Thursday, October 1, 2009
And the problem is ......
Archbishop Raymond Lahey turning himself in to Ottawa police after being charged with possession of child pornography.
Everyone is aflame with talk about abusive priests, child molesters, sexual perverts, and the need for the church to allow priests to marry, to allow women priests, etc. etc. And yet no one is pointing out the real problem which is ..... PORNOGRAPHY!
Why don't people see this? There is an epidemic of pornography in our culture. If you don't believe it, visit
Focus on the Family
and do a search for talks by Dr. James Dobson on the subject of pornography. Dr. Dobson has been researching this for years, and he knows what he is talking about. He has interviewed men in prison who are serial killers and rapists, and the one thing they have in common is pornography.
I hesitate to use the word addiction for this, because that implies the person is suffering from something from which they can never be free. Unlike alcholism or drug addiction, which create physical dependencies, we need to view pornography as sin, pure and simple. Graver sin perhaps, but still sin. And the cure is repentance and forgiveness, plus taking the steps necessary to avoid the temptation.
Yes, we are terribly disappointed at this news of a bishop being charged with such a crime, but we should not be surprised. We should have seen this coming. When our society is sexualized to the extent that it is, it should not come as a surprise that we find the effects of that sexualization amongst our clergy. They are not immune to the culture, any more than the rest of us. What is so terribly upsetting is that we place such trust in our clergy, that this man (if he is guilty) has betrayed our trust in a way that very few other people could. We trust our clergy more than we trust anyone else, we turn to them for moral guidance, and we expect them to lead the way with their own moral behaviour. When we find that they are as sinful as the rest of us, and perhaps more, it breaks our heart. But we need to realise that, besides revealing their humanity, this tragedy shows that our culture is so rotten that it is now leaking into the area we thought was protected. We know there have been popes with mistresses and cardinals with illegitimate children, but the crime of children being sexually abused is something our culture continues to abhor. And it is all the more abhorrent when the spiritual leaders fall prey to this.
As Archbishop Mancini said "we don't know who we can trust anymore." Those are the words of a man who is feeling deep sorrow over this. Prayers for all are what is needed, not discussions of revamping the church, allowing marriage for priests, etc. None of those will effect the change that is required, which is a conversion of hearts to God who can purify us from all these sins.