by Irish politicos, is simply part of a strategy to deflect attention from the complicity of the Irish state in all of this and from the complete balls they've made of managing the economy. Fortunately there are enough people around in Ireland who know that what The Thirsty Gargoyle posted above corresponds more closely to reality to ensure the demagoguery won't be the last word. That Your Grace has fallen for it simply confirms both the prudence and justice of Your Grace's own conflagatory end.

21 July 2011 11:00  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

Mr Trisagion,

Fallen for it?

His Grace suggests you read the post again, taking special note of:

"Brilliantly, by denouncing the Church of Rome, this Taoiseach may sufficiently deflect attention from the Treaty of Rome, whence emanates the true ‘dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, and narcissism’."

Or perhaps you are simply blinded by your own manifest prejudice.

21 July 2011 11:04  
Anonymous Saddo said...

His Grace's misplaced and premature triumphalism in this case and in this post is graceless and does him no credit..

21 July 2011 11:12  
Anonymous Saddo said...

I shake my head in sorrow at His Grace's use of the phrase 'manifest prejudice'.

21 July 2011 11:14  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Hornets' nest, stick, poke! :o)

Whatever the motivation, it needed to be said. For all Ireland, it needed to be said, and clearly!

21 July 2011 11:18  
Anonymous Greg Tingey said...

Only taken either 89 or 477 years to get it right.
But better late than never I suppose.

As for Brussels - well, that domino will fall of its' own weight and vreation fairly soon, I think.

21 July 2011 11:29  
Anonymous Richard B said...

The Boston police department is not interested in Cardinal Law. Nor is any other state or federal judicial, prosecutorial, or investigatorial body. Personally I think they should be, but the fact remains they have been quite clear that his matter is closed. There is no warrant or subpoena outstanding (and, contrary to popular belief, he did return to Boston after his original undignified exit, and spent some time testifying to a grand Jury).

Nor is he in the Vatican. He lives and works (mainly as a glorified parish priest) in the City of Rome (he may have some minor Vatican sinecure as well, I'm not sure, but his flat is certainly in Rome, not the Vatican), which is undeniably part of Italy, a country with which the US has normal extradition relations.

Re The Thirsty Gargoyles comment above, His Grace doubtless knows this but it is perhaps worth observing that the Vatican Congregation in question was not Ratzingers CDF but (then) Castrillon Hoyos Congregation for Clergy. That Castrillon Hoyos and Ratzinger took radically different views on the precise point in issue - mandatory reporting - is often claimed and seems to be true (witness the spat over Maciel). Four years after that 1997 letter Ratzinger won that battle by having it made clear that abuse was a CDF province, prior to that no one seems to have been entirely clear which department was supposed to be in charge, which was one element of the problem.

21 July 2011 11:38  
Anonymous Sov_Res said...

His Grace's post is too long... To the barber's with his beard. ;-)

21 July 2011 11:50  
Blogger Albert said...

I have no desire to come to the defence of anyone who has covered up or ordered a cover up of any abuse. I too do not understand the position of Cardinal Law. The way in which the Congregation for Clergy was run at the time of the 1997 letter is reprehensible. Richard has rightly pointed out the differences within the Vatican over this latter issue.

I would however like to comment on what is being said about Fr Lombardi. It seems to me that there is a lack of fairness here. He is quoted as saying:

‘somewhat strange to see the Vatican criticised so heavily’. You’ve got to admire his sense of priorities.

This appears to relate to the 1997 letter of the Apostolic Nuncio. Fr Lombardi makes two points which are significant.

(i) The 1997 letter is not an "instruction" at all as Dr Cranmer states. Says Lombardi:

although one can argue about the adequacy of Rome’s intervention [actually probably not, it was just inadequate], in relation to the seriousness of the situation in Ireland at the time--there is no reason to interpret that letter as being intended to cover up cases of abuse. In fact, it warned against the risk that measures were being taken which could later turn out to be questionable or invalid from the canonical point of view, thus defeating the purpose of the effective sanctions proposed by the Irish bishops.

In other words, unless the canon law was right, then someone might get off on a procedural issue - which is the case in any legal context.

(ii) Fr Lombardi did not simply say that is was ‘somewhat strange to see the Vatican criticised so heavily’. His full comments was:

“Moreover, there is absolutely nothing in the letter that is an invitation to disregard the laws of the country. The objection the letter referred to regarded the obligation to provide information to civil authorities (‘mandatory reporting’), it did not object to any civil law to that effect, because it did not exist in Ireland at that time (and proposals to introduce it were subject to discussion for various reasons in the same civil sphere).”

“Therefore, the severity of certain criticisms of the Vatican are curious, as if the Holy See was guilty of not having given merit under canon law to norms which a State did not considered necessary to give value under civil law.”


I think that puts a slightly different angle on the quotation.

(iii) I am sure that Dr Cranmer is right, some (but probably not all) of this is to do with the Seal of the Confessional. Does Anglican canon law allow the disclosure of information about child abuse heard in the confessional?

21 July 2011 11:52  
Blogger Albert said...

Just as an extra point. Whatever Enda Kenny meant, I don't expect he intended his words in the Erastian sense Dr Cranmer has taken them. He is probably merely trying to defend the Christian tradition that there are two spheres: Church and state. If so, then his complaint that the Church has violated the proper jurisdiction of the state would be largely contradicted if he meant that the state could violate the proper jurisdiction of the Church - as happened in Anglicanism.

21 July 2011 11:57  
Blogger Span Ows said...

Holy Jesus, Mary and Joseph! serious stuff...and long overdue!

21 July 2011 12:03  
Anonymous Saddo said...

I am sure with his usual zeal for justice His Grace will want his readers to take this into account:

>Enda Kenny has taken out of context an extract from Cardinal Ratzinger’s document on the role of the theologian in the Church. As David Quinn explains Cardinal Ratzinger was stating that the Truth cannot be decided by a majority vote. Basically Cardinal Ratzinger was challenging theologians who use opinion poll arguments to justify dissent from the doctrines of the church. In the same paragraph as the extract quoted by Enda Kenny the cardinal wrote:

‘Polling public opinion to determine the proper thing to think or do,opposing the Magisterium by exerting the pressure of public opinion,making the excuse of a “consensus” among theologians,maintaining that the theologian is the prophetical spokesman of a “base”or autonomous community which would be the source of all truth,all this indicates a grave loss of the sense of truth and of the sense of the Church.’

As any fair minded reader can see *Enda Kenny was wrong to use this extract as evidence that Pope Benedict believes that the Church is above the laws of the State*.

Though he is obviously right to believe this about some bishops in the Church,such as Bishop Magee,the emeritus bishop of Cloyne,and others who have been exposed as hiding child abuse from the police, but this accusation cannot be made against Pope Benedict.

Enda Kenny misrepresents Pope Benedict’s position on child abuse by clergy by completely ignoring the actions and words of the Holy Father over the past six years to condemn the ‘filth’of these crimes,to meet the victims of abuse,and to further tighten up the norms and rules dealing with allegations of child abuse.

