Saturday, May 28, 2005 +

And he took them up in his arms

This, said in St. Blog's Parish Hall in a thread regarding the scandal of sexual abuse of children and adolescents by priests, drew some recognition:

One unfortunate result of the scandal is that children are getting less love (as they might understand and need it) from priests, brothers, sisters, lay teachers. One sees the difference if one has been among children over the years. Much less “And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.” Rather the opposite: I've seen religious back away from children.

Added two Thoughts Out of Season:

1. The consequences of the scandal have been worse than its causes.

2. Many of the abused don’t know that they will not find peace unless they forgive.

Added lines from Lycidas about “blind mouths”:

The Pilot of the Galilean lake.
Two massy keys he bore of metals twain,
(The golden opes, the iron shuts amain)
He shook his mitred locks, and stern bespake
"How well could I have spared for thee, young swain,
Enow of such as for their bellies' sake
Creep, and intrude, and climb into the fold!
Of other care they little reckoning make
Than how to scramble at the shearers' feast,
And shove away the worthy bidden guest.
Blind mouths! that scarce themselves know how to hold
A sheep-hook, or have learned aught else the least
That to the faithful herdman's art belongs!
What recks it them? What need they? They are sped;
And when they list, their lean and flashy songs
Grate on their scrannel pipes of wretched straw;
The hungry sheep look up, and are not fed,
But swoll'n with wind, and the rank mist they draw,
Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread;
Besides what the grim wolf with privy paw
Daily devours apace, and nothing said;
But that two-handed engine at the door
Stands ready to smite once, and smite no more."