Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A Prophet One of Your Own...

Here is the well-known atheist Christopher Hitchens' scathing statement regarding the Roman Catholic Church's refusal to deal adequately with it's awful and ongoing child-abuse problem:

"The happiness and the health of countless children was systematically destroyed by men who could count on their clerical bosses to shield them from legal retribution and, it seems, even from moral condemnation. A bit of 'therapy' or a swift change of locale was the worst that most of them had to fear.

Almost every week, I go and debate with spokesmen of religious faith. Invariably and without exception, they inform me that without a belief in supernatural authority I would have no basis for my morality. Yet here is an ancient Christian church that deals in awful certainties when it comes to outright condemnation of sins like divorce, abortion, contraception, and homosexuality between consenting adults. For these offenses there is no forgiveness, and moral absolutism is invoked. Yet let the subject be the rape and torture of defenseless children, and at once every kind of wiggle room and excuse-making is invoked. What can one say of a church that finds so much latitude for a crime so ghastly that no morally normal person can even think of it without shuddering?"

Here are three thoughts regarding Hitchens' statement:

1) Hitchens is absolutely right regarding both the horrific nature of child abuse and the hypocrisy of the Roman Catholics' handling of the matter.

2) Regardless of what the RC hierarchy does to bring these sins into the light, take responsibility for them and make restitution to the victims, these sexual sins will continue in some form or another until the RC Church allows its priests God's provision for coping with sexual desire: marriage.

3) In typical Hitchens fashion, he is railing with all the certitude and righteous indignation of someone who actually has an authoritative and universally binding standard of morality, when in fact he has nothing of the kind. "Hypocrisy", you say Mr. Hitchens? As always, "It takes one to know one."

Please join me in praying that Mr. Hitchens will someday find the same divine forgiveness for his hypocrisy that we Christian hypocrites found (and find daily) at the foot of Jesus' cross.

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