The fact that Enda Kenny completely ignores Pope Benedict’s letter to the faithful in Ireland about the Church’s failure regarding child abuse is astounding. Here’s what Pope Benedict wrote about the failure of Irish bishops:

‘It cannot be denied that some of you and your predecessors failed,at times grievously, to apply the long-established norms of canon law to the crime of child abuse. Serious mistakes were made in responding to allegations. I recognize how difficult it was to grasp the extent and complexity of the problem, to obtain reliable information and to make the right decisions in the light of conflicting expert advice. Nevertheless,it must be admitted that grave errors of judgement were made and failures of leadership occurred. All this has seriously undermined your credibility and effectiveness. I appreciate the efforts you have made to remedy past mistakes and to guarantee that they do not happen again. Besides fully implementing the norms of canon law in addressing cases of child abuse, **continue to cooperate with the civil authorities** in their area of competence.’<

http://goo.gl/O3Lsn

21 July 2011 12:30  
Blogger webeida said...

Regardless of the motivation for Enda's speech, the point is that "rape & torture" of children is WRONG. Covering it up is WRONG. Moving paedophilic priests from Parish to Parish is WRONG. That 19 children were abused in one parish is WRONG. That people who knew about these wrongdoings could not or did not speak up against them was WRONG.

You folks can argue all the points of civil law, canonical law, current law, and proposed law until you are blue in the face but don't lose sight of the fact: Irish children were being "raped and tortured" by religious representatives who are supposed to take care of God's Children. That is the biggest WRONG that has been inflicted on the young people of this State by an institution that is based on the ideals of the "Son of God": he too being a child at one time. Imagine if he was "raped and tortured" by the religious individuals of his time? Would God have allowed the rape of his Child to continue?

21 July 2011 12:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But it is Enda's speech His Grace is discussing, not whether or not the rape and torture of children, and the subsequent cover up is wrong. I doubt anyone commenting here would doubt the heinous nature of such crimes or deny that they happened. Should we make such an obvious statement explicitly by rote every time we post on the subject at all?
What is actually in issue is whose fault it was and what should be done about it now.

21 July 2011 13:10  
Anonymous Sean Robsville said...

Are we seeing the effects of karma with institutionalised evil being brought into the light of day? In his previous incarnation as Cardinal Ratzinger, Pope Benedict referred to Buddhists as 'a bunch of w*nkers' . But now the Catholic Church has been found guilty of something far worse than autoeroticism.

Perhaps after the inevitable demise of Roman Catholicism in Ireland, the Irish may rediscover their original spiritual tradition - Celtic Buddhism.

21 July 2011 13:21  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

Hardly on a par with Josiah, though maybe equal to Luther.

Enda Kenny rightly says that the Church needs to be truly and deeply penitent for the horrors it perpetrated, hid and denied. He expresses the anger and frustration that many feel about the appalling failure of the Diocese of Cloyne to protect children, and the past inertia of the Vatican. He is right to be angry with a clericalism that puts the status of clergy before the protection of children. He is right to be angry at any sign of narcissism and elitism among the clergy.

But the Taoiseach is wrong to misrepresent the words of Pope Benedict and ignore the significant actions the Holy Father has taken to tackle child abuse. The conclusion of his speech falsely portrays Pope Benedict as advocating that the Catholic Church was above the laws of the state.

Enda Kenny has taken out of context an extract from Cardinal Ratzinger’s document on the role of the theologian in the Church. I think this merits greater attention than the passing reference you give it.

Basically Cardinal Ratzinger was challenging theologians who use opinion poll arguments to justify dissent from the doctrines of the church. In the same paragraph as the extract quoted by Enda Kenny the cardinal wrote:

“Polling public opinion to determine the proper thing to think or do, opposing the Magisterium by exerting the pressure of public opinion, making the excuse of a “consensus” among theologians, maintaining that the theologian is the prophetical spokesman of a “base” or autonomous community which would be the source of all truth, all this indicates a grave loss of the sense of truth and of the sense of the Church.”

Enda Kenny was wrong to use this extract as evidence that Pope Benedict believes that the Church is above the laws of the State.
Enda Kenny also completely ignores Pope Benedict’s letter to Catholics in Ireland about the Church’s failure regarding child abuse. Here’s what Pope Benedict wrote about the failure of Irish bishops:

“It cannot be denied that some of you and your predecessors failed, at times grievously, to apply the long-established norms of canon law to the crime of child abuse. Serious mistakes were made in responding to allegations ... it must be admitted that grave errors of judgement were made and failures of leadership occurred. All this has seriously undermined your credibility and effectiveness ... Besides fully implementing the norms of canon law in addressing cases of child abuse, continue to cooperate with the civil authorities in their area of competence.”

Enda Kenny completely ignores the Holy Father’s public statement that the bishops of Ireland must co-operate with the State regarding child abuse.

21 July 2011 13:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Archbishop Cranmer wrote:
"Until then we need a few more like Enda Kenny, who remind us, however imperfectly, in the spirit of Josiah and Luther, that reformation is not a monument to an event in time, but a perpetual movement of living faith."

Looks like you have "fallen for it"!

21 July 2011 13:32  
Blogger Albert said...

Webeida,

I agree entirely with what anonymous says at 13.10. I would be horrified to think that anyone would take my remarks as in any sense losing sight of the wickedness of child-abuse and covering up the crime.

The issue is one of justice. Justice is not served if the innocent are unjustly attacked and misrepresented. Neither is justice done to those who have suffered, if people use their suffering as an occasion unjustly to score points.

21 July 2011 13:34  
Blogger webeida said...

Points taken and acknowledged, Anonymous and Albert.

21 July 2011 14:19  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

A few comments.

1. Certainly in the US (and I presume the pattern hold elsewhere) the 'pedophile' crisis was in fact primarily a problem of homosexual men seducing vulnerable teenaged boys. It wasn't about men raping pre-pubescent children. We should never forget that salient fact.

2. The RCC has no special dispensation to follow Canon Law at the expense of Civil Law. The state is within its authority to compel its citizens to report crimes. Child abuse is a crime. "Follow Canon Law as opposed to Civil Law" is in this case both bad advice and bad theology. The King is not commanding what God has forbidden, nor is he forbidding what God has commanded. The King is demanding obedience to his rightful authority. He must be obeyed.

carl

21 July 2011 14:46  
Blogger ENGLISHMAN said...

A good thing this was not holocaust denial,otherwise all the priests would be up before the beak before they could rearrange thier cassocks.This is symbolic of the times that we exist in,and society is well on the way down the slippery slope,lust has been released from its confines of morality,and now there is quite a menu,buggery is "normal",the eussr encourages people to sexually stimulate thier babies,and paedophilia is on the short list like an olympic sport,after clogging the drains with condoms,and those who should be inducing spiritual expansion in mankind have decided to call it a day and get thier rocks off,while other argue about cannon law,if it was not for the suffering of the innocent,i would be apoplectic with laughter,you all wanted "freedom",well here it is,enjoy your sewer.

21 July 2011 15:03  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

The Vatican’s ‘particular kind of “morality”’

The Vatican has NO morality (not simply a particular kind). This loathsome organisation is beneath contempt, concerned more for its “reputation” than concern for those that it has so cruelly abused and no contrition for the sins that it has committed. That it still claims moral authority shows how utterly corrupt it is.

21 July 2011 15:22  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

carl jacobs said ...
"The RCC has no special dispensation to follow Canon Law at the expense of Civil Law. The state is within its authority to compel its citizens to report crimes. Child abuse is a crime. "Follow Canon Law as opposed to Civil Law" is in this case both bad advice and bad theology. The King is not commanding what God has forbidden, nor is he forbidding what God has commanded. The King is demanding obedience to his rightful authority. He must be obeyed."

