cool midsummer breeze
cool midsummer breeze
reminder of things to come
balm for my body
Out this morning for a walk with D. Taking advantage of an unexpected change in the air. Thinking about what’s going on here in the USA and abroad. Especially in churches and religious communities.
Recent revelations of clergy sex abuse of more than 1000 minors in Pennsylvania have sent our state and religious communities reeling. Not a moment too soon, yet decades too late for victims robbed of their childhood, adolescence, and sense of worth as children of God.
This time it’s about priests, bishops and the highest governing bodies of the Roman Catholic Church. It could easily have been about ordained leaders in conservative and liberal churches of all Christian denominations, including those that claim not to be denominations.
Abuse of power has no boundaries.
In the meantime, thousands upon thousands of children, young people and adults wonder when and how this madness will end. Everything in us cries out for freedom, though many of us have believed the lies of our perpetrators:
- This is for your own good.
- You made me do it.
- God told me to do it.
- I can’t help myself.
- This will bring you closer to God.
- No one will ever find out.
- This is our little secret.
- You should be ashamed of yourself.
- I can help you with your career.
- If you tell anyone, I’ll kill your brother.
Our lives are precious. We’re here for a purpose. What’s yours?
Today mine is to spotlight the reality of this rampant non-secret that’s eating away at families, communities, religious and secular institutions. To think these things don’t matter in public life is to live on another planet. These aren’t private matters. They are public and private relations disasters at every level.
No, I haven’t given up on following Jesus. I have, however, given up the notion that what happened to me in my youth and childhood should be over and done by now. It’s never over and done. Especially when there are millions of other victims out there. Overlooked, uncounted, discounted and left to their own devices. From the outside, some get along better than others. Yet deep inside, competing voices vie for everlasting attention.
I know, because I’m still doing battle, though not without hope. My purpose today is to tell the truth, without loss of hope and with the most powerful voice I have–my writing.
©Elouise Renich Fraser, 20 August 2018
Photo found at kalynskitchen.com