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Put two and two together

Some people think I am anti-Catholic. If saying the church is corrupt, when it is, makes me Anti-catholic I plead guilty. The story I've told of where the Palm Beach diocese when faced with a choice of continuing the health insurance of a diocesan employee who was on hospital bedrest, or end her insurance(require she pay it, but how can she when her income is gone because she can't work?) is very true and I got documentation to back it up what I accuse the diocese of.

Because I'm the husband of the mother in question. That's my son in a Boynton Beach cemetery. The pastor of our church, with the backing of the human resources department of the diocese of Palm Beach, took this action. I came out swinging as you can imagine, but not before the diocese bunkered down for a whole day not answering my phone calls and then accusing me of constantly calling them. Less than a week after their first letter, the church reversed course. In between my wife was put through incredible stress. Did it help cause my wife's medical condition to deteriorate and her to lose her son? We'll never know, but this wasn't the way to handle the situation.

If the pastor was worried about the money, my wife who is well loved in our parrish, there would have been no problem about doing a fundraiser. Actually that's what happened, two prominent lay people of our parish organized it. The idiot pastor didn't think about that possibility or the diocese(My wife has met four consecutive bishops of Palm Beach through her work including Cardinal Sean O'Malley). Or that by cutting the insurance they were causing stress for a mother and child in a delicate situation. The stress didn't end for my wife after the quick reversal, because we never knew how successful or not the fundraiser would be. The diocese and the pastor endangered two human lives for money. Because of what happened and my son being in a cemetery , I'll say it to the day I die. If the church has a choice between two human lives and $80 a week, they will take the money. Cause that is what happened to me, my wife, and my son. Someone try to justify what they did to us as God's work. I'd like to hear it. The diocese's and pastor's behavior was sick to say the least and I'm not even telling you all of it. How about a threat of blackmail, the HR dept saying they won't talk to me because I'm not a employee, and they not answering my simple phone call after Daniel died just to ask about making sure he was added to the insurance.

I could write volumes about what happened. This is the short story.


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Comments (31)

Your situation was tragic, ... (Below threshold)

Your situation was tragic, no question. I'm truly sorry for what your family has been through. I nearly lost my son several times before and after his birth, I understand some of your pain. But for you to paint the entire Roman Catholic Church as "corrupt" because of the actions of one pastor, one diocese, is wrong and you know it.

Are you forgetting the prie... (Below threshold)

Are you forgetting the priest sex scandals in this country? Did you know two of them were made bishop of Palm Beach. They resigned and Bishop O'Malley was appointed. He was in charge of the diocese when what I described above happened.

Who appointed these men? The problems/corruption of the Catholic Church is much deeper than the actions of one diocese.

While I can sympathize with... (Below threshold)

While I can sympathize with your loss, painting everyone with the same broad brush doesn't quite cut it.

Over the years, I've found that assholes come in many different stripes and colors.

Read the article again, mas... (Below threshold)

Read the article again, masochist. He's apparently condemning the whole Church as corrupt because of this single incident in his life. That's what I'm addressing. Not going to get into the pedophilia scandal with you since you've apparently decided nearly ALL priests are pedophiles.

JJ,The FLorida Mas... (Below threshold)


The FLorida Masochist first of all is me. My old commenter here at Wizbang and it still sometimes appears.

I don't paint all priests as pedophiles, but many non-pedophile priests did nothing to stop the pedophiles amongst them. They protected them, covered it up, didn't report it to the police. What for? Were they all doing God's work?

GF,Painting with a... (Below threshold)


Painting with a broad brush is a wizbang traditon. Two legislators propose a dumb law and all of a sudden its an attempt by the state of CT to take over the Catholic Church.

On the other hand we're to forget the many symptoms of sickness in the Catholic Church today. Money scandals, priest scandals, here in the US and world-wide. How much of this are we supposed to swallow before we finally accept there is something wrong?

As I've mentioned before, m... (Below threshold)

As I've mentioned before, my experience with the Sisters of Mercy Health System, affectionately [NOT] called the Merciless Sisters, is one that backs up Bill's contempt for their fiscal considerations trumping morality.

