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EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals #350119 07/13/10 03:50 PM
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Dave in McKinney Offline OP
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One heated discussion my wife and I have is about celibacy req'd of Roman (Rite) Catholics. While there obviously a good many Priests out there, a few bad apples evil men have ripped the church apart.
My wife believes that (required) celibacy is abnormal and is a major (but not only) cause of all the abuse scandals. And then there's the whole "you shall know them by the fruit they bear..."
So obviously the EO & EC feels that it is a tradgedy and I am sure this has been discussed before... but in general how do the EC & EO view these scandals. BTW, not looking for polemics or finger-pointing but rather some food-for-thought. My wife comes from a Protestant background and so forced-celibacy is completely foreign to her.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: Dave in McKinney] #350128 07/13/10 05:39 PM
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sielos ilgesys Offline
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Enforced celibacy of the clergy is foreign to many other people as well, including many priests bound by it. I think it'd be better to back away from this requirement, which has directly or indirectly given rise to a lot of unappetizing situations, about which the less said, the better.


Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: sielos ilgesys] #350137 07/13/10 09:53 PM
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StuartK Offline
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A married clergy is no guarantee of sexual propriety--witness the manifold scandals affecting the various Protestant denominations, not to mention the occasional disgrace within the ranks of the secular Orthodox clergy.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: StuartK] #350139 07/13/10 10:00 PM
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sielos ilgesys Offline
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I'm kinda naive but not to the point of fantasizing that married clergy would be some kinda panacea for the irregularities you allude to.

One of the most tragic/notorious cases of sexual abuse by a priest involved a Greek Orthodox priest here in Dallas.

I remain convinced, however, that mandating celibacy is barking up the wrong tree and lays the groundwork for a certain type of destructive clericalism. yecch.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: sielos ilgesys] #350141 07/13/10 10:20 PM
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Dave in McKinney Offline OP
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Originally Posted by sielos ilgesys

I remain convinced, however, that mandating celibacy is barking up the wrong tree and lays the groundwork for a certain type of destructive clericalism. yecch.


Could you eleaborate, i.e. in what way? (I am curious because my wife has her thoughts on this topic.)

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: sielos ilgesys] #350142 07/13/10 10:22 PM
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Dave in McKinney Offline OP
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Originally Posted by sielos ilgesys
I'm kinda naive but not to the point of fantasizing that married clergy would be some kinda panacea for the irregularities you allude to.


I agree... but I am interested in how these abuse scandals are perceived in the Eastern Churches.

Recently a homosexual RC priest has been reported as stealing hundred of thousands of dollars to pay for his gay lovers... I would think that this would be very rare if the clergy were married.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: Dave in McKinney] #350146 07/13/10 11:02 PM
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aramis Offline
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The rates of sexual abuse by clergy of the Catholic Church are WELL below those of the public schools. The Orthodox rates are almost identical to the Catholic. The nature of the abuse is pretty much the same, too, between the two.

When one looks at other denominations, however, Catholics and Orthodox suddenly look a whole lot better; the Southern Baptist Conference has more than 5x the rate that the Catholics do.


Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: aramis] #350149 07/13/10 11:14 PM
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Erie Byz Offline
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Sexual abuse covers all sorts of clerics, married or not. Last Sunday the Episcopal Bishop of the Northwest PA Diocese announced that a previous bishop, who is now deceased, committed abuse against 4 girls during his tenure as bishop during the 70's and 80's (this was known long before announced) and more have begun to surface.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: Dave in McKinney] #350151 07/13/10 11:24 PM
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sielos ilgesys Offline
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Methinks clericalism arises when clergy begin to believe that they are somehow better than other people & are thus not subject to the societal rules which govern everyone else. They may believe this very subtly, and may not even be consciously aware of it. It becomes part of the air they breathe.

With regard to sexuality, the celibate cleric may think, "I don't engage in deliberate orgasms and so that makes me morally superior the rest of men, who can't control themselves". This way of thinking arises from the notion that there is something inherently dirty or sordid about sexual pleasure.

Re: EO & EC view of RC's Abuse/Scandals [Re: Dave in McKinney] #350152 07/13/10 11:49 PM
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sielos ilgesys Offline
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Thank God, these kind of behaviors are still rare. We would do well to dread the day when the media stops reporting on the crimes and imprudence of some of our clergy because it is no longer surprising but rather something to be expected.

That they in fact are rare makes them newsworthy.


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