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Final US Jesuit group releases names of accused abusers

All U.S.-based Jesuit provinces have released the names of clerics they say are credibly accused of child sex abuse. RNS illustration by Kit Doyle

WASHINGTON (RNS) — The Northeast province of the Society of Jesus has released the names of 50 men it says have been credibly accused of child sex abuse since 1950.

With the report’s release Tuesday (Jan. 15), following others from the Catholic order’s U.S. provinces in recent months, all Jesuit provinces in the United States have now unveiled lists of priests accused of abuse, joining dozens of Catholic dioceses that have done the same since the August 2018 release of a bombshell grand jury report in Pennsylvania that detailed decades of alleged abuse by priests in the state.

The Northeast province’s list details the Jesuits’ past assignments, current status and the form of allegation deemed credible. Many of the clerics were listed as deceased, some were described as having left the order, and one was listed as incarcerated on charges of child pornography.

The Rev. John J. Cecero, provincial of the Northeast province, published a letter apologizing for Jesuits who have committed abuse and promising to “work to provide safe environments for all to whom we minister.” He said the order has put in place safeguards since 2002 to protect children and others.

“The list I publish today notes criminal and sinful failures in the pastoral care of children,” he wrote. After noting that “the majority of these allegations were made years or even decades after abuse occurred,” Cecero said in his letter that “any living Jesuit with a credible allegation of abuse is removed from ministry and assigned to a community that does not serve minors where he lives under a closely monitored safety plan. … Jesuits who have offended can no longer offend.”

The Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest and prominent author who is part of the Northeast province, expressed dismay on Twitter after the list was released.

“This is … my home province and this list fills me with both shame and anger,” Martin said. “Though I had no authority over any of these men, the crimes and sins of my brother Jesuits shame and anger me intensely.”

He added: “Today’s Gospel speaks of Jesus healing a man with an ‘unclean spirit’ in the midst of the synagogue (Mk 1:21-28). Today we ask Jesus to help us heal the evil that we encounter in the church today.”

As Jesuits and other church leaders embrace greater transparency by posting the names, the efforts may not be enough to stifle criticism.

After several Jesuit provinces released names late last year, journalists noted that some of the accused are living in a Baltimore home within a mile of several schools. Advocates at SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, subsequently called on the Jesuits to provide the surrounding community “with an explanation of their safety protocols and practices,” according to news website ThinkProgress.

In other cases, efforts by Catholic officials to publicly identify accused priests have been called into question. In December, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced that her state’s recent investigation into the Catholic abuse crisis uncovered more than 500 accused priests who had not yet been publicly identified by the church. The announcement stressed that the findings were preliminary and did not clarify how many of the allegations against priests were credible.

About the author

Jack Jenkins

Jack Jenkins is a national reporter for RNS based in Washington, covering U.S. Catholics and the intersection of religion and politics.

35 Comments

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  • “As Jesuits and other church leaders embrace greater transparency by posting the names, the efforts may not be enough to stifle criticism.”

    It won’t. But the criticism is valid – it took until year 2019 for the Jesuits in the U.S. to get their final list published. There will be and should be a weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth from victims and their families. There will be perhaps some who come forward who have not felt able to face what they internalized as their shame. There will be people who recognize some names and are astonished and begin to try to think about those times and if they ever had a hint that they simply dismissed because it was a priest or a Jesuit.

    What it also does, though, is allow the past to be dealt with so we can move forward. There is a safer climate in the Catholic Church now, but Catholics also know not to blindly trust priests or bishops again. We lay Catholics have to accept some of the responsibility for keeping our houses of worship, Catholic schools, Catholic institutions free of abuse, including the abuse of priests and bishops. Now we need to take the time to reevaluate our expectations of priests and bishops and to consider what changes need to be made in church governance so that we are not fooled by priests and bishops again. We need a better oversight of priests and bishops starting at the parish level, into the diocese level, up to archdiocese, and into the Vatican.

    We can’t trust them to police themselves. But here is the other side. They need alert, aware, questioning, nosy, loving, dedicated lay Catholics as much we we need guidance in our path of faith. We need each other – but in a different relationship.

    Here is a hint. I am not a sheep. A priest is not “alter-Christus.” Let’s start from here in redefining who we are to/for each other and to/for God and to/for/in Jesus.