I am sorry for your loss an... (Below threshold)

I am sorry for your loss and can understand why your are angry. This pastor obviosly acted wrongly and deserves every condemnation that could be heaped upon him; but I do believe that you are tarring the entire Church with a broad and indiscriminate brush.
Your argument that you are right in doing so because of the posting about the CT issue does so is false. Both because two wrongs don't make a right and yes two legislators proposing this dumb bill IS an attempt by the government of CT to exert control over the Catholic Church. Was that one article what sent you into this flurry of posting? I will anknowledge that there are some real pieces of work who wear the cloth and there are areas where the Church needs reform but hunting for obscure articles about washing machines and excommunication and using those to smear an entire organization of hundreds of thousands of individuals is not the way to do it.
You have a tragic story of gross misconduct by members the Church as your justification for saying the whole of the Chruch heirarchy is corrupt. Yet for every story like yours there are perhaps dozens or hundreds of stories from people who did not get abused by priests, were treated with nothing but kindness and respect and who recived a helping hand from the Catholic Church when they needed it. My own story would be like that.
In short I understand your anger and I hope you will understand why I don't see things quite the same way. I am actually quite sypathetic to your views towards reforming some elements of the Church, only some though, it is an organization made up of allways fallable humans and thus always needs improvement. The Catholic Church has gone through periods of corruption and reform many times in its history and will do so in the future.
In closing I pray that you find what you are looking for and that eventually the anger and hurt in you will fade.

BTW my comment about anti-Catholics in your last post were directed far more at hyperbolist who I am sure will be here shortly with a screed about how the Catholic Church is an evil cult full of devil worshippers or something.
Sorry for the long post.

Maybe youtr wife had no inc... (Below threshold)

Maybe youtr wife had no income while away from her job but you did.Or did you have no income, no savings, no assets, no family, no phone, no access to second mortgage, no access to payday loans, no access to pawn shops. Desperate situations calls for desperate actions. You or some resource available to you could have paid the cost during the time you fought the initial decision. A week strikes me as a very short period of time to resolve an issue like this. Only a week for a parish priest decision to be overturned by the diocese. Sounds like extraordinary quick action. The Church is responsible for the health related issues that happened during a week? I assume your wife was on bedrest for a reason. Maybe it was the underlying reason for the bedrest that caused the death of your son. You suggest a fundraiser could have resolved this situation and it could have been organized and funds available in less than a week? It takes longer than that to get a bingo permit. If you consider making a few calls to well connected parishoners a fundraiser maybe so. If it had been me I would have made the calls myself on behalf of my wife and son.

Well you could move to CT.<... (Below threshold)

Well you could move to CT.


No doubt that would be a solution. Instead of a corrupt religious hierarchy you can have a secular corrupt hierarchy in charge of the church.

Maybe Senator Dodd can run for the pope when he gets tossed.

You need to find God in a d... (Below threshold)

You need to find God in a different place. You don't need a church or a priest to be your filter, you can go directly to God thru Jesus Christ our Lord. Read the Bible. Do you believe?

Will libs soon force all re... (Below threshold)

Will libs soon force all restaurants or grocery stores to feed families that can't afford to eat on their own?

Too broad a brush and 2000 ... (Below threshold)

Too broad a brush and 2000 years of history. Bill, I sympathize but the Catholic Church never claimed to be smart business people. ww

On the other hand ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:
On the other hand we're to forget the many symptoms of sickness in the Catholic Church today. Money scandals, priest scandals, here in the US and world-wide. How much of this are we supposed to swallow before we finally accept there is something wrong?

This has been going on to some degree for a long time. Luther had the answer. If you believe the Catholic Church is corrupt, leave it and become a Protestant. Look for a Church where the Bible is the ultimate Earthly authority.

I'm sorry about what happen... (Below threshold)

I'm sorry about what happened to you. You have every right to be angry. Even though it doesn't seem like it right now, one day you will be able to smile and laugh again.

God has not abandoned you. He is real and does care. Unfortunately, we live in an world full of evil, and yes, evil does manage to work itself into the church. But this doesn't mean that the entire church is wicked. The devil does have people who pretend to be Christians in the church whose primary goal is to keep people out of the church and it works.

For some reason, you were chosen for this experience and it is my prayer that very soon God reveals to you why.

The Democratic Party is at ... (Below threshold)

The Democratic Party is at least as corrupt as the Catholic Church. For that matter, so it the Republican Party, and those MoveOn people. I have been Catholic for over 53 years and have never seen anything similar to what happened to Bill Jempty. What I have seen is me and my friends feeding the hungry and clothing the poor for decades.

Take any scoundrel and speak only good of him and you get a saint, take a saint and speak only evil and you get a scoundrel.

It is easier to fix things from the inside, and that is why I stay. So far, in my area, there has been very little to fix.

This has been goin... (Below threshold)
This has been going on to some degree for a long time. Luther had the answer. If you believe the Catholic Church is corrupt, leave it and become a Protestant.

So, there is no possibility that a Protestant institution will ever mistreat its constituents or ever become corrupt? The Reformation solved these problems? Good to know.

The Reformation solved t... (Below threshold)

The Reformation solved these problems?

Heavens, no. With all institutions comprised of men - be it religious groups or political parties - there will be corruption. I've known Catholics and Protestants alike who were good, devout people.

The Reformation did nothing about the depravity of man. It only illuminated it and emphasized the solution: Peace with God by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.

