Washington Moonie Times has an interview with Illinois Bishop Thomas Paprocki, who recently declared that voting for Democrats could doom a Catholic to hell. He struck the familiar martyr pose and blathered about how terribly persecuted Christians are in America.
“We [Christians] have to mentally adjust. I know it is an adjustment for me because – and I assume for many other people as well – because I grew up in this country at a time when the values in our secular world mirrored the values of the religious world,” Bishop Paprocki said. “And I think what’s happening now is that relationship – that symbiosis between our culture and the church -has been ruptured.
Paprocki compares today’s situation in the U.S. to Christians being persecuted under Communist regimes and even in ancient times.
“We [Christians] find ourselves now – just in this short period of time – where the early Christians found themselves in the Roman Empire. So the church in 2,000 years, we started out as being a persecuted faith, with Constantine being an accepted established faith, then for centuries, kind of moving in that direction that had this close relationship between the secular world’s values and Judeo-Christian values,” Bishop Paprocki said. “And now I think we are moving in a direction that – not only is it more than secular – it’s a rejection. It’s an outright rejection [of Judeo-Christian values]. It’s a pagan kind of a culture.”
“The reality is that – ironically, it is becoming more like the Church was in the time of John Paul II in Poland under Communism where you [Christians] lived in a very hostile environment. We still have the First Amendment of our Constitution but that is being sorely tested. “
Yeah, American Christians are persecuted just like they were in communist regimes. Churches are being shut down, priests are being thrown in gulags. Oh wait, that’s not happening? How about that. And how exactly is the First Amendment being tested? Because you’re not getting your way on everything?
Under Communist rule in Poland, Catholic schools were closed and children were forced to enlist in Communist Youth organizations. Crosses were confiscated from hospitals and classrooms. Social organizations with church ties were dissolved. The brutal government regime targeted parishes and monasteries and members of the clergy were recruited, arrested, or murdered by the Communist secret police.
No kidding. The fact that none of those things are happening here should be a clue that this comparison is utter nonsense.
BISHOP PAPROCKI: You ask what else could it be other than anti-Catholic bigotry – well, it certainly is that. What else could it be? It certainly is ignorance. Profound ignorance for anyone to make comments like that. For one thing it shows the ignorance of someone who identifies the Catholic Church and, particularly the priesthood, with sexual abuse. Certainly, we have had our unfortunate share of scandals and sin and the church is dealing with that.
I would venture to say that of any institution in the country – perhaps in the world – I don’t think anyone is dealing with it as responsibly as the Catholic Church has. So public figures like that continue to point their finger at the Catholic Church and say you have a problem with sexual abuse and people are ignoring where most sexual abuse is taking place. It’s occurring in families. It’s occurring in schools.
Wow. Seriously, WOW. That is simply delusional. Yeah, sexual abuse of children does happen in schools. But guess what? If any school official finds out about it, they are legally obligated to report it to the police. Let’s contrast that with the Catholic Church, where the former pope sent out a command to local bishops forbidding them from doing so. And where for decades (at the very least) the church not only did not turn child molesting priests over to the police, they protected them and moved them from place to place. By what possible definition of “responsibly” could that describe such behavior?