Why My Grandfather’s Funeral was My Last Day Being Catholic

Why My Grandfather’s Funeral was My Last Day Being Catholic August 14, 2018

 

In 2005, my grandfather passed away after a long battle with Congestive Heart Failure. I never had a close relationship with my grandfather. However, his death marked the first time I experienced the death of a loved one. My grandmother and her daughters arranged his funeral at the local Catholic Church they attended for decades. The church is in the middle of a neighborhood. While the church is large, the community around gives it a small feel. His funeral service should have been a time to celebrate his 89 years of life. I hoped to hear stories from the Priest about my grandpa. Instead, my grandfather’s funeral marked a turning point for me with the Catholic Church.

At the time of my grandpa’s death, I was a month shy of 27th birthday. I had grown up in the Catholic Church. At age 15, I completed confirmation and became an adult within in the church. After my confirmation, I asked my mom if I had to go to church anymore. She said I had completed the sacraments required of a child and the decision to continue to go was up to me. At age 16 years old, I decided I no longer wanted to attend church.

During this time my brother, cousins, and aunts all made similar choices regarding the church. My mother and aunts lived through traumatic experiences at Catholic School. None of them felt comfortable continuing at the church. At the time of my grandfather’s death, only my grandmother attended Catholic Church.

During my grandfather’s life, he never talked to me about faith. In fact, my grandfather was a man of very few words. He was a veteran of World War II. My mom always speculated his quietness was a result of the horror he faced during the war. I learned a considerable amount about him at his viewing the night before his funeral.

For me, it was the first time I got a peek into his life before his daughters. I saw photos from his time in the army. Read letters he wrote my grandma. There were photos of the first home he built. I enjoyed learning about him that evening, and I hoped the funeral would give me more details about his life.

The next day we met at the church. My grandfather had an open casket. The priest welcomed the family to the funeral. We talked about the service and the plans for the day. My family said their goodbyes as the staff of the church closed the casket.

I was overcome by emotion watching the casket close. My grandma stood near all of us. I walked over to her to hug her. She was a proud German woman and stood there very stoically. Despite not showing too much emotion, I knew she was overcome with grief.

My grandfather’s heart finally gave up after more than five years of fighting heart failure. I remember telling my grandma that his heart couldn’t keep going anymore. Instead of agreeing or acknowledging what I said, she looked at me very matter of fact.

She said curtly, “Your grandfather died of a broken heart because you stopped going to church.”

My mouth dropped open. My grandmother was never one to mince words, but this accusation stung. I said to her, “Grandma, no he died of heart failure.”

Rather than letting it go she doubled down and said, “No, all he wanted was all of you to go to church. All of you killed him by breaking his heart.”

I responded, “Grandma, I didn’t kill him. That’s not nice of you to say.” Despite my anger, I hugged her and walked away.

Needless to say, I walked into the funeral service heated and annoyed by her comments. My family was seated at the front of the church. The church had an ornate and slightly obnoxious gold altar. Jesus hung on the large cross behind the altar. As the music ended, the Priest started the service.

My grandmother’s comments were a prelude to what the Priest had planned for the family. He started talking about my grandfather and his love for the church. Rather than sharing details of my grandfather’s life to the more than 100 guests that attended, the Priest used the service to scold our family for not going to church.

He made the same implications my grandmother made about my grandfather’s death. For more than fifteen minutes, he told all of us that we were destroying my grandfather’s memory by abandoning the church. I looked around and watched my family sit there with their mouths open wide. Some of my cousin’s appeared to be red in the face from anger.

Most of us had to stop listening. We fidgeted with our programs, and several of us pretended to read. There were whispers back and forth, and several loud sighs from my family. No one was pleased with the Priest. However, most of us knew he and my grandmother planned this together. Instead of allowing us to grieve his passing, we were damned to eternal hell for leaving the church.

After the service, most of us were blurry eyed either from sadness or anger. We talked about what happened. However, all of us were grieving the loss of our grandfather; we had a tough time deciphering the words of the Priest.

For me, this was the day I committed myself to never stepping foot in a Catholic Church again as a member. I was done with the church. In one of the darkest times of my life, I was spiritually abused by a man of the cloth. I lost all respect for the leadership of the church. My relationship with my grandmother never recovered.

A church is supposed to console and help families through their grief. The Catholic Church used our grief to guilt, exploit, and humiliate our family. For the past 14 years since I left the church, I am still recovering from the pain the church has inflicted on my family.

Instead of picking her family, my grandmother picked the church. Even to her death, she never wavered from her commitment to the church. Her choice of the church over her family destroyed my relationship with her. When she finally passed away at 98 years old, I didn’t shed a single tear.

Every day the Catholic Church meddles and disrupts family relationships. Members needs and emotions are secondary to the needs of the church. They will stop at nothing to maintain obedience to their rules. The Catholic Church may not look like a cult. However, the day of my grandfather’s funeral I left the largest cult in the world.

I will forever be a recovering Catholic.

My only hope is one day there are no more members of the Catholic Church. When that day comes, there will finally be no more victims at the hands of their ruthless and callous leaders.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Illithid

    Having never been much of a believer, this sort of experience is quite foreign to me, and angering. I’m sorry that happened to you.

  • FanofNeri

    That was utterly horrifying and heartbreaking, i’m so sorry! What a jerk priest.

  • Jennny

    I’m so sorry that you had to go through that horrible experience. It resonates with me in my former fundy world where missionary/pastor friends and family believed the ‘lord’s work’ came way way above the needs of their families. The bible said so. They had new ‘families’, their new converts who needed pastoring, having time spent with them above family time etc. I privately thought that if they were all about being ‘a good witness’, it wasn’t a good witness to those heathen around them who saw how little time and attention their loved ones got. Those outsiders would know the family is your closest unit that needs love, nurture, attention and time and they gave that instinctively, no religion involved. And of course it was always the missionary/pastor wives who kept the home together uncomplainingly, submissively, whilst husbands did the real ‘work of the lord.’

  • Sophotroph

    I don’t know how you did it. If that had been my own grandmother, I’d have slapped her dentures clear out of her mouth!

  • Yes, the Catholic church puts the church in front of family. They act as the authority on all family decisions. By sharing this story, numerous Catholics have said “not all priests are like that” – well how come yesterday the PA attorney general returned grand jury indictments against the church. The largest in the HISTORY of the church. Spanning 70 years.

  • Oh trust me, I wanted to. However, my mom and her sisters have always protected her – despite her horrendous behavior. How she treated family was terrible. In fact, after that incident, I had little to no relationship with her. I refused to pick her up and take her places. I refused to help her at her senior home. I didn’t care that she was my family. She was an abusive and mean woman.

