Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

When everyone is wrong, blame the Catholics

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Mar 22, 2012

The first sensational headlines said that Catholic Church officials had castrated young men in the Netherlands a generation ago, allegedly to stop their homosexual activities. If the report is true, this was a brutal, appalling offense. But wait. It seems that at the time, castration was a standard treatment for homosexuality in the Netherlands, thanks to the pernicious influence of eugenics. If that report is true, it doesn’t excuse the involvement of Catholic officials. What’s wrong is wrong, even if everyone else is doing it. Still, if everyone is doing it, it shouldn’t be particularly big news that Church officials are doing it.

In Ireland, an official report released last summer found that both Church leaders and police officers had failed to respond adequately to reports of sexual abuse by priests in the Cloyne diocese. The bishop of Cloyne had already stepped down, other Church leaders were placed under microscopic inspection, and Irish lawmakers suggested draconian new laws to punish clerics who failed to report abuse. Now, a year later, the Irish government is finally stepping up an investigation of the police officials who also failed to report abuse. Again, the failures of the police do not excuse the failures of the clergy. But isn’t it worth noticing that everyone involved failed to act on the abuse charges?

Two hundred years ago, many wealthy Americans—including more than a few Catholics--owned slaves. Catholics should not have tolerated slavery. But then, no Americans should have tolerated slavery. Still that evil institution existed. So if the today’s secular journalists turned their attention to American society of the early 19th century, I could just imagine the headline: “Catholic Church supported slavery.”

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 five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($18,110 to go):
$35,000.00 $16,890.48
52% 48%
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!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Round Trip to the present moment: a Catholic jazz artist's latest offering April 22
Easter with the Pope April 21
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 20
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - April 20