Well the Pope has now visited Australia and the United States and apologized for the sexual abuse of children by priests and guess what folks, "HE FEELS OUR PAIN" and suffers along with us.
And as all good Christians know, God suffers along with us too. Joy of joys, we have the big guys on our side! And they said that "irony was dead".
There is a Greek term, metanoia. This translates into repentance. However, as many feminist Christian theologians who focus on "domestic" abuse point out, true repentance requires change in behaviour. Do we see this from the Vatican? (Actually that's a rhetorical question - obviously, the answer is no) Hardly! Hand picked "victims" to talk to. Put him in a room with the "victims" of Father Oliver O'Grady and their families. When they made the trek to Rome, they weren't even dismissed, they didn't get to talk to anybody. Everyone should have to watch Deliver Us From Evil and then ask themselves if there has been true repentance. A speech just doesn't cut it for most of us.
So Ratzinger (oops, Pope Benedict XVI) feels our pain. I don 't think so. He was around as head of the Inquisition (just can't seem to get the hang of the new name) as the whole "scandal" came to light. It was a North American problem blamed on western society's "degeneration". No talk of how many of the abusing priests were pre-Vatican 2 trained. No talk of how this is a problem that has existed for centuries.
The Roman Catholic church and others like to focus on homosexuality and celibacy as the problems - although from different quarters. Neither one has anything to do with the sexual assaults on children. Any survivor of incest will tell you very quickly that marriage didn't stop their fathers from abusing them. And homosexuality is a non starter. Priest who sexually assault children (and the other child sexual abusers), assault children, not just male children, but female children (not as many females because, I would suggest, they don't have as easy access to females as to males in this patriarchal religion). There are many priests out there who would never sexually assault children - they are the majority. They may have other problems that marriage and an acceptance of homosexuality as a god given part of humanity might solve, but that is a whole other issue - it has nothing to do with the "paedophilia crisis".
There is something "rotten in the state of the Vatican" and the fish rots from the head down. As the spirit moves me, I will deal with this issue in future posts - but who knows when?
On the whole, I would rather be a Mimbari (see Babylon 5)