Feb 20, 2007

[US] Worldly Concerns for the Catholic Church

The Catholic Church in the US always seems to be under fire these days. Just look at the news and you're going to find one thing or another about the clergy being far less than holy.

Who can blame them? At the end of the day, they're only human and we have a tendency of putting such figures on a moral pedestal that any misdeeds are blown out of proportion. The again, we might be justified in doing so given their duties and responsibilities as caretakers of a religious faith.

Topping today's of most-read articles over on the TIME Magazine website is a rather in-depth look at another Catholic crime beyond the "normal" cases of sexual-abuse allegations. This time it's about parish priests taking more than their fair share from Sunday collection baskets everywhere and funneling this cash into worldly needs like lavish vacations and education for their *gasps* CHILDREN. Pardon my sarcasm.

While some churchs are losing money due to dirty priests, others are going bankrupt due to rising legal expenses related to numerous sexual-abuse lawsuits challenging their pastors. The San Diego Diocese has announced that it is considering declaring chapter 11 in order to avoid more than 140 pending lawsuits directed at them.

Whatever happened to forgiveness, eh? This is not to say I'm siding with their activities - it's just interesting how to note that the reason these things make headlines, especially given the US, is probably because of the strength of evangelicals in recent years, especially in terms of influencing government policy and how people deal with national issues. While some might argue it was all of us who put them up so high, when you look at it again you might come to see that they themselves defined their roles such that the pedestal is their natural place.

It's a rather disturbing thought either way. Thank god I'm not overly religious, hehe.

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