Skip to comments.God love you, God bless you, and Good-Bye [Catholic Caucus]
Posted on 06/17/2011 10:15:35 PM PDT by sitetest
This Sunday, June 19, 2011, is both Trinity Sunday on the Catholic liturgical calendar and Fathers Day on the secular calendar. It is a day Ill never forget, and sadly so. It is the twentieth anniversary of my ordination to the priesthood in the Catholic Church. For twenty years I was called father. I am very thankful for those twenty years. I could have easily died any number of times, any number of ways in my life before that, so I consider it all a bonus, an undeserved bonus. To all of you that have communicated support, ordination anniversary congratulations, and other kind sentiments, I am greatly thankful, and I do not take that for granted.
All things change, only God stays the same, so I have to tell you about a major change in my life. I am not going to be involved in public ministry as a priest any longer. There are certain persons in authority in the Church that want me gone, and I shall be gone. I have been guilty of many things in the course of my life, and could easily and justifiably be considered unfit to engage in public ministry as a priest. The present complaint that you have heard about is, as far as I know, from the one person that I can honestly say I did more to help and support than any human being in my entire life. I forgive her and hope only good things for her. I am not going to get into a back and forth or argument with the Church or anyone else about this matter.
Suffice it to say that I love the Catholic Church and accept what has transpired. Unfortunately, the process used is inherently and fatally flawed, but the bishops have the power, apparently, to operate anyway they see fit. I cannot give a lengthy explanation of what has transpired, but I can tell you that the most likely outcome is that they leave me suspended indefinitely and just let me fade away. They cant prove Im guilty of the things alleged because Im not, and they cant prove Im innocent because that is simply illogical and impossible. All civilized societies know that. Certain leaders in the Catholic Church apparently do not.
I accept moving on, but I am not ready to be altogether extinguished just yet. In the final analysis I have only one of only two viable choices: 1. I can quietly lie down and die, or 2. I can go on in ways that I am able to go on.
I did not start this process, the Bishop of Corpus Christi, Texas ordered my superiors, against their will and better judgment, to do it. He in fact threatened to release a reprehensible and libelous letter to all of the bishops if they did not suspend me. He has a perfect right to do so, and I defend that right. Bishops arent bound by civil laws and procedures in internal Church matters. I agree with that, and would defend to the death the Churchs right to proceed as they see fit. He is the bishop and he has the right to govern as he sees fit. It isnt an easy task. Many forces besiege him, including pressure from other bishops.
My canon lawyer and my civil lawyers have concluded that I cannot receive a fair and just hearing under the Churchs present process. The Church will conclude that I am not cooperating with the process because I refuse to give up all of my civil and human rights in order to hold harmless anyone who chooses to say defamatory and actionable things against me with no downside to them. The case may be on hold indefinitely, but my life cannot be. Some of the things that might surprise you about the way some of the bishops treat accused priests are as follows:
1. The identity of the accuser is not revealed. You can guess, but you dont actually know. Nor are the exact allegations made known to you. Hence, you have an interesting situation of having to respond to an unknown accuser making unknown accusations (unknown to the accused and his counsel).
2. The persons chosen to investigate the allegations normally have no qualifications to do so. They certainly didnt graduate from the FBI academy, nor do they have any other background to qualify them to interrogate or otherwise interview witnesses.
3. There are no set rules of evidence or norms of procedure.
4. You are for all practical purposes assumed guilty until you can prove you are innocent. This one is truly baffling. No civilized society operates that way. If you are accused of something you are considered innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
5. The accused and his counsel have no right to obtain and review any of the evidence against him.
6. The accused and his counsel are not provided the names of witnesses, nor are they permitted to cross-examine them.
7. There is a general unwillingness or outright refusal by certain of the bishops to abide by applicable statutes of limitations, both in canon and civil law. There are good reasons for these statutes. Time has a way of clouding memories and distorting perceptions.
By the way, Canon Law does not dictate this. They choose to selectively ignore or violate both Canon Law and Civil Law, as they deem appropriate and or expeditious. Once again, they apparently have the discretionary power to do this, and if thats the way it is I have to accept that as reality.
The bottom line is that the only way a just outcome is likely, in my view and that of my counsel, both civil and canon lawyers, is by accident, rather than as a result of the process.
I will not try to fight this irrational and unjust situation for the simple reason that I dont want to be placed in an adversarial posture against the Church. For 20 years I did my best to guard and feed the sheep. Now, based on a totally unsubstantiated, undocumented allegation from a demonstrably troubled person I was thrown out like yesterdays garbage. I accept that. Perhaps I deserve that.
I cant do what I cant do. I can only do what I can do. I shall continue, black sheep that I am, to speak; and sheep dog that I am, to guard the sheepthis time around not just in the Church, but also in the entire world. I am, indeed, not ready to be extinguished. Under the name The Black Sheep Dog, I shall be with you through radio broadcasts and writing. My autobiography, The Black Sheep Dog, is almost ready for publication. My topics will be broader than in the past, and my audience likewise is apt to be broader. Ill do what I can under the circumstances.
Please dont bother the bishop or complain because it will do no good and it wastes valuable time and energy, both his and yours.