  • “We need a better oversight of priests and bishops starting at the parish
    level, into the diocese level, up to archdiocese, and into the Vatican.”

    Since the Catholic Church is hierarchical by its institution, the bishops are successors to the Apostles and therefore oversee the Church, the notion of lay oversight is a non-starter altogether.

    However there is certainly room for lay advisory members to the epsicopate.

    The ordained are “alter Christus” ONLY in their sacerdotal roles in administration of the sacraments – at the Eucharist, in Confession.

    If you reject that, you reject Catholicism.

  • That the Church is now hierarchical does not mean it must always be hierarchical. The hierarchy developed over time. It was not designed by Christ but was created by followers of Christ to fit the culture of the times in which it developed – and especially to fit into the power structure.

    The hierarchical structure is not required by God. What Jesus asked of the Church was to bring the good news to all the peoples of the earth. That is the purpose of the Catholic church. The hierarchical structure was useful as a form through which that mission could be widely accomplished.

    But, we live in different times now. How we organize societies has changed, how we distribute power has changed, how we oversee power so that it does not become abusive has changed. The form of the Church is now an impediment to the mission of the Church. It is the mission which is the sacred duty, not how they structured themselves over the first few hundred years of existence.

    All the hoopla over priests as alter-Christus or bishops as successors of the apostles are derivative assumptions, possible interpretation of some action which was recorded in the Bible. What we read is what the hearer remembers and how the hearer wrote about it is how it was filtered through his brain, his culture, the limits of his knowledge. The New Testament can give us hints, but there were no recording machines back then and MMLJ were not stenos carrying around notepads.

    Maybe, there was some Holy Spirit involvement in how the Church chose to become organized 1900 years ago – but whatever the Holy Spirit whispered at the time has been interpreted by human minds. We need to be always open to correction and to renewal, to what more the Holy Spirit may have to say. Remember Jesus said there were things we were not ready to hear during His life. Perhaps even now some are still not ready to hear but others are ready.

  • “…the bishops are successors to the Apostles…” — BALONEY. Just more self-serving institutional claptrap.

    In fact, there’s good reason to conclude that Catholic hierarchs don’t even have so-called “valid” episcopal orders, thanks to what we’ve learned from the study of church history.

    The Gospel demonstrates Jesus giving us the eucharist and baptism. Christian eucharists were originally led by unordained liturgical presiders who served in this capacity by virtue of their community leadership.

    Therefore, the “alter Christus” argument rests on a foundation of historical sand.

  • “That the Church is now hierarchical does not mean it must always be hierarchical. The hierarchy developed over time. It was not designed by Christ but was created by followers of Christ to fit the culture of the times in which it developed – and especially to fit into the power structure.”

    Of course, as I have pointed out to you before, that the Catholic Church by its divine institution is hierarchical is de fide, reiterated in Lumen Gentium at Vatican II, which established nothing new.

    Can you hold a contra position along with the folks at National Catholic Reporter?

    Of course.

    Is that contra position in any way defensible as “Catholic”?

    No.

    “All the hoopla over priests as alter-Christus or bishops as successors of the apostles are derivative assumptions, possible interpretation of some action which was recorded in the Bible.”

    Unfortunately you have not the slightest idea of what you’re talking about.

    As others, including myself, have pointed in the past the positions you espouse – no the least of which is your position on the morality of abortion – are diametrically opposed to those of the Catholic Church.

    You can hold them, you can espouse them, but the discrepancy will be pointed out.

  • Mark – you have this incredibly narrow picture of what you think all Catholics believe. And, a terrible lack of inquisitiveness, of an open mind. Do you really just believe it all?

    I am Catholic and so are tens of millions of Catholics who use contraceptives, don’t believe it is a sin to miss Mass on Sunday, Believe women would make great priests, don’t believe in all kinds of things the bishops have said we are supposed to believe.

    Get over yourself and this awful sense you have that you should be instructing or judging anyone. Look to your own failings and finding how you can be closer God. When you are perfect, then you can judge others.

  • “Mark – you have this incredibly narrow picture of what you think all Catholics believe.”

    Correction:

    I have an expansive knowledge of what the Catholic Church teaches.