Two problems with the above comment.

Firstly, Ireland doesn't have a King it is a Republic!

Secondly, the Pope has never suggested the Church put canon law above civil law!

21 July 2011 16:03  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

When the Church began witchunts, they claimed our ancestors were Satanic because they mimicked the Church.

But surely if the Old Religion already existed, then the Church was parodying them.

Either the Vatican was telling the truth, or the Vatican was telling lies. Identify the Lie.

I say they lied and our Older Faith was the true Faith, which means Satan has already had a Thousand years of lies and abuse through Rome.

The game is up, slay the Dragon!

21 July 2011 16:03  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Whoever would have thought a commenter could be naive enough(faux-naif?) to suppose Mr carl jacob would be so ignorant as not to know that the Republic of Ireland has no king?

It's enough to make a Village Explainer wonder whatever came over Uncle Toby.

21 July 2011 16:27  
Blogger English Viking said...

Sov Res,

Perhaps it is simply that your attention span is too small?

I laughed when I saw the words 'Papal Nuncio' in today's posting. I at first thought it read 'Noncio'!

What more proof is needed to show the utter depravity of the doctrines, conduct, clerics ands cover-ups of the Satanically inspired cult of Roman Catholicism?

Popeyness is very, very dirty.

21 July 2011 16:32  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

MrJ said...
Whoever would have thought a commenter could be naive enough(faux-naif?) to suppose Mr carl jacob would be so ignorant as not to know that the Republic of Ireland has no king?"

Well he is an American and these colonials do tend to be behind the times.

21 July 2011 17:16  
Anonymous MrJ said...

I guess coming from EV "Satanically inspired cult of Roman Catholicism" is not an expression of bigotry, and is likely to be more than a proposition of speculative theology, and be founded on or connected with scripture.

Are all "cults" satanically inspired in this sense, and what then is deemed to be a cult?

Are some more satanical than others, that is, in the Christian Era?

21 July 2011 17:18  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Toby the Jug (17:16) ... "he is an American and these colonials do tend to be behind the times."

Here's hoping he will take that in the jesting spirit which we are used to at the Jug and Bottle.

21 July 2011 17:26  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Toby the Jug

Firstly, Ireland doesn't have a King it is a Republic!

Quite right. I was merely using the phrase 'king' to represent all temporal authorities.

Secondly, the Pope has never suggested the Church put canon law above civil law!

And what then am I to make of this statement?

A confidential 1997 Vatican letter instructed Irish bishops to handle all allegations of child abuse strictly in accordance with Canon Law. It warned bishops that their child protection policy, particularly its emphasis on the need to report all suspected crimes to police, violated the Church’s law.

Said statement was the proximate cause of my comment.

[H]e is an American and these colonials do tend to be behind the times

Which means I know 1) it's called Soccer and not Football and 2) Cricket is a bug. On the other hand, I do enjoy observing the American stereotypes that one finds in British murder mysteries. And I truly wish American TV could produce something as good as Inspector Morse.

carl

21 July 2011 17:43  
Anonymous not a machine said...

mmm does seem an unusual attack , when EU is publically going bust .

Your grace does make an important point about robes and evading justice for such a crime though.

My view of Edna Kenny was mixed , he won on the back of the outrage of utterly corrupt previous government , but never seemed to have any mandate that really represented irelands situation .

he seemed to win by not being tainted ,rather than plan to rescue Ireland from the EU .

I still dont know what he stands for and he certainly isnt anti EU (as difficult as an idea that may be in Irelands financial situation)

His holiness pope Benedict perhaps is surprised , although after todays EU spin , I wonder if he appreciates the protestant contributuion to demanding balanced and transparent expenses .

21 July 2011 17:43  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

And what then am I to make of this statement?

"A confidential 1997 Vatican letter instructed Irish bishops to handle all allegations of child abuse strictly in accordance with Canon Law. It warned bishops that their child protection policy, particularly its emphasis on the need to report all suspected crimes to police, violated the Church’s law."

Said statement was the proximate cause of my comment.


Except that that letter wasn't an instruction, wasn't written by the Pope - or even Cardinal Ratzinger, and at the time of the letter, it wasn't breaking any Irish civil law, because they did not have a law requiring people to report such crimes (apparently).

21 July 2011 18:22  
Anonymous Kamehameha said...

Cardinal Law isn't wanted for questioning by the police in Boston. They've issued no arrest warrant, and haven't sought to extradite him. Why then should he be handed over to the Boston police department if they don't actually want him?

21 July 2011 18:26  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

MrJ said...
"I guess coming from EV "Satanically inspired cult of Roman Catholicism" is not an expression of bigotry, and is likely to be more than a proposition of speculative theology, and be founded on or connected with scripture."

Please stop ... my handle will fall off if I laugh too much!

'Popiness is dirtyness' is as far as you'll get theologically with English Viking and he is a bigot. He attacks Catholics, not Catholicism. Recently he claimed Hindus were no better than monkeys.

21 July 2011 18:28  
Blogger len said...

The stink of corruption emanating from the Catholic church is becoming such that few( but the most indoctrinated Catholics) cannot but help notice it.

"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men's bones and everything unclean.(Matthew 23:27)

21 July 2011 18:33  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

carl

Following on from Albert's comment I would add that having not seen the letter it is hard to respond to its supposed content.

If the canonical barrier is the seal of the Confessional then there is no way around this. In Catholic teaching, as you know, Confession is seen as a Sacrament instituted by Christ for the forgiveness of sins. The law of the Church is uncompromising on this.

"Regarding the sins revealed to him in sacramental confession, the priest is bound to inviolable secrecy. From this obligation he cannot be excused either to save his own life or good name, to save the life of another, to further the ends of human justice, or to avert any public calamity. No law can compel him to divulge the sins confessed to him, or any oath which he takes — e.g., as a witness in court. He cannot reveal them either directly — i.e., by repeating them in so many words — or indirectly — i.e., by any sign or action, or by giving information based on what he knows through confession. The only possible release from the obligation of secrecy is the permission to speak of the sins given freely and formally by the penitent himself. Without such permission, the violation of the seal of confession would not only be a grievous sin, but also a sacrilege."
(New Advent-Catholic Encyclopedia )

21 July 2011 18:44  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Albert

Except that that letter wasn't an instruction, wasn't written by the Pope - or even Cardinal Ratzinger, and at the time of the letter, it wasn't breaking any Irish civil law, because they did not have a law requiring people to report such crimes (apparently).


I am willing to be convinced, but this looks an awful lot like an instruction to me.

The Congregation wishes to emphasize the need for this document to conform to the canonical norms presently in force.

The text, however, contains “procedures and dispositions which appear contrary to canonical discipline and which, if applied, could invalidate the acts of the same Bishops who are attempting to put a stop to these problems. If such procedures were to be followed by the Bishops and there were cases of eventual hierarchical recourse lodged at the Holy See, the results could be highly embarrassing and detrimental to those same Diocesan authorities.

In particular, the situation of ‘mandatory reporting’ gives rise to serious reservations of both a moral and a canonical nature.

Since the policies on sexual abuse in the English speaking world exhibit many o[f] the same characteristics and procedures, the Congregation is involved in a global study of them. At the appropriate time, with the collaboration of the interested Episcopal Conferences and in dialogue with them, the Congregation will not be remiss in establishing some concrete directives with regard to these Policies.

