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By Diogenes ( articles ) | Aug 31, 2005

The Archdiocese of Boston has released Msgr. Paul McInerny from pastoral duties in order to study in Rome and serve as secretary for Cardinal Law:

Asked why the archdiocese is paying one of its priests to be secretary to the disgraced ex-archbishop, archdiocese spokesman Terrence C. Donilon said, "I would only deduce nothing more than monsignor's desire to resume his studies in Rome and the fact he has worked with the cardinal previously.' ...

"Why, when we have a shortage of priests, are we exporting a monsignor to serve a man who resigned from this archdiocese in disgrace, and doing it at our own expense?" said Peter Borre, a member of the Council of Parishes, a group opposed to local church closings. "Boston Catholics have met all of their obligations to Bernard Law, and owe him nothing."

Point taken. It's a pity Peter Borre was the one to make it. It's unclear from the story how much financial support McInerny will get from the Archdiocese, but at the very least his departure for Rome means one less man to say Mass, hear confessions, do marriage prep -- in short, to help a sinking parish stay afloat. Of course, some might argue that Monsignor's Roman studies will offset the loss by giving the Church a better-educated pastoral minister down the line.

"Cardinal Law is the best thing that's ever happened to the church in Boston in terms of leadership,' McInerny told one reporter in the heat of the scandal in 2002.

A quick learner? You make the call.

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