It cannot be denied that a large number of Catholic bishops and their vicars lied, covered up, and abused their positions and faith. The sexual abuse and exploitation of children and young people were not only the result of the dereliction of duty of bishops in governing but in several cases obviously enabled by their own secret sins.
Many, like former cardinal McCarrick, have used the Church for their own grotesque purposes that not only include clerical careerism but personal enrichment, indecency, sodomy, and other forms of sexual debauchery. And the same leaders, like McCarrick, helped shape the opinions and practices of the body of bishops. The “McCarrick Doctrine” is an apt description of the policies, procedures, and protocols that governed the Church in the United States for decades.
Following the McCarrick Doctrine, bishops have habitually avoided confrontations with a debased culture by pretending that the sexual abuse of our young people has little to do with homosexual clergy and dissent from traditional Catholic moral teaching. (Father Raniero Cantalamessa, the preacher to the papal household, not unexpectedly dodged the question during the recent bishops’ retreat in Chicago.)
Bishops have encouraged the gay agenda in many of our dioceses by overlooking the studied ambiguity of their methods. They fund “LGBTQ ministries,” turn a blind eye to “gay-friendly” parishes, and lionize and fund gay activist priests like James Martin, SJ. In all likelihood, many have been blackmailed to remain silent, lest their own sexual proclivities and lapses be revealed.
By neglect and malfeasance, the body of American bishops has effectively smeared the reputations of a handful of bishops who have been caught up in the present culture of suspicion. They now find it impossible to administer their dioceses with Catholic sensibilities using the tools of Catholic moral theology.
The bishops have often covered their unholy conspiracies with words like “collegiality” and demanded “respect and obedience” as a means to deflect any and all criticism from our priests. Passive-aggressive penalties are administered for perceived violations. Hence priests are trained to cower and behave like gossipy school girls rather than men. There is little reason to doubt that this will continue.
The McCarrick Doctrine requires bishops and priests to be practical atheists, exchanging Catholic tradition with its hope in everlasting life for the false promises of comfort and financial security in this life.
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