April 15th, 2011
01:59 PM ET

5 plead not guilty in Philadelphia sex abuse cases

By Sarah Hoye, CNN

Philadelphia (CNN) - Four priests and a parochial school teacher pleaded not guilty Friday to sexual abuse and conspiracy charges.

Edward Avery and Charles Engelhardt were charged with allegedly assaulting a 10-year-old boy at St. Jerome Parish in Philadelphia from 1998 to 1999.

Bernard Shero, a teacher in the school, is charged with allegedly assaulting the same boy there in 2000. Avery was defrocked in 2006.

James Brennan, another priest, is accused of assaulting a different boy, a 14 year old, in 1996. Brennan did not appear in court Friday.

Monsignor William Lynn, who served as the Secretary for Clergy under former Philadelphia Archbishop Anthony Bevilacqua was charged with endangering the welfare of a child in connection with the alleged assaults.

Inside a courtroom stuffed with reporters and others present for arraignments, one by one the defendants were called forward to sign court papers alongside their attorneys.

Although there was some squabbling between the assistant district attorney and the defense attorneys over the completeness of the discovery items, such as the location of statements from the accusers, the biggest holdup of the morning was coordinating attorney schedules in order to set the next court date for June 6.

A Philadelphia grand jury report released in February led to the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office criminally charging the four Philadelphia priests and the parochial school teacher. All five have also been charged with conspiracy.

Following the release of the 2011 grand jury report, Philadelphia's archbishop, Cardinal Justin Rigali, placed Lynn on administrative leave on February 18.

A total of 23 priests in the Philadelphia area have been placed on administrative leave.
The Archdiocese placed 21 priests on administrative leave on March 7. Another two priests, who were retired but allowed to assist in priestly duties, were placed on leave on March 30.

A gag order barring all parties involved in the criminal case from talking to the media imposed by a Philadelphia judge remains in effect.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity • Church • Courts • Pennsylvania • Sex abuse • United States

soundoff (76 Responses)
  1. blunt wraps

    One of my favorite posts.

    May 10, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  2. Artist

    We have a duty to shed light on the illness called religion...please pass this on:
    Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that makes it difficult to tell the difference between real and unreal experiences, to think logically, to have normal emotional responses, and to behave normally in social situations.
    Some of the symptons
    •False beliefs or thoughts that are not based in reality (delusions)
    •Hearing, seeing, or feeling things that are not there (hallucinations)

    April 18, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • JimmyNewtron

      Actually, I wish you would look it up and get a better definition. That stuff you have there needs a bit of work.

      April 18, 2011 at 11:00 pm |
    • Artist


      Actually, I wish you would look it up and get a better definition. That stuff you have there needs a bit of work.
      Nawwww I kind of like it

      May 10, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  3. Artist

    One thing about this forum, plenty of entertainment. Like going to an insane assylum and watching the patients live outside of reality. lol

    April 18, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Reality

      Saving 2 billion lost Christian souls to include Adelina's:

      There was and never will be any bodily resurrections i.e. No Easter, no Christianity- Priceless!!!

      April 19, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  4. Adelina

    True Christians in Catholic Church will endure until Jesus returns. Villains who maliciously attack the Church will be only ashamed at the end.

    April 17, 2011 at 10:55 pm |
    • helloeyes

      so.... you're a catholic AND a fortune-teller

      April 17, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
    • Adelina

      Helloeyes, I'm not Catholic or fortune-telling. Everything is written in the Bible.

      April 18, 2011 at 12:02 am |
    • Reality


      You noted: "Everything is written in the bible".

      Hmmm, you might want to review the following in order to increase your reference base:

