The much-anticipated – in one sense – “McCarrick” report was released today, and the flurries of commentaries are making their rounds, even though the thing weighs in at a whopping 461 pages. There is a summary, for those who want the reader’s digest version, if you want even to read it at all.
The whole sordid affair is, at this point, more saddening than scandalous, even if scandal there was and be. Some say the ‘system’ was, and is still, broken – but bonne chances with systems filled with unvirtuous men, who seem to have no qualm of conscience in sheer duplicity and deceit. How does one go back decades, and lay blame on those who were the victims of such lies? As my dear Scotch mother used to say in her endearing brogue, ye can catch a thief, but ye cannae catch a liar.
Ah, what a tangled web we weave. The problem is not so much with the system that’s broken and bent – which it may well be – but the persons within the system, malformed by sin, by lies, by complaisance. We are all to some extent part of it, and our task at present may for now be presented as two-fold:
Refuse to live by lies, in our own lives, and never to tell lies, not even small, ‘white’ ones to save us from embarrassment. Every lie told aids and abets the bigger lies.
And not to allow this sordid mess, nor any other, to scandalize us. Our Lord predicted such times as these, along with the heavy millstones for those who have led other astray, and don’t repent. We ourselves must stick by the Church, the barque of Peter, regardless of those who sit on Peter’s chair own level of perspicacity, and their role in how this has has unfolded.
The answer? As always, sanctity, holiness, metanoia, the Mass, prayer, sacrifice, charity, and all the rest of the virtues. Reform begins, and even ends, with our own interiore conversione, without which all really is lost. But with which, all is truly gained.