Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Vatican Scorns Sex Abuse Vicitms' Plea for Hague Trial

Vatican: Sex abuse case at Hague 'ludicrous' stunt'

Victims group requests inquiry into possible crimes

against humanity

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Clergy sex abuse victims upset that no high-ranking Roman Catholic leaders have been prosecuted for sheltering guilty priests went to the International Criminal Court on Tuesday, seeking an investigation of the pope and top Vatican cardinals for possible crimes against humanity.

The Center for Constitutional Rights, a New York-based nonprofit legal group, requested the inquiry on behalf of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, arguing that the global church has maintained a "long-standing and pervasive system of sexual violence" despite promises to swiftly oust predators.

The Vatican's U.S. lawyer, Jeffrey Lena, called the complaint a "ludicrous publicity stunt and a misuse of international judicial processes" in a statement to The Associated Press.

The Practical Buddhist Responds


Above is a representative sample of the Canadian Catholic Hierarchy. Each is a savvy administrator, far right theologically, politically adept, and utterly loyal to Rome. Those are among the basic requirements for the Pope to appoint a bishop. Nothing wrong with that. Catholicism thrives on centralizing and protecting power, apparently in the belief that rigid control is the best setting for preaching the Gospel. Maybe it is. Who knows?

But centralized, self-protective power does not deal well with challenges to it's image and authority.  The powerful (like all  politicians) will deny fault, delay, and shift blame. If they are caught dead to rights, they will issue elaborate but carefully worded apologies and establish committees to do long-term studies of the problem and propose solutions. Sometime's they'll send the CEO to do photo-ops, apologizing to victims.

Not enough.

The Practical Buddhist admires the Catholic Church plenty, and like some of its members, knows that the bosses still don't get it. A time of purification and return to basics is essential.  

On Ash Wednesday, priests smudge foreheads with the burned remains of Palm Sunday fronds, warning "Repent, and Believe the Good News."  Good advice, Your Excellency.

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