      o 1. Historical Jesus Theories, earlychristianwritings.com/theories.htm – the names of many of the contemporary historical Jesus scholars and the ti-tles of their over 100 books on the subject.
      2. Early Christian Writings, earlychristianwritings.com/
      – a list of early Christian doc-uments to include the year of publication–
      30-60 CE Passion Narrative
      40-80 Lost Sayings Gospel Q
      50-60 1 Thessalonians
      50-60 Philippians
      50-60 Galatians
      50-60 1 Corinthians
      50-60 2 Corinthians
      50-60 Romans
      50-60 Philemon
      50-80 Colossians
      50-90 Signs Gospel
      50-95 Book of Hebrews
      50-120 Didache
      50-140 Gospel of Thomas
      50-140 Oxyrhynchus 1224 Gospel
      50-200 Sophia of Jesus Christ
      65-80 Gospel of Mark
      70-100 Epistle of James
      70-120 Egerton Gospel
      70-160 Gospel of Peter
      70-160 Secret Mark
      70-200 Fayyum Fragment
      70-200 Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
      73-200 Mara Bar Serapion
      80-100 2 Thessalonians
      80-100 Ephesians
      80-100 Gospel of Matthew
      80-110 1 Peter
      80-120 Epistle of Barnabas
      80-130 Gospel of Luke
      80-130 Acts of the Apostles
      80-140 1 Clement
      80-150 Gospel of the Egyptians
      80-150 Gospel of the Hebrews
      80-250 Christian Sibyllines
      90-95 Apocalypse of John
      90-120 Gospel of John
      90-120 1 John
      90-120 2 John
      90-120 3 John
      90-120 Epistle of Jude
      93 Flavius Josephus
      100-150 1 Timothy
      100-150 2 Timothy
      100-150 T-itus
      100-150 Apocalypse of Peter
      100-150 Secret Book of James
      100-150 Preaching of Peter
      100-160 Gospel of the Ebionites
      100-160 Gospel of the Nazoreans
      100-160 Shepherd of Hermas
      100-160 2 Peter
      followed by another two columns of 1-3rd century CE doc-uments that are not in the bible

      3. Historical Jesus Studies, faithfutures.org/HJstudies.html,
      – "an extensive and constantly expanding literature on historical research into the person and cultural context of Jesus of Nazareth"
      4. Jesus Database, faithfutures.org/JDB/intro.html–"The JESUS DATABASE is an online annotated inventory of the traditions concerning the life and teachings of Jesus that have survived from the first three centuries of the Common Era. It includes both canonical and extra-canonical materials, and is not limited to the traditions found within the Christian New Testament."
      5. Josephus on Jesus mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm
      6. The Jesus Seminar, mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/seminar.html#Criteria
      7. Writing the New Testament- mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/testament.html
      8. Health and Healing in the Land of Israel By Joe Zias
      9. Economics in First Century Palestine, K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998.
      10. 7. The Gnostic Jesus
      (Part One in a Two-Part Series on Ancient and Modern Gnosticism)
      by Douglas Groothuis: equip.org/free/DG040-1.htm
      11. The interpretation of the Bible in the Church, Pontifical Biblical Commission
      Presented on March 18, 1994
      12. The Jesus Database- newer site:
      13. Jesus Database with the example of Supper and Eucharist:
      14. Josephus on Jesus by Paul Maier:
      15. The Journal of Higher Criticism with links to articles on the Historical Jesus:
      16. The Greek New Testament: laparola.net/greco/
      17. Diseases in the Bible:
      18. Religion on Line (6000 articles on the history of religion, churches, theologies,
      theologians, ethics, etc.
      19. The Jesus Seminarians and their search for NT authenticity:
      20. The New Testament Gateway – Internet NT ntgateway.com/
      21. Writing the New Testament- existing copies, oral tradition etc.
      22. The Search for the Historic Jesus by the Jesus Seminarians:
      23. Jesus Decoded by Msgr. Francis J. Maniscalco (Da Vinci Code review)jesusdecoded.com/introduction.php
      24. JD Crossan's scriptural references for his book the Historical Jesus separated into time periods: faithfutures.org/Jesus/Crossan1.rtf
      25. JD Crossan's conclusions about the authencity of most of the NT based on the above plus the conclusions of other NT exegetes in the last 200 years:
      26. Common Sayings from Thomas's Gospel and the Q Gospel: faithfutures.org/Jesus/Crossan3.rtf
      27. Early Jewish Writings- Josephus and his books by t-itle with the complete translated work in English :earlyjewishwritings.com/josephus.html
      28. Luke and Josephus- was there a connection?
      29. NT and beyond time line:
      30. St. Paul's Time line with discussion of important events:
      31. See http://www.amazon.com for a list of JD Crossan's books and those of the other Jesus Seminarians: Reviews of said books are included and selected pages can now be viewed on Amazon. Some books can be found on-line at Google Books.
      32. Father Edward Schillebeeckx's words of wisdom as found in his books.
      33. The books of the following : Professors Marcus Borg, Paula Fredriksen, Elaine Pagels, Karen Armstrong and Bishop NT Wright.
      34. Father Raymond Brown's An Introduction to the New Testament, Doubleday, NY, 1977, 878 pages, with Nihil obstat and Imprimatur.
      35. Luke Timothy Johnson's book The Real Jesus

      April 18, 2011 at 12:51 am |
    • Adelina

      Reality, all Canon Books were written by eyewitnesses and their associates within 65 years of Jesus' ascension. All non-canonical books were found out to be either junk or falsehood by textual criticism. Your list is always meaningless because the Bible text is incomparably true, deep, practical, superb and complex.

