Thursday, June 14, 2007

Deliver Us from Evil

Yesterday was a challenging day for the Wager family. Baby Wager had a minor surgery to remove his adenoids which will hopefully be beneficial to his overall health. There was a lot of crying and fussing, but that was by Mrs. Wager. Baby Wager did really well overall. Anyway, I took the day off from work to help out and Baby Wager wound up sleeping for eighteen hours following his surgery. I finally had some time to watch a movie I had laying around the house. Mrs. Wager and I decided to watch “Deliver Us from Evil”.

The movie is a documentary that covers the Catholic Church’s cover up of the pedophilia scandal. It was well done, interesting, the people who volunteered to be in the movie were definitely courageous, but overall it left me depressed. The producers lay out a reasonable case that the cover-up goes all the way to the current pope.

After spending all day thinking and worrying about our own child, I looked at my wife when the movie was over and asked her, “It was a good movie, but now that I’ve seen it, what exactly am I supposed to do with this knowledge?”

My wife answered that we need to make sure that Baby Wager has the ability to stand up to authority. It turns out, it’s not easy. See the Milgram Experiment. We are biologically programmed to listen to authority figures which is a shame that the church uses this to enslave us.

Another interesting point in the movie was the issue of clerical celibacy. One theory was that the moral absolute that priests remain celibate made all sex by priests equally bad. I may be a moral relativist but come on! A priest having an affair with an adult woman (or man for that matter) is wholly different from a priest RAPING a six month old infant (this actually happened and the priest got promoted). This absolutist mentality is causing far more harm than good. Kind of says something about the whole absolutist philosophy, huh?

Some additional fun facts from the movie:

* 10% of the seminary graduates are pedophiles

* There are 100,000 cases of clergy abuse now pending in the US

* 80% of sexual abuse cases do not get reported, therefore there have probably been 500,000 cases of abuse

* There are currently 556 priests under investigation in the Los Angeles daises alone

* The Catholic Church has paid out over $1 billion since 1950 in sexual abuse hush money. Think about where your money goes if you are a Catholic and the plate comes to you.

17 comments:

Wil said...

Hope all goes well with Baby Wager.

MasterJediDan said...

Pretty depressing numbers. Hope your son is doing ok! :)

zilch said...

All the best from me too. My son Adam had some minor surgery when he was two and came out of it just fine.

As you probably know, there are elements in the Catholic Church (for instance, here in Austria) working for reform. The big issues are of course women in the clergy, allowing priests to marry, and birth control. Not likely that they'll make much headway, though- the Church seems to prefer driving people away in droves than budging from their position.

Atheistwager said...

Baby Wager is doing great!

@Zilch
I simply can't understand this institution. Who do they think they are serving? God? Themselves? What is the issue with birth control? Too many questions!

There is a part in the movie where the bishop of LA protects a pedophile in order to get promoted. Who really cares about rank in the Church? I simply don't understand.

Warren said...

I think the catholic issue with birth control had to do with the concept that only god should be able to decide when you do and don't get pregnant. At least I think that is their official stance, I would tend to think that it actually has more to do with the fact that birth control makes premarital sex less likely to have consequences and we all know that the church can't stand the idea of copulation without commitment.

zilch said...

The Catholic church's stance on birth control might also be related to the fact that the surest converts are babies raised in a faith. The more babies, the more parishioners.

Soon after I came to Vienna, about twenty years ago, I got into a conversation with an Opus Dei priest, who went on and on about what a pity it was that the Catholic Church lost the Americas when national governments became more powerful than the Church there.

I was amazed to hear such a bald declaration of desire for power from the clergy, but have since learned that Opus Dei (which is the lineal descendant of the Inquisition) is the radical arm of the Church, sort of like the IRA is the radical arm of Sinn Fein.

BEAST said...

This abuse of children by the catholic church is poor evil.

Why this white elephant of an institution is still allowed to operate........only zeus knows.

Miracle said...

I know it doesn't matter much for you, but I'll be prayin for the wager family. So far, the worst the lil miracle has had to deal with is a penicillin allergy and that was scary enough for me.

More than anything, I am depressed by alot of the catholic church. There are millions of honest and faithful believers in the church whom just want to follow God. Now because of some horribly sick priests, whom were not helped by a code of celibacy, they all have to wonder to whom their hard-earned tithes are going. I don't think the current pope has anything to do with the scandals.

In my opinion, the biggest reason for why the catholic church continuously breeds corruption and some stupid beliefs (birth control, which was invented by a catholic priest) is they are unwilling to admit mistakes. Once a pope says something, it is final and true. Therefore, even though now we know when guys piss they lose semen, birth control is of satan. If one can't admit mistakes, then they end up in a giant mess.. the catholic church.. the bush administration

Wil said...

Shame is they consider pride a deadly sin.

MasterJediDan said...

@ Beast

Money and power. And the fact that we here in America can't make any laws concerning religion.

Miracle said...

@MJD & Beast

I don't think banning catholicism should be considered a thought. Yes, there are many horrible priests in it. But there are still millions of honest and faithful people in the religion and hundreds of thousands of priests whom have never been even considered a pedohile concern. The catholic church has done more for the poor, marginalized and hurt around the world than the protestant church that I follow could ever dream.

Their structure might be screwed up, but they (the real people) are not corrupt

CanadaSteve said...

This argument is pretty shotty in its presentation.

How can you have a list of "facts" that state "since most cases go unrecorded, and since 100,000 cases are pending in court, that means there possibly is 500,000 cases unrecorded."

If that kind of liberty of truth was used by someone of a conservative mindset, people would jump all over that here....

Not well presented.

CanadaSteve said...

This argument is pretty shotty in its presentation.

How can you have a list of "facts" that state "since most cases go unrecorded, and since 100,000 cases are pending in court, that means there possibly is 500,000 cases unrecorded."

If that kind of liberty of truth was used by someone of a conservative mindset, people would jump all over that here....

Not well presented.

CanadaSteve said...

This argument is pretty shotty in its presentation.

How can you have a list of "facts" that state "since most cases go unrecorded, and since 100,000 cases are pending in court, that means there possibly is 500,000 cases unrecorded."

If that kind of liberty of truth was used by someone of a conservative mindset, people would jump all over that here....

Not well presented.

CanadaSteve said...

This argument is pretty shotty in its presentation.

How can you have a list of "facts" that state "since most cases go unrecorded, and since 100,000 cases are pending in court, that means there possibly is 500,000 cases unrecorded."

If that kind of liberty of truth was used by someone of a conservative mindset, people would jump all over that here....

Not well presented.

CanadaSteve said...

This is an awful attempt at presenting information. It loses credibility when under the facts the following is presented:

100,000 cases of abuse are pending in courts for sexual abuse.

Since 80 percent of cases are unreported, that would mean possibly 500,000 cases of abuse have happened.

If that is not a liberalization of the truth, I do not know what is.

If conservatives used such an attempt at presenting facts, people here would be all over that.

Awful....

Mike said...

Hello from New York!

Since I was a young kid I thought that the guys wearing the priest uniform are human like us. They have to do a lot of wrong and evil things also.

Sure enough as an adult now I found out I was right all along.