For these reasons and because the abovementioned text is not an official document of the Episcopal Conference but merely a study document, I am directed to inform the individual Bishops of Ireland of the preoccupations of the Congregation in its regard, underlining that in the sad cases of accusations of sexual abuse by clerics, the procedures established by the Code of Canon Law must be meticulously followed under pain of invalidity of the acts involved if the priest so punished were to make hierarchical recourse against his Bishop.


It seems they were concerned that actions taken to satisfy civil law might rebound to the embarrassment of the RCC.

carl

21 July 2011 18:48  
Blogger Fr Levi said...

A small point, your Grace. You said: 'The present tension is between Canon Law, which permits priests accused of child abuse to appeal their cases to the Vatican, and Irish law, which demands that all suspects be immediately reported to the police.' There is, in fact, no mandatory reporting law in Ireland to date. The Irish Government has yet to enact any, despite all the child abuse scandals that have emerged over the last 15 years.

21 July 2011 18:59  
Blogger English Viking said...

Toby,

I said that Hindus are 'little better', not 'no better', there is a difference. I always pick my words carefully.

'...But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like BRUTE BEASTS, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like BEASTS they too will perish.' 2 Peter 2 v 10

A biblical description of those who follow the sensual in the name of the spiritual. Rather like Hindus and Catholics.

Is God a bigot, Toby?

Mr J,

My opinion, as you asked so nicely:

A cult is a psuedo-religious order which revolves around someone or something other than God. I think it therefore fair to describe all religions other than biblical Christianity as idolatry, or cults, if you wish.

The particularly dangerous ones are the so-called Christian cults, i.e those which purport to be biblically Christian, but upon closer inspection (in most cases not very close, as the discrepancies are obvious) prove to be following a system or person which is not only not God, but is prohibited and denounced in The Bible.

Catholics are following a hotch-potch combination of the Pope, superstition and Mary, and is therefore a cult. They hope to earn their salvation, pay for their own sins (usually with cash, but sometimes with repeated chanting of 'prayers' to a dead woman) and think that an ex-member of the Hilter Youth is a prime example of a Christian, whose utterances whilst sitting on his 'throne' (oh, please, make it stop) are infallible, even though they often either openly contradict either The Bible, his predecessors (who are supposed to have been equally infallible) or else are so vague and insipid they can mean at once both anything and nothing.

As regards being Satanically inspired, Oh yeah, baby.

21 July 2011 19:03  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

len

Do leave off - what have the Pharisees to do with the Roman Catholic Church? Not the old chestnut about 'salvation through works' I hope?

Have you kept up to date with the Pope's determination to root this evil out of the Church? Satan must be rubbing his hands with glee at the damage caused to the Church and to Christianity more widely by this shocking scandal.

Do try to be more balanced in your observations and less triumphalist. It's unbecoming. Most Catholics feel a deep sense of shame about the behaviour of these priests and fully support the Pope in the action being taken.

21 July 2011 19:04  
Anonymous Greg Tingey said...

EV
We are all a little better than monkeys, actually.
It's called about 10 million years of evolution.

21 July 2011 19:37  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

English Viking said ...
"A biblical description of those who follow the sensual in the name of the spiritual. Rather like Hindus and Catholics.
Is God a bigot, Toby?"

God isn't a bigot but you most certainly are. You sound like an ass and not one Divinely inspired!

Catholics can't be accussed of following a spiritual sensuality. Certain Hindu sects see sexuality as the route to the 'Godhead' and engage in acts of depravity to achieve this. The Catholic sexual ethic is far removed from this.

A small minority of Catholic priests abused their position and the a number of senior clergy in heirarchy of the Church failed to act properly and decisively. The Pope is taking action and the Church as a human organisation has learned the lessons.

"And I say to you: That you are Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."
(Matthew 16:18)

21 July 2011 19:43  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

St Peters keys origin
"upon his tiara, two crossed keys upheld by two kneeling Brahmins"

The Flamens of Rome were Brahmin, the word convent comes from coven and the struggle bewteen Priest and King for dominance is as old as the Hills.

All seven of them.

21 July 2011 19:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your grace,

I do wish that references to "Catholics" could be routinely amended to read "Roman Catholics".

Many of us who say the Creed profess to the Holy Catholic and Apostolic .. Church. This is clearly a very different organisation the the "Catholic" church, which is routinely struggling with these unseemly matters.

21 July 2011 19:56  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

English Viking

Still pedalling your peculiarly perverse and wilful misunderstanding of Roman Catholicism?

Do give me examples where Popes:
" ... openly contradict either The Bible, his predecessors (who are supposed to have been equally infallible) or else are so vague and insipid they can mean at once both anything and nothing."

As for the accusation that Catholics
" ... hope to earn their salvation, pay for their own sins (usually with cash, but sometimes with repeated chanting of 'prayers' to a dead woman)...", you know this to be false.

21 July 2011 19:59  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Mr English Viking, Thank you for the helpful reply at 19:03: "... fair to describe all religions other than biblical Christianity as idolatry, or cults, if you wish. The particularly dangerous ones are ... those which purport to be biblically Christian, but... prove to be following a system or person which is not only not God, but is prohibited and denounced in The Bible."

You may have noticed that Mr carl jacob mentioned some days back (other threads) adiaphora (16 July 17:23), and theopneustos (19 July 05:59). To my mind, these may also be helpful in resolving doubts, and, for example, when distinguishing between bigots and goads.

21 July 2011 19:59  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

len said...
(on another thread)

"Paul ,Saul of Tarsus. In my mind a big question mark hangs over Paul.Man of God or Pharisee?.
Paul seems to have taken the message of Jesus and turned it into the 'religion of Paul'.
Thoughts anyone?
Mohammed had an encounter with an 'angel', Paul a blinding light.
Jesus said I saw Satan fall like 'lightning from Heaven'.Satan himself appears as an Angel of Light."

I'd be interested in reactions to this challenge to Holy Scripture and the canonical authenticity of the Acts of the Apostles and Paul's writings.

Is there another Protestant Reformation in the air?

21 July 2011 20:07  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

Mr J

Nah, English Viking is a bigot and not a goad. We all know it.

21 July 2011 20:13  
Blogger English Viking said...

Greg,

Star Wars contains more science than the unproven theory of evolution.

Toby,

I sound like an ass?

Balaam's, I hope, when he warned his master he could not see the spiritual which he could see, plainly in front of him.

You confuse sensual with sexual. You are understandably touching on the matter of hundreds, even thousands of child molesting 'priests', but that, on this occasion, was not my point.

I meant that Catholicism is designed by men, obviously so, to appeal to his senses and assuage his guilt with false promises that, if he were truly honest with himself, the catholic follower would see were utterly devoid of the spiritual.

How cant chanting to Mary take away sin, or even be 'penance' (another un-biblical doctrine)? If Christ has paid for my sins, why must I pay again in purgatory?
Why is the Pope so important when he doesn't get a mention in the Bible? Why does he have his own palace, his own country even, and live like a King, faring sumptiously every day, when Peter was a pauper, and Christ had nowhere to lay His head?

But don't let these things bother you, just look at the fantastic architecture, smell the incense, light a candle, lull yourself with monastic chanting, wonder at the astonishing artworks, paintings and sculptures. Be enthralled by a man in a pointy hat and dress. But not a peep of Christ. Anything and everything to thrill the heart and mind but Christ.