      April 18, 2011 at 1:25 am |
    • HotAirAce


      Please use your spectacular commincation skills to amplify "eyewitnesses and their associates." Would an "associate" be an eyewitness themselves, or would they be someone who heard a story from an eyewitness, or someone who heard a story from someone who heard a story from an eyewitness? How many re-tellings of an alleged eyewitness observation are permitted before it becomes questionable hearsay? And you are aware how unreliable eyewitness testimony can be, aren't you?

      April 18, 2011 at 2:32 am |
    • Adelina

      @HotAirAce Retelling is a single time as the associates(Luke and the writer of the Book of Hebrews) are direct interviewers of Mary the mother of Jesus and the Apostles. The NT eyewitnesses are the most reli able as most of more than 500 people were still alive when the NT writings were being circulated. There is no internal or external reason to doubt the NT eyewitnesses. They died rather than lie.

      April 18, 2011 at 7:51 am |
    • Adelina

      @HotAirAce I'm having difficulty posting my long comment. The associates(Luke) interviewed eyewitnesses directly. NT eyewitnesses were reliable as their numbers were many and they were the people who'd rather die than testify falsehood.

      April 18, 2011 at 7:54 am |
    • Reality

      Obviously, Adelina's Three B Syndrome is incurable.

      April 18, 2011 at 8:31 am |
    • David Johnson


      Declaring that there is a god and that, that god had a son with a human, who is the redeemer of all mankind, is an extraordinary claim, indeed!

      If this claim is to be believed, should there not be extraordinary evidence to back up the claim?

      Doesn't god strongly desire everyone believe He exists and Jesus is His son?

      The birth, death and resurrection of Christ, if true, is the most important event in human history.
      You would expect an all knowing, all powerful god, would have ensured tons of eyewitness testimony existed to verify this event.

      Instead, all the evidence points to the entire notion of a god and a virgin and a redeemer as being bogus.

      The entire New Testament is propaganda for Jesus being the Messiah and the Son of God. There is no mention of Jesus in any secular writing, that is not suspected of being a later insertion or hearsay.

      There is no eyewitness testimony of Jesus. Some question that he ever actually existed.

      Nothing was written about Jesus until about 25 years after He died (Paul). Many think Paul, not Jesus, was the "father" of most of the Christianity (Pauline Christianity) practiced today. Paul never, ever met Jesus. All that he writes is hearsay.

      The authors of the Gospels, are unknown. There is no evidence that the Apostles, actually wrote them. The first gospel, Mark, was not written until about 65 CE.

      The Gospels were written to "prove" Jesus was the Messiah and Son of God. They strain to show Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament prophesies concerning the Messiah.

      The stories in the Gospels, are similar to "gods" that preceded Jesus. Google: Krishna, Mithra, Attis and Horus. You will find similarities that will astound you.

      Read some Greek and Roman mythology. Gods having $ex/offspring with humans, was not unique to the Christian god.

      Love and Prayers!

      April 18, 2011 at 10:51 pm |
  5. helloeyes

    The comments from the believers in this forum are way too long and preachy. Can't you state your opinion concisely? I get about three sentences in and start to fall asleep. TOO PREACHY. There's blogs for that.

    April 17, 2011 at 9:18 pm |
    • helloeyes

      correction: there are blogs for that

      April 17, 2011 at 9:33 pm |
  6. CatholicMom

    Since the Catholic Church is the Church that Jesus Christ founded I must say that He founded it to be the holiest of Houses all because of His knowledge of man’s sinful nature. This is the House of God….it is His House. He built it with Himself as its head. He built it with us, His body, in mind. He ist!tuted the Sacraments for us to bring sanctification to our lives. We each have our own home, our castle, no matter how humble a place it may be. We each are king of our castle and God is King of His castle! He promised to guide and guard it until the end of time.

