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The low price of defaming the Church

By Dr. Jeff Mirus (bio - articles - email) | May 17, 2012

Kenyan Bishop Philip Sulumeti’s case against the Irish RTE television network is interesting on a number of counts. In general I’d rather bishops did not sue, but since he has sued, I hope he’ll use any settlement for the good of his flock.

The suit concerns a false charge on a program called “Mission to Prey,” which claimed that a priest who had been recommended by Bishop Sulumeti was guilty of rape. When the falsity of the charge was revealed, the network cancelled the program and paid damages to the priest. Also, several RTE executives resigned.

What interests me especially is that nobody went to jail. Perhaps further cases are pending. But resignation is a consequence, not a punishment.

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  • Posted by: John J Plick - May. 18, 2012 10:42 AM ET USA

    For an American Catholic, the dissonance is clear. The bishops seem eager to defend the Church from outrageous attacks from without but often will not defend the Church from even more damaging attacks from within. This turns on its head the saying: 1Cr 5:12-13 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church? But those who are outside, God [fn]judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES.

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