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In the recent spate of pedophilic Catholic priest cases, I have a question for the board. I ask it here because I am wondering how your responses will be balanced against scriptural passages such as, "judge not..." and "how many times must I forgive my brother?".

Why should the church not turn in the guilty to receive the civil punishment they are due? What could possibly be the scriptural (or "RCC tradition) basis for such inaction? In other words, how do these archdiocese rationlize it?

For example, a pedophile priest confesses his sin to his confessor. The pedophilic act is both a sin and a crime. His confessor prescribes the appropriate response to his sin and the sin is presumed forgiven. On what basis does the church not require (or even suggest) that the criminal turn himself in to the authorities to be tried for his crime? Harboring a known criminal is a crime in and of itself. We are scripturally commanded to submit ourselves to civil authority.

This is not an esoteric question, nor is it intended to bash Catholicism. It is intended to get behind the façade protection that organization has offered her errant criminal priests. What gives them the right to harbor, support and protect criminals?

The word "cover up" is used throughout this article ( on the recent Boston pedophile priest horror. As a nation, we expect someone invovled in such action to be brought to stand trial as well. What is or should be the appropriate response to the church's cover up of pedophilia?

who, like most or all of you, abhors pedophilia
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