    Now, just as always, man does not do as we should. This is how sin enters our lives. We do what we know we should not do! This is not the fault of the Church! It is our fault if we persist in sin and do not repent of it or seek the sacraments which feed our soul with grace…grace that helps fight against the temptations of sin. There is no one on earth who is not tempted to do evil and this is why we must avail ourselves to the graces that flow from the Church to combat this evil.

    Jesus Christ founded His Church for us! But if our pride tells us… ‘I don’t need help to live a good life…sure, I may slip and fall once in a while…who doesn’t…I may call someone a jerk even though I know he has the light of God in his soul established there by God at conception…or I may say something negative about someone to tear them down another notch or two because they deserve it for how prideful they are…but God will forgive me because Jesus Christ died for all my sins so I don’t need any Church especially not the Catholic Church!’ Jesus Christ would not have founded His Church if He thought that we did not need it!

    There are many who have abandoned the Church because of scandal in the Church; yet some stay or come back or come into the Catholic Church for the first time when they hear the words Jesus Christ said to Saul on the road to Damascus, "Saul, Saul, why doest thou persecute me?" Why didn’t Jesus Christ say, ‘Saul, Saul, why doest thou persecute my Church?’ instead of ‘me’? Saul was persecuting the Church! Jesus Christ is saying that the Church is His body with Him the Head and those that persecute the Church ARE persecuting HIM.

    May everyone coming down the road towards Easter Sunday during this Holy Week meet up with Jesus Christ along the way, just as Saul did.

    April 17, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • helloeyes

      Jesus Christ did not found the Catholic Church. Where's your knowledge of religion? I am an atheist and even I have studied all the religions of the world because I want to know what makes people tick...and then I see ignorant comments like this from people within the faith – I know more about the history of catholocism than you do!

      April 17, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      catholic mom. Pity the popes boss didn't tip him off to the PR nightmare he has gotten into. would suspect that the church is a man made operation, hence the enormous wealth it holds. We are told that JC was humble man, the church appears to be far from humble..he would not allow that to happen if he was really the head as you as-sert.

      April 17, 2011 at 9:31 pm |
    • CatholicMom


      Jesus Christ was a humble man but He was also a divine person…when He founded His Church He knew what He was doing.

      Man received freewill from God so we could chose how to live our lives. God also gave us the gift of conscience to help us chose good over evil. [Some call it a ‘gut’ feeling..]

      He promised to guide and guard His Church which is a source of receiving graces by which to help us in our choosing…because we all truly must want to do good but do not always have the will to do it….because the evil is satan at work in the world; his goal is to tear down Jesus Christ’s Church or do as much damage as he can to it so that souls will leave the Church….

      People have become prideful and believe they do not need religion to live a good and righteous life… They call it ‘organized religion’ as if Jesus Christ organized something evil! It is just satan’s ploy…causing people to think like this.

      So you see, EvolvedDNA, Jesus Christ will not interfere with man’s freewill…but His Church…the Sacraments and all that the Church was founded for will be safeguarded and guided by Him because it is His promise to the Apostles.

      April 18, 2011 at 11:27 am |
    • Evolved DNA

      Catholic mom..luckily for the rest of humanity, what you have described is just interpreted out of a unsubstantiated book, and from what the catholic church would like to believe. If JC was the head of this he would have stepped in to sort this fiasco out, and would want justice.

      April 18, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
  7. Adelina

    This can be a great time for Catholic Church for revival if she goes back to the Bible fully. May God heal all the victims with His Truth and His love, and may He bring all offenders to true, permanent repentance.

    April 17, 2011 at 3:32 am |
  8. Evolved DNA

    I guess these guys have the right to a fair trial, and if they think they are not guilty then it will be up to the lawyers to prove it. Which when you think about it is rather ironic as these priests have a belief system that claims it that does not require proof, and are willing to condemn others ..ie Gay people, with out a shred of evidence, other than what they have read and have been told to do.

    April 16, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Irony is too mild a word – evil, sick, mentally ill, delusional, male dominated power system all seem closer to reality to me.

      And can you imagine the effect within such a rigid hierarchical organization when "superiors" (in the context of the organization, not morally or ethically) condone and cover up such behaviour (as molesting children)? It must have been pretty close to sending an e-mail saying "It's Open Season On Children – But Please Do Share!"

      April 17, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
  9. frank

    no eternity for you

    April 16, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
  10. Reality

    Again, why did today's pope, prelates, preachers and rabbis, so focused on society's se-xual sins, lose sight of clerical se-xual sins?

