Working from years of experience in defending Christian values, Frank Beckwith is here to offer a critique of moral relativism. He explores the inconsistencies inherent in the relativist position, suggests specific approaches that can be used in the course of dialogue, and considers the everyday implications of relativism, especially in relation to important issues such as: abortion, homosexuality, multiculturalism, political correctness, and tolerance. Frank joins us.
By Kathy Schiffer
“I did not intend any harm to come to him. The fact is, my best was not good enough to stop that harm. I am a parish priest. I should have stayed (one).”
–Monsignor William J. Lynn, speaking at his sentencing
about a victim of clergy abuse
|Monsignor William J. Lynn|
A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled December 26 that Monsignor William Lynn, secretary for clergy from for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia from 1992 to 2004, was wrongly convicted in a criminal child endangerment case involving convicted former priest Edward Avery.
In his role as vicar for clergy under the late Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, Monsignor Lynn was responsible for handling clergy abuse cases. When an accusation was made that Father Avery had abused an altar boy, Monsignor Lynn recommended that the priest be sent to a rehabilitation center. Upon completion of treatment, and with the assurance of treatment professionals that the priest was indeed rehabilitated and unlikely to commit further acts of abuse, Father Avery was reassigned to another parish in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
According to the appeals court ruling, the state’s child-endangerment law at the time of Father Avery’s transfer clearly applied only to parents and caregivers. The law was only amended in 2007 to include supervisors like Monsignor Lynn.
Monsignor Lynn has already served fifteen months of a three- to six-year sentence for his role in the handling of the case. Today’s decision overturns the legal basis for a prosecution that was viewed, according to the New York Times, as a “milestone in holding senior church officials accountable for keeping abuse reports secret in past decades and transferring predatory priests to unwary new parishes.”
With the conviction overturned, Lynn will likely be released immediately. Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams has indicated that he plans to appeal; but Thomas A. Bergstrom, a lawyer for Monsignor Lynn, called the ruling “a strong opinion by a unanimous court.” Bergstrom added, “He shouldn’t have been convicted. He shouldn’t have been sentenced.”
“What has happened to me has been the very reverse of what appears to be the experience of most of my friends. Instead of dwindling to a point, Santa Claus has grown larger and larger in my life until he fills almost the whole of it. It happened in this way. As a child I [Read More...]
Don’t Forget to Pack Your Prozac (Fa, la, la, la, la. La, la, la, la). Holiday Hints for Surviving the Homefront
Ah, Christmas. A solemn, joyful time of year for Christians, where silent and holy nights are de rigueur and Norman Rockwell springs eternal in the collective unconscious of the American mind. And then it happens…. You try–contrary to what conventional wisdom says about the subject–to go home again. Now, let me state right up front [Read More...]
5:40 – Innocence: A Novel
He lives in solitude beneath the city, an exile from society, which will destroy him if he is ever seen. She dwells in seclusion, a fugitive from enemies who will do her harm if she is ever found. But the bond between them runs deeper than the tragedies that have scarred their lives. Something more than chance—and nothing less than destiny—has brought them together in a world whose hour of reckoning is fast approaching. It’s the latest novel from the Catholic bestselling author Dean Koontz who blends mystery, suspense, and acute insight into the human soul in a masterfully told tale that will resonate with readers forever. He joins us.
The following is a guest post by Pastoral Solutions Institute clinical pastoral counseling associate, Dave McClow, MDiv, LCSW, LMFT. The Pope It seems that Pope Francis’ favorite topic is the poor. His new Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of Evangelism, is not even the latest evidence, because every other homily or statement includes the [Read More...]
Following Archbishop Nienstedt’s decision yesterday to step down from his post as Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis during an investigation into a scurrilous allegation of sexual impropriety, Bill Donohue at the Catholic League has published a statement praising the Archbishop, and asking for anyone with information about the case to contact him personally.
Here is the full statement.
The Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights
450 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10123