The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench


“Now there is a loss of trust in the church…”

posted by jmcgee

The New York Times this morning printed an essay from German author Peter Schneider, who raised some pointed questions about the Church in the pope’s homeland:

23opedimg-articleLarge.jpgPope Benedict should also recognize how precarious the Catholic Church is in Germany. Like Americans, Germans have already had to cope with a general loss of trust in public institutions. First there were the bankers, with their insane bets and bonuses. Then the politicians, who couldn’t stop the bankers. Now there is a loss of trust in the church.

But unlike in America, religion in Germany is already weak. In the former Communist east, only 2 percent of the population go to church on Sunday; in the western states, the number is 8 percent. Some dwindling congregations have had to sell their church buildings.

So far the church is benefiting from the breadth of sexual abuse scandals. Victims are also coming forward from Protestant institutions, from secular boarding schools and elite academies, from children’s homes. Many critics argue that any closed institution where male educators have charge of male children runs the risk of sexual abuse.

Conservative Catholic bishops go further, saying that the sexual abuse committed by their priests is a general social problem, traceable not to the church but to the sexualization of society, to the zeitgeist, to the sins of the 1968 generation. The truth, they suggest, was that the evil had struck in all sectors of society. Others have warned of the dangers of a witch hunt, and some have even highlighted a new form of political correctness.

But the figures available so far show that the problem is especially severe in the Catholic Church. Alois Glück, president of the Central Committee of German Catholics, has urged consideration of the “church-specific conditions that favor sexual abuse,” which many have taken as a call for the church to reconsider the matter of its priests’ celibacy.

This is yet another difference between the Irish and American scandals and our own. Ireland and America are deeply religious places; if priestly celibacy is not as well understood there as it once was, it is nevertheless respected.

Germany is not only a secular country, but a sexually liberated one as well. Many Germans find the Vatican’s demand of priestly celibacy completely alien, and we recognize it as a historical, rather than holy, tradition, going back to a decree by Pope Benedict VIII in 1022. Indeed, in a poll conducted last week, 87 percent of Germans said that celibacy is no longer appropriate.

It’s not hard, then, for us to draw the conclusion — fair or not — that the church’s problems are rooted in celibacy. Much more so than in the United States, the German debate is about the fundamental structure of the Catholic church: Must a person be chaste to exercise the office of a priest? Does this condition not attract sexually disturbed and pedophiliac men, who count on cover and understanding in the bosom of the church?

How Benedict handles the issue in the coming weeks will determine not only how well the German church endures, but whether it can survive in its current form at all. None of the victims has yet sought reparations, but sooner or later, the church will have to offer compensation. The American church has paid $2 billion to abuse victims since 1992; can the German church afford the same?

Read the whole thing right here.



Advertisement
Comments read comments(30)
post a comment
Franklin Jennings

posted March 23, 2010 at 9:42 am


Well, its a shame whoever wrote that article didn’t have an editor worth a darn.
He interchanges celibacy and chastity so many times I cant tell if ‘Germans’ believe marriage would reduce such things, or just snogging?



report abuse
 

Ruth Ann

posted March 23, 2010 at 10:52 am


Personally I would have no qualms about offering priests the option to marry. This is the practice in at least some Eastern rite Catholic churches.
However, when I hear a call to end priestly celibacy because of pedophilia, it makes no sense. There are many more pedophiles outside the priesthood, and lots of them are married. So why is a married priesthood tauted at “the answer?”



report abuse
 

pagansister

posted March 23, 2010 at 12:11 pm


IMO celibacy isn’t the reason for the abuse of the children. Men who are distrubed are the reason for it. However, it makes no sense to me that a priest has to pledge to be single to be a priest…thus supposedly celibate. Married to the church, no matter how much it has been explained, doesn’t make sense to me.
Apparently the German church is on the rocks anyhow, so whether it continues in that country might depend on how the Pope handles the situtation in his homeland. Haven’t been impressed so far with his handling of the Irish situation.



report abuse
 

Your Name

posted March 23, 2010 at 1:14 pm


Sorry, Deacon, but the trust will not be regained unless and until the official Vatican policy to NOT report the abusers to the police is removed.
If you had children yourself, maybe you’d understand the distrust.



report abuse
 

Your Name

posted March 23, 2010 at 1:15 pm


“It’s not hard, then, for us to draw the conclusion — fair or not — that the church’s problems are rooted in celibacy.”
Bullcrap! It’s “rooted” in Crimens Solicitationis.



