Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Scapegoating the Catholic Church

Fr. Gordon MacRae who writes These Stone Walls from his prison cell, has just reviewed a book - in which he is often mentioned.   The book, "The Rest of the Story: Hope Springs Eternal in the Priestly Breast" by Fr. James Valladares, is a research study on procedural process for priests. It casts casts light on the case of Fr. Gordon MacRae and the state of due process for Catholic priests falsely accused.   Most priests know nothing of procedural justice. Any priest can be falsely accused at any time by anyone for any reason or none.

Fr. MacRae concludes:

"The wounds of the priesthood must be healed, but they cannot be healed as long as only one side of the story is told. It is a fact that vulnerable people were once harmed at the hands of a small number of Catholic priests several decades ago. It is a fact that child sexual abuse in our society was and still is a reality of epidemic proportions. It is also a fact that scapegoating the Catholic Church does little to cast light on this topic and does nothing – absolutely nothing – to protect children in our broken culture."

He also comments,

“Over just the last year, some prophetic and courageous voices have emerged in the Catholic public square to stem the tide of unjust vilification of the priesthood. Let’s hope these voices reverberate throughout this time of crisis and conflicting agendas to inspire others. Father George David Byers has joined in with some courageous recent posts such as “The Judas Crisis . . . Follow the Thirty Pieces of Silver.” Ryan MacDonald has once again added to this trend with “Bishop Takes Pawn: Plundering the Rights of a Prisoner Priest.” So has David F. Pierre, host of The Media Report, with his “Bombshell Report” about false accusations and his “Exclusive Report” about new evidence in my own case.

These writers of just and merciful Catholic conscience have made me proud to be a priest, and have given meaning to the suffering inherent in 18 years of wrongful imprisonment. Our reluctant Catholic press would do well to put aside its “Father Maciel Syndrome,” and follow their lead to cover this story."

You can find links to the articles Fr. MacRae cites on "These Stone Walls.

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