    I am also very familiar with most of the dissident groups and what they hand out to folks like yourself.

    “And, a terrible lack of inquisitiveness, of an open mind. Do you really just believe it all?”

    Among other things I don’t believe the National Catholic Reporter or you.

    “I am Catholic and so are tens of millions of Catholics who use contraceptives, don’t believe it is a sin to miss Mass on Sunday, Believe women would make great priests, don’t believe in all kinds of things the bishops have said we are supposed to believe.”

    You’re using “Catholic” in a very special sense: a person who was apparently baptized Catholic, at one point in her life educated Catholic, and because she has neither been excommunicated nor formally apostasized believes she can call herself Catholic while actively opposing the Church and its teachings.

    The Church sees it a bit differently.

    A Catholic is a baptized Christian who supports and attends a Catholic parish, seeks to follow the Church’s teachings, raises any children in the Catholic Faith, and engages in the constant pursuit of getting closer to God.

    That Catholic believes solemnly propounded as revealed by God with divine faith, as well as doctrines likewise infallibly taught not as revealed by God but as truths inseparably connected with revelation with a firm and definitive assent, and gives religious submission of will and intellect to teachings on matters more connected with revelation that are nevertheless authoritative.

    In the first category are the articles of the Creed, and teachings on the sacrificial nature of the Eucharist and on the grave immorality of direct and voluntary killing of an innocent human being, the last two of which you reject.

    “Get over yourself and this awful sense you have that you should be instructing or judging anyone.”

    Get over yourself and your incredible anger at having it pointed out that the Catholic Church actually teaches, and you oppose its teachings with all your heart, and all your mind, and all your will.

    As to “…. then you can judge others“, you have never read me judge you.

    I compare and contrast your positions with those of the Catholic Church and point the incredible lack of correspondence and the doubts that casts over your claim to be Catholic.

    You acknowledge that lack of correspondence, which means anyone reading the exchanges knows where things stand.

  • There would be no study of Church history without the Church and the successors of the Apostles, our Bishops!

  • Indeed. If you reject that, then you are closer to one of the National Churches or any Protestant denomination.

  • Of course.

    The way that they dealt with that at National Catholic Reporter comments – where several of these commenters were active – was by banning anyone who pointed that out.

    That is still the case at a variety of dissident fora, e.g.:

    https://disqus.com/home/forum/bilgrimage/

    and

    https://disqus.com/home/forum/www-aggiornamento-net/

    and you can see why.

    The difficulty is that the Catholic Church – and there are others in some ways like it – is a teaching church. Its positions and teachings and the reasons for them can be found and presented.

    And if you disagree, especially if you don’t disagree for well-founded and logically constructed reasons, having those positions and teachings pointed out is a real problem for you.

  • Again, time and money wasted as the “vomit-inducing” pedophilia and coverup will simply hasten the decline of all religions as they finally go extinct from their own absurdity.. It is time to replace all religions with a few rules like “Do No Harm” and convert all houses of “worthless worship” to recreation facilities and parks.

    Please promulgate The Great Kibosh of All Religions so that we can return to useful and righteous pursuits:

    Putting the kibosh on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    • A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached and belief that various beings (angels?, tinkerbells? etc) exist that we, as mortals, cannot comprehend makes for a no on Sikhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

    e.g. Taoism

    “The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

    Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother’s womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. “

  • I think you memorize well. But what you hold to is someone’s ideas of what the fact are, which you can learn to recite. I think that is how you celebrate and recognize faith – by the rules.

    But I don’t sense you have any idea of the mystery that is God. You think man has explained Him and knows what God wants of us, down to when or if a couple should use contraceptives and that a bishop can infuse a person with God like powers to change bread to flesh. And wow how you judge!

    People approach faith in different ways. I don’t believe one is better than the other – God comes to us in ways He can be found. Obviously, you think you can define Him. I think He is indefinable, undefinable, … But I do believe He IS and I do believe that Jesus knew/knows Him and explained Him better than anyone else.

    Peace. I am Catholic.

  • “I am Catholic.”

    You are what you believe to be Catholic.

    “But what you hold to is someone’s ideas of what the fact are, which you can learn to recite.”

    The Catholic Church is a teaching church.