  • adhoc

    If the priest is still alive, you could write him a thank you note explaining that he is the reason you are no longer Catholic/left religion and that your life is much better for it. Basically thanking him for being the arsehole that got you over the hump and away from the criminal organization known as the RCC.

    Funerals are for the living, it’s sad that the priest and your grandmother used it for nefarious purposes.

    I didn’t attend any of the funerals from my grandparents, I went to visit them before they died. It was sad leaving them, knowing I would never see them again, but I have no memories of caskets, funeral services, or crappy attitudes from the clergy. After reading stories like this, I’m glad I don’t have those memories.

  • Bob Jase

    Just be glad it wasn’t your wedding, trust me I went through that one.

  • Imnoaheinstein

    good story, indeed, but with due respect to the author, you needed a good editor on this piece. Still, your point is well taken.

  • Daffodil

    And of course that targeted scolding made you immediately smack your head and bow down in abject remorse, promising to attend mass every day and go to confession every week for the rest of your life. Not.

  • Daffodil

    Good for you. I have never understood that familial devotion that makes people continue to associate and help those who have harmed them so badly. So she gave birth to your mother/father. So what!? People have to earn respect and if they choose not to, f— them!

  • Daffodil

    I’m so sorry that happened to you. I don’t know that I’ve ever heard of that happening in evangelical circles, but what irritates me about them is their insistence on treating every funeral as an opportunity to evangelize. Who the deceased was, their unique personality, everything they did, is overlooked and ignored so that the “gospel” can be preached to a captive audience. It’s completely despicable.

  • Andrea Fitzgerald

    Can anyone see the smoke coming out of my ears?!

  • guadalupelavaca

    I am always saddened to hear stories like this. However, the Catholic Church has been a very positive influence in my life. I grew up in a dysfunctional home in Texas. I associated with Catholic adults in my parish who gave me guidance. I attended the University of Texas and then UCLA Law school. And during that time I was a devoted Catholic. I currently live in Los Angeles and work for for a very large law firm, and I still find time to go to mass every day, seven days a week. I find it to be a beautiful experience and a wonderful way to start the day. I could not imagine another way of life.

  • Oh no!

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    I don’t think any Catholic priest or bishop of my acquaintance would be anything but horrified by your experience at your grandfather’s funeral. Not only is it self-evidently cruel and inappropriate, it’s also counterproductive! How stupid would that fool in clerical vestments have to be to think that such an admonition in those circumstances could possibly have ANY positive impact in terms of bringing people back into the Church?! Anyone with even a passing familiarity with the teachings of Jesus would have recognized that occasion as a moment for empathy and compassionate outreach. It would have been appropriate to file a formal complaint with the diocese; the result would depend entirely on the bishop, but at least there would be a possibility of saving others from a similar experience with that idiot.

  • I don’t think any of us had the bandwidth to file a complaint at the time. Though I will say the congregation lost many people because many didn’t like him. He never lost his job though. People just left.

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    That’s been a huge factor in the recent problems being faced by the Catholic Church: clergy are so few and far between that even total fork-ups get to keep their posts. It’s one of the many misjudgements and missed opportunities that have led to so many people, like yourself, drifting away from the faith.

  • Well no – the rules of the church. the ridiculous rules. Paying to get out of purgatory. Praying to be absolved for sin. How about the church being in charge of whether or not I go to heaven? I also learned as a child I could not ask questions. I could not apply reason or try to understand aspects of their teachings. The church is made up. The sacraments, the paying to get out purgatory, the saints. None of that is biblical. It’s all made up garbage.

  • se habla espol

    That’s part of the grift: ya go after people when they’re most vulnerable. Every con-man (and those of us who study them) knows that.

  • Otto

    People like that are not family…there is no other way to put it

  • Otto

    Despite opinions to the contrary the title of Priest is rather meaningless as it pertains to whether he is a good person or not. Sure there are good Priests, there are also awful Priests and that is no different than anyone else. The thing is just because a Priest treats you well does not mean that same Priest treats everybody well. Priests can quite often be extremely passive aggressive, saying something with a smile but the meaning is an insult, I have experienced it countless times.

    When I was 15 I started Catholic High School following 3 older siblings that went there before. The Priest immediately took a liking to me and would great me everyday on the hall…he was the ‘cool’ Priest. I decided after my first year that I did not want to go to Catholic school anymore. My mother called the Priest over to try and talk me out of it, but my mind was made up. I was not disrespectful to him but I stood my ground. The next year I would see him in the grocery store where I worked, I greeted him the same as I always did, he ignored me. He would not acknowledge my presence in any way. It was then that I knew Priests are just people, there is nothing special about them. People need to get over the idea that being a Priest means they are moral or nice or good… maybe they are, but it is not because they are a Priest.

  • Otto

    I am sorry you dealt with that.The abuse of the Catholic Church is not just sexual, it is physical and mental too.

  • Raging Bee

    That sounds very…escapist. Like maybe all those pastors are putting “The Lord’s Work” so far above their own families because they really have no ability or desire to deal with real family issues; and much prefer the rush of new converts, young energy, spiritual idealism, and power over a flock instead.

  • Lark62

    This is normal. My grandfather was a good man. The priest spent his funeral condemning him as a sinner. The priest didn’t care how much pain he inflicted.

  • Lark62

    The international organization of child rapists thanks you for your support. Just think, without people like you defending them and funding them, they might not be able to give “personal attention” to so many children.

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    That is most emphatically NOT normal! I’m not disputing that it happened to you, or that similar incidents have happened to others, but in my experience these are aberrations, and not at all representative of the actions or behaviour of most Catholic clergy.

  • Oh it’s normal. Stop defending these predators

  • guadalupelavaca

    Yes, and it so tragic to see the St. Vincent de Paul society in Los Angeles helping the 50 thousand homeless people. And saddened to see the Church give so much aid to the poor Hispanic immigrants here in Southern California who barely have enough to survive.

  • Lark62

    Do tell, what is the proper ratio of good deeds to child rape? Do we ignore one child rape for every 100 good deeds? Or maybe one rape gets a pass for every 10 good deeds.

    Plus, christian good deeds come with strings. Just today I read a report of a woman who fled Nigeria where her life was in danger because she was gay. She was to stay at a Catholic shelter in Holland. They turned her out into the streets when they learned she was gay.

    Read about Mother Teresa and dull needles and how much she gloried in the suffering of the poor.

    Catholic charity comes with a high price.

  • How about the thousands of victims that were raped, sodomized, or assaulted?

