The Pope takes a page from Jimmy’s playbook!
Last week the Vatican began a three-week-long assembly to discuss how to bring young people back into the Catholic Church. As the Synod of Bishops began, Pope Francis said, “This moment has highlighted a church that needs to listen.”
No, the moment highlights a church that needs to stop letting its priests molest kids.
Protesters have been much in evidence at the gathering, denouncing what they (and I) see as the Vatican’s refusal to take necessary actions to ensure that sexual predator priests and those who cover up for them be stopped. Said one protester, a victim himself, “They should center the discussions where it hurts most — and this is the outrageous abuse of power, and the thousands and thousands of children and young people hurt by officials of the church in the last decades all over the world. You can’t discuss youth without talking about this point.”
Other victims held up placards demanding, “No More Cover Up”; “Make Zero Tolerance Real”; “Establish an International Inquiry and Justice Commission” in Italian and English.
So far, the Pope’s approach to the renewed scandal has been to point fingers, or change the subject. He did publish a letter in August that appeared to be a holy, Italian version of “huminahuminahumina,” as Ralph Kramden used to say when words and wit failed him in a crisis. That the Pope’s efforts to either ignore, or duck, or spin his accountability for the fact that children are still not safe around priests almost 20 years after the scandal of high-level cover-ups and the facilitating of serial sexual assaults in the Church across the globe were not going well became clearer than ever last week, when Francis adopted the same tragedy used by Jimmy Swaggert, Jim and Tammy Lee Baker, Ted Haggard and so many other TV evangelist con artists did when they were caught either with a hand up a dress or in the till.
He blamed the Devil. Continue reading