I’m sorry to hear you had a bad head cold. I hope you feel better now. Happy Halloween! Are you dressing up? I was going to be Heinz Doofenschmirtz, but will probably not dress this year. Nowhere to go.
We love Doofenschmirtz here. No such fun for me but my kids have invited some friends over. I would surely horrify them if I tried dressing up. I'm hiding in another room while they scream at a movie.
If you're interested you can start with Appendix 1 (found on page 347 of the report itself).
Thank you for the reference. I’ve read the report from page 347 to the end. Which parts show evidence that shuttling is an institution-wide policy?[/quote]
My original reply was to your comment about shuttling and ignoring
. From page 349, number 9: "Each complaint, alleged a lack of any adequate response being taken by the Diocese. They reported a perceived lack of willingness to follow any appropriate child protection procedures."
This was the function of the report itself - to investigate if the church authority was being responsible in the protection of the children in its care. This is textbook negligence. General accusations of abusive priests being shuttled from one parish to another can be found in other sources
We are obedient to authority because when we follow the rule, we are better than when we don’t.
Okay this makes sense, but there's no supernatural element in this mechanic. You're suggesting there's a such a thing as a spirit that is holy and righteous and is essentially perfect love. There's simply no reason to accept this premise any more than accepting the argument for karma: Good people tend to find good things happen to them and people who do bad things find bad events happen to them. Of course it doesn't always stand but it's easy enough to read into any event after the fact. If you're suggesting there is a spirit of perfect love that animates the church or any of her members, we ought to see evidence for that argument. Instead, we see within the Catholic church the same elements we see in any organization, namely, some people are more suited to their positions than others, some are exemplary and others are horrifying, but there's no objective reason to assume there's a supernatural effect within the church or her members.
St. Peter comes to mind. Because of fear he denied Jesus.
That doesn't help me. I don't mean to be contrary but I have no reason to believe the character "Jesus" as described in the bible actually exists which would suggest St. Peter is no more than an anthropomorphized analogy as well. It simply doesn't make sense that a man who "knew" the "Son of God" without being told, who saw countless miracles, who watched his own mother in law get better from Jesus' attention, would deny knowing him. I mean, if I knew and hung out with a guy who could raise the dead, there would be nothing I would fear. Srsly.
You seem to be saying that either grace has a functional effect or that we have (the Church’s understanding of) free will. Is that correct? Why can’t it be both? Logically speaking, why can’t grace have a functional effect that helps a person when they cooperate with it and has no effect when a person refuses to cooperate?
It's simply unpersuasive to apply a cause only after the fact to explain the fact. Consider - a person finds God and works honorably with orphans the rest of his life. Must be the holy spirit. A person finds God and works with orphans and takes advantage of them physically and emotionally. Must be free will. Why not karma? Why not Allah's will? Why doesn't Buddhism explain it? Well, they all do and with the same validity the Christian faith can offer. Any of these ideas could
explain it, and do when offered by adherents to those belief systems. A more rational and meritorious explanation would be human behavior. Operant conditioning, natural levels of adrenaline which contributes to aggression or lack thereof, executive functioning ability and skills, education, etc. These explain events without having to appeal to supernatural superstition to explain what was once as mysterious as the stars.
So, are you saying that the bishops’ actions were based on what the experts said? I think if I said that, then some would claim I was defending the bishops or excusing their behavior.
That's likely to be true, that some would claim you're defending the bishops, that is. It's hard to excuse this kind of behavior, but I suspect the men were doing the best they could with the information they had. Listening to psychologists was a logical alternative to the years of listening to homilies for answers. How could they know that the advice they received wouldn't be as sophisticated as they needed? Well, except for the idea of observing the utter failure of following that advice and the fact that innocent children are being set up time and time again.
At the same time, I don’t understand why the source of the problem is not that some in the Church forgot that higher standard. It seems to me that if they had the counsel and fortitude to follow the higher standard, then they wouldn’t have made the mistakes (or at least as many as) they did. If the priests and Bishops who did these things were able to follow the “claim to be the Bride of Christ, . . . [and the] claim to have supernatural ability to know truth and morals and have access to God's grace to combat such spiritual attacks.” then they would have, in particular, been looking out for the victims a lot more than they actually did.
I can't imagine they forgot this. I'm trying, but I can't imagine the scenario. Father So-and-So rapes three boys every Tuesday and Thursday in his bedroom and tells the children that these times are under the seal of confession and will send them straight to hell for talking about and he *forgot* he ought not do this as a priest?
I think it's probably far more likely they reacted to whatever stimuli was attractive and learned to justify it so much that they stopped trying to justify it and simply continued to satisfy immediate gratification. I even imagine that in the dark of night, insomnia would have brought to their attention the vile, torturous things they did and the guilt would have been insurmountable. Until they figured out how to alleviate it, that is. Prayer works, "perfect contrition" means one need not go to the confessional for absolution. Drinking. Blaming the boys, blaming one's father, blaming sin. How very convenient to realize one has an addiction to sex with boys to convince themselves it's not really their fault and besides, who's going to find out? Lord knows childhood wasn't a day in the park for them... (or whatever it takes to get their minds off their actions).