  • Jim Jones

    In my early 20’s, I had occasion to go to a house that some seminarians were renting to do minor repairs. I was a little surprised to see that their main occupation was playing cards, smoking, and drinking beer.

    Any slight regard I had for priests was gone. After that, I regarded them as I found them. Long experience with a Catholic cemetery taught me that they loathed doing funerals and you needed to be in very good graces with one to get him to perform a service.

    Better to get a non religious celebrant to perform any ritual, even a ‘christening’ (or naming). They’re all about pleasing you, not selling their religion.

  • Jim Jones

    How much do they help? Typically, most churches spend more on gardening than on actual charity. Most run about 1% to 3%. The LDS is at 0.8%. And sometimes the charity is more like self help.

  • Jim Jones

    There’s a hypothesis that all religion is just virtue signalling.

  • most their money goes into their greedy pockets

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    I am NOT defending predators! And YOU KNOW PERFECTLY WELL that is NOT what I’m doing!

    This specific post isn’t even ABOUT predation AT ALL. It’s about how one priest’s egregious (perhaps psychopathic) lack of empathy at your grandfather’s funeral confirmed your decision of years earlier to cease practicing the Catholic faith. While I wholeheartedly agree with your entirely justified negative impression of that specific cleric, I ABSOLUTELY KNOW from personal experience that his behaviour was not at all “normal” for a Catholic priest. No matter how much you hate the Catholic Church to the deepest core of your being, surely you have the rational capacity and basic command of logic to understand that you can’t extrapolate from the actions of a single person the expected behaviour of tens of thousands of individuals who happen fit within the same category.

    There are MANY, MANY priests all around the world, at all levels of the hierarchy, who are at best an embarrassment and at worst a cancer to the Catholic Church. I have NO argument with that observation, and absolutely and unequivocally support any and all efforts to eliminate their influence.

    But I remain convinced that there are many, many MORE priests who are deeply dedicated to service and compassion. Your statement implying that every single Catholic priest, without exception, is a “predator” is an insult to your own obvious intelligence.

  • 6700 US Priests accused of rape and abuse is a lot of bad priests

  • Raging Bee

    What if you had stopped being such a devoted Catholic? Would you have kept on getting…whatever unspecified “guidance” you got from them?

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    Over what time period? And out of what total number of priests?

    The total number of Catholic priests in the US in 2009 was 27,614 (https://www.statista.com/statistics/245551/number-of-ordained-clergy-serving-us-religious-parishes-by-church/#0). If ALL 6,700 child-abusing priests to whom you refer were active in that year alone, they would have represented a little over 24% of the total number priests. That being the case, you would be unjustly accusing three quarters of Catholic priests of pedophilia!

    But it gets worse… a 2002 analysis by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice concluded that over a 50 year period, about 4.4% of Catholic priests in the United States had been accused of sexual abuses directed at minors. Now, that study was commissioned by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, so let’s increase that proportion by 100% to allow for possible under-reporting and bias. By that measure, you’re unjustly accusing NINETY PERCENT of Catholic Priests with criminal actions!

    In fact, I’ve seen research that reports that child sexual abuse is actually not more prevalent among Catholic priests than among people in other professions. There are widespread accounts of such abuse perpetrated, for example, by teachers and coaches or other sports personnel (e.g. Larry Nasser). It’s not just nor even predominantly a Catholic issue.

    The core of the specific issue within the Catholic Church, especially in the US, has not been the prevalence of the problem, but the way the institution has dealt with it. Catholic authorities tended to act to protect the institution rather than the victims, burying victims’ reporting of abuse and protecting perpetrators from the law.

    When you make a blanket statement suggesting that every single Catholic priest, without exception, is guilty of child sexual abuse, you are directly accusing literally dozens of honourable and compassionate men whom I have known or worked with over a period of decades. I cannot stand by and allow such calumny to pass without challenge!

    The handling of child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church is a scandal of the first order, and is the worst outcome of the more generalized problem of excessive clericalism within the Church. But to extend that criticism to a suggestion that ALL Catholic priests engage in child sexual abuse is irresponsible to the extreme.

  • did I say they all do? Nope. Move along

  • Anat

    24% accused, how many knew and ignored, or suspected but didn’t want to look too hard into the details? All those are guilty too, just not to the same degree. And once some stories came out in the media, from multiple places – there was no justification to not demanding a thorough investigation. So yes, every priest who was not actively working to find out the truth is to some extent guilty.

  • I agree! Guilt by omission or turning a blind eye – is guilt

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    First, the relevant statistic is 4.4% (or maybe as high as 8.8%). My reference to 24% was to indicate an absurdly high absolute maximum possible.

    As for guilt by association… that’s just silly. While I have no doubt that there are many, many priests who were to some degree aware of the issue and chose not to take action, I can’t imagine that they constituted more than a relatively small percentage of the total number of priests.

    There’s more than enough REAL stuff for which to criticize the Catholic Church. There’s no need to start making things up just because you hate the institution so much!

  • Hey dude, calm down. No one said all the priests raped kids. Are you a Catholic? Why are you so hellbent on defending a cult?

  • Anat

    So it is my imagination against yours. I am not a very imaginative person, yet I find it very easy. Because we know how power works.

  • Kevin K

    I’m sorry you went through that. Your grandmother was a bully and what she did to you was abuse, pure and simple.

    Good for you for not letting yourself be blackmailed or “guilted”.

  • thank you! guilt is thick in the Catholic life

  • jufulu

    I hear you. When my father died we had his funeral in the commons room at his care facility. The minister was late, so we started without him. It was a very lovely time were we just talked about him. Then the minister showed up and the mood took a nose dive. As with most funerals I’ve been to, it became a sales pitch of God, Jesus and whatever.

  • Carstonio

    I know of at least one Catholic funeral for someone who had grown up in the religion but ultimately had no religious affiliation. Some of the family members, including the devout Catholics, were upset when the presiding priest gently scolded the deceased.

  • sounds so familiar!

  • Raging Bee

    I went to a black Southern Baptist funeral, which was tolerable until the minister went into his “Let’s take this person’s death as a reminder that we all have to get right with Jesus before we die!” routine, and tried to get people to come to the altar and convert on the spot. No one came, IIRC, probably because most of them were already Christian, and those few who weren’t, didn’t believe his thinly-veiled “convert or go to Hell forever” schtick in the first place.

  • Raging Bee

    Christians throwing each other under the bus whenever the folly of their beliefs or practices is called out, is TOTALLY normal.

