Learning from the Irish Sex Scandal

The Irish, if you’re not aware, are going through a sex abuse scandal similar to what we faced in the US, only compounded by the fact that these abuses often occurred at boarding schools with plenty of other problems (including physical abuse). All of this was sort of dumped on a relatively unsuspecting Irish public all at once. There had been more minor sex abuse furors in the past, but the recent Murphy Report has been devastating. Fortunately, the Irish are blessed with something we Americans haven’t been so far: a Bishop unafraid to publicly humiliate other bishops who need to be publicly called to the floor. In their case, it’s Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, a walking incarnation of Galatians 2 when he’s most desperately needed.

It’s worked wonders. Abp. Martin was called to the Vatican to discuss how to handle the crisis. Limerick’s Bishop Donal Murray, an old Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin who was a priest-shuffler, has resigned. And in the midst of all this tragedy, some lessons are hopefully being learned. Diogenes offers one: that a bishop is supposed to be a ruler, not a leader. It’s a surprising – counterintuitive and certainly countercultural – conclusion, but with a little help from one C.S. Lewis, I think he proves his case quite nicely.

The post is short and worth the read, and I’m curious as to others’ reactions.

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