    Luke 10:16 “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me, and he who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”

    Because it is Roman it documents those teachings quite comprehensively and systematically.

    “But I don’t sense you have any idea of the mystery that is God.”

    The only mystery to me is how you can read Luke 10:16 and come away from it with center finger raised to the successors to the Apostles he was speaking to.

    And wow how you judge! You know better than Pope and Council, Bible and Tradition, you know better than anyone.

    “People approach faith in different ways.”

    Not all of which entitle one to call one’s self “Catholic”.

    You’re really unable to support your position beyond “I know what I like to believe”.

    That’s okay, but let’s not pretend any of it rises to a level beyond a matter of personal taste, eh?

  • What about the Mormons? Is something going on like that, there? I notice an uptick in articles on them, and I also noted there is something called “The Book of Mormon,” which has advertising like “Nunsense.”

  • No “study of Church history without the Church and the successors of the Apostles, our bishops”???

    One may presume that Christian writers would write the history of their faith expression, etc. On the other hand, there is no evidence the Twelve served as bishops/leaders of local churches or ordained anyone to serve in this capacity. Their ministry, unlike that of bishops, was unique in that the Twelve observed the earthly ministry of Jesus himself and were appointed by Jesus (and nobody else) to go forth to teach and baptize.

    Some primitive Christian communities identified their religious leaders as “presbyteroi”, i.e., elders, while other communities identified leaders as “episkopoi”, i.e., supervisors. The term used depended on the preference of the particular community. There was no ministerial ordination to liturgical ministry, a responsibility based on the incumbent’s community leadership. It was only a hundred or so years later that Christian apologists began identifying liturgical leaders as “priests” and borrowing other terms from Judaism. It was during this transition period that apologists also began describing the Twelve as “priests”.

    Furthermore, many (most?) of the bishops at the Council of Trent did not regard their “priesthood” as any different or more significant than that of the men whom they ordained to said ministry. In ordaining men to the episcopate, bishops saw themselves as ordaining persons to an office of honor and administration, not to any higher level of “priesthood” than that of frontline clerics. Why is this background important? Because it points to Rome’s stress on “intent” in its sacramental system. The Church has held that it requires a “validly” ordained bishop to ordain a man to the highest level of “priesthood”, i.e., the episcopate. This flaw regarding “intent” — assuming there was ever such a link in the first place from time immemorial — was thus broken even before Trent! Many (most?) conciliar bishops did not regard episcopal ordination as conferring any superior “priesthood” on their ordinands. Bishops simply were ordaining men to a “priesthood” that also involved diocesan administration and honor, nothing else.

    Your comment reflects doctrine posing as history. They are not the same even though Rome has freely conflated the two over the centuries. In his THEOLOGICAL HIGHLIGHTS OF VATICAN II (Paulist Press/Deus Books, 1966, p. 16), Joseph Ratzinger observes that “facts, as history teaches, carry more weight than pure doctrine.” When history and doctrine are in conflict on a matter, history must govern. Of course, the former pope would not accept church history’s adverse impact on sacramental “intent” as applied to episcopal ordination. Why not? Because doing so would render moot Rome’s argument that the Church has “valid” episcopal orders.

  • What about the Replacement for Judas? Bishop Matthias? And you are not giving provable “facts” of history. It takes more faith in these “facts” to prove that there is no apostolic succession, than it does to believe in the true facts handed down by tradition. Thus, we obviously have Bishops appointing people (1 Timothy and Acts of the Apostles, Stephen) to holy orders, also. Just because they did not express ministry in terms that are currently used, does not mean it was not there. As John Henry Newman says in his “Essay on the Development of Doctrine this…”may arise from the very notoriety of the facts in question, as in the case of the seasons, the weather or other natural phenomena.” If it were not for Mother Church who preserved historical documents, there would be very little documentation from any source.

  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints holds a theology which includes the doctrine of salvation only through Jesus Christ, but doctrines regarding the nature of God and the potential of mankind differ significantly from mainstream Christianity.

    It has an open canon which includes four scriptures: the Bible (both Old and New Testaments), the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price.

    The majority of the non-Biblical canon is made up of revelation received by Joseph Smith and recorded by his scribes which includes commentary and exegesis about the Bible, texts described as lost parts of the Bible, and other works believed to be written by ancient prophets.

