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The Silence of the Episcopal Bishops: Why is Presiding Bishop Curry & his HOB Silent on Catholic Sexual Abuse?

The Silence of the Episcopal Bishops: Why is Presiding Bishop Curry & his HOB Silent on Catholic Sexual Abuse?

COMMENTARY

By David W. Virtue, DD
www.virtueonline.org
September 10, 2018

Why is there a deafening silence by Episcopal Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and his HOB on the growing sexual abuse scandal in the Roman Catholic Church?

Rome's moral corruption has finally trickled down to the Catholic and non-Catholic rank-and-file. The Episcopal Church thinks it's immune because its professed libertine 'theology' precludes such subterfuge.

But the irony is deep and overwhelming; the leftist media and politicians are blowing the lid right off the Church's homosexual subculture, heretofore their fellow travelers in the pansexual movement!

One Catholic priest who gets it said this; "God will use the government as a scourge to reform the Church."

To date, only the Episcopal Bishop of Northwestern Pennsylvania, Sean Rowe, has spoken out and he called for prayers for people whose lives have been ripped apart over what they have suffered. He described the grand jury report as "horrific and evil".

He did have one eye-opening statement when he said this: "In the Episcopal Church, we are not strangers to news of abuse and betrayal by our leaders. For some of us, the news of the grand jury report may have stirred up memories of our own grief and anger when we have learned that a priest or bishop we have known has abused children or been complicit in covering up abuse. For some of us who began our lives as Roman Catholics, this news may have reopened old wounds. And for some of us who have been victims of abuse, this news may trigger anger, sadness and trauma." Rowe did not name names.

Amy Spagna writing for Episcopal Cafe, observed that the Roman Catholic Church is not alone in combating this issue. The Episcopal Church has had its share of similar cases. In recent memory are that of Howdy White, the former chaplain at St. George's School in Rhode Island and that of Donald Davis, former bishop of Northwest Pennsylvania, who was found in 2010 to have abused several children during his tenure. In both cases, the people responsible for supervising their work failed to take proper action at the time the abuse was reported. Sexual harassment and abuse figured prominently in many conversations at General Convention last month, she noted.

Significantly overlooked was Bishop "Skip" Adams, formerly of Central New York, who in 2005, inhibited a 20-year serving priest by the name of Fr. David Bollinger in the diocese of Central New York where Adams was bishop. Fr. Bollinger blew the whistle on a pedophile priest who reportedly abused 16 people. Adams covered it all up. The name of that priest was Fr. Ralph Johnson. Pennsylvania state police charged the 82-year old priest with sexual contact with a minor. Johnson was finally inhibited by Adams, but not before Adams took revenge on Bollinger for blowing the whistle on Johnson.

And then there were the allegations made that TEC Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori knew former Benedictine monk, Bede Parry, was a pedophile when he joined TEC while she was the Bishop of Nevada. He was made an assisting priest at All Saints in 2004 after Jefferts Schori received him into The Episcopal Church, acknowledging his Catholic priesthood. A psychiatrist's report said he would reoffend.

Paul Marshall, the former bishop of the Diocese of Bethlehem, commented about the Bede Parry affair at the time, saying, "Now let's be serious. When 815-level lawyers threaten and cajole diocesan bishops not to reveal multiple sex-abuse cover-ups at the highest level lest former leaders be embarrassed, what can we expect, and why do we look down on the RCC?

"As a rector I had to follow a priest who was simply passed along by another bishop, and as a bishop have had the same experience with a staff member who was protected by his bishop, with catastrophic results here.

"On paper, we are a one-strike church, but in reality, too many people have walked. The national church refused comment on this story with principled-sounding obfuscation, which essentially tells it all, doesn't it? There is no more transparency at 815 than previously, as some commentators know to their pain," said Marshall.

Paul Marshall then went on record saying that Jefferts Schori threatened bishops not to reveal multiple sexual abuse cover-ups.

In an e-mail to VOL, Marshall wrote, "The anger has subsided for the moment, and I come to the office incredibly sad. As you know, I think we are doomed as a church unless our life is vigorously centered in the Gospel and see our mission in only those terms that are consistent with it." The bishop said he and his staff are planning on writing a full-length piece (and eventually a book) on this subject.

