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time for personal renewal

By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 01, 2009

Back in 2004, you may remember, the Springfield (MA) Diocese announced that Bishop Thomas Dupre, "citing health reasons," was opting for early retirement under the provisions of canon 401-dash-2.

The word "health," it turned out, had a special ecclesiastical meaning. The reason Dupre resigned, local law enforcement agencies immediately made clear, was that he had sodomized two underage boys in past years and the DA finally caught up with him.
 

Diocesan officials hastened to reassure us that Dupre's ailments were "not considered life threatening." A beautiful example of the new transparency.
 

We return to the present. On September 27 Bishop Raymond Lahey of Antigonish (Nova Scotia) announced he too was taking a Dash-2 retirement. " I have already left the Diocese," he said in a statement, "to take some much-needed time for personal renewal."
 

Ah, yes. Personal renewal. It turns out that on September 15 Lahey had been found with kiddie-porn on his laptop by border security agents. He has since been arrested. The "much needed time" Lahey claimed to be seeking will mostly likely be spent under house arrest with a transponder around his ankle. If he believed in his own innocence, after all, he wouldn't have requested an early exit or tried to blow smoke to conceal the reasons for his departure.
 

Canon 401-§2, under the Gaudium et Spes dispensation, has become Joe Catholic's friendly emetic. Like a panful of tapeworms taken from a dog's stomach, the roster of Dash-2 retirees provides a grim display of parasites that fed, too long, off the Church's bounty. As so often, it's a pity that secular law enforcement should be the agency that puts a stop to bad bishops. As so often, it's a pity that even after the remedy the bishops won't name the real disease for which it was applied.
 

Bishop Lahey's ailments, be it noted, are not considered life threatening.
 

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