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Organized religion: the good, the bad, and the ugly. Login/Join 
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Hi Jim, my heart also feels deeply for you within your memories and the sorrow of your childhood. I pray your five siblings have overcome together with your Mom.

We share a spiritual camaraderie of love in our victory, healing and rising above in and through the graces and love of God. Thank you for sharing, since I know this was not an easy task for you. Bless you Jim. We are overcomers, having found the kingdom of God within.

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So long as little children are allowed to suffer, there is no true love in the world. Isodore Duncan.

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Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it. Helen Keller.
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Thank you to all who have expressed compassion and especially to Grace, how I appreciate your tender heart of Christ.



Smiler
 
Posts: 571 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 20 June 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Jim, let me add my voice to express sorrow for the suffering your father and family have undergone because of an abusive priest. It's really sad that such things happen.

I think you make some good points about reasons why people are drawn to Church, and why Christ provided for this. When we profess that God is love, it follows that love cannot be known outside of relationship, and what better a place to do so than in a community who believe this about God and Christ? As I noted above, Christ communicates himself to us in very distinctive ways through community and Sacrament, so the Church is far more than just a kind of accommodation to the social nature of human beings. It's actually a mode of Christ's presence on earth, which is why he desires our participation. The reign of God is not merely "within" us, it is "among" us (that's actually the preferred translation by Scripture scholars). That this is sometimes counter-symbolic is truly lamentable, for it understandably contributes to an aversion for what is supposed to be a gift.
 
Posts: 7539 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 09 August 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Phil's quote:

Jim, let me add my voice to express sorrow for the suffering your father and family have undergone because of an abusive priest. It's really sad that such things happen.
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I laid in bed earlier( it's 11:00p.m) reflecting upon my day and the spirit of love brought to me Phil's quote. Phil, this priest was not abusive, he was much more, he committed a heinous crime against a child, an altar boy. The consequences of this evil priest affected this boy who grew into a man, married and fathered six children. Jim's father was a closet bi-sexual frequenting gay bars during his marriage, and his wife together with the children were deprived of a home life of love that they all deserved. Many suffered because of this priest.

As a counselor I state that sexual exploits of children, singly, or throughout a period of years most likely determine the child's sexual orientation in adulthood.

In our society were serious heinous deeds and crimes are reported with regularity, much desensitizing has occurred among humanity. Let us all have eyes to see and hearts of love for these innocent victims without minimizing the crimes against the body and soul of innocent children of God. Let us call evil for what it is, evil.

Again my heartfelt compassion Jim.
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Now back to bed for a good night's sleep.
 
Posts: 571 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 20 June 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Phil and Freebird, Thanks for the empathetic feelings that you both expressed. I think I have healed from any suffering or ill feelings about the situation with my father. One can find abuse, ignorance, and sin in every institution and outside of every institution. The abuser was often abused himself.
"The reign of God is not merely "within" us, it is "among" us (that's actually the preferred translation by Scripture scholars). That this is sometimes counter-symbolic is truly lamentable, for it understandably contributes to an aversion for what is supposed to be a gift."
Very true. The reign of God is in all things. In the whole universe, but unfortunately in no outward place including the church will the soul find God until it finds it within itself. For everywhere the soul goes, its thoughts and desires will go with it. However beautiful may be the outward dwelling place, if there are sinful thoughts within, there will be darkness and gloom without, for sin always casts a shadow over the pathway of the soul-the shadow of sorrow.
The church can play a very important part in the sharing of love, learning and sacraments with other Christians, but the true test for the Christian is for he or she to continue to share that love while at home, at work, among non-believers and evil doers. All life is gladness and love when the heart is right. Life is religion and religion is life.
Jim
 
Posts: 11 | Location: traveler | Registered: 22 May 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Jim,

I loved everything you said in your above post, especially about soul.

Thank you for your sharing. Smiler
 
Posts: 571 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 20 June 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yes, very good post, Jim. Thank you.

Freebird, I do not mean to be minimizing the harm done to children, nor the evil at work, when I use the term "abuse." I think all abuse is evil -- even criminal! -- but those inflected on children are especially so. This goes for abuses perpetrated by parents (the most common of all), teachers, extended family members, clergy, coaches, etc.

Edit - I would also venture to say that abuse by clergy is no more common than in the other groups mentioned above, and abuse by Protestant clergy is just as common as that by Catholics. Catholic clergy abuse is further complicated by cover-ups and poor management of the problem by bishops, so it's good that came out. Domestic violence, which is the most common of all (and, arguably, the most harmful), is often undetected, rationalized, and allowed to continue for years. No one is arguing against the importance of families, however; only against domestic abuse. That's how it should be re. Church as well; the value of the community still stands, but the abuse has to go, along with all the institutional dynamics that enable its perpetuation.
 
Posts: 7539 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 09 August 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Excellent post Phil. Smiler

As you mention abuses are not only perpetrated among the clergy, but reach everywhere there is power, authority and control. In other religions and spiritual groups this same devastation is evident. Last week I read some complimentary things about a spiritual guru. My curiosity made me do a reputable source research on this person, and what I discovered was contrary to the original article's lording of his impeccable character. He was a great sinner as I read the report.

It has all to do with crossing the boundaries of another human being may it be a wife beater or child molester, etc. Why do many abuse, just because they can. They think that they are above the law and that no one sees or knows. Therefore all of humanity must be aware that crimes against the body and soul will reap consequences not only in this life, but in the life to come. We also have many that are unstable in their mental health and still are allowed to continue in service causing havoc to the innocent.

When all of humanity knows the truth about the first Commandment to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, all our minds, all our souls and all our strengths and to have no other gods before us together with loving our neighbors as ourselves, the rest of the Commandments will fall into place and no one will cross the boundaries of another to inflict pain and sufferings. Only the One God will rule than within our hearts.

So yes, Phil, abuses are everywhere until the glorious day when we will see Christ as He is because we shall be like Him.

The love of Christ is still the greatest power on earth and in heaven.

Quote by M. Scott Peck from his book the people of the lie.

The healing of evil-scientifically or otherwise -can be accomplished only by the love of individuals. A willing sacrifice is required. The individual healer must allow his or her own soul to become the battleground. He or she must sacrificially absorb the evil.

As C.S. Lewis wrote: "When a willing victim has committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backwards. Oh the power of love. Hallelujah!. I do know that good people can deliberately allow themselves to be pierced by evil of others- to be broken thereby yet somehow not broken- to even be killed in some sense and yet still survive and not succumb. Whenever this happens there is a slight shift in the balance of power in the world. I have been there and know Christ's strength in the battle between good and evil.
And, most important we must forgive others for forgiveness is the marriage partner of love.
 
Posts: 571 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 20 June 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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