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View Diary: New Information Emerges on Pope John Paul II (308 comments)

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  •  You can say a lot of things about JPII but (3+ / 0-)
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    Don midwest, wu ming, AoT

    incompetence is not one of them. He did not screw up the handling of clerical sex abuse, he acted to protect those that mattered most - the priests. He did not fail to protect anyone he protected those he believed needed protection the hierarchy of the church. After all what is the suffering of a few children compared with the need to protect "The Bride of Christ". It was not incompetence is was intentional.

    He saw the world as Maggie Thatcher and Ronald Reagan saw it - as a place under attack by the Evil One. He saw the child abuse scandal as an attack on Mother Church by Satan and his forces. Just like communism. In his mind these scandals were about destroying the reputation of the church and ultimatly destroying the church itself. Child sex abuse itself is as old as human history. The modern difference is that now we understand that the victims deserve our protection and help and the abusers deserve prison and condemnation.

    The Catholic church also saw the French Revolution as an existential threat and countered it with conservative thinking. They burned critics at the stake. At the turn of the 20th century they published a list of books that one should never read or risk excommunication.

    So do not let Catholicism off easy by claiming that the church made a simple mistake about child sex abuse. It was no mistake. They chose to throw those kids under the bus.

    •  You hit the nail on the head. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Don midwest, a2nite, SeaTurtle, AoT

      The overarching purpose of the popes throughout history has been to maintain and advance the Church's own wealth and power. The deaths, torture, impoverishment, etc. etc. of others is of no concern.

    •  Au, contraire mon frere. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lgcap, Don midwest

      Not letting the Church off the hook at all. Scores of Bishops & Cardinals need to be rotting in jail for for life what they did to shield the rapists of children from justice, and to provide them access to even more victims. For decades. No one is angrier about this atrocity than I am, trust me. I left the Church largely because of it.

      But John Paul II was indeed mind-bogglingly incompetent. He was famously uninterested in the boring but utterly essential nuts & bolts management of the Vatican. Countless decisions large and small went unmade. Or they were negligently made by an ignorant cabal of (mostly Polish) close friends of Woytila who were utterly clueless about how the Vatican and the Church as a whole actually ran. Finances fell apart. Basic functions fell apart. The only thing that was really a priority for him was packing the College of Cardinals and replacing the Episcopate with hundreds of extremely conservative members. Most of whom were not coincidentally utterly incompetent managers themselves.

      •  You see I agree with you that he was a bad pope (0+ / 0-)

        but I tend to think he was more responsible for the problems than you do. I think he damn well knew about the child abuse and acted the way he did intentionally. There is no job manual for the job of pope. Each pope basically defines the job his way. He uses the Curia or the Curia uses him. There was much corruption and he chose to ignore it. He decided it was more important to chase his Marian devotion and leave the day to day business to the Curialists. They run the church anyway. The entire leadership of the church from assistant bishop on up should resign and spend the rest of their sorry lives on their knees begging Gods forgiveness in a monks cell or prison cell. Prayer and contemplation. Let some new people figure out how to save the church.

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