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 August expenses ($34,995 to go):
$35,000.00 $5.00
100% 0%
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

Recent Catholic Commentary

Talk to your kids about porn! 0 hours ago
Showing the Courage to battle homosexual impulses 16 hours ago
In other words, to be a Christian means this: 18 hours ago
Wanted: a balanced Catholic perspective on immigration 22 hours ago
Renewal with God before Us: Christ Determines All July 30

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
New management, new changes coming for reformed Vatican bank CWN - July 8
Sweeping reforms to Vatican's media, financial operations CWN - July 9
‘Even Genghis Khan didn’t do this’: Mosul emptied of Christians CWN - July 21