Catholic Culture Podcasts
Catholic Culture Podcasts

Why Archbishop Sean O’Malley makes me see red, and I don’t mean hats. IV

By Leila Marie Lawler ( articles ) | Mar 19, 2006

I wish the reporter had asked Archbishop Sean about Talking About Touching, a sex education program mandated for the Archdiocese (perhaps now under a different name -- it's devilishly hard to find out anything about it), which in itself constitutes a form of sexual abuse of children. I can see why he doesn’t, though – it fits in so well with the liberal agenda, why rock the boat?

And we still have a long way to go, but certainly the thousands and thousands of CORI checks and sex abuse training of our volunteers, and the training of the children has been a monumental task…

CORI checks. Training. What we have here is the Talking About Touching mode of expressing deep concern over the sex abuse crisis: that of sounding good to program-minded people while selling the next generation up the sex-abuse river.

If he were more father than reluctant administrator, Archbishop Sean would realize that the point about being children is that they can't be trained in the sense he means – they just aren't big enough, even the teenagers. They are, in fact, children.

What adults in other less litigation-minded eras have somehow known is that they are supposed to protect kids, period. The bishop is supposed to teach responsibility to the adults. St. Charles Borromeo ordered Silvio Antoniano’s On the Christian Education of Youth to be read in public to parents. He didn’t invade the child’s psyche to accomplish his goal.

All this prelatic lamenting over the Crisis is so much smoke obscuring the fact that in essence, Archbishop Sean and the rest of his TAT gang have pretty much sat back and said, "Yeah, we aren't doing that any more. Too bad. Here's some stuff you could say to the fat drunk guy breathing down your neck in the summer house that your parents said you could go to with him because he’s a priest and they trust him." Subtext: the training is actually for the trial later on. But who knows, maybe then you'll be at fault for not having implemented your TAT training, you dumb kid.

Seem harsh? Here’s what Pius XI (last seen spinning in his grave after reading Dom’s article on TAT) wrote in his encyclical On Christian Education :

Far too common is the error of those who with dangerous assurance and under an ugly term propagate a so-called sex-education, falsely imagining they can forearm youths against the dangers of sensuality by means purely natural, such as a foolhardy initiation and precautionary instruction for all indiscriminately, even in public; and, worse still, by exposing them at an early age to the occasions, in order to accustom them, so it is argued, and as it were to harden them against such dangers.

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