    The canon is “open” because under the doctrine of continuing revelation, Latter-day Saints believe that the church president is a modern-day “prophet, seer, and revelator” and that Jesus Christ, under the direction of God the Father, leads the church by revealing his will to its president.

    The president heads a hierarchical structure with various levels reaching down to local congregations.

    Like all the major religions, it is experiencing dissent from various factions, particularly feminists, and one of its frequent critics is pundit at RNS:

    https://pantheon-live.religionnews.com/category/opinion/columns/jana-riess/

  • Mark/Bob Connelly/Arnzen: self-ordained defender of the indefensible and purveyer of bovine excrement.

  • “The difficulty is that the Catholic Church – and there are others in some ways like it – is a teaching church.”

    The Catholic Church is a doctrinal church. Problems arise, however, when the doctrine effectively repudiates Jesus’ own teaching!!! For example, the Church of Rome teaches that Jesus was the “high priest” even though Jesus himself never identifies himself as any kind of “priest”. He and the Twelve already had their “priests” who could be found at the Temple or, at other times, at their synagogues where they enjoyed no special privileges and only a few insignificant functions reserved to them. The Church teaches that Peter was the “first pope” even though he would not have known what the term meant in terms of official church structure. The Church of Rome teaches that a “validly ordained priest” is necessary to officiate at mass even though such a notion would have been considered odd, if not heretical, by the earliest Christians. For them, *every* baptized man and woman was a priest challenged by Jesus’ teaching to help people in need (this understanding was their doctrine of “sacrifice”).

    To rephrase Mr. Connelly’s last paragraph, “And if you disagree with the distinction between ‘fact’ and ‘fiction’, between ‘history’ and ‘doctrine’, especially if you don’t disagree for well-founded and logically constructed reasons, having those historically based positions and teachings pointed out is a real problem for people like Connelly.”

  • I gave a reply addressing your comments. It does not (yet?) appear here. It was respectful and factual. Perhaps it’s awaiting moderator review.

  • Matthias and Judas were not “bishops”; you’re engaging in anachronism (the term ‘episkopos’ did not mean ‘bishop’ as we understand it today). Facts and faith are not the same. What I’ve given is information from canonical and other sources examined by scholars including Kenan Osborne, OFM; Francis Sullivan, SJ; and the late Jaroslav Pelikan of Yale University. Osborne is professor emeritus of theology at the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, CA where he taught for more than four decades; he is a past president of the Catholic Theological Society of America. He authored PRIESTHOOD: A HISTORY OF THE ORDAINED MINISTRY IN THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH. Sullivan, now retired, was on the faculty of the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome for more than three decades, serving as dean from 1964 to 1970. His research/teaching interests were in ecclesiology. He authored FROM APOSTLES TO BISHOPS: THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE EPISCOPACY IN THE EARLY CHURCH. Pelikan was a renowned theological historian who wrote, inter alia, the 5-volume THE CHRISTIAN TRADITION: A HISTORY OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF DOCTRINE. Wikipedia has biographical entries for Pelikan and Sullivan.

    You contend, “[W]e obviously have Bishops appointing people (1 Timothy and Acts of the Apostles, Stephen) to holy orders, also. Just because they did not express ministry in terms that are currently used, does not mean it was not there.” Osborne offers the following information for consideration:

    + “In all of the passages on New Testament ministries, we have no clear indication of any ordination rite. There are, of course, instances of a laying on of hands in the early Church, particularly in Acts and in 1 Tim 4, 14; 2 Tim 1, 6 (cf. also 2 Cor 8, 19 which speaks of an election). What this laying on of hands in each case of these New Testament passages might clearly indicate is arguable. Ordination, as we understand this term, does not seem to be the intent of these situations, and to read an ‘ordination’ ritual, such as one finds from the time of Hippolytus onward, would be clearly an ‘eisegesis.’”

    + “Very little Old Testament data for a laying on of hands as an installation ritual is available, and this dearth of evidence does not bolster the view that a true ‘ordination’ ritual can be found in the New Testament passages. When one realizes that between the few New Testament indications mentioned above and the ritual of Hippolytus at the beginning of the third century there is absolutely no documentary evidence for ordination, then the conjectural status of any statement on ordination prior to Hippolytus becomes even more apparent, cautioning us to avoid any apodictic approach.”

