There’s nothing like taking decisive action to correct a major problem. Too bad the Pope doesn’t seem to understand that. His idea of decisive action in dealing with the problem of pedophile priests is to wait five years after the church’s foundation has been rocked by the scandal and then command the churches to pray continuously for God to solve the problem:
Pope Benedict XVI has instructed Roman Catholics to pray “in perpetuity” to cleanse the Church of paedophile clergy. All dioceses, parishes, monasteries, convents and seminaries will be expected to organise continuous daily prayers to express penitence and to purify the clergy.
Vatican officials said that every parish or institution should designate a person or group each day to conduct continuous prayers for the Church to rid itself of the scandal of sexual abuse by clergy. Alternatively, churches in the same diocese could share the duty. Prayer would take place in one parish for 24 hours, then move to another.
The instruction was sent to bishops by Cardinal Cláudio Hummes of Brazil, head of the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy. He told L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper, that he was acting in the Pope’s name. The Pope wanted Catholics to pray for the “mercy of God for the victims of the grave situations caused by the moral and sexual conduct of a very small part of the clergy”, he said.
Cause prayer works so well for sick people and sports teams. Thanks, Pope, for nothing. Which is about all your plan will add up to.
Link via Pharyngula.