My thoughts on the report of the Australian Royal Commission on sexual abuse of minors, and its call for the Catholic Church to discontinue compulsory celibacy for priests.

The Australian Royal Commission, set up to investigate child sexual abuse in institutions, has made its report. It has focused a great deal on sexual abuse of children in the Catholic Church, and its findings are, to say the least, disturbing, and challenging for the Church. We have had a number of state sponsored investigations in this country, but none of them has gone so deeply into the causes of abuse.

A spiritual writer in the U.S. sent me this.

I did not kill Jesus;

please stop blaming me for his death.

And Jesus did not die on my behalf,

He was mailed to the cross

by the hierarchy of his day

because He was a threat to them.

If everyone followed Jesus’ teachings

the hierarchs would lose control.

My concept of God

is not one that required the death of someone

to love us again.

The notion of Jesus sacrificed

to appease a god

is primitive

and barbaric.

My Advent Reflection in Newport

This evening, at five o’clock, we had a lovely hour of music and reflection for Advent in the local pub. Siobhan sang and played the harp, and Eamonn played the flute. Margaret read some poetry. Dispite the bad weather a large group turned up.

I did three periods of reflection.

The first one was very much an Advent theme;  patient waiting; trying to get in tune with the rhythms of life and nature, and so to become aware that the best and most wonderful things in life cannot be rushed or grasped at.

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