Article8 – FORGIVENESS IS NOT A SUBSTITUE FOR JUSTICE


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FORGIVENESS IS NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR JUSTICE
– POPE BENEDICT XVI.
THIS IS THE OPINION OF THE AUTHOR, eastwind (BERNIE LOPEZ), AND DOES NOT IN ANY WAY REFLECT THE OPINION OR VIEWPOINT OF THE HEALING MINISTRY OR THE RVM CONGREGATION.
Pope Benedict has finally given a proper reply, “forgiveness is not a substitute for justice”. It is an admittance of guilt and an act of humility. Now, the controversy can be laid to rest, but only if there is the final act of the Church telling all and surrendering the guilty to the authorities. Until that is done, there is no justice.
Earlier, the Pope had dialogues with victims and their families, which failed to exonerate the Church. In fact, it made the Church look more guilty. Apology was not the issue, but justice.
Earlier, many came to the rescue of the Pope but their defenses, although eloquent and articulate, skirted around the issue of culpability and admittance of guilt. It had the same effect of making the Church more guilty. All the ‘nice’ arguments made the Church position worse. It was the Pope’s final reply which saved the day for the Church.
For example, French historian Alain Besancon “noted that the media campaign against the Holy Father and the Church reveals a hatred for Christianity, and that the Pope is confronting the ‘self-destruction’ of society, nature and reason” (CNN/EWTN News, April 20, 2010, L’Observatore Romano). This is a very bad fallacious argument. There is no ‘media campaign against the Holy Father and the Church’. The Church brought it upon itself to be a subject of the media.
There is no ‘hatred for Christianity’. The Church is not beyond criticism. It is capable of human errors. Criticism is not ‘hatred’ and is in fact not only good but necessary to catalyze reforms, to cleanse the Church. There is no ‘self-destruction’ of society. Let us not call a spade a clover. They are twisting the issue of the Church guilty of cover-up. The Pope’s admittance is in truth the saving grace for the Church, not these false arguments, these futile attempts to save the image of the Church.
Besancon further said, “Benedict XVI has fought untiringly for clarity and accuracy. For him there is nothing more dangerous than the relativism that is fused with modern democratic society: any organized group can legitimize an opinion merely because it is their opinion without the need to support it with reason,” This is intellectual gibberish attempting to put the blame on ‘relativism’ … of ‘democratic society’. The opinion is not ‘organized’ and is not being ‘legitimized’. It is supported with reason, namely, cover up of crimes.
There was a lengthy homily by a priest who said the lesson is for us to focus ourselves on ‘holiness’ once again. True. But no, the lesson is for us to not cover up crimes and to bring justice to the victims, which is the essence of holiness based on justice.
It is about time the Church gets its act together. The Church is as much human as it is divine. Throughout history, it has faltered (Reformation) then surged forward (Counter Reformation). There is the human aspect of error and correction, of stumbling then standing up once again. The age of darkness in the Church is followed by the age light in a cyclic manner throughout history. The Church has to solve the case of pedophile priests once and for all and launch a new spiritual reformation at the parish level, otherwise a new crisis will haunt it. There is no escape. Every stone will not be left unturned.
The Lord will appreciate this new spiritual reformation. Let us not be obsessed with the image of the Church tarnished. Let it be tarnished if it is indeed tarnished. Let us untarnish it with justice and transparency. Sweeping it under the rug will not untarnish it but tarnish it more. Let us confront the problem, not go around it.
eastwind
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amdg

Published by Anton

Anton worked for the biggest multinational company in the Philippines for 12+ years, straight out of college, before becoming a full-time Online Entrepreneur. He was the Chief Information Officer of Procter & Gamble Philippines when he finally quit his day job and decided to take his blog, Our Awesome Planet, to the next level in 2008. OurAwesomePlanet.com, which he started in 2005, is the number #1 food and travel media in the Philippines with over 500,000+ followers and thousands of readers, and is still organically growing. His advocacy is to promote the “Food and Travel Secrets in the Philippines” and to inspire Filipinos that living in the Philippines is truly awesome! He was recognized as Go Negosyo's Inspiring Young Filipino Entrepreneur Award in 2010. He was featured in Go Negosyo's 7th book: "Go Negosyo's 50 Inspiring Stories of Young Entrepreneurs" in 2011. In 2015, Anton Diaz received the first Tourism Star Award for media by the Department of Tourism for his valuable contribution in promoting Philippine cuisine and destinations through his blog Our Awesome Planet thereby encouraging tourists to visit and taste the best in what the Philippines has to offer. Our Awesome Planet is recognized as one of the Top 50 Travel Blogs in the world!

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