I hope you stay with us and follow us into our new domain and name of The Black Sheep Dog. Through writing and broadcasting we hope to continue to dispense truth and hope to a world so much in need of it. For those of you who choose to part company and go away from us, we wish you well and thank you for your many kindnesses over the years. Well miss you in our usual meeting places, but assure you that there will be new places for us to meet, just like in the good old days, so for now,
God bless you, God love you, and goodbye.
John Corapi (once called father, now The Black Sheep Dog)
“Do you think the statement, the original article, sounds Christlike? I think it sounds like an affronted human being taking his ball and leaving the field.”
Being Christlike is an enviable Christian goal. Unfortunately, nobody reaches that goal.
Yes, his statement sounds like an affronted human being.
Taking his ball and leaving the field? That is sort of his point. The Hierarchy has kicked the ball out from under him and showed him not the Bench, but the bleachers.
I, for one, will not follow “The Black Sheep Dog” who, when the going got tough, protested at the injustice of it all and left the battlefield.
And therefore, the goal should be abandoned and we should be satisfied with our clergy's (and ourselves) behaving like classless high-schoolers?
I don't buy it. I know people "made perfect through suffering," or as near as makes no difference, so I know that laying down the ego is a realistic possibility. However, I think it's a better possibility for the clergy nobody's ever heard of than for the "rock stars."
Perseverence to the end is how Scripture puts it...
let’s all get our heads out of the sand. bishops bend over backwards to put up with unfaithful priests, for him not to defend himself is proof enough for me that fame and fortune has gone to his head. it’s a shame.
In reading through these threads on this specific case, it's very obvious that not many Catholics have known anyone accused - priest or laity - since the Dallas Accord went into effect. I do. Someone I used to work with, who was treated horridly. See my comments on the other thread for what I had to say.
IMO (and this is after seeing about ten popular, good men nationwide who did nothing wrong be accused (in one case by someone he didn't know) and be put on "administrative leave" without any explanation (some stories have been publicized)), the Dallas Accord was put into place so fast, the bishops didn't take the time to think it through. We are seeing in slow, painful motion why the Church has moved glacially over the centuries - to avoid mistakes and injustice. Whether or not the passage of the Dallas Accord was a deliberate attempt to rid the priesthood and diocesan staffs of people more popular than the other clergy, I have no way of knowing, but that's what it looks like it is being used to do.
Now, we have to figure out how the laity can work to explain this to the bishops without bruising the wrong personas....
i guess he is hoping to millions from his new book, i guess a beachfront house won’t behind.
That’s one heck of a cynical thing to say. Whatever happened has messed with his head and the man deserves compassion and prayers. And, when it comes to the treatment of people accused in the American Church, unfortunately, he is correct. At the very least, whether or not there is any crime here, he is bringing attention to a pretty unjust system put in place by the USCCB, which doesn’t even have any true authority in the overall Church. It’s just a joint statement machine that they use to abdicate responsibility for saying anything under their own titles.
“Programs like STAND and whatever it is our diocese has are for the insurance companies.”
Yes, for adults. When an adult volunteers for mock trial or football, they take STAND training.
But a 14 year old kid taking STAND training?
“Herein lies his essential problem. It is a crisis of faith. He does not believe that God is in charge”
On the other hand, maybe he does think God is in charge and he is supposed to go another route.
he deserves prayers, compassion when he comes clean about his conduct. he obviously didn’t want an investigation into his lifestyle, and was willing to give up the priesthood to protect his secrets from coming to light.
Everyone deserves prayers at any time. That's what my Catholic upbringing taught me. And, I know I'm the lone voice on these threads saying this, but, regardless of his innocence or guilt he is absolutely correct about the process.
we don’t know about the process, he chose to run away.
“we should be satisfied with our clergy’s (and ourselves) behaving like classless high-schoolers? “
Where has he acted like a “classless high schooler”?
...I’m sure if you were accused of infidelity in a very public way, you would want to defend yourself. Father Corapi’s point is that he cannot defend himself and his justice will be based on randomness.
“lets all get our heads out of the sand. bishops bend over backwards to put up with unfaithful priests, for him not to defend himself is proof enough for me that fame and fortune has gone to his head. its a shame.”
His point is that he cannot defend himself. More accurately, you should have stated, “bishops bent over backwards to protect pedophiles”.
Now they are overcompensating to CYA....or CTA.
he can’t defend himself - sounds like a pr excuse, just like politicians quit to “spend more time with their family”. sadly his actions have quilt written all over them.
“we dont know about the process, he chose to run away.”
No, he does know the process and many informed Catholics do as well.
It is you who choose to stick your head in the sand. The Church has erred in the past and it can err now.
he is acting like a guilty man. why doesn’t he explain what his relationship with this woman was, and release his schedule and financial records. no, he chose to “lawyer up” and then run. innocent men don’t act like this, especially if it means giving up the priesthood. it is a shame.
“he is acting like a guilty man. why doesnt he explain what his relationship with this woman was”
LOL...He is not allowed to say who she is or even know what her accusations are.
not true, he can say whatever he wants, who is going to stop him. prediction, he pays the woman off with he “black sheep”. book proceeds and then buys more dye for his beard, i guess to make him more attractive to younger women. can you imagine st paul dying his beard? big clue there is a problem.