Bill,Your beef isn... (Below threshold)


Your beef isn't with the Catholic church, it's with a man, a fallen and flawed man. I truly am sorry for your loss and your wife's grief. But, your anger is misdirected.

I hope you don't mind if I continue to pray for you.

OregonMuse,<blockquot... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:


So, there is no possibility that a Protestant institution will ever mistreat its constituents or ever become corrupt? The Reformation solved these problems? Good to know.

You misunderstood my comment. The subject of my comment is someone who believes the Catholic Church is corrupt. What value is the Catholic Church to such an individual? What value is such an individual to the Catholic Church? Better for both the individual and the Catholic Church for such an individual to seek salvation in the company of those who believe salvation comes only through an individual's own faith in Jesus and what He did on the cross.

Protestant churches have many of the same problems the Catholic Church has, but a Protestant believes they obtain salvation directly from the Source. The value of a church to a Protestant is to have fellowship with other believers in order to increase their understanding and strengthen their faith. It's the concept that steel sharpens steel. It's much easier for a Protestant to change the ways of their church if they find it needs changing. Also, a Protestant has many more choices of churches.

I don't paint all priest... (Below threshold)

I don't paint all priests as pedophiles, but many non-pedophile priests did nothing to stop the pedophiles amongst them. They protected them, covered it up, didn't report it to the police. What for? Were they all doing God's work?

"Many" priests don't make the entire Church corrupt. Another thing, most of the priest abuse cases were not pedophilia- the vast majority were abuse of post-pubescent teenage boys. That's a homosexual attraction, not pedophilia. That was another major issue the Church had to confront - whether or not to allow homosexuals as priests.

One of the biggest problems causing the whole church scandal was the fact that, for years, the Church was assured by mental health professionals that offenders could be rehabilitated. When the priest was "cleared" by the psychologist (or psychiatrist), the Church placed them back into service, usually in a different parish. They were continually assured that homosexual priests would not be an issue.

Oh, and this isn't just a Catholic Church problem. A Methodist church I used to attend had a new pastor forced upon it who had been convicted of a sexual offense against a child (I don't remember what exactly). Due to this, the church's after school children's program was canceled because no one wanted their kids there.

One more thing. The percentage of priests who abused children/teenagers was very, very low. In fact, more teachers commit abuse or have improper relationships with students than priests with parishioners.

Also, would you refer to Am... (Below threshold)

Also, would you refer to America as a "racist country" since there are still some racists living here?

I am anti-Catholic, no need... (Below threshold)

I am anti-Catholic, no need to guess or call me out. The Catholic church is, and has been for nearly its entire existence, corrupt and morally bankrupt. It maintains its status by thorough indoctrination of its members, as is evidenced by the outrage in these posts.

Where do I begin? The inquisition? selling indulgences? pedophile priests (broad brush, sure, but damned if there aren't a lot of them, and the church has done too little, too late)? bigotry disguised as political lobbies against gays (ironic since the priesthood is one of the most popular "closets" in which to hide), jews, and a dozen other groups that they condemn in order to unite their constituents against a common "enemy"(take a look at how much money they threw at prop 8 - that's the real reason why they need Bill's wife's money)? the idiotic stance against birth control (their master plan to win through overpopulation disguised as a concern over the sanctity of the act as procreation - has the pope heard of AIDS? is the church going to help feed all those mouths that they have propagated?)? the equally idiotic insistence on celibacy (an unnatural state if I know anything about human nature) for clergy that only drives their activities underground to even less savory sources, such as prostitutes or your kids?

The catholics I know have always been the rowdies, the "bad" kids, the partiers. I can only assume that is because they get a free pass if they confess. Either that, or they're rebelling against the crazy nuns smacking them across their knuckles. In 7th grade, when the Catholic schools dump their kids into the public school system where I'm from, the catholic girls were known for sexual proclivity (as boys, we were psyched - a whole wave of new girls, and they're easy!) and the boys were principal's office frequent-flyers.

The catholic church is more of a political machine and a business than a religion. Religion is just how they sell it to their backers. that, and guilt - lots and lots of guilt. From the same people who protected the pedophiles that raped your kids.

Sure, they do charity work. So did my college fraternity. It's good PR, but it's not proof of goodness or morality - my frat looked like animal house the rest of the time.

From what I see, not much good comes out of the catholic church, other than the consistency of the rituals and rites that the automatons, whoops, congregation finds so comforting. Otherwise they're trying to stick it to all non-catholics and promote their scientifically and socially inept policies.

Let the cries for my head from the brainwashed masses commence. All I can say is, your mental picture of that church is a lot better than the reality.

I was going to write a post... (Below threshold)

I was going to write a post describing how abc is wrong in every respect; but I suppose that it would be a waste of breath as anything I say would be pointless as I am one of the "indoctrinated" and "brainwashed masses" he talks about.
I guess that's the easy way out in an argument; posit a host of overthetop and unverified statements and then go on to say that anyone who disagrees with you is a brainwashed lunatic. Let me try that approach.