    Obviously ordination in any religion is not assurance of good behavior !!!!!

    Neither is coronation!!! e.g. Henry VIII, King David.

    Neither is marriage as 50% of those men convicted of pedophilia are married.

    Neither is being elected president of the USA!! e.g. Billy "I did not have se-x with that girl" Clinton, John "Marilyn Monroe" Kennedy"

    Neither is possessing super athletic skill!!! e.g. Tiger "I am so sorry for getting caught" Woods.

    Neither is being an atheist or pagan since pedophilia is present in all walks of life.

    If someone is guilty of a crime in this litany of "neithers" they should or should have been penalized as the law dictates to include jail terms for pedophiliacs (priests, rabbis, evangelicals, boy scout leaders, married men/women), divorce/alimony for adultery (Clinton, Kennedy, Woods), jail terms for obstruction of justice (Clinton, Cardinal Law) and the death penalty or life in prison for murder ("Kings David and Henry VIII).

    April 16, 2011 at 8:22 am |
    • Casey

      It's a great question... I think the Church is (obviously) not well equipt for handling this sort of crime. I really don't know the answer, but can offer this as a possibility:

      Lets a=start with a couple of assumptions: First, that some within the Church knew this was going on... Second, that the way they knew was through the Sarcement of Reconcilliation (aka Confession). No, confession has very old and deep roots, and the Priests who hear confession are forbidden to say anything they are told. This is in fact, a necessary rule and is deeply help within the Church. On hearing of a crime, the priest will try to get the person to turn themselves in... as part of their pennance. That's the way it generally works. However, like I said, they are bound to not say anything about the crime outside the confessional. I think there are practical reasons this rule is in place. The Church is there to save souls, and to teach. They are not in existence to enforce laws, however much we all agree that the laws are just... and the crimes heinous. Like I said, I don;t think the Church is well suited to deal with this kind of situation.

      As far as what you say about the Churches focus on our se-xual sins. They see a lot of the statistics you mention about the divorce rate as driven, in part, by those sins. They feel that sociaty has come to objectify women, and that the pervasivness of P*rnography has damaged lots of marriages. So, yes... they see this as a problem, and for the good of all, want us to appeal to the better angels of our nature. The Church is definitly NOT against s*x... but they see it as an imortant part of a healthy marriage. In fact, Catholic Doctrine teaches that a good loving healthy s*x life is vital to a good marriage. The outside influences tend to damage that.

      Finally, I know it's hard to see if you haven't experienced it.... but the Church does not look down on us for our mistakes. They want the best for us, and they want our relationship with God to be strong and vital.

      Of course... none of this means that things don't slip by them. They are after all, humans. This current situation is really really bad, and I pray for the victims.

      My 2 cents

      April 16, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Reality, we already have Jesus' truth ...

      Galatians 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are [these]; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

      Galatians 5:20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

      Galatians 5:21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
    • Reality

      The Egyptians beat Paul and his Galatians' epistle by about 2000 years:

      Paul et al's Commandment: "Honor your father and your mother"

      Egyptian Book of the Dead: "I have not opposed my family and kinsfolk."


      Commandment: "You shall not ki-ll (mu-rder)."

      BOTD: "I have not committed mu-rder."


      Commandment: "You shall not commit adu-ltery."

      BOTD: "I have not committed adul-tery."


      Commandment: "You shall not steal."

      BOTD: "I have not stolen."


      Commandment: "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor."

      BOTD: "I have not utt-ered lies."


      Commandment: "You shall not co-vet your neighbor’s wife, or his ma-nservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his a-ss, or anything that is your neighbor’s."

      BOTD: "I have not defrauded the humble man of his property."

      "The Egyptian BOTD includes about a hundred sins, including stopping the flow of water, ho-mose-xuality, causing hunger, raising your voice, acting with arrogance, acting with undue haste, stirring up strife, cursing men, eating hearts, and many others. So, essentially, whoever wrote the Papyrus of Ani has listed one hundred things that they found to be sinful, including over ninety sins that weren't included in the Ten Commandments."

      April 16, 2011 at 11:05 pm |
  11. Rich

    Please support victims of clergy abuse and create productive discussion about how we as a society can prevent future children from abuse, inside and outside the walls of the Catholic Church.

    April 16, 2011 at 3:09 am |
    • Snaglepuss

      Finally ! Thank you !
      Was wondering where an honest debate would be allowed.

