Swift action on abuse allows priests to get about their mission


July 29, 2018

By Father Jeffrey F. Kirby

… Regrettably, a priest’s negligence of his own discipleship, doesn’t end merely in the realm of omission. If a man is consecrated for service, and his whole life is to be directed to this end, and yet he ignores this fundamental mission, then his soul is thrown into disarray. His internal measure is off. The structure of his soul and the inner dynamics of his affections are confused and left unfulfilled.

In such a weary and confused state, the soul of such a lost priest begins to desperately look for something beyond its mission. Tragically, in a fallen world, this wayward search never ends well.

If humility is not nurtured, pride dominates. If selflessness does not become a way of life, self-absorption takes over. If love, which is to be patient and kind, is not victorious, anger and envy seek to justify themselves. The parallels are disastrous and they continuously and rapidly descend into appalling darkness, lacking any sense of goodness or self-regulation.

In such a bleak existence, the priest’s appearance, the task of “playing the role,” becomes the only rule of his life and becomes a manipulative means for deception and disguise.

While such backsliding is possible for any priest, it takes on a particularly gross expression in sexual predators who are welcomed and protected within the ranks of Catholic priests. In such shadows, the priesthood is redefined beyond comprehension by sick men, who should never have been ordained or promoted in the Church.

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