Cardinal Bernard Law resigns
Facing mounting outrage from Boston-area Catholics and clergy over the priest sexual abuse crisis, Cardinal Bernard Law announced today that he would resign as head of the Boston Archdiocese after 18 years in the post. Share your thoughts on the cardinal's resignation and his career in Boston. How will he be remembered? What effect will his departure have? And what comes next for the archdiocese?
This is for O'reilly in Nahant! The good he did doesn't make up for the bad. He was wrong for hiding that info all these years. Those guys should have been in jail, instead they did it more, because they had a hiding place thanks to him. What if it was someone you know? Would you still stay "oh but what about all the good he's done"! You better rethink your thoughts and go spit in your own face! You pissed off alot of people saying that!
Deb L, Chelsea
Law's resignation is a good thing; the Holy Father made the right decision. Now it is time for additional good decisions, many, many of them: * let the church hierarchy act to become transparent, ending secrecy. * Let us place the needs of children at at least the same level as the needs of clergy. * Let the criminal justice system of Boston treat Cardinal Law with the same fairness and firmness they would exhibit with any citizen who participated actively (as he has done) in the rape of children and the distribution of drugs to vulnerable young people. I see this as an example of the strength of the Roman Catholic hierarchy and the Catholic church; Cardinal Law has been stripped of his authority. I am thankful.
Ned Fagan, River Falls, WI
THE POWER OF PRAYER DOES WORK!
To Patrick O'Reilly of Nahant, who said "You should all be ashamed of yourselves, do any of you doubt that Cardinal Law was trying to do the right thing all these years?" If Mr. Law had done the "right thing" all these years, he would have STOPPED the abuse back when it happened. But heaven forbid he bring attention to a matter while under his watch and take accountability, despite the fact that that was part of his job. And that is what this role is/was - a JOB. He is the head of a corporation called the Archdiocese of Boston, which is a subsidiary of the parent company, the Roman Catholic Church. As such, he has the ultimate responsibility to protect his people (other than the Chairman of the corporation, the Pope). And by "his people" I do not mean the pedophile priests. I mean the people of his "flock," as he so often calls those who attend the church. Moving those priests from one parish to another is NOT protecting the flock...it's just put more people in harm's way. So when you ask do any of us doubt whether he tried to do the right thing? Yes, I have every doubt in the world, as it seems thousands upon thousands of others do. His resignation and criminal prosecution is so long overdue, it's a complete and utter shame.
Pure Speculation: We Cajuns down here on the South Coast are about as militantly Catholic as any ethnic group gets in this country, thanks to our own experience with religious intolerance. (Our 18th century French ancestors were exiled from their homes in their beloved L'Acadie, just so the British could resettle Acadia with Presbyterians, and re-name the place "Nova Scotia".) However, we still share with our cousins in France the ability to look upon the Church with a critical eye, where circumstances call for it. We are speculating at present as to why Cardinal Law had such a sudden change of heart regarding the idea of resignation. Could it be that your prosecutors have made it clear that there is now enough evidence to convict him as an accessory in some of his subordinates' crimes? We have heard much speculation about a possible bankruptcy proceeding to avoid the consequences of anticipated civil judgments in sex abuse cases. Such a conviction might throw a monkey wrench into plans to seek bankruptcy relief for your Archdiocese, insofar as debts incurred as a direct consequence of criminal conduct are generally not dischargeable in bankruptcy! What a pity it would be if the ultimate embarassment for Law was not the harm caused to the victims, and not the harm caused to the Church's credibility in spreading the Gospel, but rather, the embarassing prospect of seeing Church property seized an sold to pay judgments.
Michael, New Orleans, Louisiana
This is the first step. This whole episode has cause severe damage to the church. The leaders of the church need to address issues such as marriage for priests and the roll of women in the church. This 900 year old celebacy decree isn't appropriate in the 21st century. When a priest takes a vow it doesn't magically kill their sexuality. It just gets perverted in a haze of guilt and righteousness. Also, women need to have a much greater roll in the church. These 2 things alone will help stem the problems with sick pedophiles being assigned priest's duties because the church will suddenly have more resources (men and women) to serve the community and spread the word of God and they can weed out the bad-seeds.
Resignation is another step on the path to complete recovery for the archdiocese. Steps need to be taken to show all priests involved- as participants, in the coverup, as enablers- have been removed from clerical duties. A second and complete apology should be made from new leadership. All possible sources of revenue for restitution should be used- and yes, this means the sale of the Cardinal's estate & numerous other 'showcase' properties be sold.
THANK YOU GOD! Now please allow AG to do his work and bring this man in to face a court of law! You need to pay more than just offering a apology! I have a feeling that not one of your victims will accept your apology---you knew what you were doing when you made those decisions. Today, the good lord has spoken and has now given Boston the chance to restart and begin to heal! Thank you Mr. Law for your offer to leave! GLADLY ACCEPTED :)
J Sal, Watertown
Law's resignation was long overdue. But coincidently it comes 12 days before the annual Christmas Collection--which is strictly for the Retired Priests Retirement Fund. Perhaps this year, parishioners will dig deeper.
This is a seismic day in the history of the Catholic Church in the United States. Cardinal Law will probaly not be the only high ranking Catholic official to resign or to be indicted. We are witnessing the implosion of the Catholic Church; their own documents damn them.Every person that reads the files that have been released must answer to their own consciences about whether an actual coverup of crimes took place. My family and I have concluded that yes,the primary concern of the Catholic Church is and has always been the Catholic Church and not the faithful. This is an institution that will not change. The hierarchy is very good at mouthing platitudes, but by their actions they reveal themselves. Nothing is going to change.UNFORTUNATELY !!!!