You have been brainwashed by anti-Catholic propaganda and likely was dropped on the head as a child. Though I don't know you, I am pretty sure that you beat homeless people and steal money from orphans when you are not indulging in caniibalism. Any response of yours to these assertions is going to be disregaurded as you are, like I said, brainwashed and mentally damaged and thus have nothing of importance to say.
Wow that was easy; I didn't have to stick to the facts or say anything with intellectual rigor. I just did a quick hit and run posting and ran off giggling with glee. Thank you abc for teaching me your ways. (rolls eyes)

Besides all you of anti-Cat... (Below threshold)

Besides all you of anti-Catholics had better watch your back.
The Church has some of the best albino assassins in the world.

Heavens, no. With ... (Below threshold)
Heavens, no. With all institutions comprised of men - be it religious groups or political parties - there will be corruption.

Precisely. Then the encouragements to Bill to leave the Catholic Church make no sense. Why will it help him to flee one corrupt church for another? The theological reasoning I've read from you and Mac Lorry doesn't seem to address the issue, to wit: Bill's family got reamed by a Catholic institution that was either incompetent or corrupt. I don't see how emphasizing the Protestant understanding of soteriology is particularly relevant to his situation.

For those calling the Churc... (Below threshold)
retired military:

For those calling the Church evil, etc think about this.

How many corrupt presidents have the US have? Corrupt congressmen, judges, slavery, treatment of Indians, fleecing of the taxpayers, etc.

Does that make the US and everyone in it evil and corrupt?

Yeah I didnt think so.

Have some people suffered due actions taken by members of the Church? Yes. THe same way people have suffered by actions taken by the US govt. Do you damn the govt the way you damn the church? Some do, some dont.

Men do evil things. The Church does not. The teachings of the Church do not condone evil. For some, like those who are proabortion, that is a reason to damn it for anything. The church is evil for being against abortions yet the folks who are proabortion think that a million abortions a year is just peachy.

If you have an axe to grind do so against men and not the Church.

The theological reasonin... (Below threshold)

The theological reasoning I've read from you and Mac Lorry doesn't seem to address the issue,

Please re-read what I wrote in the context of what you wrote. I am not advocating Bill to leave the Catholic church. I was merely offering an explanation as to what the Reformation was.

OregonMuse,<blockquot... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:


Then the encouragements to Bill to leave the Catholic Church make no sense. Why will it help him to flee one corrupt church for another?

If Bill's only complaint was the medical insurance issue then your point is valid as he could just as easily run into the same problem in any Protestant church. But if you read Bill's posts # 2, 5 and 6 you'll see Bill is taking about corruption within the hierarchy of the church, and not just greed, but immorality.

The Catholic Church is based on the doctrine of the Primacy, and teaches that forgiveness of sin is achieved through church ritual, with the assistance of a priest in confession. Can a priest unrepentant in his own immorality assist another in forgiveness of sin?

Now look at it from the point of view of other Catholics. Does not Bill's accusations damage the Catholic Church? Are there no Catholics already weak in faith for whom such accusations may turn them into a non-practicing Catholics? Think about their salvation and to who's account their loss may be held charged.

That's why I say it's better for both the person and the Church if a person who believes the Catholic Church is corrupt to become Protestant. Even the Catholic Church recognizes the possibility of salvation for Protestants, so leaving the Church may be a better outcome for both the person and the Church.

Truly a tragic tale, and I ... (Below threshold)

Truly a tragic tale, and I sympathize

You're still anti-catholic though.

The church is a man-made re... (Below threshold)

The church is a man-made representation of the faith or beliefs that I believe most people should be able to come up with on their own, without shepherding from the flawed representatives of their likewise-flawed construct.

Churches in general, and especially the Catholic church, are businesses first, and if they manage to help some people along the way while they take care of themselves, all the better.

The Catholic church has too much money and influence, and meddles in politics far too much. It would have even more money if it wasn't busy throwing it at politicians. The U.S. is not a Catholic institution, and as such, should not be making laws only to advance the church's agenda. Let their constituents vote their consciences, and if that wins the day, so be it. As with other special interests, deep pockets does not make them right, at least not in a democracy.

STaylor - Congratulations! Recognizing that you have been brainwashed is the first step...
If you think I can't find backing for any of my assertions, you don't get out much. This is a blog commentary, and I will not be spending the time to cite sources. Feel free to waste your time citing stuff to prove the inquisition didn't happen - maybe you can buddy up with the priests who believe and preach that the holocaust didn't happen. For an organization whose business model is based on forgiveness, they sure have a lot of folks on their "enemies" list.






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