    + “In themselves, phrases which include the words ‘laying on of hands’ do not essentially include an appointment to office or ministry. A laying on of hands, in both Old and New Testaments, can be found for blessings, healings, receiving the Spirit, reconciling. In other words, ‘laying on of hands’ in itself is not a technical term for an ‘ordination.’”

    In his FROM APOSTLES TO BISHOPS: THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE EPISCOPACY IN THE EARLY CHURCH (2001), Francis Sullivan writes: “We must conclude that the New Testament provides no basis for the notion that before the apostles died, they ordained one man as bishop for each of the churches they had founded. The only person in the New Testament whose role resembles that of a bishop is James the ‘brother of the Lord,’ who was most likely designated for his position of leadership in the Jerusalem church by his relationship with Jesus and the special appearance with which he was favored by the risen Jesus. It seems extremely unlikely that he was ‘ordained’ as bishop of Jerusalem by St. Peter. Nor does the New Testament evidence support the idea that Peter, Paul or any other apostle became bishop of any one local church or ordained one man as bishop of any local church. One looks in vain to the New Testament for a basis for the idea of ‘an unbroken line of episcopal ordination from Christ through the apostles down through the centuries to the bishops of today.”

    Were Timothy and Stephen “appoint[ed] to holy orders”? Such does not appear to be the case. They were appointed to ministries of leadership and service, respectively, but the oldest extant ordination rituals, which include the duties/expectations for deacon, presbyter, and bishop, date from ca. 150 to as late as ca. 350 CE, according to recent historical scholarship. The “Apostolic Tradition of Hippolytus” shows threadbare liturgical leadership for the bishop and no such function for the presbyter. The first hundred or so years was a time of flux and variety in the Christian world.

  • I think you and those you cite are mis-interpreting tradition. Rites did not come full-blown out of the early Church. The were refined. What would you call “election” of Matthias in modern terms? Once again. Cheer up! These scholars are depressing you. There is still the joy of Christ in the Church.

  • You are obviously conflating history with doctrine. Not the same. I’ve shared historical information from respected sources.

    You ask, “What would you call ‘election’ of Matthias in modern terms?” I would call it ‘selection’ for the ministry of teaching and baptizing of future believers. Again, you are engaging in anachronism. “T]hese scholars are [not] depressing [me].” I cannot speak, of course, for you. I can only remind my fellow Catholics of the church’s “roots”, which are a far cry from the institutional stuff that would develop later. We ignore our collective history at our own and our children’s peril. Let’s acknowledge church history to further Vatican II’s goal of ecclesial renewal. Long past due.

  • When I “self-delete” a comment of mine, I do so because it may be unnecessarily redundant or superseded by a later relevant comment. You may do the same if you think it necessary from time to time.

  • I can’t agree with you. These respected sources will not last the test of time. I’m glad they uplift you. But you don’t seem uplifted…you keep predicting a imminent catastrophe for the Church.

  • “I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first …… And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which search the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.” (Revelation 2:19-23) ~ Man’s work is used sanitary napkin.

    “And he that overcome, and keep my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.” (Revelation 2:26-27) ~ Christ’s work is eternal life and abundant life.

  • “These respected sources will not last the test of time.”

    I’m not a prognosticator as some folks pretend to be. I respect the findings of scholars whose Christian faith is not jeopardized by their research into the roots of the Christian church. The Church of Rome values faith *and* reason. The latter embraces, inter alia, history.

    “I’m glad they uplift you. But you don’t seem uplifted….” What??? There’s no “uplift[ing]” here, merely an acknowledgement of what history has to show us.

    “[Y]ou keep predicting a imminent catastrophe for the Church.” To repeat, I’m not a prognosticator, but recent events have demonstrated the dangers inherent in having a church institution built upon a caste system that is not supported by the Gospel.

    I provide historical information from respected sources, and you keep complaining.

    Your problem, not mine.

  • Good news is that Christ entered history, and transformed it. I think you have it backwards, and you think I have it backwards. I have traveled to a country where there is a real caste system. The Catholic Church is not that, even in analogy. But I think we can agree to disagree?

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