  • Raging Bee

    If all of that tiny minority of priests were removed from their posts (at least) for their crimes, you’d have a point. But the ENTIRE ORGANIZATION conspired to keep them on, cover up their crimes, shuffle them from place to place, and even attack their accusers. That means the ENTIRE ORGANIZATION is complicit in the crimes of that “tiny minority.” And yes, that includes all the parishioners and other donors who gave said organization the resources to cover up and enable such crimes.

  • Raging Bee

    This isn’t about “guilt by association,” it’s about guilt by organizational complicity.

  • Raging Bee

    There was no shortage of priests in my neighborhood back when I first dumped the Church. Their beliefs simply made no sense, and were unsupported by anything remotely resembling evidence.

  • Cubist

    How many raped children shall the RCC be excused for those 50,000 homeless people it helped?

  • guadalupelavaca

    I give up. How many?

  • guadalupelavaca

    I know that the homeless population is out of control. Around 50 thousand people. Its the the salvation army and st. Vincent de paul who provide most of the services. None are are atheist organizations.

  • Michael Bean

    It’s not just the Roman Catholic Church…it’s all of them. The human race has been held back and stifled for millennia by all religions, and all the other superstitious belief and BS.
    Human beings are pathetically gullible.

  • DKJung

    Sources please?

  • Jim Jones

    I’d have to Google it. Used to have links but computers go tits up and . . . .

  • Cubist

    *You’re* the one who’s making noise about “the RCC helped 50K homeless people!” in response to an observation that the RCC has, as an institution, aided and abetted child-rapists. So you tell me: How manyraped children shall the RCC be excused for those 50,000 homeless people it helped?

  • DKJung

    She’s just saying that in her life, Catholics have done a lot of good in her community. Can you share the link to the article?

  • Lark62
  • DKJung

    There’s no denying that some “Catholic” priests and nuns have done horrible things. But villifying all Catholics isn’t the answer either, or things like this will happen: http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2018/08/22/this-is-for-all-the-kids-innocent-priest-attacked-in-sacristy/

    Jesus said you would know who his true followers are by the works they do.
    There’s still good Catholics/religious people in the world who are doing good because they believe that there is a God and that we should love one another. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was founded by a Catholic man, I believe. And I don’t know about the Missionaries of Charity in India, but the ones in the US are helping the poor, serving single mothers, etc: https://www.yelp.com/biz/missionaries-of-charity-chicago-2?osq=missionaries+of+charity

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2016/09/02/mother-teresas-nuns-still-quietly-serve-the-poor-at-d-c-convent/?utm_term=.c1b70f51afd0

  • DKJung

    She’s just saying that in her life, Catholics have done a lot of good in her community.

  • Lark62

    If Missionaries of Charity is so wealthy and (seemingly) committed to helping the poor, why are conditions so unsanitary and patients suffering needlessly?

    When I posed this question to Sister C, she explained that Mother Teresa’s aim was to serve Christ, not her fellow man. To distinguish such goals may seem like hair-splitting—until it comes to painkiller.

    Christopher Hitchens’s The Missionary Position cites Mother Teresa speaking at a press conference in Washington shortly before her death in 1997: “I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of poor people.”

    Read the article for descriptions of the TOTALLY UNNECESSARY “suffering of the poor” – painful medical procedures and amputations performed without anesthesia, despite the fact that ample anesthesia was available. “Saint” Teresa did not and would not relieve the suffering of the poor. Warning – strong stomach highly recommended.
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/missionariesofcharity.wordpress.com/2016/03/11/volunteers-continue-to-testify-against-mother-teresas-charity/amp/

    I am not vilifying individual catholics. Lots of people do good things, religious or not. People doing good things can attribute their goodness to their invisible friends if they so choose. But no amount of good deeds can offset the pure evil attributable to the catholic church.

    The WashPost article was very happy happy. I’m sure newspapers in Burlington Vermont printed happy happy articles about their local orphanage.

    I couldn’t see much negative about St. Judes Research Hospital, founded by Danny Thomas, except a bizarre fundraising set up that limits what goes to the hospital. Of course, although named for a catholic saint, St. Judes is not a catholic hospital nor associated with the catholic church.

  • Cubist

    Sure. The thing is, whatever good the RCC may have done does not negate the evil the RCC has also done. So when some joker makes noise about oooh, the RCC has done Good Thing X!, I figure it is entirely fitting and proper to inquire how many raped children the RCC chall be excused for each instance of Good Thing X.

  • Deborah A

    When my Grandfather died, many decades before I was born, my Grandmother could not afford to bury him in the Catholic part of the cemetery. Afterwards, she asked the priest if he could bless the grave. He told her my Grandfather would burn in hell until she had him dug up and re-buried in the Catholic cemetery. My father went down to the church and decked the priest. He avoided church as much as possible from that time on. My mother was very religious, rarely missed mass. She died when I was 4. I rarely saw the inside of a Catholic church after that time.

  • OMG I’m glad your dad decked the priest! He deserved it!

  • Cally

    Worship the man who spoke the words, not the institution that profits from them.

  • Amy Adams

    Ok, I get it. But I am sad to see you so ANGRY with the institution of the Church, the bricks, the mortar, and the HUMAN condition of the priests. When I was raised in the Church, and I am older than you, a baby boomer+, priests were to be modeled after Jesus Christ. I looked at a priest and saw Jesus Christ. I know Jesus would not be happy with what’s happening in the Church. He would probably applaud you for turning away, kicking the dust off your feet, and going somewhere else, as he told his disciples in the Gospels.
    I hope you find that somewhere else, as for me, I am staying. It’s not the Church that I am feeding off of, it’s the Gospels, and what Jesus is telling me to do. Yes, I have to sit and watch the Church and all of its fumbles and pain it is causing. But to me, the priests are HUMAN. And I am not condoning their actions, and telling them to get an out of jail card or a free pass. No way. They will be accountable, and excommunicated, rightly so. And what Jesus spoke about mercy and compassion, I hope can be seen sifting through the fog of The Catholic Church in the days to come.
    The Church should be a place of healing, not abuse, not bullying, not humiliation. That is not what Jesus intended for the Early Christian Church and the Church of today.

    The Church will always be looked at as an ominous institution, with its gold and colored glass. To me that’s materialistic, but that’s the way it has always been, and will stay. It’s up to us who stay behind to look beyond that wealth, and find the simple beauty in our faith, the rituals, even covered in incense. For me, they are my way, and I am breathing it all in.