Just put another tenner in the bag, say 3 Hail Mary's and all will be forgiven. Provided you never leave the cult, of course. Then you'd really be in trouble.

Oh, go on then, just a fiver this week. But 3 more Hail Mary's.

You see now? Ridiculous sensuality.

PS Stop calling me names. I don't find it offensive, just childish.

21 July 2011 20:14  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

It seems to me that it is clearly not an instruction. It refers to on going discussion about how to deal with the problem and says that a directive will be given at some point in the future (i.e. this is not an instruction itself). Moreover, the letter is not written from the Congregation in the Vatican which has authority to make instructions, but by the Apostolic Nuncio, who has no authority to make instructions.

It seems they were concerned that actions taken to satisfy civil law might rebound to the embarrassment of the RCC.

Again: there was no civil law in Ireland on this. The embarrassment therefore to which the letter refers is that the Irish Bishops might aim to look tough on abusive priests, only to have their actions undone because due process was not followed. Note: the letter never seeks to impose a sanction on someone who violates canon law (as might be expected from an instruction), it simply points out that if canon law is violated, the actions will be invalid. Considering the aim is to ensure the safety of children, this is not an unfair point to make.

21 July 2011 20:15  
Blogger English Viking said...

Dodo,

I've told you numerous times that I will no longer debate the matter with you, as you continually fail to answer the simplest of question and misrepresent your opponent's position, so much so that you even manage to repeatedly infuriate your host.

Just one example, and then no more from me to you on this thread.

The Pope teaches a celibate 'priesthood'. The Bible teaches that a sure sign of a false teacher is that he will prohibit marriage. It also speaks nowhere of a hierarchical clerisy in NT administration. 1 Tim chap 4.

21 July 2011 20:23  
Blogger English Viking said...

Albert,

'...there was no civil law in Ireland on this...'

A shocking defence of the cover-up of child-rape.

The law of wanting to protect a child from a rapist should be written in a man's heart, not in book, Christian or not.

21 July 2011 20:26  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Mr Toby the Jug (20:13)..." English Viking is a bigot... We all know it."

We?

As ever, he is well able to speak for himself, and has answered above, in a way that cannot fairly be regarded as bigoted.

21 July 2011 20:34  
Blogger Albert said...

A shocking defence of the cover-up of child-rape.

Follow the thread, Viking. The issue is simply whether, if clergy did not report abusive priests to the police - for example if they heard of it in confession - they would be breaking the law.

The 1997 does not ask for a cover-up and does not ask anyone to break the law.

21 July 2011 20:44  
Blogger English Viking said...

Albert,

You're doing it again.

The point is not what man's law says, it is what God thinks on a matter that is the be all and end all to a Christian.

Are you seriously telling me that you would not report a 'priest' to the Police if there was no man-made law which impelled you to do so, simply for fear of bringing the 'church' into disrepute?

'Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:'

Isaiah 29 v 13


Astonishing.

21 July 2011 21:15  
Blogger Albert said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

21 July 2011 21:32  
Blogger Albert said...

Are you seriously telling me that you would not report a 'priest' to the Police if there was no man-made law which impelled you to do so, simply for fear of bringing the 'church' into disrepute?

Viking how do you best handle such situations? If you do not get the procedures right, the villains get away.

What is truly astonishing is the (somewhat gleeful) way in which you are using the suffering of children to score points, while apparently ignoring the topic of conversation: did the Pope instruct the clergy to break the civil law? The answer is no: it wasn't the Pope, it wasn't an instruction, and it didn't break the civil law. It sought to ensure that if proceedings were taken against abusive priests the proceedings would stick. Do you really have a problem with that?

21 July 2011 21:35  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Albert

How you best handle such situations? If you do not get the procedures right, the villains get away.

It depends on how you define 'gets away with it.' Certainly it is much more important that he be punished by the civil authorities for his crime. If the problem is "Don't report him lest the RCC have difficulties punishing him canonically" then you don't have much of a problem. He might 'get away with it' as far as Rome is concerned, but that is a small price to pay for seeing the man imprisoned. Besides, if Rome cannot remove from office someone who has been convicted of child molestation, then Rome has a problem with Roman Canonical law. Don't blame the civil government. Fix the canonical law.

If I know a man has committed this crime, then I have an obligation to report him to the authorities. Other obligations don't matter much against that imperative.

carl

21 July 2011 21:55  
Blogger Paul Twigg said...

English Viking said :

"The law of wanting to protect a child from a rapist should be written in a man's heart, not in book, Christian or not."

For once (?) myself and the Viking are in 100% agreement.

21 July 2011 22:03  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

English Viking

We've covered this particular 'example' of yours in some detail. Scripture consists of the word's of Christ:

"Not all can accept this word, but only those to whom it is granted. Some are incapable of marriage because they were born so; some, because they were made so by others; some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of God. Whoever can accept this ought to accept it" (Matt. 19:11–12).

Saint Paul reaffirms this in 1 Corintians Chapter 7:
"To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is well for them to remain single as I am. But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to be aflame with passion"."

"Are you free from a wife? Do not seek marriage. . . those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that. . . . The unmarried man is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to please the Lord; but the married man is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided."

He concludes:
He who marries "does well; and he who refrains from marriage will do better".

Voluntary celibacy is a a calling not granted to all. Other people are called to marriage. Individuals in both vocations fall short of the requirements of their state, but this does not diminish either vocation. The sin of a priest doesn’t necessarily prove that he never should have taken a vow of celibacy, any more than the sin of a married man or woman proves that he or she never should have gotten married. It is possible for us to fall short of our own true calling.

Maybe, like Len, you have doubts about the Spiritual integrity of Paul's writings? He appears to suggest Saint Paul was inspired by Satan!

Ps
I'm not the only one who infuriates our host with comments, now am I?

21 July 2011 22:11  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

Nigromancy, the black arts, which is the left hand path of the Craft going back to paleolithic times, has always had aspects of ritual abuse.

Not only does the Order of the Garter have an origin in our earlier Old Religion, but so also does the Vatican.

The Shiva Dionysus cult has links to both, the Nine Naths and 84 Siddhas are an aspect of its inititiation.

Naths are paths of which the anus is one, the Old Religion is alive and well.

Identify the Lie, slay the Dragon!

21 July 2011 22:12  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

Paul Twigg said...
"English Viking said :
"The law of wanting to protect a child from a rapist should be written in a man's heart, not in book, Christian or not."
For once (?) myself and the Viking are in 100% agreement."

Surely no one can disagree with this. It is a shortcoming shared in civil society as well as the Catholic Church.

However, there is a distinction between a suspicion and an actual allegation. An expressed suspicion, not backed by evidence, poses a difficulty. So to an allegation without corroboration.

I agree that such matters should be referred to the correct authorities for investigation, even when the victims resist this. The exception for a Roman Catholic priest must be information shared during the Sacrament of Confession.

However, take note that it is not only the Church that has had to learn this lesson. The BMA has struggled with the ethics of mandatory and voluntary reporting of child and adult abuse for decades.

21 July 2011 22:25  
Blogger Paul Twigg said...

Len,

Not wanting to pick a fight, but is the allegation of Dodo correct and if so, why do you seem to apply a literal view of Revelation to today's world, yet are happy to chop out 3/4 of the NT?

21 July 2011 22:28  
Anonymous Atlas shrugged said...

"Brilliantly, by denouncing the Church of Rome, this Taoiseach may sufficiently deflect attention from the Treaty of Rome, whence emanates the true ‘dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, and narcissism’."

