Damian’s Reform


This memorial of the bishop, reformer, monk, poet, theologian and mystic Saint Peter Damian (+1073) is an a propos one. He was a stern man, true to his principles, seeing the Church of the 11th century in deep need of reform, and the same may be said of every age, perhaps most of all, our own. For what other age can we reform? Saint Peter’s 1050 work Liber Gomorrhianus – the Book of Gomorrha – spares no punches in condemning the sins of the clergy, with particular focus on the unnatural vice of sodomy, corrupting the mind, soul, body and society.

I would highly recommend Pope Benedict’s meditation on Saint Peter from back in 2009, which seems a whole different era.

It was the same Pope Benedict who began to see how deep the corruption was in the Church – which was perhaps one of the primary causes of his own resignation four years later. Not least, Benedict saw past the façade of Father Macial, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, on which the editor of Crisis has some poignant words, going so far as to call for their immediate and complete suppression.

And so the world turns. Now, off to do my own small part, to prayer and Mass.