  • Ivlia Blackburn

    Sorry but have never known a priest to be anything like that. Have had many problems over the years and the priests of the church I was attending at the time, moved frequently, were never anything other than quietly supportive. Even now, and I no longer attend my local church, as mass times aren’t convenient, the priest will always stop and ask how I’m doing. When there is a problem and my daughter needs someone to just listen a local priest will put the kettle on, make a big pot of tea and sit and listen, and she doesn’t even attend church. The pastor of the local church where my daughter has been a member for decades and I have attended occasionally over the years although neither of us do any longer the Pastor still asks how we are doing whenever he sees us. Sounds like your grandmother persuaded him to follow her agenda, depending on her state of mind would depend on whether this was the best idea. Having been to a memorial where the presiding minister followed a similar theme after the widower asked her to make this the central theme of the sermon and who apparently later apologised to family members saying that the widower’s state of mind made it the best option. Unfortunately this seems to be common to all churches and I have heard others mention a similar theme at weddings they have attended where it was aimed at the friends and family members who didn’t attend the church in question (nondenominational). In a time when many churches are competing for a limited number of attendees it is only to be expected especially as many who do attend are close to fanatical about it. Unfortunately, if this site is anything to go by, it seems to be a part of the increasing desperation of US churches, not just RC either, to hang on to their members and rule with guilt. Many people have written articles on Patheos on the subject, where guilt is used to bind a congregation to a specific church, or to hide some misdemeanor on the part of the minister or ruling council, or just to make a person feel guilty for doing something that the rest of the church disagrees with eg: one I heard was when a family decided to keep in contact with a homosexual child and their church thought they should have cast the person into the wilderness and cut off all contact, almost every month there would be a sermon with a mention of this subject (they still attended the church, they still saw the family member, apparently they just ignored the comments and attempted guilt trip). Human nature and juyst joining a church will NEVER EVER change a persons basic human nature, regardless of what they may think. I will stay with a church that is compassionate (though not on all subjects I admit, though here in Ireland there are openly homosexual priests), always there to listen with a pot of tea when needed, and who doesn’t judge. But also the church I do now attend, daily, follows the way of the very early church, lives a secluded enclosed life where they only see members of the congregation to talk to on a regular basis. Not for everyone but when you read what the early church members wrote you see that there is a huge difference between their church and the modern church and practices. A really huge difference. Good luck with your life and remember that your grandmother was responsible for her thoughts, and your grandfather for his, and I really doubt any if you really killed him in spite of what she had the priest say.

  • the man that spoke the words is a lie and didn’t exist. Carry on.

  • www.tomatobubble.com

    Sounds to me like you had left the Catholic church long before your grandfather’s funeral and to this day are looking for excuses to justify this bad decision. You will NEVER be at peace until you return back. The fact that to this day you can’t let go of this tells me that down deep you know you are betraying God. I see this all the time with my relatives who have left the Church. If you people are so secure about your apostasy then why do you keep dwelling on it and reassuring yourself for so many years?

    BTW, that dream of yours of no Catholic church will never happen.

  • KGTN

    My father’s side of the family is Southern Baptist, and even though my dad is not practicing, he still talks fondly of the “hard-shell” style of preaching. I went to a Baptist funeral once for one distant relative, and there was not a word about the man’s life other than that he was a dedicated Christian. The whole service was instead used as an altar call. I thought it was so tacky at the time, but now that I’m thinking back, that may have been the deceased man’s intentions. Do you think it was your grandmother or grandfather’s intention for the priest to use your grandfather’s funeral as a “come-to-Jesus moment?” Regardless, I’m sorry that happened to you.

    I wasn’t raised religious. My husband is a cradle Catholic. Faith was always important to him. He is so gentle and loving, and he has always respected my autonomy. I decided after a tough period that I wanted to go to Mass and learn more about the faith (partly out of curiosity–I always loved the traditionally Catholic aesthetics–“smells and bells,” Latin chant, candles, Gothic architecture). But, before then, I was sort of afraid to go. I was afraid I would have been singled out and judged as a non-believer. Thankfully, that didn’t happen. If it had happened, I don’t know what I would have done.

    I find that each community is different. Even though the Roman Catholic Church is a big institution, each parish community is unique. Like any community though, some are toxic.

    My current parish is a small but mighty African American community that’s often overlooked. If it weren’t for the fact that I love my community, it would have been a lot harder to go to Mass after reading from the PA Grand Jury report…I was an angry, crying, sniffling mess at Mass even so. The real reason why I stubbornly continue to pray and go to Mass, even though I’ve lately had doubts and have been angry with God, boils down to my belief in something greater than all the abusers.

    We all have our stories and reasons for doing what we do. I wish you peace and blessings, and I pray nobody, Catholic or otherwise, treats you poorly for your beliefs (or lack thereof).

  • KGTN

    How can you say,”deep down you know you are betraying God” to someone who has just stated she has suffered trauma at the hands of people, and an institution, she trusted? Sure, it’s possible the author “left the Church long before.” It’s also possible she didn’t have a lot of catechizing and was unaware of many of the beliefs. However, we can’t possibly know that or assume the motives of her heart! Remember to have charity towards others, or you will never be at peace either.

  • Sounds like you need to turn around and go back to your cult. Enjoy your day.

  • www.tomatobubble.com

    Give me a break, she suffered no trauma. People like this hate it when they are told the truth, that’s why they lie to themselves about experiencing all these “traumas” to justify their bad decision to leave the Catholic church. They could all come back and all their problems would go away, but their bad will keeps them from taking this step.

  • You are welcome to leave this page at anytime. Thank you.

  • www.tomatobubble.com

    Except the Man who spoke the words also told us this: Luke 10:16 “Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me; but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.”

    Logical conclusion to any true Bible believer is that we are to listen to our church leaders (pope, bishops).

    BTW, I don’t even buy there really is a sex abuse crises in the Catholic church. I believe it’s largely based on false accusations.of the so called “victims” paid off by the shadowy conspirators in high places (media, govt, judiciary, etc..) who hate the Catholic church and seek its destruction.

  • I’ve asked you to leave. Your opinions are not welcomed here.

  • Cally

    Tomatobubble: I find it quite astonishing that despite the many thousands of sex abuse victims in so many countries, some of whom have committed suicide later in life because of the abuse they suffered, you accuse the victims of lying. If the mountain of evidence, the millions of dollars already paid out, (some as hush money), the admissions by priests and others and the church’s own documentation of the perpetrators in their midst – is not enough for you to accept these crimes actually happened, then you my friend, are suffering from a serious case of denial.
    It’s this kind of denial that has allowed the abuse to occur under the noses of the parents. It’s also why victims, fearing they would never be believed, suffered in silence for so long. John 8:32 “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

  • Cally

    I think there’s enough evidence to show that a man named Jesus did exist, based on non-biblical writings, but whether he actually was God incarnate is a whole other ball of wax.