Which strongly implies that this is being done quite deliberately, which it undoubtedly is.

Do we have a new member of the rapidly growing Conspiracy Theorists Club?

As all roads lead to Rome, as must The Great Conspiracy, as well as all but a few of the worlds greatest conspiracies, and conspirators lead from it.

From which place western civilization itself has been spreading its ambiguous influence to the remotest corners of the planet for now around 3000 years.

Trading laws, governmental, educational and political systems, international and national banking institutions, codes of international law, architecture and warfare, as well as our spiritual darkness, and profound ignorance, all stem from ROME....IMO.

So why not also the wide spread use of deliberately created and facilitated 'sexual depravity' as a relatively CHEAP means of controlling, corrupting, black-mailing, and/or enlisting its own middle, and higher management?

There is very few new tricks under the SUN, and this particular well tried and tested kind of highly manipulative cheap-trick, is certainly not one of them.

21 July 2011 22:33  
Blogger Paul Twigg said...

A rebuke :

Malachi 2:7-9
King James Version (KJV)

"For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts.

But ye are departed out of the way; ye have caused many to stumble at the law; ye have corrupted the covenant of Levi, saith the LORD of hosts.

Therefore have I also made you contemptible and base before all the people, according as ye have not kept my ways, but have been partial in the law."

21 July 2011 22:52  
Blogger Paul Twigg said...

Dodo & also to Albert, my comments are not directed at honest God fearing Catholic folk like yourselves, but against the arrogant Cardinals and Bishops who have led your Church astray.

They need to repent of their sin of negligence and whatever the confessional says, don't bishops etc have a duty to advise their flock about morality, rather than trying to cover things up, lest they put a stain on the Church (which has happened anyway and has in fact made matters worse- the uber protestant voices now see a worldy justification for calling the Catholic Church 'the whore of babylon').

Perhaps the Catholic Church should bring upon this blog these Bishops rather than an elderly gentleman like Albert (who is on the whole erudite) and a stuffed long dead bird (sorry, Dodo, but that's what Dodo's are) to fully discuss these matters...

PS- what is it about Cardinals and irony? Cardinal 'Law'... and I am sure that there was a Cardinal 'Sin' at one stage??

Yours in Jesus, Paul.

21 July 2011 23:01  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Atlas shrugged ( 22:33) "As all roads lead to Rome... From which place western civilization itself has been spreading its ambiguous influence to the remotest corners of the planet for now around 3000 years. Trading laws, governmental, educational and political systems, international and national banking institutions, codes of international law, architecture and warfare, as well as our spiritual darkness, and profound ignorance, all stem from ROME."

That is a proposition which could be supported by much historical and archaelological evidence, as if extending Gibbon backward from the imperial age and forward to today. But it is arguable that there is another scheme of things, of which this Roman activity is but a part, perhaps a decoy. To see Romanism in that way may itself be to have become trapped in that very Romanism as the source of a certain way of thinking. As if the fate of the human race after expulsion from Eden has been to suffer and endure the limitations of this Romanism, sufficient in each generation and from era to era, until....?

[This is not meant as a jab at the Church of Rome, but the proposition is of general application and that organisation and others are not exempt.]

21 July 2011 23:33  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Dodo

About this...

Is there another Protestant Reformation in the air?

The theological covariance of this weblog is huge. I haven't quite got my mind around it yet. So I don't think the opinions expressed herein can be considered a good sampling of Protestant thought.

Also, you should refrain from blaming Scripture for its misuse. Consider. A man buys a new printer for his computer. He might:

1. Cast the printer manual aside in favor of his own experience.

2. Read the printer manual but decide to do things the way he learned when he bought his last printer.

3. Re-write the manual because he decides he doesn't like what he is reading.

4. Fetch himself a printer's manual from his favorite printer even though he doesn't own it.

When he accidentally erases his hard drive while trying to install his printer, he can't logically blame the printer's manual for his failure.

And before you say "Who interprets?", I will again demand that you start producing infallible interpretations as a consequence of your argument. RC doctrine is indeed quite explicit, but the question on the table is the source for that doctrine. It doesn't count if the RCC creates doctrine out of [whole cloth/thin air/smoke and mirrors] and then back-fills said doctrine into Scripture. Which is what it does. Doctrine is supposed to be derived from our understanding of Scripture. We are not supposed to derive our understanding of Scripture from doctrine. Hence my concern about the missing infallible interpretations of the infallible interpreter. What are all these RC doctrines based upon - because it sure isn't the Bible.

carl

21 July 2011 23:36  
Blogger Paul Twigg said...

Carl Jacobs is clearly one of the sounder voices on this blog, it wouldn't suprise me if he were an Anglican Vicar?

21 July 2011 23:45  
Anonymous Aquinas said...

"nam error circa creaturas redundat in falsam de Deo sententiam"

Aquinas

21 July 2011 23:52  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Paul Twigg

You are just saying that because I am a Calvinist. :) Thank you for the compliment, but, no, I am not a vicar. I am an Engineer. Which profession is in every way the absolute pinnacle of human evolution ... or at least it would be if there was such a thing as human evolution.

carl

21 July 2011 23:57  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

carl

I recall reading somewhere that the RCC doctrines are based on Scripture, tradition and reason, but one does not necessarily have to agree with all the theological discourse behind the actual doctrines, just the doctrine. Infuriating? For you and many I suspect it is!

I may be wrong but I do read the Papal documents and find them logical, based on the Bible and full of reason and common sense. Often they are too long, sometimes hard to penetrate and occasionally beyond my comprehension. I disagree strongly that doctrines are somehow fabricated and then Scripture is used, or misused, to support these.

I have a deep love of the Roman Catholic Church and its steadfastness in the face of the relativism in today's world. I accept Christ gave authority to the Church through Peter and the Apostles and that whatever failings it has it will ultimately be protected in its divine mission by the Holy Spirit.

Fundamentally, I agree with the teachings from the Council of Trent, Vatican I and Vatican II. The Biblical basis, whether you accept this or not, for the doctrines from these Councils are all elaborated in the documents from them. Heavy reading but illuminating and inspiring.

I am no theological expert and do not know the Bible inside out. I do know that 'Protestantism', whatever that is, has the potential to be divisive, acrimonious and often undermines the Christian message by argumentation. It divides the Body of Christ. I also despair of some Protestant sects, the 'fundamentalists' in particular, sheer hatefulness towards Rome and their peculiar understandings of Scripture.

The Bible is such a complex, rich and beautiful book. Surely it's sufficient to interpret and apply it to the problems confronting particular times. This the Church has done in respect of contraception, abortion, divorce, women priests, homosexuality, etc.

22 July 2011 00:22  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

Ps carl

Have I ever blamed Scripture for its misuse? I sincerely hope not!

22 July 2011 00:39  
Blogger Owl said...

The English people are totally distracted with the NI and Dave.

The Irish people are totally distracted with Enda vs. the Pope.

Both peoples are being emotionally "wound up".

Is this a coincidence?

I think not. Keep everyones' mind off what is happening to the Euro and the future of the EU.

Keep their minds off the perculiar rumbles from the UNO (green helmets for green warmongery?).

I wonder what Dave and Enda are planning to slip in on the orders of their EU/UNO masters, which we are not supposed to notice?

