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Meditation 981
The Greater Sin Revisited

by: JT

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Ten years ago I wrote on Archbishop* George Pell's claim that abortion is a worse moral scandal than priests sexually abusing young people.

Perhaps, in light of the Vatican's continued smoke and mirrors inaction on child abuse and, more importantly, its continued inaction on punishing those who covered up child abuse, we might look at what else besides abortion the Catholic Church regards as a worse moral scandal than priests abusing children.

Bishop Fernando Bargallo of the Argentine diocese of Merlo-Moreno was forced to hand in his resignation this week, less than a month after photographs emerged showing him frolicking and embracing a woman at a luxury resort in Mexico. He admitted to an affair with her.

Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala of the California diocese of Los Angeles was forced to hand in his resignation in January this year, less than a month after he admitted to fathering two children in a relationship with a woman.

This month the Vatican fired the two founders of an Italian Catholic Missionary organization, the Villaregia Missionary Community, shortly after it found out that Luigi Prandin had several sexual relationships with female members of the order, and that Maria Luigia Corona, the other founder, knew of these relationships and covered them up.

So what we can learn from these Vatican decisions (and such decisions are all made ultimately by the Pope) is that if a priest is caught breaking his vows of celibacy with a consenting woman, prompt action is taken to punish the offender. If someone covers-up a priest breaking his vows of celibacy with a consenting woman, prompt action is taken to punish the offender.

And if a priest is caught breaking his vows of celibacy with a non-consenting child? Cover-up is the order of the day. And those who cover up are rewarded with promotions.

By its actions and by its inaction, the Catholic Church under Pope Benedict XVI clearly has a clear policy that sex with a consenting woman is a much greater sin than sex with a non-consenting child.

Note:

* A year after his minimization of the crime of child abuse, Pell was rewarded by being promoted to Cardinal.