herald

Monday 18 December 2017

No conspiracy from media -- just the Church

Dr Ian Paisley must be kicking himself. His black rhetoric against the Roman Church has turned out to be milky white.

"As often as you did it to the least of my little ones you did it to me." Jesus's words condemn the RC Church for raping him repeatedly in the person of his little ones.

The Pope's letter is not the end of our troubles. It is not even the beginning of the end. It is the last phase of Rome's attempt to cover up sex abuse in Ireland.

All roads lead to Rome, yet Benedict blames everyone but himself. Popes don't do mea maxima culpas, not even minima culpas. Everything this Pope says reflects "Thou art Peter" (the Rock), and never the equally important words of Jesus: "Get thee behind me, Satan, for you are a rock on my path."

A cardinal like Sean Brady is allowed to be ashamed of what he's done, and even St Peter for denying his Lord. Never a Pope.

The letter speaks of our bishops' failure to act. Failure? For decades, they acted with the utmost efficiency to cover up the evil deeds of priest criminals.

The letter speaks of the "inadequacy" of the bishops' response. Could this possibly refer to bishops who enabled child-rape on a vast scale by moving priests to pastures new, never telling anyone; not the parishes they were sent to and certainly not the gardai whose job it was to arrest child sex abusers? This was not an inadequate response, but a heinous crime calling to heaven for vengeance.



secrecy

The cover-up was so global, so uniform, it had to be the result of a conspiracy. The Murphy report spoke of endemic corruption. The system was rotten to the core. How could so many bishops act in exactly one way except under orders?

Those orders were written by the Holy Office. For 24 years the head of the Holy Office was Ratzinger, now for five years Benedict XVI, the Pope elected by the likes of Cardinals Law and Connell. Everything was to be kept secret under penalty of excommunication. This is why youngsters were put under a cruel oath of secrecy.

If Ratzinger ordered bishops to tell the police about priest rapists I can find no single reference to it. The Vatican's watchdog did not bark, though he knew more about their sex abuse than anyone else on earth.

Hans Kung, the world's best known theologian, says, "Honesty demands that Joseph Ratzinger, who for decades was principally responsible for the worldwide cover-up, at last pronounce his own mea culpa."

He won't. But let's hope he stops insulting the media, without which priests would have gone on raping children with the connivance of bishops he trained in concealment. There was no conspiracy to bring down the Catholic Church. The mastermind behind the only conspiracy was the Pope.

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