THE INTERCESSIONS published on the Diocese of Manchester's Web site for Mass this past Sunday asked Catholics throughout New Hampshire to pray for reconciliation with those "who have been in leadership roles and have unwittingly allowed" sexual abuse to happen -- a thinly veiled reference to Bishop John McCormack and Auxiliary Bishop Francis Christian.If Bill Donohue's going to tar victims as "vultures" and urge the bishops to "start playing hardball," what about vulture-bishops who have done nothing but play hardball?
Slipped in amongst mention of those who were abused and those who were the abusers, this clever effort to exonerate our bishops of their shameful records deserves rebuttal.
"Bless me Father, for mistakes were made" is their version of confession instead of "Bless me Father, for I have lied, deceived, covered up sexual abuse, and endangered children." Bishop McCormack's habitual turn to euphemisms about "mistakes and inadequacies" cannot obscure the plain, simple truth. What they say now about what they did then reveals a clerical mindset bent more on damage control than honesty. The continuing spin, like these intercessions, is what is so wounding to the Body of Christ. Where are the bishops who speak truth from the heart and do not practice deceit?
What's fair is fair, right?