KNA rises to occation where Bishops failed Kerala priest outfits apologize to sexual abuse victim’s family

By Babu K Peter  | in New Indian Express,: 08th March 2017|


                 James kottoor (Note: Something beautiful and praiseworthy at last? We heartily congratulate the Kerala Theological Association (KTA) for tendering an unconditional apology which is equivalent to admitting serious failure on the part of the priestly fraternity. Only it is not that  “the clergy may have deviated,” they “definitely and deliberately deviated..” which is proved by concrete action taken by some of the priests  to hush up things and help the criminal priest to shoot and scoot to Canada. That makes their apology a tainted one.

                Why stop with  saying “ordination” can’t make a priest “divine”, even a Pope doesn’t  get a “hot-line connection” to God when made Pope. Good Pope John XXIII left room  for doubt to anyone when he said in substance, “I am infallible only when I say correct things and I don’t sit on that chair to produce an ex-cathedra statement.” The priestly class are responsible for spreading these stupid ideas that they become “holy or sin-free” once ordained. They do it just to wield undue authority on  credulous, blindly believing laity to make them to lie down promptly and willingly to get raped by a priest. They thus prod innocent girls believe and behave like “Devadasis” in temples. Can there be more stupid mean things for a priest to do, that is, leading the sheep astray?

                  As for  formation of priests, according to many experts, 90% of the practices followed are totally outdated for the simple fact that their stress is on getting numbers, not quality. They want as many as possible to fill seminaries. In some seminaries in US the Rector was reported by some journalists at evening recreation,  to have gone about with a banyan with writing on the back; “I am gay?” which means unimaginable things are happening in seminary training in some places. Smoke doesn’t come without fire!.

                Verbal apologies, by a Cardinal or a priest Thelekat, without concrete remedial action, are of no value,  except for fooling the credulous. They can become insults added to injury to laity who the so-called “enlighten and holy” priests consider idiots. They are not, there are many enlightened laity. They are waiting to see how soon action is going to come, not education is going to start.

                   Yes action, it is not demeaning, but ennobling – it should have been — for the KNA to stoop to serve, as Jesus did when he knelt down on the floor, he could not have humiliated himself more, to wash the feet of his apostles. Francis did just that when he washed the feet of Muslim women. KNA’s apology without concrete action is a far cry to all these. The laity is not fooled by their extemporized sugar-coated words without action.  james kottoor, editor)


KOCHI: Even as a deluge of support pours in for Fr Robin, accused in the Kottiyoor sexual abuse case, the Kerala Theological Association (KTA) has issued an apology while accepting “the clergy may have deviated from the pious path”.

KTA, an organisation of priests, members of religious congregations and laymen engaged in research in theology, has tendered the apology in a statement to the victim, her family, the Catholic community and to society.  “The unfortunate incident evokes nothing but apology. We apologise for deviating from the spiritual way and for misleading the people,” a statement issued by Fr Vincent Kundukulam said.

 “It is an opportunity for priests to do a self-introspection. There is no point in covering it up by saying “we are also humans, after all,” he said. Society holds priests in high regard as the people have great expectations from them. Emotional outbursts and reactions on media indicate how much trust and respect they have reposed in them, the statement said.  It’s a misconception a person becomes divine once he is ordained a priest. If you consider priesthood as a profession and drift away from Jesus and the poor, you will fall, he said.

The priests should introspect whether they should be active in market-driven spheres, the KTA president said. Fr Kundukulam, a professor at the St Joseph’s Pontifical Seminary, Aluva, said it is relevant to review priestly formation.

 “It does not imply the present ways are outdated. But aspirants should be trained to adapt to the cultural changes in the modern world,” he said. KTA also condemned social media posts by priests and laity accusing the victim girl and her family.  “Apologies by Cardinal George Alencherry and Fr Paul Thelakkattu and the family of Fr Robin were soothing act. Despite this, attempts to blame the girl are unacceptable. Blame-shifting in lieu of initiating corrective measures is not fair,” Fr Kundukulam said.

The recent developments in Kerala is a pointer to the need for a new sexual culture.Those concerned should address the issue immediately. Sexuality is not discussed with due consideration within families and in religion because of pseudo morality and spirituality. Lets hope a better sexual culture will emerge in society through education, he said.

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