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ABSOLUTE MUST READ guest column by Richard Sipe in NSAC News, 4.21.2010




It would be great if this guest column by Richard Sipe could be read by every Catholic. Consider sending it to your Catholic friends.

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NATIONAL SURVIVOR ADVOCATES COALITION NEWS

April  1,2010                                                                          Vol. 2, No. 65

GUEST COLUMN

“Welcome to Wittenberg”

Richard Sipe is one of the prophetic voices in the long struggle for the Church to face truth squarely.

The New Yorker recently quoted from a Sipe speech in 1992. The address was titled “Welcome to Wittenberg.”

A portion of the speech appears here today because we believe some NSAC subscribers might not know all of the shoulders we stand on.

- Kristine Ward, Chair, NSAC

_______________________________________________________________

IV. TRANSFORMATION & REFORM

Is reform possible? An alcoholic problem is not cured by merely giving up drinking. What is needed? A spiritual transformation that progressively takes full responsibility for one’s actions and their consequences, reevaluates relationships, and institutes a new way of life and being…there are fourteen facts (truths) in the area of its celibate/sexual practice that the Church must face to reform (transform) itself.

1. Sexual abuse of minors by Roman Catholic clergy is a long-standing problem. Besides the historical accounts in Lea and Boswell we have cases on U.S. file from 1908 through 1917 and consistently from the 1930s through the 1980s.

2. The phenomenon of the sexual abuse of minors is a worldwide problem among Roman Catholic clergy. It is every bit as prevalent in Baltimore and Washington, D.C. and in Boston as it is in Chicago. Europe and England are ten years behind the United States in bringing the problem to public attention.

3. When the whole story of sexual abuse by presumed celibate clergy is told, it will lead to the highest corridors of Vatican City.

4. Sexual abuse of children is part of a larger pattern of sexual involvement by priests with others–adult women and men. Although the latter is not illegal, it is still marked in many cases by moral negligence, abuse, and is tolerated by ecclesiastical authority.

5. Seminary training does not prepare clergy for celibate/sexual reality. Seminary training produces many psychosexually impaired and retarded priests whose level of adjustment is adolescent at best. This tends to create a psychic and moral field and situation in which immature liaisons with young children not only become more possible but are psychosexually over-determined because children are actually on a developmental par with these men.

6. The celibate/sexual system which surrounds clerical culture fosters and often rewards psychosexual immaturity.

7. The homo-social system of the hierarchy which excludes women categorically from decision making and power at the same time that it glorifies exclusively the roles of virgin and mother creates a psychological structure that reinforces male psychosexual immaturity and malformation.

8. A significantly larger proportion of the clergy has a homosexual orientation than does the general population. This has always been the case and is due in part to natural sexual biodiversity and the high genetic correlation between homosexual orientation and the altruistic drive.

9. By refusing to deal honestly with the reality of homosexuality in the clerical state (and in general), Catholic teaching fosters self-alienation of its clergy and encourages and enables identity confusion, sexual acting out, and moral duplicity.

10. The Catholic moral teaching on sexuality is based on a patently false anthropology that renders magisterial pronouncement non-credible. (“Every sexual thought, word, desire, and action outside marriage is mortally sinful. Every sexual act within marriage not open to procreation is mortally sinful. In sexual matters there is no paucity of matter.”)

11. Clergy deprived of a moral doctrine in which they can believe are also deprived of moral guidance and leadership in their own lives and behavior. Sexually, priests and the hierarchy resort to denial, rationalization, and splitting in dealing with their own sexual behavior and that of their colleagues. With the laity they often apply the full wrath of the “law” (including the threat of hell).

12. The hierarchy cannot claim ignorance of the sexual practices of their own–themselves and their fellow-priests–and at the same time assert that they are credible and authoritative sources of leadership in sexual morality for the laity.

13. The hierarchy cannot use the psychiatric system to deal with the problems of sexual abuse–whether with children, with adult women or with adult males–and sidestep their personal and corporate roles as enablers.

14. Child abuse by clergy, the tip of the iceberg so painfully visible today, does not stand on its own. Removing it from view will not solve the crisis. Difficult as it is to accept, we are certain that the hierarchical and power structures beneath the surface are part of a secret world that supports abuse. These hidden forces are far more dangerous to the sexual health and welfare of Christ’s Church than those that we can already see.

V. Conclusion

Only a thoroughgoing reform of the celibate/sexual structure of the Church will really address the problem of sexual abuse. Sexual reform of the clergy is the most significant challenge that the priesthood has faced since the Protestant Reformation. Only a transformation similar to the sixteenth-century Reformation–only a penetrating reevaluation and reform of the clergy–will meet the current sexual crisis.

There are those voices within the Church that are still ignoring the celibate/sexual reality. These voices reinforce denial and avoidance. They want to strike up the band of public relations and secretly rearrange the deck chairs. Someone has to tell them that they have booked passage on the sexual Titanic.

Jesus Christ is not on the Titanic; He is where He always is to be found–with His suffering people in the small lifeboats, tossed and buffeted by storms. In our fear and terror He may seem to be asleep; we and He may seem powerless. Have peace; our power is in Truth, and that is far more secure and trustworthy than any sleek and supposedly unsinkable vessel. I hope you derive a modicum of consolation from the light of truth you have shed by your witness. It stands as a warning of danger and also a guide to safe harbor for all.

