I marvel at the choice of the Gospel reading for the Feast of Christ the King. To finalize the Year of Faith, the Church spotlights not the triumphant Jesus but the One sneered as ‘King of the Jews’, punctured by spears and jeers (LK 23: 35-43). Jesus the criminal King, turning man’s justice on its ear. The blows He took broke the barrier between us; the blood shed rescues us from death, the shattered body makes us whole. The vehicle for our empowerment is His utter weakness.
Merciful Discipline 6: Humbled, We Shine ‘When You disciplined us, we could barely whisper a prayer.’ (IS 26:16)
‘Christ’s abiding presence in the midst of our suffering is gradually transforming our darkness into light.’ Pope Benedict The sexual abuse crisis in the Church brings us to our knees. We do not kneel politely but painfully, a sprawl rather than a pose. On behalf of those felled by the weight of a priest’s perversion, we too stumble and fall. Behold the scandal we
Merciful Discipline 5: Hopeful, We Fight for the Dignity and Integrity of Our Priests The fine work and selfless dedication of the great majority of priests should not be obscured by the transgressions of some. – Pope Benedict
I will raise up for Myself a faithful priest who will do what is in My heart and mind, and his house will be firmly established. (1 Samuel 2:15) As a new Catholic, I have a fresh appreciation for the honorable, difficult office of the priest. I rely upo
Merciful Discipline 4: Hopeful, We Rebuild Trust We do not want you to grieve…as those who have no hope. (1Thes. 4:13)
Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. (1Cor. 4:2)
Cursed is the man who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the Lord…He will dwell in the parched places of the earth. (Jer. 17: 5, 6) One struggles to consider a more profound violation of trust than priestly abuse of chil
Merciful Discipline 3: Broken, We Endure Shame In the Church, God has put Himself into hands that betray Him again and again. – Pope Benedict
Do not hold against us the sins of the fathers;
may Your mercy come quickly to meet us,
for we are in desperate need.
Help us, O God our Savior, for the glory of Your Name;
deliver us, and forgive us our sins for Your Name’s sake.
Why should the nations say, “Where is their God?”
(PS 79:8-10a) We repent on behalf of the abuse-broken chu
— Merciful Discipline 1: Broken, We Pray for the Abused No wound runs deeper in the Church today than the sexual abuse of children by her priests. Over the last 30 years, the wound has become apparent as brave, broken souls throughout the world have dared to confess the perversion deposited in them by priests. We the Church bear this wound. We are the broken: bewildered, angry, more tempted to strike the Church than to heal her. And yet we are ‘her’, the wounded bride, as nee