Popes Gone Wild
By J.L. Robb
Often we hear about the hypocrisy of the church, folk who go to church who talk-the-talk but do not walk-the-walk. Folk who go to church and criticize others, then turn around and do worse, themselves. Then unbelievers say, “See, that’s why we do not go to church.”
Of course, that is not true. Unbelievers do not go to church or do missionary activities or participate in Bible study, because they do not believe the story. It has little to do with my hypocrisy.
First, to the unbeliever: The church is not a hotel for the sinless but a home for sinners.
Question: When a lawyer breaks the law, should his penalty be greater than the average person’s penalty?
Every basket has a few bad apples, but some baskets have more than others. Take the church for instance, not the modern-day church but the church from the beginning. The Church of Saint Peter, the foundation that Jesus said that Peter would be. What happened during the Dark Ages?
The early church during the birth of Christianity was much different than the first established church in Rome, the Catholic Church from which all other churches were born. The falling away started almost in the beginning, but the Dark Ages turbocharged the apostasy.
Today, I believe Saint Peter would be ashamed and embarrassed at his namesake and am quite sure that Jesus is. Jesus was not much on pomp and circumstance, gold and jewels and water blessed by a priest who was having sex with an altar boy an hour earlier.
Take the case in Pennsylvania, as reported yesterday by National Public Radio:
“The phone lines at the state attorney general’s office in Pennsylvania have not stopped ringing. Hotline numbers have surged with calls in the aftermath of a scathing grand jury report which describes decades of child sex abuse and a massive cover-up by the Catholic Church. As Bobby Allyn of member station WHYY reports, officials are scrambling to keep up with hundreds of new tips that are coming through on a clergy abuse hotline.”
More than 400 calls have come in so far, and they have not stopped.
How long have we been hearing stories of altar boys being abused and used for sexual gratification for celibate priests? How many Popes have said they were embarrassed, ashamed and would do something about it? It goes back a long way, when priests were not required to be celibate.
From the Wall Street Journal:
ROME—Pope Francis in a letter to Catholics world-wide expressed shame and repentance over the sexual abuse of children by priests, following months in which the escalating scandal in several countries has raised pressure on the Vatican.
The pope in Monday’s letter, his first to all the world’s Catholic faithful about the scandal, vowed to improve efforts to protect children and punish those in the church who commit sex abuse or cover it up.
“Expressed shame and repentance.” That’s nice. Popes have been doing that for centuries.
From the Washington Post:
More than 300 Catholic priests across Pennsylvania sexually abused children over seven decades, protected by a hierarchy of church leaders who covered it up, according to a sweeping grand jury report released Tuesday.
The investigation, one of the broadest inquiries into church sex abuse in U.S. history, identified 1,000 children who were victims, but reported that there probably are thousands more.
“Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God who were responsible for them not only did nothing; they hid it all. For decades,” the grand jury wrote in its report.
One has to wonder, how many people did these so called men of God, turn away from God? How many young boys and girls will have psychological and sexual issues for the rest of their lives because of these “priests” who the church and the popes have known about forever?
It goes back much longer than 70 years.
Pope Benedict IX (1032-1048) turned the Lateran Palace, the papal residence at the time, into a den of iniquity for little boys and girls who were abused for the pope’s sexual pleasure.
Pope John XII (955-964) turned the Lateran Palace into a house of prostitution where the pope stole the offerings and raped Christian pilgrims for his sexual pleasure.
Pope Julius II (1503-1513) was charged by the Council of Pisa of being a “sodomite covered with shameful ulcers.” The ulcers were a result of what was then called French Disease but is today named syphilis. He contracted the disease from male prostitutes in Rome. As devious as he was, hopefully many of his sexual perversions were only rumors.
Pope Boniface VII (1294-1303) once declared that having sex with young boys is no more sinful than “rubbing” one’s hands together.
But the winner of The Most Deviant Pope goes to Pope Alexander VI.
Pope Alexander VI (1492-1503) after having sexual relations with his daughter, went on to father at least 7 illegitimate children. One was rumored to be his daughter’s. Some historians claim that Alexander had more orgies than masses, often with young, naked boys jumping out of cakes. At one such orgy, he provided a room of 50 prostitutes and gave awards to those who had the most sex with the most people. He was a poor father and would give his daughter’s hand in marriage to the wealthiest men in Rome. Then he would nullify the marriage and confiscate all the man’s wealth.
I am not beating up the Catholic Church, because this abuse crosses all churches and denominations, including Synagogues. Pedophilia has been around a long time and is accepted in many of the Muslim communities in the Middle East and Asia. There is a push in Europe to decriminalize pedophilia.
The hypocrisy screams out, and it is no wonder that so many Millennials do not believe in the God of Abraham. How long will Christianity let this go on? How much “sexual pleasure” does God allow in His house?
Church attendance is on the decline. One might not realize that from observing the large Joel Osteen crowds and the crowds of so many preachers, preaching salvation through tithing to their church treasury.
For every 1000 new churches that open, 4000 churches close.
Question: Should a priest be held to a higher standard than the flock, when church law is broken?
It is time to clean the church swamp. It might help recruitment.