The Young Are Better Prepared with Earlier Confirmation

Crisis Magazine | 2/12/2019 | Richard Becker
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Later this month, the Vatican is hosting an international summit of bishops to address the clerical sex-abuse crisis. Based on comments Pope Francis has made to the press, the gathering will focus its attention on prayer and penance, but also educating the Church’s shepherds on what the issue is all about.

As if the U.S. bishops needed more educating—or any of us in the pews for that matter. It’s an issue that has been in the public eye since at least 2002 when the sex-abuse bombshell was detonated by the Boston Globe, and it’s been simmering on various back burners ever since.

Philadelphia - Jury - Firestorm - Summer - Reports

Then the Philadelphia grand jury firestorm erupted last summer, followed quickly by reports of the horrendous predatory behavior, over many decades, of Washington’s Archbishop Theodore McCarrick—along with hints of cover-ups and collusion. Since then, it seems like the faithful in this country have been confronted with regular (for a while, almost daily) revelations about clerical abuses and episcopal failures to do anything about them, and more disturbing disclosures are sure to come.

In the face of all that, many bishops have been pro-active in addressing the crisis head on. They’ve held listening sessions, written apologetic open letters, and made public the names of clergy who’ve been credibly accused. They’ve also committed themselves to rooting out the problem where it still exists and being more careful in screening candidates for ordination.

Addition - US - Bishops - Faithful - Prayers

In addition, many U.S. bishops have also called on the faithful to re-double their prayers on the Church’s behalf: to pray for our bishops and priests, for example, as well as for current seminarians and an increase in priestly vocations. And many have reintroduced the Prayer to St. Michael at Mass: a plea for supernatural buttressing of the Church’s defenses in the face of spiritual onslaught.

Prayer is essential, of course, but it’s...
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