report abuse
 

Armiger Jagoe

posted March 23, 2010 at 3:10 pm


Germany and Ireland are facing what we endured during the past decade. But the Church will recover. Let’s pray for the right decisions and action from the top.
Armiger Jagoe, editor of The Joyful Catholic
http:thejoyfulcatholic.wordpress.com/



report abuse
 

kenneth

posted March 23, 2010 at 3:40 pm


A married priesthood is not “the answer” to the abuse problem, but it is very likely part of the answer. Simply allowing priests to marry would not at all end the problem by itself. It would, however, disrupt a subculture of damaged men who are recruited to seminaries and then establish their own self-sustaining societies within the church. It’s a simple numbers game. You will never find enough well men who are doing celibacy for the right reasons to fill the needs of the church.



report abuse
 

Danny

posted March 23, 2010 at 3:45 pm


I do not understand the connection between celibacy and pedophilia. It does not make any sense whatsoever to assume that if a man cannot have consensual intercourse with a woman than he will feel that his only recourse is to rape a child. Celibacy does not equal pedophilia.
Also, a very relevant point is that, in the scandals in the U.S., the vast majority of the victims of abuse were post-pubescent minors, i.e, the problem is NOT pedophilia but, rather, homosexuality.



report abuse
 

Wondering

posted March 23, 2010 at 3:47 pm


Kenneth so are you saying all priests are “damaged men”? Please back up your statement with facts.



report abuse
 

wineinthewater

posted March 23, 2010 at 3:48 pm


Ruth Ann,
The Eastern Churches do not allow priests to marry. The Church has never allowed priests to marry. The practice in the East and in the ancient Church when we had a married clergy was to allow married men to be ordained as priests. There is a significant difference.
In general,
I don’t see how a married clergy can even be seen as part of the solution, much less the whole solution. The #1 abusers of children are fathers .. oh, if only we would allow fathers to marry. The next is teachers .. oh, if only we allowed teachers to marry. Also up there are farmers and doctors .. oh, if only we allowed them to marry. In fact, not only do clergy fall pretty low on the likelihood of abuser statistics, celibate clergy fall below married clergy. So based on pure statistics, broadening the use of married clergy in the Catholic Church is more likely to actually make the problem worse.



report abuse
 

Abe

posted March 23, 2010 at 4:19 pm


@Danny–Seriously? What part of minor do you not get? The raping of minors in the Church isn’t a facet of homosexuality, it’s a facet of a culture where people with serious mental/social troubles have been able to thrive in situations where 1) they have authority over their victim pool and 2) they can be relatively confident that their superiors won’t do the right thing.



report abuse
 

Tina

posted March 23, 2010 at 4:37 pm


Your name
You keep bringing up this official document, Crimens Solicitationis. Have you read the document in Latin? I believe the secrecy is a mis-translation according to various people such as Fr. Z and John Allen. Additionally, you don’t want the victims to have confidentiality? You want their names plastered all over the front pages? What about the Confessional? Do we break the seal of Confessional? What about protecting the innocently accused?
In Ireland, the police were complicent with the cover-up. What about then? What if there are no police to report it too?



report abuse
 

Maria

posted March 23, 2010 at 4:47 pm


Celibacy as the problem? Nope. The crisis is inextricably linked to priests who have lost their Faith. The problem is “priestless priests”.



report abuse
 

Eka

posted March 23, 2010 at 5:50 pm


Wow…that is an terribly flawed article! Will the NYTimes and similar publications not allow even one credible journalist to cover this story?



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 23, 2010 at 6:16 pm


A celibate priesthood is a part of how the sex abuse scandal occurred.
When you create an all-male, all-celibate, above-the-law community that has unquestioned, unsupervised access to hundreds and hundreds of children, who do think will be the first to join up?
When I was growing up Catholic, it was unspoken fact that the gay sons would become priests, including those who were attracted to children and teens, and those who were attracted to female children and teens, as well.
Add to that community an atmosphere of arrogance, pride and secrecy, and you get the recipe for the sex abuse scandal.
Would eliminating the celibacy requirement end any and all possibility that a pedophile could become a priest, even today?
No.
But what it would do is end the boys’ club environment. Women — the wives of priests and the mothers of their children — would be a part of every priests’ life, whether he himself was married or not. Priests themselves would have children. Parents, especially mothers, tend to have a sixth sense about these things. Priests themselves would have children of their own to protect.
Also, Christ Himself established a priesthood that included married men. Who are we to decide He didn’t know what He was doing?



report abuse
 

Eka

posted March 23, 2010 at 9:04 pm


Nora,
Good Lord!
“it was unspoken fact that the gay sons would become priests, including those who were attracted to children and teens, and those who were attracted to female children and teens, as well.”
Does that mean that you also knew about these predators but failed to report them?!



