Saturday, March 13, 2010

Why I'm An Exodus Catholic

I've often referred to myself as an "Exodus Catholic." Here, here, and most recently here.

An "Exodus Catholic" is a Catholic who finds himself so much at odds with many of the institutional Catholic Church's practices and pronouncements that he finds himself alienated and wandering in the wilderness of institutionalized faith, even though he shares enough of the fundamental values and beliefs of the faith to not break fully from it.

And now we hear that the Catholic Church's Supreme Leader, the doctrinally orthodox and moralistically rigid Pope Benedict XVI (Joseph Ratzinger), is now personally embroiled in the Church sex abuse scandal. Once again, it looks like we have none other than the Pope engaging in the cover-up of a renegade abusive priest. The argument that the Pope, when he was Archbishop of Munich and Freising, did not know of the abusive priest's reinstatement, where he continued to engage in abusive behavior, just doesn't wash. We know all too well that in the hierarchical nature of the leadership structure of the Catholic Church, especially when it comes to circling the wagons around the Church and its wayward priests, Bishops and Archbishops as a matter of course would be informed of and would have ultimate authority over such decisions. I can assure you that Bishop Ratzinger knew. And even if he chose to close his eyes to it, the hallmark of leadership is that responsibility always flows to the top. This means that Bishop Ratzinger knew, AND that he is ultimately responsible.

This sickness within the Catholic hierarchy is so profound and widespread that no leader goes untouched by it. Sad. Welcome to my faith wilderness.

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