August 23, 2018
Dear Beloved in Christ,
I share in your shock and anger when we hear of the harm caused as a result of clergy abuse. Our sorrow is intensified when we find those whom we have trusted as priests, bishops, and those in authority are the perpetrators of such evil. Others have been responsible for covering-up such sins instead of reporting it immediately. Surely, Jesus must share in our frustration, our rage, and our tears.
Your parish priests and staff, along with some parishioners have met to discuss and plan how we are to begin to address and acknowledge this moral catastrophe. Already, the scandal was acknowledged last Wednesday at my Holy Day Masses. My brother priests and myself also agreed to address this in last weekend’s homilies rather than remain complicitly silent. We will schedule a “parish-town hall meeting” for further assistance in listening, praying, and looking for ways to change the institution. This will be an opportunity to share feelings and frustration in hopes of moving towards healing. Of course, we will be inviting laity to be leaders in that discussion. To help in healing, we are looking to make available counseling times, by lay and clergy, for those affected by this horror. Our parish priests are always ready to walk with you, not only in the moments of sacramental light but also in the darkness of times such as these.
This is certainly not enough, but it is a start. My hope is this will be an historic time for reformation in the Church. I believe that this is not only possible but attainable because it will be demanded from so many of our Spirit-led faithful just like you.
On our web-site, you will find a page dedicated to homilies, pastoral statements, and additional resources. Starting on this Sunday, August 26, we will be offering an hour of Eucharistic Adoration following the 12:15 masses and each of the weekday Noon masses for a novena period of nine days. This will be also be offered at Wilde Lake during weekday evenings from 7 – 8 pm. A Holy Hour will conclude the nine days after the 10am Labor Day Mass. Further, I humbly invite you to join me in this novena of reparation as well as in a Prayer for Healing Victims of Abuse. (You will also find it below.)
Rev. Gerry Bowen
Homily from August 22: Memorial of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Homily from the Weekend of August 18 – 19
From the Pastor’s Desk
Homily from Mass before Rededication of Wilde Lake Space
If one member suffers, all suffer together with it Letter from Pope Francis
Accountability for All A Must Archbishop Lori Statement
We are shamed by and sorry for the sins and omissions United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Other responses from local Catholic Clergy Catholic Review
How Archbishop Lori has been hearing the faithful’s concerns about the scandals in the Church. Catholic Review recently added
A Biblical Response to Church Scandal: What Can We Do? Edward Sri (Focus)
The Virtues of Catholic Anger. Father James Martin, SJ (New York Times)
The Clerical Sex Abuse Scandal: What Parents Can Do & How to Talk to Your Kids
The Darkness of Scandal and the Light of Christ Leah Murphy (LifeTeen)
Why Am I Still Catholic? Karen Tumulty (Washington Post)