the churchlet of the self

By Diogenes (articles ) | Apr 01, 2004

Self-styled abbot, social worker, and Oakland-area scholar Donald Weeks has been accused of conducting affectivity education with an underage youth.

Weeks has said he is an ordained priest of a branch of the Old Catholic Church, and is not affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. He maintained an extensive Web site with his biography and information on his programs.

But it appears that most of the information cannot be verified. He lists honorary doctorates from St. Jude Seminary, St. Ephrim Institute and the Pontifica Universitas Lateranensis, none of which could be located.

He also served as archbishop of the Apostolic Episcopal Church and abbott for the American Congregation of Saint Benedict -- a sect he may have created when he founded the abbey in 1999.

Well, at least the Pontifical Lateran University can be proven to exist, although it doesn't have the reputation of handing out gongs to schismatic monks. I wonder whether the Voice of the Faithful could find fault with Weeks's client-centered ecclesiology.

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  • Posted by: extremeCatholic - Apr. 02, 2004 9:16 AM ET USA

    I'm sure that the plantiff's bar are aware of Weeks' non-affiliation with the Catholic Church. The possibility of a "substantial cash settlement" from this defendant is nil. Some of these phony church web sites are more elaborate than web sites of real dioceses.

  • Posted by: - Apr. 01, 2004 8:25 PM ET USA

    Well, affectivity education is about all we get in the Church today (with some exceptions). Emotive and sentimental catechesis, prayer, and Liturgy. Since such affectivity has no objective guidelines it can express itself with underage teens or anyone or anything else that momentarily attracts it. It's too bad the people afflicted with the affectivity disorder can't fixate on something innocuous--maybe a pit bull or something.

  • Posted by: Gil125 - Apr. 01, 2004 7:07 PM ET USA

    Bay area news media have been treating "Father" Weeks from the beginning as if he were a Catholic. The SF Chronicle (main paper here) does include a short paragraph saying who he claims to be affiliated with, far down in its stories, but does NOT specify that he's not Catholic. After his arrest on the sex charges (which may well be phony) one TV station teased, "More Trouble for the Catholic Church in Oakland". So far as I can hear, silence from the new Bishop of Oakland.

  • Posted by: - Apr. 01, 2004 1:54 PM ET USA

    Hmmm. The Pontifical Lateran University that I used to know wasn't in the habit of giving out honorary doctorates like confetti - you had to work for one! But that was awhile ago - maybe things have changed...