By John W. Lillpop
Cardinal Roger Mahony has been soundly rebuked for mishandling cases involving sexual molestation of children by Catholic priests. His role in covering-up potential criminal behavior is nothing short of scandalous, and has caused him to be stripped of diocesan duties.
In and of itself, the Mahony cover-up is a devastating exposure of the apparent lack of spiritual enlightenment in some quarters of the Catholic Church.
Even worse, however, is the despicable attempt by the “Holy Father” to claim that he is a victim who is being persecuted as was Jesus Christ!
As reported in the media:
Los Angeles' retired Cardinal Roger Mahony, who was rebuked last month for his handling of the sex-abuse crisis, suggests he was "scapegoated" in a blog post ahead of two important dates: his Saturday deposition in a lawsuit alleging that the church hierarchy protected a priest accused of molesting children and his trip to Rome to help pick the next pope.
The high-profile "prince of the church" is at the center of an outcry over several scandal-tainted cardinals being allowed to help choose who will succeed Pope Benedict XVI at next month's conclave at the Vatican.
A group called Catholics United started a petition against his attendance at the conclave. And an Italian consumer group requested Rome prosecutors open a criminal investigation into Mahony if he travels to the Vatican, the news agency ANSA reported Friday.
Improbable as that is, it underscores the outrage in some quarters that cardinals whose reputations have been battered by cover-up allegations will have an equal say in who will next lead the world's 1.3 billion Catholics.
NBC News' Vatican expert, George Weigel, said he could not recall similar calls for abstention at other conclaves, but he noted that voting is an obligation under church law and that other "less-than-admirable" figures have attended for more than a millennium.
"If people are looking for a perfect, sinless electorate to choose religious leadership, they should look somewhere else," Weigel said.”
Excuse me, but who in the hell is looking for “a perfect, sinless electorate,” Mr. Weigel?
Is it really too much to ask that Cardinals voting for a Pope to represent Jesus Christ on earth not be involved in covering up pedophilia and other sexual abuses of children?
Jesus himself warned against harming “little ones“ with this admonition, "If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea" (Matt 18:6).
It would seem that the least that the Church could do would be to deny the vote to Mahony, so as to not cheapen and ridicule the Conclave and the next Pope.
Furthermore, given the choice between not voting for Pope and being “drowned in the depth of the sea,” Mahony would seem to be undeservingly blessed if his punishment be limited to the former!