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 23, 2010 at 9:39 pm


No — perhaps I can put that more clearly — when I was growing up Catholic (Irish, 1960s), it was sort of an unspoken given that homosexual boys would become priests, which would then — unbeknownst to anyone until they acted on it — include those who were attracted to children.
The point I’m trying to make and you’re trying rather disingenuously to deflect, is that the Church created the perfect safe haven for sexual predators and that the human institution of a celibate priesthood is one of the factors leading to it’s creation.
I don’t think being gay makes anyone more likely to be a sexual predator — the highest incidence of child sexual abuse is among male heterosexuals, and their victims are more often than not their relatives or neighbors.
My point was to bring up the fact that the priesthood was looked on as a place for boys who weren’t mainstream, heterosexual boys to be safely stashed — not just to be hidden, but to be sort of normalized, if you will. Remember, back then, being gay was considered being sexually deviant, being abnormal. Today, it’s not socially unacceptable to be openly gay, so the all-celibate priesthood isn’t really that big a draw for normal gay guys. Even predators aren’t likely to look to the priesthood for safe haven these days because of the scrutiny.
BTW — the John Jay study found that while there was a slightly higher rate than in the general population of sexual predators among the priesthood, that rate matched the same, slightly higher rate found among groups such as coaches, teachers, scout leaders — groups where access to children was part and parcel of the job description.
I know I’m not putting this very well, but the point is that the celibate priesthood created by the human institution that is the Church created the perfect lifestyle for child abusers, and particularly gay child abusers.
Anyways, to paint this as me being fully aware of particular child abusers and not telling is beyond ridiculous, so don’t even go there.



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 23, 2010 at 9:44 pm


BTW, I do think there were probably some parents who knew their sons might have had a sexual attraction to children and who happily passed them on to the priesthood — none specifically, but knowing the older generation I grew up around, and their particular culture, I’d say it’s a safe guess.
Again, this all points to the main point — an all-male, unmarried, closed, above-the-law, unsupervised community in which easy access to children is part of the job description is bound to attract a higher than usual number of sexual predators, probably more homosexually oriented predators than heterosexual oriented predators, and to keep denying this is to set yourselves up for more abusers among you.



report abuse
 

PsychoDad

posted March 23, 2010 at 10:37 pm


Regardless, it is still true that celibacy in the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church is a matter of discipline and not dogma. There are a number of Latin priests who actually are married, by virtue of their conversion while holding valid Holy Orders. ALL Eastern Rite Catholic priests are allowed marriage: Maronite, Melkite, Greek Catholic, the various Russian and Ukrainian eparchs, all those under Byzantine rather than Latin Rite. However, again due only to disciplinary considerations, Eastern Rite priests in Western territory generally are not allowed to marry: very much the exception and not the rule. The rule is the same for the Orthodox Churches. Only those priests who voluntarily take the monastic vows remain unmarried.
Therefore, there is nothing particularly virtuous or holy about a celibate priesthood. And, need it be said, how many of these sex scandals have come out of Byzantine Churches, Catholic or Orthodox?
Possibly, part of the problem may derive from recruitment strategy — a friend of mine told me that long ago, in the 50s thru the ’70s maybe, it was customary to tell young men that if they found they weren’t terribly interested in girls, it could be a sign they had a calling to the priesthood. Well, blame naivity, but it seems like it was a lot more a sign of something else: as someone notes up there, these scandals are almost exclusively homosexually oriented. Make of it what you will, but IMHO it’s long past time for the Latin Rite to rejoin the rest of the Apostolic Churches in allowing “choice” in marriage.



report abuse
 

Eka

posted March 23, 2010 at 11:14 pm


Nora,
I was intentionally being ridiculous because I thought that your blanket statement about the priesthood being a well known dumping ground for sexually deviant men was outrageous and uninformed.
We can discuss celibacy without making bigoted and hurtful statements about a entire group. I apologise if my sarcasm was so obtuse.