      April 16, 2011 at 11:26 am |
  12. Casey

    The Catholic Church has been a force for good in the world for over two thousand years. These horrible allegations, if found to be true, will be met with Justice for the men who are guilty, both within our legal system and from the Lord God. Although, I must point out that, in this Country, individuals are innocent until proven guilty... and Gods Justice is His ... It is clearly (at least to me) a spiritual attack on one of our most important inst*tutions at a time when the World needs it the most... and of course, the anti-Christians come out to feed whenever they get a chance. It really makes me wonder... just think about this for a second... what if the forces of evil are really making their big effort... aka Revelations... where do you think they would first make their move? Maybe by damaging the Catholic Church? ... Making people turn away from their teachings, and the grace that God can give.... and how would you go about this? Maybe by causing crimes against children that no decent human could deal with, understand, or forgive.... and one that the Church itself is poorly equipt to deal with. (I'm not a big fire and brimstone kind of guy... but the events of the World, including this, have started me thinking.) I think I'll pray about it...

    April 16, 2011 at 12:03 am |
    • HotAirAce

      You need to wake up and get a dose of reality. Numerous priests have been found guilty already. The current pope-a-dope, and even CatholicMom, has admitted there is a problem. The current pople-a-dope and his processor most likely helped cover up criminal activity. The rcc is going to crumble because of the actions of its members, not because of imaginary attacks that are the product of your christian paranoia. THERE ARE NO GODS, NOT EVEN JUST ONE AND THE RCC OR ANY RELIGION IS NOT NEEDED!

      April 16, 2011 at 2:22 am |
    • Peace2All


      Hi -Casey...

      It seems to me that right out the gate, your assertions are based on unproven assumptions. Of course, you quite 'possibly' may be right... I will certainly give you that. I don't know either.

      However, your musings are based on pure 'speculations.'

      Maybe you're right...maybe you're wrong.

      Your argument seems to 'infer' that it is a given in many ways.

      Just something to think about.



      April 16, 2011 at 5:07 am |
    • Casey

      @ Peace2All: I agree, this was simply a hypothesis ... or musing if you will... I did mean to imply these questions as a given... That's why they were presented as a series of questions... food for thought really, just as your comments were.

      @HOTAIR: I didn't I say that there wasn't a problem... just the opposite. I simply offered a possible explaination for consideration. It is always interesting to me though... that folks who have no faith in God feel the need to state that fact, at the top of their lungs... whenever the opportunity arises. Clearly, since you and I are coming from different places, and the basic premise is in direct opposition to what you believe, you really have little to add to my musings. As usual.... athiests will just attack the basic faith of a person, imply they need to "wake up" and/or that people of faith are of lower intellengence. This is often done with the most caustic language possible. I appreciate that you exercised some restraint in that regard.

      I will pray that one day.. through thought and additional life experience, you will reconsider your position and open your heart to the Lord. He'll be there... and all will rejoice. In the mean time, I hope that you have a great life.

      April 16, 2011 at 8:03 am |
    • Peace2All



      You Said: "@ Peace2All: I agree, this was simply a hypothesis ... or musing if you will... I did mean to imply these questions as a given... That's why they were presented as a series of questions... food for thought really, just as your comments were."

      I'm guessing that you meant to say..." I (didn't) mean to imply these questions as a given..." Am I correct in that assumption...?

      Also, yes i think my perception of your posting was accurate, in that you were, in fact, 'speculating.' Thank you for confirming that.

      And... There were a whole lot of presupposti-tions in your posting, I just didn't have time to go through all of them.

      However, then...

      You Said to @HotAirAce: "I will pray that one day.. through thought and additional life experience, you will reconsider your position and open your heart to the Lord. He'll be there... and all will rejoice. In the mean time, I hope that you have a great life.

      That is what you said in your last sentence to him. I think 'that' is where i got a sense that at a 'deep structure' level, some of these things...for 'you' are not just speculation, but a matter of fervently held belief...yes...?

      You also mentioned to -Ace about "As usual...(atheists) will just attack, etc..." I am assuming that you are not an atheist or agnostic here, but a believer... which is obviously o.k... I'm really interested in the structure and implications, and inferences of what people say.