  • Whether he actually spoke the words is the other ball of wax. Assuming he existed, the stories about him weren’t written down for decades, and writers then didn’t attempt to get spoken words down verbatim. They would make things up that sounded good. Of the great orators from prehistory, we know what none of them actually said. In the case of Jesus, we know nothing of the events of his life. We don’t know if he was crucified, we don’t know if any of the stories have any factual basis at all, and we don’t know in the cases that stories might have a factual basis whether they were from the life of one man or several.

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  • KGTN

    No scolding or accusation you fling at her is going to get her to come back to church.

    Like I said before, we can’t possibly assume where her heart is at this moment. Sure, plenty of people ignore or reject the truth, especially when it forces them to change (even people in the Church, as we’ve seen lately).

    We don’t know everything the author has gone through or how she’s been educated in the faith. I suspect from what she’s said that she probably didn’t have good catechism. Faith probably wasn’t super prominent in her life or in the lives of her immediate family before she made the decision to leave.

    And to say her problems would go away if she came back to the Church is complete exaggeration. We’re still fallen beings, with or without acceptance of God. We still have baggage, as you’ve demonstrated. The difference is that believers accept Grace. That gives our suffering more of a purpose since we can unite it to Christ and offer it up for the sake of others in need, and it helps us overcome things we didn’t believe we could overcome before. It’s beautiful, but not always easy. I would invite the author to give it another try, but with eyes wide open to the reality that faith is a beautiful but at times difficult journey.

  • KGTN

    By the way, on an unrelated note, your website doesn’t help Catholics look credible or reasonable…To give some completely unsolicited advice, if you’re going to run a fringe NWO/Conspiracy theorist website, at least make it look nice. Wix or Squarespace are simple to use and don’t look shady like they’ll give the computer a virus. Coast to Coast AM did a nice job on their site, for example.

  • You have made assumptions about me that are entirely inaccurate. I was a confirmed Catholic at age 15. I attended Catechism classes from kindergarten until I was confirmed. My grandparents were devout. I attended mass regularly until I was around 5. Then we went only on Easter and Christmas. But I ALWAYS had CCD every single week. Faith was a part of our lives.

    Anyone making assumptions about me – are making assumptions. My life is my story. I share it here for people to read. No amount of prophetizing to me will get me to return to God. Nor am I a bad person for not believing. I am a good person. I advocate for families with children that have disabilities, write to expose pseudoscience, expose predators that rape and hurt women and children. I use my voice to help change. Not to stay a minion to a religious organization.

  • Um, I don’t run a NWO conspiracy theory website. You are hilarious. I also don’t manage this page. I’m a contributor to the Patheos News Site. My site is rooted in science and logic. I’m not trying to make Catholics Look Credible. you are responding to a columnist on an ATHEIST channel

  • KGTN

    I apologize I came off as making an assumption that was false. That was never my intention. I was trying to get a point across to the other commenter for making very judgmental assumptions. I wanted him to open his mind to all possibilities for why others might make different choices than him.

    What I meant above though, and it really doesn’t even matter to my point to Tomato, is that even people who go through Confirmation and CCD classes don’t always have the best experience. That was the case in my mother’s family, and even with her parents, and that has been with so many others. It’s a problem in the Church. He can’t say every one who’s left or fallen away has malicious intentions.

    But, yes, as you say, you have a purpose for writing, and your story is your own. I never said or even thought you were a bad person, so I’m not sure where that came from. Patheos is a space for dialogue though. It’s a place to encounter other beliefs and share parts of oneself in a respectful manner. That’s what I was doing.

  • KGTN

    If you see, I was responding to the other guy whose user name is “www.tomatobubble.com” This explains the confusion. Oops! Your website looks nice. Patheos is credible and won’t give my computer a virus. Not sure how this mix-up happened.

  • well that makes a lot more sense! Tomato got banned for being a troll

  • KGTN

    Oh, so you can’t see his comments? Not sure how banning works, but I can still see his comments, and he can respond to me, which probably means all your readers can see his comments too. Patheos might want to fix that. I can send a screen shot if you’d like to see what I’m seeing. Anyway, I never meant any disrespect.

  • These priests and asshole youth coaches forget when your douchebag behavior drives someone away, it also drives away the kids they will have if they have any. This does not help especally when you keep having priests RAPING kids, go ahead and think YOU DONT NEED THEM while you watch their entire thing crumble all around you. Church like these over professionalized youth sports leagues, I will not be sheding any tears then they die.

  • Statistics Palin

    My housekeeper is a resident alien from Mexico. When her husband left her and her daughters, M asked her parish priest for help. He said she would have to fuck him in order to get help. I am gay. I give her money and food in addition to her salary to help support her family.

    A friend of mind from New York said his father grew up in a Catholic orphanage i the 1920s. R’s father said that when the children asked for food the priests demanded sex.

    The Church’s help comes at the expense of human dignity for many. Fuck it.

  • No. He is banned from my page and should not be able to respond since last night.

  • Robin Warchol

    I am sorry about your experiences at your Grandfather’s funeral. It sounded like your grandmother may have been close to the priest and set him up to do this by giving him the info that her children and grandchildren were not going to Church. But even at that, this was not the time or place to use a funeral to lash out, embarrass or humiliate people for not attending Church. Faith is passed on between parents and children not so much by rigid rules but by love and empathetic practice. If your grandmother was angry that her children and grandchildren were not going to Church, she should have looked at herself and realized that the hard nose rigid, nasty faith she seemed to have practiced isn’t going to be picked up by any of her off spring. To also blame you and the rest of the family for his death is even sicker. The priest should have known better than to listen to her or even be controlled by her to use the funeral to attack the rest of you and your family. Did he really think this approach would bring any of you back? No, all it did is make you an atheist and seemed to been the set up for this blog. But don’t end up like your grandmother and make sweeping blame of the Catholic Church for what happen to you and your family. Again there is no excuse for what happen at this funeral. But brake this cycle of anger and blame by not following in her footsteps and blaming the Catholic Church for her own sickness.

  • Statistics Palin
  • Cally

    A familiarity with Buddhist, Hindu (vedas, advaita vedanta, upanishads), kabbalah, suffism etc. show they also point to the same thing Jesus (or whoever) was on about – minus the cultural differences i.e. how to shed the shackles of the ego and become enlightened.

