As most know by now, Father John Corapi was accused by an unidentified woman of "abusing" her. I won't rehash that entire history here; you can read it on his new blog. At any rate, his faculties were suspended and it seemed that he was given no rights whatsoever to defend himself. Agree with this or not, John Corapi has decided to forego public ministry as a priest.
As you read through the comments, you'll notice a variety of mindsets. There are those who state quite plainly that they always believed he was an egotistical fraud. These adolescents don't deserve the time of day. There are those who understand why he's chosen the route that he did. While I have no basis of opining on his guilt or innocense, I do know that the hierarchy's investigative processes are fatally flawed. He didn't stand a snowball's chance in hell of obtaining fair treatment.
Then there are those who I might call the sappy petulant whiners, waxing oh-so-sanctimoneous in their disappointment in Corapi's decision. I'll try to sum it up in a hypothetical paragraph: "Oh Father, why didn't you submit? Our Lord is trying to purify you! Perhaps He wants you to engage in contemplation! You should submit even as He was scourged! You must learn humble submission" As I read all this, I thought of how Our Lord denounced the Pharisees who sought to lay heavy burdens and not lift a finger to help. They seem to want Corapi to fall on a sword for them so that they can "be edified" from afar. With "friends" like those, who needs enemies?
An important note - I am neither theologian nor canon lawyer. I've no knowledge about Corapi's innocence or guilt. On the other hand, I don't think that the other few hundred folks who've commented have any more credentials than do I.
Today Corapi announced that he filed for civil damages for defamation. Before there's any self-righteous sniffing about him "taking the low road" or other such nonsense, let's consider two things. First, let's consider how scandalous it is that Corapi would have to seek relief from a civil court as opposed to canonical court. Second, he did this on the advice of both Bishop (Emeritus) Rene Gracida and the founder of his religious society. By the way - I commend to your reading a post by Bishop Gracida, as he sheds much-needed light on this situation from a bishop's vantage point.
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