Not all Catholics are blind or passive when it comes to the horrible sexual behavior of some Catholic priests. A group called The Roman Catholic Faithful is in the very forefront of the effort to clean up the Catholic priesthood. And they aren't frightened off the hunt by threats of lawsuits. Reading at their site eases my mind, for I am reminded that some Catholics, including some priests, are just as offended as we are and are striving against heavy odds and enormous outside pressures to get those sicko priests away from kids. The following open letter is from their site. It is used by permission. I do not endorse their theology but am 100% behind their message.
A FEW BLUNT WORDS TO
Before you explore any other pages on our site, please take a moment to read the following statement, which was prepared by one of the priests guiding RCF. We ask this so that you may clearly understand what the Roman Catholic Faithful are doing, and what we stand for.
A very, very long time ago a pagan Greek philosopher suggested that 90% of you would not like what I'm about to say, but I do ask you to read it all and I pray that you will consider it honestly. First you must realize that we are living in the most evil of all the ages. Read your newspaper. I will take only one example - abortion. We have killed more children than any people in history, and no one else is even in the ballpark! Hitler, Stalin and the other monsters of history must peek through the flames of Hell and gaze in awe and professional admiration at the level of our barbarity. We have found a way to kill children and vote for those who protect the abortionist and we still go to Church on Sunday. We can read from the Bible about the terrible things God said about those who would harm His "little ones" and never connect those words to our own final judgment. I remember being horrified when I read in school about the Aztec Indians throwing children alive into the fire as a sacrifice to their god. How barbaric! But count the numbers. What is the output of the abortion clinics in this country each day? Who are the barbarians? Who are the monsters? At least the Aztecs will have the excuse that they thought they were serving God. What excuse will we have?
As followers of Christ and members of His Church we must stand in opposition to evil! There is a very real conflict, a "spiritual warfare" that the followers of Jesus are called to take up. This is revealed with crystalline clarity in all forms of revelation. God calls His followers to reject the ways of this world and follow him. This warfare is not for the weak or the faint of heart, and many are simply not capable. St. Thomas Aquinas said, "Grace builds on Nature." That is why the Israelites spent 40 years in the desert. A generation of slaves with a slave's mentality had to die off and a new people, strong and toughened by the harsh life of the desert had to rise up. Most Catholics today seem to be like those slaves. They are simply not capable of dealing with the truth. And the truth is that the evil that is everywhere in this world is also deep within the Church. Pope Leo the XIII noticed it and composed the "Prayer to St. Michael". Pope Paul VI proclaimed that the "Smoke of Satan has entered the sanctuary"! Throughout the history of the Church it has always been those who are within that have caused the most damage. Remember that Judas was a bishop and nearly all the heresies that have ravaged the Church throughout history have come from priests and bishops. In an earlier age we were better equipped to deal with this evil and protect the truth. No less a Saint than St. John Chrysostom said, "The floor of hell is paved with the skulls of bishops!"
This evil has festered and grown because it has been promoted and protected by a false spirituality with its roots in the "spirit of Vatican II". An astounding and diabolical pride has allowed us to turn away from the spiritual values that have made saints for 2000 years to embrace a false theology promoted by a false church and presenting a false god. This new god simply blesses whatever our desires, passions, and appetites crave. This god wants us to be happy and such things as sacrifice; penance and self-discipline are non-values. This is the god of the "group hug", "we are the church", and if you complain - "Don't be judgmental" This "god" is a god of love, but not the burning self-sacrificing love we see on the cross, but a phony and sick imitation, a daytime TV talk show morality, which is preached from too many pulpits and is fooling "even the elect"! It's a god for slaves and enslavement. It has found a home deep in the heart of the Church and the Church seems incapable of dealing with it!
If we wish to survive these days with our faith intact we should learn the lessons of history. We live in a time when the laity must rise up to save the true Church. This is very difficult because we are coming out of an age when the laity looked to the hierarchy for guidance. But as it was in the time of King Henry the VIII, you may follow your pastor or even your bishop and as a result find yourself outside the true Church. This is not an age that will suffer weak faith. Soon there will only be two kinds of Catholics - strong Catholics and ex-Catholics.
