Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

first things first

By Diogenes (articles ) | Dec 18, 2009

The Bishop of Limerick Donal Murray has resigned his post in the wake of Ireland's clerical abuse scandal. His sorrowfully lame resignation statement does not admit any failure on his part. He says rather that his continued presence in the job would create too many difficulties for too many people:

A bishop is meant to be a person who seeks to lead and inspire all the people of the diocese in living as a community united in the truth and love of Christ.

Well, no. The office of the bishop is to teach, to govern, and to sanctify (see the Catechism, 888-896). Leadership as such has nothing to do with it.

C.S. Lewis argued that the political shift from dominion by ruler to dominion by leader was one of the most important and far-reaching changes in the history of the West:

Of a ruler one asks justice, incorruption, diligence, perhaps clemency; of a leader, dash, initiative, and (I suppose) what people call ‘magnetism’ or ‘personality.’

If Murray had been less concerned to “lead and inspire” his flock, and instead had stuck to the more fundamental tasks of instructing, governing, and sanctifying them -- had he brought to his job a modicum of justice, incorruption, diligence, and clemency -- would the abusive clergy have preyed on multiple targets? Would he be apologising to the victims today?
 

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($33,130 to go):
$35,000.00 $1,870.25
95% 5%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Pseudodionysius - Dec. 18, 2009 6:58 PM ET USA

    Di, I think you've got it wrong. Not only does the President of the CCCB believe that you bloggers aren't part of the Church, but you guys just haven't read enough Hegel. http://www.archwinnipeg.ca/community.php

  • Posted by: adamah - Dec. 18, 2009 1:36 PM ET USA

    Excellent distinction.

  • Posted by: Wild Bill - Dec. 18, 2009 1:16 PM ET USA

    At least he had the vestige of decency to resign. So many of his equally guilty brother bishops remain in their sees and refuse to step down.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

The first steps toward liturgical renewal 5 hours ago
Boycott Apple? No; the effort is doomed to fail. 7 hours ago
Church Fathers: St. Justin Martyr 19 hours ago
Zooming toward Easter 20 hours ago
Why homosexuals need not worry over the Indiana law 21 hours ago

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope announces Jubilee: a Year of Mercy CWN - March 13