22 July 2011 00:43  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Dodo

What an excellent demonstration of Sola Ecclessia. I tell people that the difference between a Protestant and a RC is that a Protestant says about the Scripture what a RC says about the RCC. You have admirably illustrated the point.

Have I ever blamed Scripture for its misuse? I sincerely hope not!

Every time you deny its sufficiency by saying "See, look at all these Protestant interpretations. Who is to decide? We need an infallible interpreter." The point of the Printer's manual should now be abundantly clear.

carl

22 July 2011 05:12  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

What became of the Jersey abuse scandal, how about the Hollie Greig story. This is not merely a Papal matter but another hornets nest.

22 July 2011 06:00  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"That’s good. That’s very good."

"That's good! 'Gimlet eye' is good."

Something about the pervasive sense of schadenfreude here that suggests a Manifest Prejudice.

22 July 2011 06:44  
Anonymous MrJ said...

Owl (0:43)_ Quite so.

carl jacobs (5:12)_ Quite so.

My Village Explainer mentions in passing:

Some engineers develop the theory of structures, some practise bridge-building, some devise means for carriage by land or sea or air or into the domain of planets and stars; some productive machinery, processing plant, material energy resources and other such things-- to do with motion and stability of solids, fluids, gases and thermal and electical conductivity, radio and communication apparatus (including internet and astronomers' facilities). All these mean that this and future generations are living in a man-made world but have been given the Gospel that they may continue to live in a God-created world.

Bred in the bone (6:00)_ Quite so.

22 July 2011 07:04  
Anonymous Homo Hamed said...

If you think the Catholic Church has problems with people obstructing and undermining change then you should try changing spanish practices and self serving attitudes in a large aid organisation.

Like the British Red Cross.

22 July 2011 08:43  
Anonymous MrJ said...

PS to 23:33 (re Atlas shrugged 22:33)_

The news this morning seems to be that Greece is being taken over by a syndicate of EU and IMF members, with some double-counting among those members, and possibly some duplicity has gone before or is yet to come, and certainly the crisis is not over.

22 July 2011 08:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

[Comment from Albert]

Carl,

Don't blame the civil government. Fix the canonical law.

I agree with you. The problem was that the letter came from a time before the canonical problems had been dealt with.

The Congregation concerned was run by a Cardinal who had more experience of corrupt civil authorities and who therefore did not think these things could be addressed reliably by the civil authorities. He could see the problem, but not the solution.

It was only when Cardinal Ratzinger took control that these issues came to be addressed more satisfactorily.

I tell people that the difference between a Protestant and a RC is that a Protestant says about the Scripture what a RC says about the RCC.

That's not correct - read the Catechism.

Albert

22 July 2011 09:00  
Blogger webeida said...

I think some of you only refrain from arguing with your shadows because they never make a retort.

You strive to make your arguments stick using the glue from post-it notes.

You fail to observe the frivolous nature of your PoW because you attach unfounded importance to your opinions.

You quote scriptures like you are experts in exegesis, yet show up your weaknesses through your bigotry.

22 July 2011 12:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If a man is accused of the charges of peadophile rape and abuse, he should be tried for the offence by a court of law. This gives the opportunity for him to clear his name or suffer the consequences of his crime. No organised religous or other body should attempt to cover his tracks or assist him to escape justice.
Any other course of action will be used as ammunition by unbelievers to discredit the church per se, and thereby precious souls may be lost.
We must not only say we are clean, we must be seen to be clean in the eyes of a cynical world.

22 July 2011 12:27  
Blogger JT said...

As usual, you guys do not get it.Your superior line in BS is a disgrace to you. The debate is over. The Roman Catholic Church is sinking and as usual you guys are re arranging the deck chairs. An Taoiseach Enda Kenny speech is the first salvo in a war for recompense for the abused. No other country has done Romes bidding more than Ireland, a tradition which is now forever tarnished by evil men and women who believed they answered to God. In their sick and perverse minds, rape, murder, and cruelty could be forgiven in the confessional. It make me sad to see such a great movement sullied and destroyed by human frailty, greed and corruption.

This was acceptable and hidden instead of exposed and destroyed. In your debating the toss you are further perpetrating the evil on the victims. Think how they feel reading your mealy mouth, hair splitting. Shame on you all.

22 July 2011 12:42  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Albert

That's not correct - read the Catechism.

The difference is one of authority. The central locus of authority for a RC is the Magisterium. The central locus of authority for a Protestant is the Scripture. I make arguments about and from Scripture in exactly the same way a RC makes arguments about and from the Magisterium. It is why Sola Scriptura was central to the Reformation.

Protestant: "Your doctrines conflict with the clear teaching of Scripture."

Roman Catholic: "You cannot understand Scripture without the teaching of the Magisterium."

Round and round it goes.

carl

22 July 2011 13:38  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

carl jacobs said...
"Dodo
What an excellent demonstration of Sola Ecclessia."

Did you overlook the following comment?

"Fundamentally, I agree with the teachings from the Council of Trent, Vatican I and Vatican II. The Biblical basis, whether you accept this or not, for the doctrines from these Councils are all elaborated in the documents from them."

Maybe a naive question to ask but just where in Scripture does it say that the Church cannot elaborate doctrines, clarify them and establish disciplines for Christians? Indeed it was the early Church that agreed what constituted canonical Scripture and applied it's message to their organisation and forms of worship.

Individual revelation, according to Roman Catholic teaching, is a private matter as all that is necessary for salvation has been revealed in Scripture. However, what can we make of the following words of Jesus to His disciples?

"I have yet many things to say to you: but you cannot bear them now. But when he, the Spirit of truth, has come, he will teach you all truth. For he shall not speak of himself: but what things soever he shall hear, he shall speak. And the things that are to come, he shall show you."

Words to His Church or to individuals? And His words to Peter?

"And I say to you: That you are Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven"

Perhaps the manual for the printer requires the active, iterative engagement of thse attempting to install it!

22 July 2011 14:00  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's always heartening to read sincere accounts of personal belief. Well done, Dodo the Dude at 0:22 22 July!

While I don't share your commitment to the RCC, I sense your contentment of heart and your strong faith in God lived out from within the Roman communion.

Article 36 from the CofE Articles of Religion of 1562 gives a principle worth noting: that the unworthiness of clergy does not render their sacramental administrations or proclamation of the Gospel invalid. Every 'evil minister', however, must be brought to justice.

22 July 2011 16:42  
Blogger len said...

Jesus came to tell us the truth. "Pilate therefore said to Him, 'Are You a king then?' Jesus answered, 'You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice'" (John 18:37).

'Note hears MY(Jesus`s) voice' not the Popes,not some group of Catholic or even Protestant scholars voice,not Mohammed`s or Paul`s......... but Jesus`s voice.

22 July 2011 19:30  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

Viva Voce!

22 July 2011 20:13  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

len

Now I'm concerned you are walking a hazardous path.

We disagree about much but surely we both accept God is a Trinity and the Words of Jesus are from Him, the Father and the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit inspired Scripture and, according to Paul, bestows gifts on members of the Body of Christ, His Church on earth (setting aside all our disputations about what Church means).

Jesus also said the Holy Spirit will come and teach us all truth because He speaks from and of the God.

The words of Jesus, the words of the authors of the Scripture, the words of the Apostles and the words of those in possession of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, are surely one?

