I never know whether to ignore these stories or report them. Do we really need to know that yet more of our shepherds has been a cause of scandal? Is it simply detraction?
I had been intending to ignore these two, but a reader brought my attention to them, and given that these stories do get widely reported anyway (and have generally been the result of public admissions to the media), perhaps we do need to be aware of the facts so we can deal with the issue when it comes up in conversations with non-catholics (or nominal catholics). And we need to know what we may be up against! So herewith two more items for the shame file.
Remember the bishop who ran for the Presidency, was elected, and was subsequently laicized by the Pope? Well, now it turns out that his disobedience was not just on running for political office, but also against his vow of celibacy. President Lugo has admitted paternity of a child by a girl who he met and seduced while preparing her for confirmation classes when she was aged 16.
And today's gem, Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte of Montreal, Canada has said that while he is against abortion "I can understand that in certain cases, there is almost no other choice than to practice it."
In an interview with Le Devoir, Lifesite News reports that the Cardinal contradicted the teachings of Catholic Church on abortion and condoms.
"Personally, I am against murder," Cardinal Turcotte was quoted as saying, "but can understand that sometimes, when someone is being attacked, they need to kill someone in self-defense. I am against abortion, but I can understand that in certain cases, there is no other choice than to practice it."
On condoms, he said it would be "ridiculous" to suggest that Pope Benedict said condoms should not be used.
"Essentially, the pope said that it took two things to fight this disease, the means, but also a change of mentality. He pronounced this sentence to show that condoms were not in and of themselves the perfect solution; we took his words out of context and all this was largely amplified," said Cardinal Turcotte.
"As if the pope had said that condoms should not be used. This is ridiculous! When someone has AIDS, it is his or her responsibility to protect the people with whom he or she has intercourse."
Please pray for these bishops in particular, and all bishops, that they might lead their flocks both by example and in the rectitude of their teaching...