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Friday, July 16, 2010

The Loosening Grip of the Catholic Church

Today marked the publication of the Catholic Church's newest legislation in the fight against its ongoing fight with child sex abuse amongst the clergy. This story made headline news in Ireland, a country that has been rocked by the abuse scandal more than most

Let me explain something about the Church and the nation of Ireland. the Church has been the greatest political influence on this country from its creation in 1992 up until very recently. At the foundation of the State the church  was in charge of most of the country's hospitals and education facilities (it remains in a majority today). It also lead to the banning of pornography, contraception and up until the 1970's had a "special position" in the very Constitution of Ireland. Indeed, up until the child sex abuse scandal broke (originally about 5 years ago) the idea of being an ethnically Irish person who questioned Catholic teaching was bizarre and even admonished by elderly people. now dissent rings out from many corners against the Church and the pain of abuse victims is strewn across every newspaper.

But not only in the jewel of the Vatican's crown has this scandal been hard felt. There was recent outrage in Belgium after the raids  of Church's suspected of harbouring information on paedophiles by the police. However, it wasn't exactly handled well by the Vatican who called the raids "suprising and deplorable".

And thus we come to the point of this blog entry. People often express how out of touch the Church is with modern attitudes and sentiment and how deeply wrong it was for them to harbour paedophiiles in their midst and protect them. Shouldn't the Church as a hole realise that if they are to have only hope of rescuing their dwindling flock that they must be as contrite as possible in the face of some horrific charges.

Indeed today, with the release of this new legislation the Church has been attacked again saying that it does not go far enough. The Vatican has completely neglected in this legislation their responsibility to not only protect children from predators but also to alert authorities to those who engage in illegal activity in their ranks.  This decree does not take care of this important issue.

How can the Church even begin to think it can make amends for the atrocities that many of the clergy have committed if it does not completely purge its ranks and offer the victims who have been tortured and suffered for so long its highest level of repentance. After all it has been getting us to repent for long enough.

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