Pope On Child Abuse

Pope Benedict XVI gave his annual speech to assembled cardinals and bishops and he discussed issues related to an issue that has plagued the church–child abuse. “We must ask ourselves what was wrong in our proclamation, in our way of living the Christian life to allow such a thing to happen.” Fair enough question. He made clear the Catholic Church was aware of sins committed by some priests, but also thought it important to reflect on the “context of these times.” He went on to note “there is a market in child pornography that seems in some way to be considered more and more normal by society. The psychological destruction of children in which human persons are reduced to articles of merchandise, is a terrifying sign of the times.” Naturally, these developments stemmed from moral relativism which left people without a set of fixed values. “Morality is replaced by a calculus of consequences, and in the process it ceases to exist.”

I got lost somewhere around moral relativism. What does child pornography have to do with priests who abandon their vows and abuse children? Ironically, the abuse of children was carried out by men who had absolute beliefs in what was right and wrong so why blame moral relativism for the actions of true believers. We could also cite Nazi Germany or Communist China as societies which did not tolerate moral relativism and in the process killed millions of people.

The bottom line is priests did not carry out their moral values.

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