'Benedict XVI in Rome has spoken, the case is closed' will not apply for the Irish victims of the John Paul II Pedophile Priests Army
We are quoting this entire article because it contains a balanced critique of the Ryan and Murphy Reports.
The first paragraph says: THE famous Latin saying, 'Roma locuta est, causa finita est' -- 'Rome has spoken, the case is closed' -- will not apply in Pope Benedict's promised Lenten Pastoral to the Catholics of Ireland on clerical child sex abuse and the cover-ups of paedophile priests by church authorities.
The last paragraph says: Whatever the Pontiff has to say will be far from being the last word on the scandals if priests and laity demand a national forum. If this right is not granted or exercised, they will not even listen to the Pope and the bishops.
Thank God, there are some Jesuits left who have not sold their soul to the Pope and Opus Dei like John Allen Jr. has see the John Paul II Millstone earlier post http://jp2m.blogspot.com/2010/02/cardinal-bernard-law-must-resign.html Remember John Allen Jr former posts in Rome? It was called “the Word from Rome” referring to 'Rome has spoken, the case is closed'. Now he has moved to New York and changed his column in NCR into “All things Catholic” which means everything he writes must be out of absolute obedience and service to Opus Dei and the Pope as he is now in their $120,000 payroll plus his speaking engagements in the USA! John Allen Jr. sold his soul to St. Josemaria Escriva since he was given the one and only free access when he wrote his book “Opus Dei”.
Scandals, splits and a battle for the Pope's ear
Jesuit Centre for Faith & Justice, Ireland
THE famous Latin saying, 'Roma locuta est, causa finita est' -- 'Rome has spoken, the case is closed' -- will not apply in Pope Benedict's promised Lenten Pastoral to the Catholics of Ireland on clerical child sex abuse and the cover-ups of paedophile priests by church authorities.
With less than a fortnight to go before the heralded Rome summit of Pope Benedict with the Irish bishops, preparations for its agenda appear to be in complete confusion, certainly as far as the unconsulted clergy and laity are concerned.
So far, the main focus of public attention has centred on growing indications of a split among the bishops, with the battle lines being drawn-up in a power struggle for the Pontiff's ear between Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin and the rest, with Cardinal Sean Brady trying to hold both warring factions into some semblance of unity in the interests of best child protection procedures for a 'One Church' policy.
Indeed, a lay Catholic activist has warned of the danger of a systematic move being under way inside the Irish hierarchy "to oust" the Archbishop of Dublin.
Brendan Butler, who has campaigned to secure the resignation of the Bishop of Galway, Martin Drennan, for being named in the damning Murphy report, has warned that it would be "the final nail in the coffin" of the Irish church if Archbishop Martin was forced to resign.
Mr Butler issued his comment after being dismayed at the personal appeal made to priests, published by the 'Irish Catholic' last week, by retired Dublin auxiliary bishop, Dr Dermot O'Mahony, urging them to question the findings of the Murphy report of cover-ups of paedophile priests.
"It seems there is now a systematic move within the hierarchy to oust Archbishop Martin because he wholeheartedly accepted the findings of the Murphy report," Mr Butler told the Irish Independent.
Mr Butler, who organised a protest last month in Maynooth during an extraordinary meeting of the Irish Bishops' Conference convened to prepare for their summit meeting in Rome on February 15 and 16, was shocked to observe deep divisions between Archbishop Martin and other bishops who have been slower to accept fully accountable child protection procedures in their dioceses than the ones operating in Dublin.
"There is a definite split within the hierarchy and within the ranks of the clergy over Archbishop Martin's response to the Murphy report," said Mr Butler, who also noted that the same 'Martin versus the rest' split had first surfaced visibly last May when the religious orders reacted sullenly to the Ryan report on systematic institutional abuse of children.
In no uncertain terms, Archbishop Martin reminded the religious of their moral obligation to provide more financial compensation to victims.
Meanwhile, as if on cue with Bishop O'Mahony, Fr Padraig McCarthy, a retired Dublin priest with 42 years' experience in the ministry, has expressed his strong reservations about key findings in the Murphy report in an article published in the February issue of 'The Furrow', the monthly journal for clergy.
Pointedly, Fr McCarthy writes that Archbishop Martin was under great pressure in the days and weeks after the publication of the Murphy report on November 26. But implying that Dr Martin is remote from his clergy, Fr McCarthy adds: "What was and still is missing, however, is a considered diocesan response."
