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Sin City: Harboring Sinners and Criminals

John O'Sullivan

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William F. Buckley praised this article by John O'Sullivan because of the seriousness and clarity with which O'Sullivan approached the issue of the molestation of young boys in the Roman Catholic Church. O'Sullivan argues that the lax dealings with these crimes ultimately betrayed his church.

Those who think of Christ as "Gentle Jesus, meek and mild" have read the New Testament very selectively. Christ had many words of comfort for the afflicted; but He also uttered harsh words of condemnation to the impenitent. And there is no judgment more terrifying than His warning to anyone who attacked the innocence of children that "it were better for him, if a millstone be tied around his neck and he be cast into the depths of the sea."

But there was apparently a shortage of millstones in Boston over the last three decades. In that time, the Catholic Church harbored several priests who repeatedly molested young boys. One priest, now defrocked, John Geoghan, has been convicted of serious assaults in that period and awaits sentencing. Other names are surfacing now that the courts have ordered the Boston archdiocese to disclose its internal documents on Geoghan. And newspapers speculate that as many as fifty priests may eventually be accused. That is almost certainly a large exaggeration. But suppose that the true figure is five. Would that not be shocking enough?

For the complete article go to the National Review Online website.



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Copyright 2001-2014 OrthodoxyToday.org. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article is subject to the policy of the individual copyright holder. See OrthodoxyToday.org for details.


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