    The interesting thing about Christianity is that the deeper (mystical) meanings are not recognized by the majority. In fact, Christians have a real disdain for anything mystical. Instead, Christianity has become a religion of belief, rather than one of real transformation. I put this down to Paul’s influence. He never met Jesus, yet a third of the new testament is attributed to him. For this reason, Christianity has become little more than a moral code for better living and self-improvement. It is often the insistence on a literal interpretation of the ‘miracles’ of Jesus that turn people away, because not even Christians can appreciate the employment of myth as a teaching tool and also as a means to elevate someone of high standing. Ironically, a poll done in 2000 revealed one third of the Church of England clergy don’t believe or doubt that the crucifixion actually happened. Yet they not only preach it, the religion hinges on the resurrection. Go figure!

    However, for those who are earnest seekers of truth and liberation, it’s worth while allowing skepticism to turn to inquiry. Ask yourself: Why is it exactly, that religious/spiritual texts have been revered by so many millions of people for so long? People surrender their whole lives to spiritual practice. Why would they be bothered? Allow yourself to consider that maybe, just maybe……if you dig down deep enough, under all the religious hoo-ha and cultural traditions; there really is something to be discovered that could change your life forever. To me, enlightenment, truth and freedom sound like a worthwhile pursuit, don’t you think?

    If I could be so bold as to offer some advice: Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. 🙂

  • Been there, done that? After I shed Christianity (that was some nasty bathwater with no babies to be found) I investigated a lot of other religions and forms of spirituality. Buddhism isn’t bad. In the end I didn’t find any where their “truth” was any more than wishful thinking and no better than what Deepak Chopra offers. It’s in our nature to delude ourselves, and millions of people can easily be wrong.

  • Cally

    The only way we can know anything for sure is through personal experience. Beliefs mean nothing, in my opinion. So It didn’t work out for you and that’s okay. It’s not for everyone. I respect you for taking the journey.

  • Raging Bee

    Oh dear, sounds like you got triggered by something…

  • Raging Bee

    How do you know she’s “lying to herself?” Do you know her? Were you there? The subject of this thread is HER life, not yours — why is your word on that subject more credible than hers?

  • Raging Bee

    And what kind of name is “Tomato Bubble?” Is that a Veggie Tales reference or something?

  • Raging Bee

    I just looked at his past comments: this guy totally refuses to believe ANY of the allegations of child-sexual-abuse, even after so many of the perpetrators admitted their guilt. This guy is the most extreme Catholic-tribalist bigot I’ve seen yet.

  • Raging Bee

    He told her my Grandfather would burn in hell until she had him dug up and re-buried in the Catholic cemetery.

    Really? I don’t remember Dante saying anything about people getting transferred up from Hell after they’d died. And he was THERE.

    And what if he’d been buried in a Catholic cemetery and later moved FROM there to somewhere else? Would a couple of burly angels have hustled his soul to the elevator shaft and tossed him down it?

  • Raging Bee

    BTW, I don’t even buy there really is a sex abuse crises in the Catholic church.

    The Church has admitted there IS a crisis, so there’s no reason to take you seriously.

  • Mr. James Parson

    Interesting

  • fractal

    I grew up Fundy Catholic.
    I have MANY stories like the above, I could share.
    Sexual predators are not the only thing to fear in the Church hierarchy.

  • fractal

    Come on.

    You don’t think all the priests in a parish know who is creepy?
    They hear confessions, including the kids confessions.
    And don’t YOU KNOW when a guy you live with, is untrustworthy?
    Men traditionally warn their sisters away from creepy guys, while considering the rest of the female population as “fair game” for him.

    I think most had a good idea what was happening.

    And if they wanted to investigate further, all they had to do was ask the nuns—they are the ones who interact with the kids daily.
    EVERYONE was indoctrinated with the attitude that ANYTHING was better than hurting the Church in any way, even if it meant being willing to sacrifice the welfare of your child—after all, isn’t that what obedient servant Abraham did?

  • Raging Bee

    If this “sickness” was taught by the Church, and is part of Catholic doctrine, then yes, we SHOULD blame the Church for the sickness.

  • Raging Bee

    So how did he score on Rotten Tomatoes? I’m guessing they’d be biased in his favor…

  • She was just acting Catholic. Wouldn’t want her husband to end up in purgatory

  • Raging Bee

    Why not? According to Dante, Purgatory is a HAPPY place where everyone is grateful for every second of their decades of suffering, ‘cuz they all know they’re bound for Heaven!

  • lol!

  • Raging Bee

    Read “Purgatorio” if you really want to LOL. It’s laughably silly, and helps to remind us why the trilogy is called “The Divine Comedy.” I honestly can’t figure out how serious Dante really was when he wrote all that…

  • thank you for the suggestion. I always say that I would rather go to hell than be in heaven with crazy Christians.

  • Raging Bee

    It’s an interesting trilogy in a lot of ways. “Inferno” was the best part, a really great allegory for the nature and consequences of all the various sins in the world, and BITING satire of the politics and society of Dante’s time; “Purgatorio” was silly, as I said before; and “Paradiso” was mostly a pathetic cave-in to all the pushback Dante was getting for the aforementioned satire. I’m told there are people he described in Hell, who were alive and rather powerful when “Inferno” was published, who then re-appear in Heaven.

  • Robin Warchol

    This “sickness” is not taught by the Catholic Church. It’s too easy to blame a big religious institution than look at bad human attitudes and behaviors of the grandparents especially the grandmother. Every religion has it’s saints and sinners. By the author’s own admission, she didn’t have much contact with these grandparents growing up. By the author’s own admission, she stopped going to the Catholic Church after her confirmation. I also think that it didn’t matter what the priest would have said at this funeral, she would not have come back, even if the priest said the nicest things at this funeral. But it’s all to convenient to take the stupid things this priest has reportedly said and use it to justify what already has taken place, which is the author already left the Catholic Church and religion. It looks like most all of her articles on this blog are about the big bad Catholic Church. If someone has left, why bother, why care, why go back and beat a dead horse (to the author)? It’s too easy to take bad human experience and then blaster that or use that to make straw men to knock down on why you left.

  • Cubist

    Hi there! I don’t think you answered the last time I asked, so here it is agasin:

    How many raped children shall the RCC be excused for the ≈50K homeless people it’s helping?

  • guadalupelavaca

    Is that what you think? That the Catholic Church only helps 50k people? You dont read much do you. They help the homeless in every city and the poor all over the world. They run hundreds of hospitals and hundreds of universities.

  • Brianna LaPoint

    I am grateful that as devout as my mother was, neither me nor my cousin finished Confirmation classes. In the eyes of the Catholic church, we are not Catholic, depending on which Catholic you ask. My aunt says no. But it no longer matters to me, I was raised into both Catholicism and Protestantism, and i detest both with equal impunity.

  • Brianna LaPoint

    To the OP, what else is damaging is the belief that when youre baptized youre catholic for life. I know that is about power and control. But its brainwashing and abuse at its finest. Just because parents chose to force their kids into being Catholic, does not mean they choose it for themselves.

