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out of the frying pan ...

By Diogenes (articles ) | Mar 08, 2004

The experts weigh in:

"Men ordained around 1970 were at higher risk for abuse since they were ordained during the tumultuous years of Vatican II and were coping like everyone else with the wackiness of the 1970s," said Thomas Plante, a professor of psychology at Santa Clara University in California.

A few amateur observations:

  • I realize that it's partly academic and actuarial jargon, but isn't it about time to drop the cant whereby a class of perpetrators is "at risk" for the crime it perpetrates? There's plenty of danger around because of out-of-control sexuality, but the perps create it, for God's sake.
  • Every Catholic alive at the time was affected by the tumult precipitated by Vatican II. Yet there's no evidence that journeyman Catholic millwrights raped their apprentices or that field-grade Catholic officers hit on male recruits in disproportionate numbers.
  • Doesn't it make more sense to say that Class of 1970 was not coping like everyone else?
  • Just what did the "wackiness of the 1970s" consist in? Very high on the list -- at least in the formation of priests and religious -- was the replacement of traditional asceticism with the latest findings of academic psychology. So what's the game plan for fixing the catastrophe spawned by the wackiness? (Hint: it's not traditional asceticism.)

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Show 4 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: - Mar. 09, 2004 1:11 AM ET USA

    When it suits them, liberals depict humans as being nothing but marionets of the great god, History. Jerked about, and soulless. It doesn't seem to occur to them, that their obscene condescension (which they do to exculpate) inflicts far more damage on the objects of their tender concern than righteous condemnation would.

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Mar. 08, 2004 5:55 PM ET USA

    Our Church at the highest levels doesn't "make" mistakes, Diogenes...So "what's to fix?" But be thankful...By this time during the Middle Ages, my dear brother, you certainly would have been tongueless.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 08, 2004 5:02 PM ET USA

    I'm on our local school board, and the student "Gay/Straight Alliance" wants the school to participate in a "Day of Silence," the supposed meaning of which eludes me. (I did hear that 223 Jesuits had volunteered to be the chaplain for this chapter of the GSA, though.) Naturally, pun intended, we refused immediately, and informed the GSA's members that failing to respond properly to a teacher would be met with punishment. So far the NY Times has stayed out of it....

  • Posted by: Pseudodionysius - Mar. 08, 2004 11:24 AM ET USA

    I am shocked to discover that the "wackiness" of the 1970's did not result in marginal priestly formation causing everyone to "Soar on Eagle's Wings".

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