The Good. The Bad. The Asinine.

With all this Uren, it’s definitely time to break the Seal

As I mentioned the other day, the Irish Prime Minister (or Taoiseach, which by the way, is apparently pronounced “Tea-shock”), has called for the Catholic Church to do away with their cherished “sacramental seal” of confession.

Needless to say, the Church hasn’t exactly warmed to the idea. Given the paucity, (or rather, non-existence), of cases where paedophilic abuse was reported outside of the confessional seal, their reluctance is hardly surprising. What is surprising are the feeble attempts at wrangling such a cynical position into secular legitimacy.

Which brings us to Father Bill Uren, Jesuit priest, and Rector of Newman College at the University of Melbourne. Unencumbered by such trivial concerns as empathy and common sense, Bill set his mighty intellect to work, and managed to coax three “arguments” out into the open. And here they are, in all their glory, paraphrased for your convenience:

1 – It’s all too hard
We have no idea who comes into confession, because of our fool-proof privacy measures. We may have been clever enough to figure out that god exists, is Catholic, wants his Church to be an obscenely wealthy dictatorship, and perfected (but declined to patent) the art of virgin birth, but how on earth do you expect us to see through that little curtain?

2 – We’d break the law anyway
Even if we knew who the confessor was, no one likes a snitch. Well, except Harry Potter, but don’t get me started on him.

3 – Confession would become boring
Faced with the possibility of being turned in, no more paedophiles would come to confession, which would leave us with just the blasphemers and chronic masturbators to listen to.

Pens down, Church wins!

Well, not really.

For one thing, it should be immediately obvious that his second and third arguments cancel each other out. I mean, if Bill is right, and Catholic priests never break the confessional seal, why would paedophiles suddenly be afraid of going to confession?

But let’s indulge Bill for a moment. Suppose that the laws of logic are temporarily suspended, and we concede that paedophiles will stop going to confession for fear of being turned in by someone who would never turn them in. If this happened, Bill argues, Catholic priests would lose the opportunity to convince paedophiles to turn themselves in.

So, let me get this straight. A paedophile won’t go to confession if he thinks the priest might dob him in, but he’s happy to go to confession knowing the priest will try and convince him to dob himself in?


Anyway, all this is irrelevant, unless Bill can point us towards a single instance of a paedophile following a visit to the confessional with a visit to the police.

Well, Bill, can you?

Somehow, I very much doubt it. Unless, of course, I just happened to be away on the day that hundreds of paedophiles ran into the Police station yelling “We surrender! Yay for Catholic priests!”.

Now that I think about it, his efforts at logic remind me of the Flashbeer guy. I mean, Father Uren seems like he’s doing his best, but he looks so ridiculous that you can’t really be sure that he’s not taking the piss.

Category: Bad, Catholic Church, Religion


One Response

  1. Squirts says:

    Wow, how proud his parents must be – Uren, that is. His statements were the stuff of legend.

    Another goldstar, Austin Powers.

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