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 23, 2010 at 11:41 pm


In some circles it was very much a suggested career trajectory, as PsychoDad touches on as well. Dumping ground is a strong term, but that’s kind of exactly the mindset behind the practice.
Besides, I hardly stated the ONLY men attracted to the priesthood were homosexual pedophiles.
It’s hardly a bigoted and hurtful statement — it’s just the way things were.



report abuse
 

Franklin Jennings

posted March 24, 2010 at 7:32 am


Yeah, Nora’s parents, and her parents friends, were happy to callously pawn their pervert kids off on the Catholic world.
What on earth could be bigotted or hurtful about that? That’s just the way it was.



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 24, 2010 at 10:01 am


Unfortunately, Franklin’s parents pawned him off on the rest of us…
But since you and Eka insist on dragging this down to the crudest sort of expression, yes, people of my parents’ and my grandparents’ generations did indeed “pawn off” their “pervert kids” on the Church.
And the Church was happy to have them at the time. So what does that make the Church?
You and Eka and folks like you who choose to remain blind to the problems that gave rise to the sex abuse scandal are only insuring it will happen again.
You can grow up and discuss like an adult, or you can deny and snark and be sarcastic and cruel and take cheap shots and the world will see one more factor leading to the problem: arrogance.
Neither of you are showing any kind of Christian charity or willingness to discuss like adults, so go ahead and snipe and snark away. No one’s listening anymore. Except God. I’m sure He’s impressed.



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 24, 2010 at 10:12 am


BTW, pointing out that there was an attitude that the priesthood was considered, at one point in time and in some cultures, to be a place one could steer homosexual boys, is not bigoted or hurtful any more than pointing out that in certain cultures at certain times, wealthy families often promised the Church a son and/or a daughter or two, or that the priesthood and convents were places where sons and daughters with no prospects would go.
However, claiming that my parents personally and their friends personally “callously pawned off their pervert kids on the Catholic world” is actually a direct insult — my parents and their friends didn’t have any pervert kids.
But thank you for showing me what the Catholic version of Christian charity is, Franklin. Thank you for showing me the face of Chrsit. I can always count on a Catholic to remind me of the myriad ways Catholics have screwed up Christ’s message over the centuries.
The vibe I get from you is maybe someone should be looking into YOUR extracurricular activities.



report abuse
 

cathyf

posted March 24, 2010 at 11:26 pm


Also, a very relevant point is that, in the scandals in the U.S., the vast majority of the victims of abuse were post-pubescent minors, i.e, the problem is NOT pedophilia but, rather, homosexuality.
Not true. The plurality of victims (over 40%) were 5th-8th grade boys. The next largest group (about 35%) were high-school aged boys. The next group was high-school girls, and then 5th-8th grade girls. (girls together made up about 20% of the victims.) Then (think “lies, damn lies and statistics”) the way that you get to “the slight majority being post-pubescent minors” is that you add the girls to the high-school aged boys. (Note that the majority of 5th-8th grade girls have reached puberty, while only a minority of boys have, and a significant minority of freshman and even sophomore boys have not.)
The experts claim that a sexual attraction to boys who are slightly before or right at puberty is a heterosexual perversion not a homosexual one. The argument is that these boys more closely resemble adult women than adult men. (To put it more colorfully, supermodels look like pubescent boys; and a certain class of loser-pervert attracted to supermodels will settle for pubescent boys because they have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting an actual adult woman to have anything to do with them.) Another variety is the heterosexual misogynist — who is revulsed by women, but also sexually attracted to women and not men. Again, boy sopranos and altos are a compromise position for someone who doesn’t like real sopranos and altos. (Think Plato’s Symposium.)
While you can certainly argue that if the victim and perpetrator both have a Y-chromosomes that it’s homosexuality, that’s not an uncontroversial position. And the puberty split is not “vast” — it’s more like 55-45. And of the definitely post-pubescent class of victims, the male-female split is more like 65-35 — definitely far from a strictly homosexual problem.