All Rights Reserved. Copyright © Richard Sipe. Terms of Use. This page updated 04/06/2010

2825 Ridgegate Row

La Jolla, CA 92037

858-551-4370

http://www.richardsipe.com

awrsipe@san.rr.com

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Click on the headline to read the whole story.

1.    The Catholic Church: Sex and Public Relations - UNITED STATES – The Huffington Post

2.    BREAKING: Former priest extradited, posts bond - NORTH CAROLINA – WVLT

3.    Mexican man who says he was raped by priest files lawsuit naming Mahony, Mexican cardinal -

LOS ANGELES (CA) – Los Angeles Times

4.    HIV positive priest arrested on defilement – UGANDA -  New Vision

5.    When Should a Bishop Expose a Priest to Civil Authority? – UNITED STATES – Catholic Culture

6.    Catholic activists protest Vatican official’s attending Mass – WASHINGTON (DC) -

The Washington Times

7.    Norwegian prosecutor drops plans to charge former Catholic bishop - NORWAY – Earth Times

8.     Küng to Benedict: Set About Reform – UNITED STATES – America Magazine

9.    TRANSPARENCY: Catholic Bishops’ Abortion War Chest Stays Secret – UNITED STATES -
The Center for Public Integrity

10.  Former Omaha Priest Accused In Sexual Abuse Case - OMAHA (NE) – WOWT

11.  Turn this dreadful moment into a graced moment – UNITED STATES – National Catholic Reporter

12.   Examining the crisis – UNITED STATES – National Catholic Reporter

13.  A Time to Plant and a Time to Uproot - UNITED STATES – Healing and Spirituality




    4 Responses to “ABSOLUTE MUST READ guest column by Richard Sipe in NSAC News, 4.21.2010”

  1. Deanna Leonti Says:

    I find it odd that the RC heirarchy doesn’t heed the advice from experts and Doctors of this field
    like Richard Sipe & Tom Doyle?.
    So, Now we have to add another log on the fire….because the heirarchy doesn’t give a damn about Nyone else’s Mental Health let alone there’s !’ (psychosexual immaturity and malformation).

  2. Deanna Leonti Says:

    A certain look religous have, like they grow in age like everyone else, but still kind of have a youthful look & expressions in their face.
    Like somehow shielded from the everyday stress the secular world deals with. 

    Maybe it’s something about that “pure of heart” thing..shielding a group of chosen people from the evil secular world…keeping ones emotional mentality in check to a superior always being made to feel like a little child infront of the Obe-One-Kanobi’s.superiors..,
    Not being able to think for themselves and always have to rely on or be dependent upon an authority figure who replaces a parent figure for an entire group!, How can anyone in their right mind think that could possibly work for everyone, and normal environment?.
    Don’t ya think it kind of keeps the adults in religous formation in the group or sect
     co-dependent and reduces their maturity level to that of a 5yrs. old?. 
    Why do they do that?
    In the mean time claim that this state in life of the religous is superior to that of the single or married state.
    How does anyone see that as a normal lifestyle that would emulate what humans are created for. 

  3. glorybe1929 Says:

    I will tell you the look I see on these poor bastards, is that of a bratty little kid, that wants his own way and is used to getting it. When I see pictures of priests, it makes me physically sick. EVEN GOD WILL NOT FORGIVE THIS UNPARDONABLE SIN…”THE SIN AGSINST THE HOLY SPIRIT”!!!!

    It has nothing to do with psychosexual Immaturity or malformation, what ever that means, psychologically. The RCC is a HAVEN FOR THE DEVIL’S PEDOPHILES! Period.

    ST. PAUL WARNED, IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FIRST CENTURY, THAT THE NEW BELIEVERS SHOULD BE VERY CAREFULL OF INFILLTRAITOTS COMING INTO THEIR SMALL GROUPS WHO WERE TEACHING A gospel other than CHRIST’S GOSPEL.

    The result; the Roman Catholic Church, with it’s eliteisim, “we’re the one and only real church”, the pomp and ceremony to elevate the people ALONG WITH THE CLERGY, with a sense of “we’re better than you! THAT’S AN ATTITUDE AND THE DEVIL FOUND OUT PEOPLE REALLY LIKE BEING THE BEST OVER OTHERS.

    Now that we know the Truth, we must do to the devil what God did to this beautiful prince..God threw him OUT OF HEAVEN, WE MUST GET him OUT OF OUR LIVES…LET him DIE A DEATH SUITABLE TO WHAT we’ve allowed him to do….by our putting God second and this Devil’s Institution first.

  4. glorybe1929 Says:

    LEAVE THIS EVIL PLACE AND THESE EVIL PEOPLE AND SEE HOW MAGNIFICENT YOUR LIFE CAN BE WITH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, OUR HOLY FATHER AND OUR HOLY SPIRIT. REMEMBER THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS WITHIN. NO ONE CAN TAKE THAT AWAY FROM YOU BUT YOU.

    NO MATTER WHERE YOU GO, NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO,(IN HIS WILL) HE IS ALWAYS THERE, YOUR BEST FRIEND IN ALL WAYS. WHAT A MARVELOUS FEELING TO KNOW YOU ARE NEVER ALONE. NEVER CEASE PRAYING!

    We left in 2001 on our 50th wedding anniversary. COULDN’T DRIVE THE GET-A-WAY CAR ANY LONGER IN THIESE CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY.


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