Friday, March 26, 2010

The Catholic Church Under Fire

Are we witnessing the demise of a huge institution.....the affects of which will impact the world?

It's been all over the media lately about the alleged cover-up by certain church officials of sexual abuse done by a number of priests on children. Yes, this has been going on for years, I know, but this time the present Pope is being implicated.

It appears that while he was the person at the Vatican in charge of dealing with sexual allegations of priests, he chose to not deal with an incident that occurred to a 12 year old boy, plus many others, in the U.S.

The young boy incident had happened 40 years ago. A complaint was launched formally about 20 years ago by the boy's family and local bishops, when Pope Benedict XVI was a cardinal. Nothing was done.

An interesting interview was on CBC radio this morning and it was brought up that this could be the turning point for the Catholic Church. The medieval-like hierarchy of the church (male dominated and totally undemocratic) is no longer able to 'govern' its followers effectively in the 21st century. People want more and are not willing to 'turn a blind eye' on very important issues facing society today which the church hasn't faced up to and/or is dealing with in a very prehistoric manner.

Having been brought up in the Catholic Church in a very religious family, I have witnessed (not personally) the effects that sexual abuse can have on a child. A childhood friend was approached and 'touched' by a priest in our parish when we were about 12 years old and alter boys at the time. My friend told me immediately and appeared to have been unscathed by the incident as it didn't go very far because he got away from the priest. He was upset at the time. My friend is fine today.

I haven't considered myself a Catholic for a very long time and it is mainly due to how the Church treats people.....especially homosexuals. By 'treats', I mean how it patronizes us in suggesting that we should be loved and accepted but not permitted to 'be' an active homosexual if we are to be accepted by the church. In undeveloped countries, the poor and uneducated are encouraged (no, told!) to NOT use condoms for birth control and that condoms will not help stop the spread of AIDS. That's like saying there is no such thing as Global Warming!!!

Who needs this? And how arrogant of them, especially in the light of all the thousands of children who have been impacted by the abuse perpetrated on them by priests,and the abuse of 'neglect- of- duty' to help these kids and their families by the church hierarchy. It's no wonder that Catholic Churches are next to vacant. People are tired and disgusted with the complacency.

It's not until more people get involved and start demanding change, that any will ever take place. I have moved on with my spiritual path and it will never include this church; but I do realize the importance it could and does have for a lot of people and their lives.

Hopefully the 'powers that be' will see that if the Catholic Church has any future at all, it will begin real change within and join the rest of us here in the 21st century.

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