Set this dangerous questioning of the authenticity of St Paul's writings aside. He, more than any other Apostle, grasped and explained the harmony between Judaism and Christ's Messianic sacrifice. Remove one book and where will this end? Another person might challenge the validity of Revelation.

22 July 2011 23:38  
Anonymous Gerard Tibercross said...

The position is notthat clear cut. If a priest goes to a solicitor and says "I need your legal advice. I have been fiddling with little boys" then the solicitor cannot under any circumstances repeat this admission to anybody. If a solicitor goes to a priest and says "Bless me Father for I have sinned. I have been fiddling with the Client Account" then the priest cannot repeat this to anybody.

So let us assume that the solicitor tells the priest that he fiddled with little boys 30 years ago. Is that different from fiddling the Client Account? Now the priest admits to his confessor that he has been stealing from the collection plate.

So now we get to the priest confessing to his confessor that he has fiddled with little boys. In which case is the seal of the confessional/solicitor-client confidentiality liable to be broken?

23 July 2011 02:37  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Len: @ 19:30

Any thoughts as to why Jesus did not answer Pilot's question: ''what is truth''?

Their whole dialogue is tremendously interesting and, I've always thought, laden with deep import.

23 July 2011 03:09  
Anonymous Oswin said...

er, you'd berter make that 'Pilate' - sorry, it's late!

23 July 2011 03:38  
Blogger len said...

Oswin,

Truth is not a concept, an idea ,or a philosophy,but a person and that person stood before Pilate.

23 July 2011 12:34  
Blogger len said...

Dodo,
Thanks for your concern.
The main thing that concerns me is 'the bottom line'getting at the truth of a situation, and sometimes that means bumping into a few sacred cows and treading(unintentionally, mostly) on a few people toes.
I am ready to throw out anything which is not of God, rather like cleaning out all the rubbish one accumulates over the years.
I believe in these last days truth will be at a premium and the only thing worth hanging onto as God shakes all things!

23 July 2011 12:40  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Len - much obliged, ta.

23 July 2011 14:21  
Blogger The Worker said...

"I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father, but by me.(John 14:6).

"For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth. Every one that is of the truth hears my voice." (John 18:37)

23 July 2011 15:19  
Anonymous Danny Haszard said...

Not to diminish the high crimes of the RCC but please examine the Jehovah's Witnesses who go door to door and come on our property.

Jehovah's Witnesses pedophiles.

Many court documents and news events prove that Jehovah's Witnesses require two witnesses when a child comes forward with allegations of molestation within the congregation. Such allegations have customarily been treated as sins instead of crimes and are only reported to authorities when it is required to do so by law, (which varies by state). It has also been shown that child molesters within the organization usually have not been identified to the congregation members or the public at large.
These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to pedophiles.

Although the Watchtower Bible Tract Society claims that known pedophiles are accompanied by a non-pedophile in such work, there is no law stating that such a practice must be followed.

The Watchtower corporation has paid out millions in settlement money already.
--
Danny Haszard abuse victim
dannyhaszard(dot)com

24 July 2011 14:48  
Anonymous chevron said...

I cannot let this pass without comment ...

"These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to paedophiles."

Uh huh. And every passing contact between a suspected paedophile and a child should be avoided, "just in case" ? Hotbeds of illegal activity, them there doorsteps. I bet they feel horny just walking up the garden path. Perhaps we should have such sickos wear an armband, lest a child approaches them in the street? And such a conspicuous mark would definitely save asking every Tesco cashier whether they are kiddyfiddlers before allowing ones children to unload the trolley.

Utterly absurd, of course. But can a hysterical society, in pursuit of the impossible goal of eliminating all risk, justly place limitless restrictions on suspect individuals? As I see it, to insist "once a perv, always a perv" is profoundly unChristian: it admits no possibility of repentance and reform (which is always independent of punitive justice anyway ... or indeed injustice when it comes to the mechanism of a lifetime register that is too often wielded as as tool of punishment rather than risk management). "Even one child saved" is the common mantra, but is it, together with the associated poisonous distrust of the motives of the rest of society, really worth the complete social disenfranchisement and ongoing humiliation of probably hundreds of now-reformed and/or time-served-and-spent individuals? Not a chance!

25 July 2011 03:04  
Blogger yes said...

THE VATICAN BROUGHT DEATH, POVERTY AND DESTRUCTION TO IRELAND. IT ALSO BROUGHT A ZANY CULT RELIGION FOUNDED IN 377 AD (ACCORDING TO CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA) AND CLOSED IT'S DOOR TO THE IRISH DURING THE FAMINE... CRUSADES, INQUISITIONS, WAR, WERE ALL BROUGHT TO IRELAND BY THE VATICAN (AND THE DARK AGES ACCORDING TO ANNALS). IT HAS STOLEN 150,000,000,000,000, (BILLION)EUROS FROM US IRISH WITH THE HELP BERTIE-THE-MONK AND PAEDOPHILE CHURCHED COURTS. IT NETS 1 BILLION A YEAR FROM IRELAND TAX FREE! THE VATICAN I.O.R BANK OWN MORE CHARITIES REGISTERED IN IRELAND THAN IN EU. IT TAKES MORE MONEY FROM FROM THEM THAN ALL IN EU! IT OWNS OVER 50% OF CITY ESTATES AND ART PORTFOLIOS THAN THE GOVERNMENT. IT IS A SUPER-CORPORATION THAT DRIANS IRISH POCKETS VIA DONATIONS, BURSARIES, TAX WRITE-OFFS AND CHURCH COLLECTIONS. ITS PRIESTS TOUR HOSPITALS WITH WILL-COPIES. IT'S SIMPLY A FISCAL CORPORATION! THE VATICAN MISSION STATEMENT... GET THE MONEY, GET THE MONEY, GET THE MONEY!!! PAPAL NUNCIO COMMANDS OVER 121 VATICAN ACCOUNTABLE ORDERS THAT MUST FUND VATICAN COFFERS OR ELSE. THIS IS DONE VIA NURSERIES, SCHOOLS, HOSPITALS, AND TAX-PAYER FUNDED INSTITUTIONS. PAPAL NUNCIO ALSO COMMANDS ARCHBISHOPS, BISHOPS, CARDINALS (THE REAL BANKERS) TO GATHER ALL FUNDS AND ASSETS VIA THE ABOVE 121 ORDERS AND THE STAGGERINGLY HUGE NUMBER OF CATHOLIC CHARITIES REG TAX FREE IN IRELAND [TOTAL MORE THAN 1000!!!]. NUNCIOS JOB IS TO MAKE SURE ALL THE MONEY, LAND, PROPERTY FUNDS, TAX-FREE INV FOLIOS, ETC, ETC, GET TO VATICAN BANK [IT IS ACTUALLY A BANK]... ISTITUTO PER OPERE DE RELIGIONE AND HAS NUMEROUS OFF-SHORE SHELL COMPANIES RANGING FROM LONDON-CHARITABLE-TRUSTS TO PANAMA BASED SHELL COMPANIES. SO MR KENNY YOU COULD HAVE SAID A LOT MORE. IT IS 'THE BANK' THAT CONTROLS IRELAND, THE VATICAN BANK... GET THE MONEY, GET THE MONEY, GET THE MONEY!!!

25 July 2011 19:23  
Blogger robertatforsythe said...

I read Cranmer's post would great interest and largely in agreement. I find it fascinating that our ancestors of 500 years ago would have recognised so much of this.

25 July 2011 20:02  

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