And then there is the case of the disgraced former Bishop of Pennsylvania, Charles E. Bennison, who covered up his brother, a now-former Episcopalian priest, for sexually violating a girl in California.

In 2009, the Diocese of Texas was a defendant in a $45-million class-action lawsuit which alleged that for more than 40 years, diocesan officials had tried to hide the fact that one of the priests on staff at St. Stephen's Episcopal School in Austin sexually abused students. It all started when Bob Haslanger received a letter from his high school alma mater, St. Stephen's Episcopal School in Austin, where the school's wildly popular chaplain, The Reverend James Lydell Tucker once reigned. When he approached the diocese to accuse Tucker of sexually abusing him, they blew him off. So, for their cover-up and silence, the diocese faced a $45 million lawsuit. Tucker served as chaplain at St. Stephen's from 1958 to 1968. The diocese transferred him to another school in 1968, after receiving misconduct complaints about him. Tucker retired from active ministry in 1994. He was deposed from the ordained ministry of The Episcopal Church in 2008.

In 2015, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that 11 former Episcopal Academy students came forward and told police that they were sexually abused by Richard Perkins Smith, a former teacher and administrator. Smith, who is a 1966 graduate of Episcopal Academy, taught at the school's Devon campus from 1970 to 1990. He allegedly told investigators he also molested a student around 1977 while they were in his car and admitted the incident to the head of the school. For some reason, Smith remained employed there and may have abused others.

Richard Pollard, 74, Episcopal priest, pled guilty and was sentenced to 30 years on two counts of attempted rape under a plea agreement. Pollard was charged with eight counts of capital sexual battery involving assaults on one boy between 1970 and 1976. Another charge was added in September after another victim came forward. The offenses occurred at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Tampa, where Pollard served from 1969 to 1974; All Saints Episcopal in Tarpon Springs, where he served from 1974 to 1992; and at Pollard's home, police said.

Episcopal academies have been favorite places for homosexuals to assault vulnerable young men.

This has not stopped The Episcopal Church, in one general convention after another, from embracing the pansexual darkness, starting in 2003, when general convention reaffirmed Resolution A069 of the 65th General Convention (1976) that "homosexual persons are children of God who have a full and equal claim with all other persons upon the love, acceptance, and pastoral concern and care of the Church."

Then it got twisted into this; "That, in our understanding of homosexual persons, differences exist among us about how best to care pastorally for those who intend to live in monogamous, non-celibate unions; and what is, or should be, required, permitted, or prohibited by the doctrine, discipline, and worship of The Episcopal Church concerning the blessing of the same.

Finally, we reaffirm Resolution D039 of the 73rd General Convention (2000), that "We expect such relationships will be characterized by fidelity, monogamy, mutual affection and respect, careful, honest communication, and the holy love which enables those in such relationships to see in each other the image of God," and that such relationships exist throughout the church.

Then the capstone; "That we recognize that local faith communities are operating within the bounds of our common life as they explore and experience liturgies celebrating and blessing same-sex unions."

Gotcha.

Now it is being pushed on every diocese with the passage of B012 at the last general convention, that every diocese must allow local priests to marry homosexuals even if their own bishop does not approve of such "marriages." We await the outcome of this in the Diocese of Albany, where Bishop Bill Love, a lone orthodox bishop, says he will make a decision about what he will do come Dec. 2, when the balloon goes up. Recently, he met with his clergy in a closed-door meeting. There were frank talks, but nothing conclusive.

His options are few. If he prohibits a progressive priest in his diocese (and he has a few) from performing a homosexual marriage, that priest could file a complaint under Title IV canons. His diocese could ask to leave TEC and come under the ACNA, but that is probably unlikely as they don't have the resources for a protracted legal battle. Love could resign. The diocese could revolt with mass resignations, or the diocese could simply cave in. What then of Bishop Love's conscience?

God is using the government as a scourge to reform the Roman Catholic Church. Of course, it is too late for The Episcopal Church. She has drunk the Kool-Aid. TEC has embraced the pansexual darkness, and for its sins is going out of business. God is not mocked. TEC has sown the wind and it is reaping the whirlwind.

END

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