  • Brianna LaPoint

    I intentionally did not go to my mothers funeral service until closer to the end of it, knowing full well that it was a chance for a priest to evangelize to people paying their respects.

  • Raging Bee

    It’s too easy to blame a big religious institution than look at bad human attitudes and behaviors…

    It’s even easier when the big religious institution is ruled by humans with bad attitudes, using their doctrine and organizational power to justify and enable bad behaviors.

    I also think that it didn’t matter what the priest would have said at
    this funeral, she would not have come back, even if the priest said the
    nicest things at this funeral.

    On what actual knowledge do you base that “thinking?”

    Every religion has it’s saints and sinners.

    Yes, and religious thinking, and the closed, oligarchic, self-serving nature of religious institutions, makes it virtually impossible for us to separate the two and get the latter out of power.

    But it’s all to convenient to take the stupid things this priest has
    reportedly said and use it to justify what already has taken place…

    Yeah, it’s real easy to judge a church by the words and actions of its officials. If the officials don’t like it, maybe they should have behaved better when we were paying attention to them.

    It looks like most all of her articles on this blog are about the big
    bad Catholic Church. If someone has left, why bother, why care, why go
    back and beat a dead horse (to the author)?

    Oh yes, all the standard excuses for discounting all criticism of your religion. Outsiders aren’t allowed to criticize the church, and insiders who criticize it should just leave, ergo NOBODY’S criticism of the church can ever be treated as valid. Stop whining and dodging, grow up, and face reality: your church is nowhere near as wonderful as you’re pretending it is.

  • Lisa

    Much of this work is actually funded by the state. Thus the Catholics got out of the adoption business because the state wouldn’t fund their discrimination against gays. St. Jude’s aside, most Catholic run hospitals will bankrupt you just as quickly as any secular hospital well. In fact, here in Sacramento, prior to Obamacare, The Sacramento Bee did a series of articles on health care, and Mercy hospitals were quicker to leave people homeless and financially ruined than any of the secular hospitals.

  • Lark62

    The buzz feed article on the Burlington orphanage linked above will turn your stomach.

    This was reported on once before, pre Boston Spotlight, and nothing happened.

    Today, law enforcement in Vermont announced an investigation, but probably far too late for justice for the murdered children.

  • Lark62

    Decent people pay attention to the catholic church because someone has to stand up for the children they murder, abuse and rape.

  • Lark62

    Your dad deserves a medal.

  • Lark62

    It’s all about money. The care selling an imaginary afterlife for cold, hard cash.

  • Lark62

    How do you know “it’s not normal”?

    On what possible basis do you conclude the average priest is anything but heartless?

    McArdle in Australia confessed 1500 assaults on children to 30 priests over 25 years. Not one of them protected one child.

  • Lark62

    Pull you head out of the sand, or wherever you have it lodged. Abuse is pervasive and systemic. And when told of abuse, priests close ranks.

  • Shaun G. Lynch

    “What possible basis?” How about personally knowing literally dozens of priests over the span of several decades, most of whom are compassionate, empathetic people (there have been a couple of exceptions), and not a single one of whom, to my knowledge, has EVER been accused of any kind of sexual abuse.

    In every single case of abuse accusations at the diocesan level, without a single exception, the number of priests accused has ALWAYS been a small proportion of the total number.

    Again, I am NOT saying that abuse doesn’t happen, nor am I saying that the Church has, in many if not most cases, handled the accusations appropriately.

    (And, for the record, sexual abuse by priests isn’t even the subject of this blog post and this discussion.)

  • Deborah A

    Of course, my dad had to get married in the church, my mother wouldn’t have had it any other way. But when they had to go to counseling before the marriage, the priest started talking about how many children they should have. My father told him: ‘I know how many I can support, how many of them are you going to support?’ Priests didn’t like him much,

  • Lark62

    The priests named in the PA report were adored by their congregations, and hadn’t been publicly accused of abuse – because all accusations are secret.

    And you haven’t addressed tge issue of protecting bad priests. Because there is no defense.

  • KP2

    Shaun, I agree with you that the behavior of the priest described by the author was very unusual. I also understand how the author would want to walk away from the church after such an experience. However, to lump all priests into the same category because of the bad behavior of one, or a few, is unfair and narrow minded, much like the original priest who shamed the family and accused them of “breaking grandpa’s heart” by not going to church.

    It is this type of thinking that is damaging to society as a whole. Whether it is lumping all priests together or lumping all immigrants together (calling for them all to be sent home because one illegal immigrant committed a crime)…it is the same sort of thinking.

    I choose to let each person’s voice and actions speak for themselves. There are priests who are kind and compassionate, understanding and open to questions; and there are arrogant and judgmental priests (the same goes for pastors in other denominations as well). I have met good, kind, productive, hard working, tax paying immigrants; and, immigrants who are here to game the system. Give each individual a chance to show who they are.

    I am sad for the author that he has allowed the horrible behavior of one man to completely jade his opinion of all other Catholic priests. I hope he doesn’t operate like that in all aspects of his life and experiences. (Same goes for the “predator” implication.)

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  • Cubist

    > Is that what you think? That the Catholic Church only helps 50k people?

    No, that is not what I think. What I think is that the RCC, in addition to helping those ≈50K homeless people you mentioned, has also aided and abetted that segment of their employees—I mean “clergymen”—who have raped an untold number of little children. And I think that the more you double down on but helping homeless people!1!@! without even acknowledging the evil that the RCC has done and is still doing, the more you make it appear as if you cannot acknowledge the evil that the RCC has done and is still doing.

    One more time: How many raped children shall the RCC be excused for the ≈50K homeless people it’s helping?

  • Karl Dubhe

    Don’t you have the power to delete tomatobubble’s comments?

    Cause, dang…

  • I keep them up for people to see and ridicule 🙂

  • Chris R

    Quit being a pussy and read the text for yourselves. All i see here is a bunch of babies/lemmings who are reactive instead of being proactive. Stop putting the priest on par or even above God. They’re humans. To blame your exodus from faith on a priest who wronged you is a clear sign of immaturity and laziness.

  • MuttsRule

    My grandmother had her first husband cremated after he’d died in a tractor accident. (This would have been in the 1920s.) The priest denounced her from the pulpit as “burning her husband like a dog.” That was her last time in a Catholic church.

  • Okay, so, WithoutACrystalBall and Lark62 here have been wounded by the church they once attended, and now the tone you’ve taken on is as a person fending off attackers rather than talking to people who have received abuse from your organisation.

    It’s unsightly.