Leave "political correctness" to the false church. It's time for a little plain speech. Its time for a little truth! There are many homosexuals in the priesthood and in the hierarchy. Many of these are not living celibate lives, and they prey on others. They do not preach the truth of Jesus Christ because they could not do so without condemning themselves. They are in positions of authority in Chancery Offices and seek to add to their numbers by controlling vocations. They organize into "support groups" many of which are not oriented toward celibacy, but exist to provide "contacts" for sexual relationships. Priests are dying of AIDS at an alarming rate and some have even blamed the Church for not teaching them about "safe" sex in the seminary! (How safe can "safe" sex be, when Hell is the result!)? The Church has not shown any desire or ability to deal with this. Recently the Vatican told a priest and a nun to stop giving workshops across the country promoting the homosexual lifestyle. That's nice. But they have been giving these workshops for 20 long years!! How many souls have been lost and lives destroyed while the hierarchy did nothing! Maybe your newspaper today will carry the story about another multi-million dollar lawsuit involving a pedophile priest. The judgments are so high because juries are learning that bishops knew who the pedophiles were and allowed them to continue to destroy children. Bishops protected the pervert and provided innocent victims for him to prey upon. Bishops even hide perverts by trading them from diocese to diocese like baseball players! (You take mine, and I'll take yours.) Parents and good priests approach Church authorities with accusations and are ignored or referred to an inept committee. The goal of those in authority is simply damage control and covering it up. Recently I met with a very well known priest who was sent to represent the hierarchy in a terrible case of sexual abuse. His primary concern seemed to be to avoid publicity. I told him we would consider his request if he would answer two simple questions. First - Would he give me just one example of the Church intervening on its own to stop that particular form of abuse? - He didn't answer. Second - If we backed away and did not make this public and as a result of our choice another innocent person was attacked, would God hold us responsible for that terrible sin? He didn't answer that question either. It seems that the operative spirituality of the Church has become so weak that it is no longer capable of dealing with evil. It is a fact that authorities in the Church have allowed innocent lives to be destroyed and then have covered up the crime and protected the criminal! This has been done with the thinly veiled excuse that "we must protect holy mother church from scandal"! The tragic truth is this publicity and large lawsuits have done much more to protect the innocent than the Vatican, the National Council of Catholic Bishops or the Apostolic Delegate combined! And (with apologies to Vince Lombardi) the protection of the innocent is not the most important thing; it's the only thing! If it is necessary to protect one innocent child then I pray that every diocese in the country will be sued for every nickel it has and every sordid detail be put on the front page of every newspaper! The Church that I love and that Jesus promised would last until the end of the world is a Church that doesn't want to appear holy, it must be holy!
Allow me to return to that Greek philosopher and the 90%. Heraclitus was a philosopher and a warrior. During a lull in the battle he wrote a letter to the leaders of Athens regarding the soldiers he was receiving as replacements. He said that for every 100 men they sent 90 were useless. They were little more than battlefield clutter. Out of the 100, about 10 were fighters and the outcome of the battle rested on their shoulders. And maybe one, only one, was a true warrior. The spiritual warfare is no less warfare, and I believe the percentages apply. The vast majority doesn't want to know the truth. They just want things to be "nice" and the truth and the demands it would place on them as followers of Christ are unacceptable. I appreciate those who pray but if that's all you do, remember it says in the epistle of St. James that "Faith without works is dead and has no power to save you!" I would ask those 90% to consider joining the warrior class. You are needed! If you cannot - Then at least stay out of the way. The battle is tough enough without clutter. If you cannot fight this Goliath, at least stand back and make room for those who are going forward to sling their stones. The false charity and empty spirituality of those who mouth pious platitudes over the broken bodies and souls of the innocent is an affront to the martyrs and missionaries who gave their lives to share the true faith. I have seen, up close and personal, the heart-rending results of allowing predators to destroy children, families, and faith. A "drawing room" spirituality does not have the power to fight the malignant evil of this age. Delicate sensibilities must be sacrificed and hands dirtied in favor of a cross-centered faith! We are not fighting for principles or philosophies. We are fighting for SOULS and we must not lose!
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