Re-evaluating the Dallas policy

Re-evaluating the Dallas policy

A joint American-Vatican commission is re-evaluating the Dallas Charter for the Protection of Kids from Perverts or whatever they called it. They had planned to look back after two years to see how it’s working out.

Not too well, in my opinion. The main problem with the policy is that it can’t deal with the underlying problem of the Scandal: bishops who covered up for or just shuffled about priests who engaged in sexual abuse or otherwise violated their vows. The charter, in only dealing with the priests who have abused, approaches only the surface of the problem. Yet no policy approved by a national bishops’ conference or even a dicastery of the Vatican can bring the necessary heat to bear on a wayward bishop. Only the Pope himself (assisted by certain dicasteries, to be sure) can deal with them.

They can re-evaluate the charter all they want, tinker with it, water it down, and so on, but it really has little do with solving the problem it’s aimed at.

  • Maybe no one really wants to solve the problem.  Maybe all they want to do is make it look as though they are solving it.

  • Even a faithful and courageous bishop must deal with the fact that a large number of men in holy orders are unsuited by their basic character to pastor God’s people and have been malformed by corrupt seminaries into perverts and heretics. 

    Only the passage of time can resolve this issue.

  • In the Feb. 2005 “Catholic Family News” Robert L. Mauro reports “New Vatican Document to Eliminate 1961 Ban on Ordaining Homosexuals.”  The article recounts John Thavis’ revelation of the 1961 document which established the ban then further states:

    In the December 17, 2004 edition of the Los Angeles Archdiocesan publication, “The Tidings” the same John Thavis revealed, in effect, that a recent Church effort to keep and enforce the 1961 Papal ban had been rejected, and that a revised Vatican draft document, due for release by early fall, 2005, would in effect allow homosexuals to be ordained as Catholic priests.

    The passage of time may be of no use at all.

  • I’d take anything you read in Catholic Family News with a grain of salt.

    And the prediction that the upcoming document will remove the ban may be a bit of a desire for a self-fulfilling prophecy.

  • Charles, the problem is NOT “courageous and faithful Bishops.”  It is, rather, Bishops who are perfidious and who lie, often, and glibly.

    We discover every week, it seems, that there are plenty of the latter and few of the former, and that the current Pope is simply unwilling to deal with the latter.

  • Well, time will certainly tell, Dom.  I was a lot more willing to view with caution things written by those on the extreme right before the scandal broke.