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Friday, July 18, 2014


A talk with brother Ignathius

Brother Ignathius, you are one of the smartest people I know.  For heaven sake, you are a Jesuist, trained not only in the arts and science but in rhetoric and logic.  I've tried to steer the conversation in this direction a number of times so you would see the truth for yourself but we always go off on a tangent.  You have about the most serious case of cognitive dissonance* I have ever seen.

*The ability to hold two mutually exclusive beliefs in your head at the same time without going bonkers.

Actually, now that I think about it, I saw a more serious case a few years ago.  One of my friends from the now defunct local sect invited me to go on a geological field trip.  This sect broke up for all the usual reasons.  The final straw was when the ladies realized that they were not the unique "hand maiden" of the charismatic leader and further realized that their daughters were reaching puberty.  Many of the folks now live in our community.  Sects to my mind are an abomination but don't get me wrong.  These are the nicest folks I have met.  I taught many of their kids in high school and they had the same range of abilities of any bunch of kids.  One thing that distinguished them, though, is that they were great to teach.  Polite, keen, eager to learn.  A real pleasure but I am getting off the subject.

This field trip was led by a geologist from one of our local universities and he was a creationist.  That's right, he believed that the world was created some 6000 years ago.  If a geologist-creationist is not the ultimate case of cognitive dissonance, I don't know what is.  Anyway, I promised my friend I would be good and not rock the boat.  Our area is a geologist paradise.  You can even see the KT boundary in a couple of locations and marine fossils from extinct animals abound.

At one point in our walk up the gorge we saw a sequence of clay,sand,pebbles,, clay,sand,pebbles repeated at least 500 times.I couldn't resist.  I sidled up to the geologist and asked him what had created this.  He told me that it was The Flood.  I restrained myself and just nodded and moved away.

Back, though to Celibacy.  Don't you see why the church insists on Celibacy for  her priests.  I have no idea if the church instituted celibacy with this in mind but its potential to control it's priests must have been obvious almost immediately.  You do realize, I assume, that nowhere in the bible is it said that priests should be celibate.  At the roots of your religion, the Jewish religion, a man is enjoined to be married.  Celebacy is church created artifact just like confession.  Now confession, there is a wowser.

Most regimes have to resort to sending agents, listening in on private conversations, trolling through garbage and, in our modern world,  spying on our e-mails.  All these methods are likely to get the agents outed and even killed and can put considerable egg on the face of the regime that sent them.  The Catholic church has worked out a system whereby everyone comes and confesses their secrets to officers of the church.  Michaevelli must have learned his trade from the church.

With celibacy, the church has you by the short and curlies.  Let's assume that the sexual preferences of church officers are the same, percentage wise, as the rest of the population*.  You have the same proportion of homosexual paedophiles, heterosexual paedophiles, adult oriented homosexuals and adult oriented hetrosexuals.

*Apparently not the case but let's not be nasty here.

By the by, if you look at the work of Kinsey, some of us are pure homosexuals, some pure heterosexuals and rest of us on  a spectrum somewhere in between. How we end up, for many of us, depends  on our experiences, especially in early life.

What has been coming to light lately is homosexual paedophilia amongst the clergy.  I suspect this is because it is such an abomination in the eyes of the public.  However this must only be the tip of the iceburg.  Hetrosexual paedophilia is also horrendous but in the eyes of the public somewhat less so, homosexual relations with a consenting adult less again and hetrosexual relationships with  consenting adult still less reprehensible.    If priests abusing boys is coming to light, how many cases of the other three types of relationship will there be.  And, if you are a priest all are sins according to the catholic church.

In the mildest case lets say you are  having it off with the wife of one of your parishioners.  When you confess, you are told to say so many hail maries, forgiven and told to sin no more.  You are behoden to the church which has relieved the pangs of guilt you feel and next time you repeat the sin, you can confess again.  The church has infinite capacity for forgiveness, especially when it keeps you firmly under their thumb.  In fact, they advertize their infinite capacity for forgiveness, depending on her priests not to cotton on to how this keeps them servile.

In the most serious case when you have been buggering the choir boys, the church will send you to another parish to start over and defend you from the law.  Payment will be made to the victim if the church can't get out of it, and the church will do everything possible to keep you safe.  This combined with your feelings of guilt and disgust with yourself makes you their slave.  If you wake up an leave this most un-christian organization, you will be open to the full force of the law.  So added to your guilt are the  possible consequences.

I started by suggesting that the percentage of priests with various orientations is the same as the general public but I strongly suspect this is not the case.  As I mentioned, which way many of us go is dependent not only on our predilections but also on our early sexual experiences.  Amongst the youth that priests start with, some will be homosexually inclined and some on the fence.  When their first sexual experience is with a priest, I'd be willing to bet that many of them will become priests.  The ones we, the public, hear about are the hetrosexual boys that find their experience with a priest soul shattering.  I would love to see a survey of how many serving church officers were started, sexually,  by a catholic priest in their youth.  Maybe, brother Ignathius, you could conduct a straw poll amongst the clergy you know.

Pope Fancis, bless his little white socks, is talking about eliminating celibacy.  I doubt if he will succeed any more than President Obama succeeded in doing all the great things he intended.  Not only is it too ingrained in the church culture but the people at the top realize, overtly or instinctively the level of control it give them over their underlings.  I wish Francis every success. It could be the beginning of the end of this most unchristian institution.