This week a Philadelphia priest was convicted for covering up priest abuse of children, a continuation of other horror stories. Why would anyone choose to join the Catholic Church now?
Most importantly, the priest abuse scandal has nothing to do with the beautiful gospel of Jesus Christ and the central claims of Protestantism (sola scriptura, sola fide), which disintegrated into ash amidst my clenched fists. However, here’s a disturbing but enlightening exercise that makes a different point.
Go to Google News and type in “pastor sex.” Note the abundance of recent stories highlighting pastors convicted of rape, sexual assault, and child abuse. Now, search search the “crime” section for every local paper you can find over the last 40 years (allegations go back this far in the Catholic Church).
Ask yourself, why isn’t this a leading news story too?
Protestantism is so fragmented that there can be no story. What Presbyterian Pastor Joel does in Tacoma has nothing to do with Baptist Deacon Jeff in Berlin. The idea of a visible, unified Church, prayed for by Christ, is nonexistent.
When people act wickedly towards children we must be outraged at the injustice. And when those people are members of the Church, we must weep and mourn for the children and for the disgrace the sin places on the unified witness of Jesus Christ to the world.