Another Catholic Priest Allegedly Misbehaves With Children, Acts Like A Ratigan

Digby has the story:

A Catholic bishop in Kansas City must stand trial on charges that he failed to report a priest found with pornographic pictures of young girls on his Church computer to police, a judge said on Thursday.

Bishop Robert Finn, head of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, faces one misdemeanor charge that he failed to tell authorities that Church officials had found disturbing pictures of unclothed little girls that appeared to have been taken by a popular local priest, Father Patrick Ratigan.

What an unfortunate name for a priest, but if he’s going to behave like a rat, again and again…

The Church’s reaction, from a Cardinal Dolan, contains an even more unfortunate turn of phrase. From Digby’s article again:

“I think we bishops have been very contrite in admitting that the church did not handle this well at all in the past,” he said. “But we bristle sometimes in that the church doesn’t get the credit, now being in the vanguard of reform. It does bother us that the church continues to be a whipping boy.

(Bolds mine.) Maybe that wouldn’t happen if the Church didn’t have so many priests who are “in the vanguard of” whipping boys, stripping girls, etc. Abuse of children is ugly, no matter who does it. There should be no “get out of jail free” card for clergy: they should be prosecuted, and anyone who covers up such abuse, yes, even a bishop, should also be prosecuted.

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  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday April 6, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    (christian) orthodox priests are not so different: especially when it comes to little boys!

    • Steve  On Friday April 6, 2012 at 3:36 pm

      Enfant, I am sorry to hear that. It’s not that it never happens in other Christian denominations here (I have even heard of one Eastern Orthodox priest in America who was charged), but that the overwhelming number of cases involving Catholic priests, whose misbehavior is covered up by other Catholic officials, leads one to think of such priests as potential child abusers. If I had a son (which I don’t), I would not want him to be a Catholic altar-boy. Abuse by an adult is simply a terrible introduction to what one hopes will be a child’s healthy sexuality later in life.

  • MandT  On Friday April 6, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    Let the SOB bristle all he wants. The idea that the pedophile Church is the victim is outrageous by any standard of moral integrity.

    • Steve  On Friday April 6, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      MandT, the Church has changed little in its outlook from the era, centuries ago, in which it ran everything throughout Europe. The Conference of Catholic Bishops in the US pursues blatantly political goals with a vengeance, unapologetically and with no concern for anybody else’s religious sensitivities. And with 6 Catholic members out of 9 on the Supreme Court, they can probably get away with almost anything.

  • MandT  On Friday April 6, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    And at least three of those Supreme’s are members of Opus Dei—a fascist Catholic lobby protected by the Pope. Don’t bother reading the Wikipedia account of them—it has been scrubbed of the organization’s true history. It’s founder was a Nazi sympathizer and confessor the Spain’s fascist Dictator.

    • Steve  On Sunday April 8, 2012 at 12:01 am

      MandT, I know that nothing about Opus Dei is funny, but every time I hear the name, I can’t help thinking of the line out of PDQ Bach’s (i.e., Peter Schickele’s) Missa Hilarius: “Agnes and her sister Doris De…i / Kemosabe, watchum what you sa…y / Lord, have mercy on my so…..lo.”

      • MandT  On Sunday April 8, 2012 at 2:58 pm

        LOL! We are having Agnus Dei for Easter dinner today.

  • Shaun Downey  On Sunday April 8, 2012 at 7:43 am

    To get a feel for what Opus Dei is about think of them as Opus Nazi. They are a bunch of evil scumbags.

    As for Dolan he should shut the fuck up and work harder to erase the massive stain on the church if not a quiet room, a bottle of whiskey (no point wasting good malt on the shit stain)and a revolver will suffice

    • Steve  On Sunday April 8, 2012 at 9:04 am

      Shaun, as little as I like to use popular fiction as a source of information, I presume the depiction of Opus Dei in Brown’s The Da Vinci Code is not far off.

      Dolan is just doing what he was hired to do. If he didn’t do it, he might lose his privileged position, Dog forbid!

      Part of me wishes I could be more accepting of Catholicism; I don’t doubt there are many fine people who are Catholic. But the Church itself keeps putting its oar in (um, maybe that’s a bad choice of phrase) where it is neither welcome nor legal. As I said, we must grant no free pass to clergy for their illegal and frankly deplorable acts.

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