The considered response offered by Fr McCarthy includes questioning the report's conclusion that "the vast majority of priests simply chose to turn a blind eye" to instances of abuse and were thus complicit in concealment of paedophile clerics. He also questions the concept of collective responsibility among those who exercised authority in the diocese, wryly noting that, in 42 years of service, "it has been more conspicuous by its absence".
The enigmatic Archbishop Martin, who has established an image in the public mind of being 'the White Knight' of the hierarchy also finds himself under fire in the same issue of 'The Furrow' from a former head of the Jesuits in Ireland. Fr Gerry O'Hanlon SJ, a distinguished theologian, criticises the archbishop for expressing his reluctance to convene a national synod or assembly of bishops, priests and laity to address both the fallout from the Murphy report and to chart the way forward for "a People's Church".
Fr O'Hanlon suggests that "the decisive leadership that is required is precisely the facilitation of a much wider consultative process, like that which would culminate in a national synod or assembly". Capturing the angry mood of the laity against the authoritarian clericalist structures that continue to dominate Maynooth and the Vatican, the Jesuit scholar also questions the secrecy which has clouded the approach to the Rome summit.
"It will not do any more for priests, bishops, cardinals, the Pope to simply tell us what to think, what to do," he chides. "People, rightly, want to have a say."
However, the big question is how can people have their right to speak guaranteed in a church that continues to operate like a closed clericalist society -- not even the Vatican press office will say what is on the agenda when each bishop has his seven-minute say with Pope Benedict?
Whatever the Pontiff has to say will be far from being the last word on the scandals if priests and laity demand a national forum. If this right is not granted or exercised, they will not even listen to the Pope and the bishops.
© Irish Independent, February 2 2010
Leading Jesuit calls for synod to address Murphy report
THE FORMER Jesuit provincial Fr Gerry O’Hanlon has called for a national synod of the Catholic Church in Ireland in the context of fallout from the Murphy report.
"It will not do any more for priests, bishops, cardinals, the pope to simply tell us what to think, what to do. People rightly want to have a say," he has written in the current edition of the Furrow magazine.
"Now would also seem to be a good time to call into question the reality that certain narrow grounds of orthodoxy are a sine qua non of episcopal appointments at present, and to call for more transparent, representative and accountable local, including lay, participation in the appointment of bishops.
"It’s instructive to note that as recently as 1829, of 646 diocesan bishops in the Latin Church, only 24 had been appointed by the pope: often we forget how new many of our ‘traditions’ are.
"It would seem that we need in Ireland to renew our own understanding of church, along the more participative lines envisaged by Vatican II, and, in particular, with a greater role for women and without any veto on the kinds of issues that might emerge in the consultative process that will be required.
"Why not, then, envisage going down the road of the oft-proposed national synod or assembly, well prepared in each diocese, touching into the experience of believers and disaffected alike?"
More generally, he observed, "one gets the sense that we are at a watershed moment in Irish Catholicism, with repercussions for Catholicism worldwide. There is an institutional dysfunctionality at the heart of our church which goes beyond any simple notion of governance or management reform and which needs to be tackled."
In the same issue retired Dublin priest Fr Pádraig McCarthy challenged the findings of the Murphy report, how the media has dealt with it and how Dublin’s Catholic archdiocese has responded to it.
"Media coverage of the report may have given the impression that the report is a catalogue of unrelieved disaster. It is good to be aware, therefore, that of the 45 cases in which the report gives an assessment, handling by the church in 25 cases receives some sort of approval from the commission; 20 cases receive varying degrees of criticism."
He found it "extraordinary that I have found not one journalist or commentator who has done the kind of review of the report which would otherwise be normal. The commission, I am sure, would not wish to be burdened with any claim to infallibility; nor do I. We must not make the report the final and absolute word."
Among the Murphy report findings, each of which he disputes in detail, is "that child sexual abuse by clerics was widespread throughout the period under review".
That, he said, "does not accord with the facts". He also criticises the report’s lack of "precision" in saying that while "some priests were aware that particular instances of abuse had occurred . . . the vast majority simply chose to turn a blind eye".
He pointed out that "the report does not specify what ‘some’ means" and that "vast majority" seemed to imply a very large number.
"What was (and still is) missing . . . is a considered diocesan response" to the report, he added.
PATSY McGARRY Religious Affairs Correspondent
© Irish Times, February 9, 2010