report abuse
 

Kate

posted March 25, 2010 at 10:26 am


When the scandals first broke publicly in a big way in the Northeast, starting with James Porter, I lived where James Porter served and worked as a priest. I was on the jury duty list for his trial, like most of the county I’d wager. I defended the church then; some bad apples don’t spoil the whole barrel, sexual abuse is most prevalent in the home, the message is still valid even though the messengers are sinful, etc, etc, ad nauseum. I even served in RCIA , the church’s welcoming committee for adults wanting to become Catholic. I helped them make sense of these events, talked about the history of church and how even popes could be and were corrupt in the past. I continued to be a cheerleader, finding hope where it was scarce and trying very hard to be faithful(l) and hopeful. After all, Jesus told Peter that the gates of hell would not prevail against the church, right?
Over the years, the news has gotten grimmer and grimmer. This “US problem” is actually a worldwide one. We’re hearing about Europe now, but I’ve seen reports and read about abuses in Latin America, Asia and Africa too. Oh, and Australia too. What breaks my heart about it is the nearly uniform response of those in charge (bishops on up). Their first concern was for the image and reputation of the church, protecting themselves and church assets from legal action, the accused and maybe, just maybe some care or thought for the victims. It’s come out now that our current pope acted just like the others he’s supposed to now police, apologize for, and correct. I’m sure we’d probably find like evidence for his predecessors, including John Paul II or the Great as those who seek his canonization call him. Our leaders have feet of clay, which should not be a surprise to us because we all do.
The latest news about a priest who molested deaf children in Wisconsin just pushed me over the limit. Not because the victims were deaf, although I have a semiverbal son with autism for whom I fear because he can’t tell me if someone hurts him. He doesn’t have the language or context for such a thing. It was the response of both Weakland and the pope, in his capacity of heading the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. That response and show of compassion for the accused without regard for those he victimized was how it’s been done for years, decades, and more. I don’t think we will ever truly know just how deep this all goes. I can appreciate that the new policies in place will help reduce the prevalence and incidence of such abuses going forward and seems to have shown that already (you’ve already posted about that here), but we have a much more serious issue now.
I’ve seen tons of hand wringing and anger about the latest with healthcare reform and abortion since the House vote on Sunday. The bishops’ views have been well publicized, analyzed and discussed here and elsewhere. I posit that part of the bishops’ failure to have people take their message and view seriously is related to how they’ve conducted themselves with respect to the sexual abuse of minors church wide. Personal holiness matters I think. It seems to me that it’s rich for these folks to wage war on behalf of the unborn, when they cannot even honor the human rights and dignity of the children in their pastoral care. No bishop, cardinal or any other church leader responsible for failing to act responsibly and appropriately on behalf of those in their care has been held accountable. Resignations are not enough. Cardinal Law has a cushy job and placement in Rome. Not Archbishop of Boston anymore? So what. That’s not being held accountable AT ALL. An Irish bishop has now resigned also. SO WHAT. He still keeps his title, perks and benes, I bet. I also bet he’ll be offered a place in Rome or at the Vatican if it seems he would have to face legal repercussions in Ireland, like they feared for Law. It’s going to take so much more now. Much, much more.
I have young children. I’ve been keeping my promises as a parent to rear them in the faith that I made on their behalf at their baptism. I want them to have the moral and conscience formation I’ve received growing up. I want them to have a framework for understanding and engaging our world through the lens of faith and knowledge of Jesus. That has all helped me become the best person I can be and still on the make at that. But, it’s getting so much harder to continue to support people who can’t see that we are the Pharisees in the story of the Man Born Blind, which is a gospel story used when you have adults preparing for baptism during the RCIA scrutinizes, one of which is held on the Fourth Sunday of Lent.
I’m finding it harder and harder to continue supporting the church. As it is, I’ve stopped donating to the diocese directly until I get my 5,000 dollars back that my bishop decided to use as a political donation because that’s not what I give money to the church for. It’s down to supporting my parish these days, even though I know that some of that contribution still gets to the diocese and Vatican. For now, I can still trust the pastor and deacon we have. But, in reality, lay people do not have any real voice or authority to make the changes the church so desperately needs to regain the confidence and trust of its members and our larger society. Is it any wonder then that the bishops can’t even be taken seriously on issues like abortion? Actions speak far louder than words, even when the words are right. Personal holiness matters. And, now we see that the problem has reached the top. I’m sure that Pope Benedict is a personally nice guy, tries to be holy, pray and do all the right things. He didn’t on the abuse scandal. He may have meant well, but the road to hell can and is all too often paved with good intentions. The harm is done. The hierarchy needs to act, acknowledge they are part of the problem, take responsibility and make reparations. They need to step aside, give back their titles, privilege, perks and benes and get back to basics – starting with penance. They need to face the legal repercussions of their actions, words, deeds and choices. It seems that the secular authorities might have to become the instruments of justice the church has failed to be themselves.
So, as a layperson, it may be best to withhold the only thing I can to make these people sit up, take notice and ACT. We hold the purse strings. It’s time to shut them and perhaps even just walk away, because clearly our church leaders take our presence in the pews as tacit support. I’m sad, angry, disheartened and fed up. Things cannot continue as they are. If we don’t act in ways we can to force the hierarchy’s hand in this, then we become part of the problem. That’s the pitfall so many defenders of the church have fallen into even in this discussion. When we’re parsing pedophilia based on age and puberty status, same sex vs. opposite sex victims, homosexuality, celibacy, and married priests instead of realizing that sexual abuse is wrong, morally repugnant and reprehensible, no matter what the age, stage or other status of the victim, we’re part of the problem. Things cannot continue as they are. I’m sick at heart and sick in spirit. What we’ve done as a church to mar Jesus message and example makes me wonder if Lent needs to be extended and celebrating Easter should be delayed until things change. Reflect on that this Good Friday.