Actually the concept of karma explains this so much better than sin. Karma suggests that in the person's last life they may have some lingering debt to justice, they are born with a character that is indicative of who they must have been before. If they work hard to eliminate as much as they can, their next life won't be fraught with such angst and little boys won't be so darn scrumptious. We can't remember our last lives, therefore anything could be possible. There's no reason not to believe this is the case, it's just how karma would work. The holy spirit, on the other hand, ought to have enough influence to shake a person out of their sin-fog just long enough to know what they're doing, seek the sacraments, and flee from more sin. The idea of free will ought not trump God's holy spirit, especially when that spirit is guiding the person who dedicated their lives to be a priest.
Do you disagree that her question contains the implicit claim that sports organizations and our public schools do not have the problem of shuttling? Do you disagree that they actually do have that problem? Do you think that she is helping the larger problem of abuse of any children by implying that there’s not a problem in our schools or sports? Do you think it’s okay to lie if it helps in making a point? Which is more important, the truth or attacking the Catholic Church?
I think you're missing her point. It's not to imply our public schools do not have this problem, it's to remind the faithful that the organization to which they belong not only represents its values through their policies, it claims to be supernaturally guided. A public school or sports team exists to provide an education or sporting experience. The church exists to provide the promise of salvation. It claims to be the representative of Christ on earth, the priests acting in persona christi
for the needs of the parishioners. People relocate schools and quit teams as necessary, but where does the faithful go for salvation? Instead of recognizing the faulty logic, they learn to distract themselves with the idea that each person is accountable for their own actions, regardless of the idea that the holy spirit supposedly separates the church from every other "natural" organization. It's this cognitive dissonance that one refuses to approach with the same careful consideration they do for judging those other areas in which they spend their time and offer their contributions.
Interesting. I had not seen that yet. Thank you for pointing it out to me. Let’s be accurate about what the stories are saying, though. It wasn’t Pope John Paul II who circulated the letter. It was Cardinal Castrillon who wrote and sent the letter. The Cardinal is also claiming that Pope John Paul II “authorized the letter and told him to send it to bishops around the world.” Other than repeats of the story, I have not found anything that confirms or denies the Cardinal’s claims.
Are you suggesting the cardinal lied and no one corrected his slander against the pope?
Thank you for going to the trouble of providing the explanation. Let me restate for clarification. You say that our behavioral choices are limited based on internal physics and personal experiences. (I have a Trading Places scene in my head right now. ) We are free to choose in the sense that we can select from one of those specific options, but we can’t choose outside of those options. Is that a correct re-statement?
My understanding is that our "choice" is really a rationalization for the decision the frontal lobe settled on in any given circumstance. From my "choice" of sitting on this couch to the "choice" of the word "circumstance" rather than "situation" or "scenario," the brain is simultaneously operating trillions of calculations every moment. Neurologist Sam Harris explains
, "You are not aware of the electrochemical events occurring at each of the trillion synapses in your brain at this moment. But you are aware, however dimly, of sights, sounds, sensations, thoughts, and moods. At the level of your experience, you are not a body of cells, organelles, and atoms; you are consciousness and its ever-changing contents, passing through various stages of wakefulness and sleep, and from cradle to grave." It is these electrochemical events, I suspect, that determine which of the many possibilities your brain calculates will net the most gain for the least cost that determine your "choice." He has a few blog posts about free will as well you might find interesting.
I think I understand. Thanks. Your claim that I’m using the NTS fallacy is more about grace than being a “true Catholic,” or maybe you see them the same. It’s like the discussion above about grace in the “either/or” setting above. Let me try to lay it out according the examples here.
Is that close? It’s the wording in 2 and 3 that I’m struggling with. I’m not sure that I’ve captured yet what you think I’m saying. Please pardon my obtuseness and thank you for your patience.
- Priest A committed sexually abusive acts.
- No true priest would have committed sexually abusive acts because of the grace they received.
- Therefore, Priest A is not a true priest, because they did not receive grace.
- Therefore, Priest A is not a counter-example to the claim that no true priest would have committed sexually abusive acts because of the grace they received.
Because "priest" is an office objectively identified, I wouldn't agree. Replace "priest" with "true Catholic" or "faithful believer" or anything in there that is purely subjectively determined and that would be a good start. The idea of receiving grace is another aspect to this that I really never considered as a Catholic. It sounds more like OSAS theology to declare one had never "really" been saved in the first place.
This is very much tied to the Problem of Evil. I wish I had an answer for you. I have some speculations – some logical, maybe some not – on various hypothetical situations. However, on the greater question, I don’t have an answer. I don’t always know why I do what I do, let alone an infinite, eternal, omniscient being.
I appreciate your not patronizing me with some superficiality. I think the reason you don't have an answer is because none exists. You wish you did because you sincerely believe the church is the repository of the supernatural essence of god and his grace and therefore some answer must exist. Any logical answers you have are rooted in the premise first of the existence of this god and the nature of this god as good (begging the question). Or I should say, if you have logical answers that are not rooted in this premise, I would be curious to hear them. As far as why you do what you do, I think that's the biggest selling point of faith. It offers a reason - sin. It's a fine hypothesis and makes sense given our nature and instinct to find correlation between events, but the hypothesis fails under careful scrutiny. Neurology, biology, evolution, social psychology and other related fields offer specific, objective data that contribute to a more rational, falsifiable hypothesis, one that leaves an ancient hypothesis created in the midst of beliefs of spirit and nature gods lacking.