“Just another guy with a blog.  No big whoop.”

July 16, 2010

Here lies the man who has everything . . . but Christ


On yesterday's EWTN "Open Line" radio show, I received two interesting calls on the same subject: the recent plague of priest scandals. The first caller, a layman named Grant, asked why Catholic priests don't preach more on this subject from the pulpit and how parents can explain this subject to their children. As you'll hear, we soon moved off that issue and in the direction of what appear to me to be some of the root causes of the scandals. A bit later in the same show, a former Catholic priest named Dwayne called in to express his thoughts on this subject. I found his comments to be quite interesting, and I'm very interested in knowing what you think of this discussion. [I host "Open Line" every Thursday from 3-5 pm ET). Click the image above to listen, or click here.

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  1. Wow. I realize now that I turned off the radio right before Dwayne's call, so I'm glad you posted it. It must have taken a lot of courage for him to call. What a great reminder of the absolute necessity to exercise virtue in today's world where doing what you want, how you want it, and when you want it is above everything else. Let us keep praying for our priests.

  2. I think your responses were probably accurate Patrick.

    I might add another reason priests don't talk about the scandal as much (and we should clarify that some priests do address it, I have heard it referenced and 'discussed' from the pulpit various times from various priests) and that is that so many priests are allergic to controversy or are afraid of delving into areas that stir parishoners' ire, or that come with any measure of emotion (the scandal being a topic that is replete with negative emotion for all Catholics).

    E.G., why is abortion so under-addressed from the pulpit? (again, by many priests, not by all). The majority of priests from the 60s-80s are so wishy washy. They love discussing the facets of our faith that are universally seen as good and that are politically correct. No one can criticize a priest for reminding us to help the poor and visit the sick. But other elements of the magisterium (contraceptives, abortion, etc.) make people uncomfortable, so these weaker priests say nothing. Heaven forbid they "offend" someone from the pulpit.

    That same pattern and habit of avoiding topics that lift people's anger might permeate here. I can see a lot of priests who are probably just ill-equipped to address this topic as part of a sermon because they are in the habit of using the pulpit for matters of less emotional gravity. They do not practice, and so are poorly suited, to talk about anything much heavier than rainbows, doves, and "being nice to people".