report abuse
 

Frank

posted March 25, 2010 at 11:20 am


The Catholic laity are as much to blame as the clergy. You demand celibate priests and life-long celibacy and sexual continence from gays but you know that some sexual (or, at least, romantic) involvement is a necessary part of attaining maturity.
a
You have yourselves to blame, in part, for those priests who lack the emotional maturity of even a well-adjusted thirteen-year-old boy.



report abuse
 

Nora

posted March 25, 2010 at 11:47 am


Kate, that was beautifully put.
The gates of hell cannot, will not prevail against the church — the true church — the body of believers, the faithful.
The problem is too many Catholics put their faith in what amounts to little more than a corporate structure created by men. That church has, time and time again, failed. The gates of hell have indeed prevailed over that church.
Faith — true faith — resides in one’s heart, one’s soul. Nothing can touch that, no matter what the circumstances in which you find yourself.
The gates of hell will not prevail in the end — this Christ promises us. What we’re seeing now is a clear sign the earthbound, man-made institution Catholics have come to think of as “the church” was never anything people were supposed to place their faith in.
The institutionalized church has lost all credibility. It has failed, crumbled. We see the little man behind the curtain…the Emporer has no clothes…the fat lady has sung…it’s over.
The only thing that remains unfaltering, unfailing, is God, is His word, is the sacrifice His Son made, is the Resurrection. That never changes, never fails, will not falter, crumble or succumb to Satan.



report abuse
 

pagansister

posted March 25, 2010 at 3:50 pm


Kate, you can try the Episcopal church.



report abuse
 

Your Name

posted March 25, 2010 at 4:57 pm


“Now there is a loss of trust in the church…”
NOW???
That’s a joke, right? NOW there is a loss of trust in the church?
HOW long have these scandals been going on, discussed, exposed?
Pardon my cynicism, but BWAHAHAHAHHAAHAHAHHAHHHAAAAAA!!!!



report abuse
 

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the beliefnet.com terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to beliefnet.com and may be used by beliefnet.com in accordance with the agreements.



Previous Posts

This blog is no longer active
This blog is no longer being actively updated. Please feel free to browse the archives or: Read our most popular inspiration blog See our most popular inspirational video Take our most popular quiz

posted 10:42:40pm Dec. 12, 2010 | read full post »

One day more
A reminder: "The Deacon's Bench" is closed! Please enjoy the archives!

posted 11:26:20pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Meet Montana's married priest
Earlier this week, I posted an item about Montana getting its first married priest. Now a local TV station has hopped on the bandwagon. Take a look, below.

posted 10:29:55pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Big day in the Big Easy: 10 new deacons
Deacon Mike Talbot has the scoop: 10 men today were ordained as Permanent Deacons for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. This group of men was formally selected on the day the evacuation of New Orleans began as Hurricane Katrina approached. The immediate aftermath of the storm for this class would be

posted 6:55:42pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Gaudete! And let's break out a carol or two...
"Gesu Bambino," anyone? This is one of my favorites, and nobody does it better than these gals: Kathleen Battle and Frederica von Staade. Enjoy.

posted 1:04:10pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.