Our colleagues and friends at BCI have brilliantly exercised the inanity HERE.
Let me explain to you the reasons why this feels like a shameless exploitation of the victims of sexual abuse to put a shine on the the Cardinal's image.
An anniversary of a Boston Globe spotlight series is a non-event. It is not material to the crimes that took place.
Let's use Penn State an example: Sandusky stands accused of raping a child at Penn State and numerous others elsewhere. There was a young man who admits to, literally watching it happen at Penn State. He went home and called his father and the coach. The coach called the athletic director. A University Vice President was told. Nobody called the police.
The newspaper story is not the "anniversary" of the disturbing events.
That make sense? The newspaper story has nothing to do with it.
Making a pedophile solemnity out of a newspaper story is contrived.
Making up a reason to tee up the Cardinal with a group of victims and a kleenex is a non sequitur that gives the appearance of a publicity stunt to benefit the Cardinal.
Several sources have told me that this idea came from Terry Donilon, the Cardinal's publicity guy, which confirms my suspicions. I will be asking Terry to confirm or deny if this birdbrained idea is running out of the Chancery publicity office and will update when I have further information.
Evidently there still isn't anyone in the Chancery who can say "This is a stupid idea".
Using victims to improve the public image of the Cardinal is spiritually abusive. Victims have obsessive thoughts about their crimes. There was value to disclosing the crimes and cover up, letting the victims open up all of the things they have buried inside of them, getting them help, exposing the dysfunction, profusely apologize, try to compensate them for the magnitude of their loss. After going above and beyond the call of duty, you then have to allow the doctors the space and time to heal the wounds professionally. You do all you can spiritually. It is destructive to interrupt the healing process to take them back to their obssesive thoughts and pain and emotions. Part of the penance is living and dealing with your guilt without burdening the people you hurt.
The last thing you do while trying to build is to once again paint all priests and the Catholic Church as the institution that coddles pedophiles. It is time for all of us to move forward. We never forget, but we must move forward.
For all concerned, public relations must now focus on the love, the gifts our precious Church has available, the goodness of our priests.
The Cardinal has spent close to a decade now on the subterfuge of sexual abuse that happened in the 60s.
For the love of Christ, we,must stop the madness of forever tarring us as pedophiles. These publicity stunts are serving nobody but the Cardinal. Stop sabotaging healing by perpetually parading morbidity, dysfunction and crimes of a handful of people in our 2000 year history. We are much more than these despicable events.
Find another way to polish the image of the Cardinal.
Give it a rest. Let us all heal.