ABC quotes Jason Berry charging “Bishop Quinn was basically saying if you have something that’s incriminating, send it to the Vatican Embassy. They can hide it.” They have a tape of Quinn saying essentially this–in 1990.
And that, of course, is why none of us has ever heard of John Geoghan or Paul Shanley and the bulging files of a gob of American bishops are not now spilling their contents all over the American media.
Do you see something not adding up here? If the AmChurch bishops were sending everything off to Rome to “hide it”? Then how come everything is still here and being read by eager reporters? Unless of course the American bishops simply figured nobody would call them on their atrocious mishandling of priests and victims.
In fact, I think this is exactly the case. It’s why I think they behave so incredibly to this very moment: hiring PR firms and thinking nobody will notice this is not a substitute for reform, arrogantly assigning penances to rational people who tell them they were idiots for putting child porn fans into middle schools, claiming to the be Voice of Reform while they are paying out hush money, being shocked and angry when somebody tells them they are negligent, expecting any sane person to believe them when they tell us they just didn’t notice that Paul Shanley advocated Man Boy Love publicly–even after letters of complaint. It’s a bizarre combination of cowardice and arrogance that seems to be explicable only in terms of a comfortable CEO mentality that simply got used to not being questioned about its actions. And now that the environment has suddenly changed radically, they are swinging their spiked tails at all the bad press like stegosaurs and trying to figure out how to evolve quickly into something besides bureaucrats with brains (and sometimes hearts) atrophied by comfort and neglect to the size of walnuts.
Look back, gentlemen. Back to the Tradition of which you are so shamefully ignorant. Look back and repent. It is the only thing that can save you because it is the gift of Jesus Christ, who is the only one who can save you. Be priests again (or for the first time). Take up your crosses. The crosses you so shamefully laid on innocent children. The crosses you have so shamefully neglected in your search for PR firms and your Happy Talk and your hidden files and your cowardly abandonment of the Faith. Take them up voluntarily for the hour is already here when, voluntarily or not, you will have to carry them. If you take it up voluntarily, you will be saved by your cross. If you neglect it and go whoring after PR firms and lawyers instead, you will only be broken on it. Repent and live. It’s all that’s left to you now.