Catholic Culture Dedication
Catholic Culture Dedication

when a bishop must obey

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Sep 13, 2005

Did you ever daydream about telling American bishops what to do, and having them obey you?

Dream on. There's only one person on earth who can tell the US bishops what to do.

No, I don't mean the Pope. They ignore him all the time. (Has Ex Corde Ecclesiae been implemented in your diocese? Are "extraordinary" Eucharistic ministers used only on extraordinary occasions? Did the diocese do anything to celebrate this Year of the Eucharist?)

I'm talking about Teresa M. Kettelkamp, the executive director of the Office of Child and Youth Protection at the US bishops' conference. She developed her habits of command with the Illinois State Police, and she isn't going to take any guff from a mere successor to the apostles.

On September 9, Kettelkamp sent a no-nonsense memo to all the US bishops, informing that every Catholic child in every diocese must be submitted to the "safe environment" sex-ed programs approved by her office. If not, the offending dioceses will be stamped with the dreaded "non-compliant" label, and her office will prescribe a "required action."

Now suppose a bishop thinks that "safe environment" programs such as "Talking about Touching" are inappropriate, offensive, destructive-- in fact, that the programs themselves are a form of child abuse? That doesn't matter. Shut up, Your Grace; do as you're told. Who do you think is in charge here, anyway?

Oh, another thing. These sex-education programs are not sex-education programs. How can that be so? Because Teresa Kettelkamp says so. Listen to the logic:

Since its mandate was the result of the clergy sexual abuse crisis, some have incorrectly concluded that this training is sex education training; it is not.

That's clear now, I trust? Any other questions? No? Good.

Hey, you! Sit up straight!

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