A reader writes:
I fear the problem in the Church is the problem you see on the right: The organization has been whittled down to a few diehards who believe they are absolutely right and see any failings of their group not as a leadership problem, or a moral problem, but a media problem.
I remember attending a mass in Montreal in 2002, just as the sex abuse scandals in the United States were surfacing. The priest dedicated his entire sermon to condemning journalists for supposedly persecuting the Church and instructed his parishioners to not listen to anything they heard about the abuse.
That set the stage for the next several years before I gave up on the Church: When the hierarchy addressed the abuse, it refused to reflect on its culpability, instead casting the Church as victim of a vast conspiracy trying to drag Catholicism down. And because many of us who were outraged at what happened left the Church, the remaining parishioners -- not all, but I'd say a bare majority -- believe that narrative and are more furious at the evil, evil MSM who uncovered the abuse than the leaders who enabled it.
I have more good memories of the Catholic Church than bad, and I want to see the current hierarchy swept away and real reforms put in place. But, like the conservative movement in this country, the rank-and-file seems distressingly willing to accept and embrace the lies floated by its leaders. Until that changes, I don't see how the Church reforms.