      Again...I'm not here to argue... I'm always sincerely curious, as I don't know all the answers myself. However, that last sentence above to -HotAirAce seems to go beyond speculation to a deeply held 'belief', which of course is a belief for you... but not necessarily *fact.*

      Thanks for having a 'civil' chat with me... -Casey.



      April 16, 2011 at 11:05 am |
    • Casey

      @ Peace2All: LOL... Yes, you picked up on my typo... good call! If you want to know where I'm coming from... well, it's been a long strange trip : )

      I am a member of the Catholic Church. I have been away from the Church for many years, and over the last 2 years, I started to study and learn more.... and my Faith has been strengthened. My background is very ecclectic... I am a Practicing engineer by profession, and the sciences are a big part of my background... however, I am also a Muscian and Artist by inclination. I came back to the faith through lots of reflection, and a long time of observation. I certainly don't have everything figured out, but I have come to the realization that, to me... there is something out there bigger, better, smarter, and wiser than I. I came to tis through being a (amature) student of human nature, and personal attempts to understand the world we live in. A lot of Catholic Doctrine that, at first blush, seems archaic and quaint, particularly when viewed through the lens of the modern world. The Church is very old after all. But the more I study, I come to realize that their teachings have good reason for being the way they are, and ... to my way of thinking, hav a deeper underlying truth behind them. I still have struggles sometimes, but I think that my relationship with God is a growing, learning, living and breathing thing. It has brought me peace and happiness in my life, and I would like for others to have a good life as well. But I know that people can only figure things out for themselves... nothing I can say, with my feeble understanding will alter their views.

      Now, I have absolutly no ill feelings for those who hold differing beliefs. I CAN get frustrated by caustic and inflammatory lashings that some will inflict on others for beliefs they hold. I see this a lot on these blogs... it seems that simple courtesy is a thing that our society lacks sometimes. I try not to bow to those frustrations, but I know I am imperfect.

      I very much apppreciate a good debate by people like yourself, who are thinking people, and respectful. I see these as learning opportunities.

      Thank you, and best wishes.

      April 16, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

      1 Timothy 4:2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

      1 Timothy 4:3 is a must read too.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
    • helloeyes

      "the anti-christians come out to feed" ?? You blew your argument out of the water. It was respectful and even thoughtful up until that point.

      April 17, 2011 at 9:10 pm |
  13. Adelina

    The only thing Catholics can do is starting to read the Bible, every single one of them. It's not too late.

    April 15, 2011 at 11:15 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      You want each catholic to read every single bible? That will keep them busy and away from innocent children!

      April 16, 2011 at 2:24 am |
    • Peace2All


      What makes you think that they aren't reading the Bible...?



      April 16, 2011 at 5:10 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Hot Air, what are you on? There is only one Bible. You keep mixing up denominations with Jesus' truth (the Bible). All denominations are Christians that follow Jesus' truth (the Bible).


      April 16, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • HotAirAce


      Adelina is guilty of poor sentence structure, but in addition to being a liar, you are thick in the head. Re-read Adelina's original post and you might understand my previous response. Note also that it was you that imagined I was referring to the many variants of your book of stupidity – once again your christian paranoia becomes evident.

      April 16, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
    • Adelina

      H-A-A, There is only one Bible. Catholics are one of the best people to take care of children. What's your problem? I didn't lie. I'm not Vietnamese.

      April 17, 2011 at 3:29 am |
    • Adelina

      H-A-A-, you atheists are gangsters who bully believers even in CNN forum. Shame on you.

      April 17, 2011 at 3:35 am |
    • Magic

      Adelina & HeavenSent,

      You old girls *are* quite dense, as HotAirAce said.

      In the original sentence, Adelina said: "The only thing Catholics can do is starting to read the Bible, every single one of them." As written, the phrase, "every single one of them", refers to the Bible. It is saying that Catholics should read every single Bible. HAA was just sort of teasing about that. I know that English is not your native language, but it *is* a humorous misplacement of the phrase.

      HAA was calling HeavenSent a liar, not you, Adelina. I'll let him explain that.

      The two of you misunderstand so many simple things - it bodes ill for your understanding of anything deeper.

      April 17, 2011 at 3:56 am |
    • Adelina

      Magic, it seems there are millions of fakes of the real Christian HeavenSent. My own names were hijacked many times. You atheists should worry over the character quality of your atheist friends. And most of you are men, aren't you? Doing this cowardice to a few Christian women? American men would never have done this if it was decades ago. What did you learn from your own mothers? Why don't you rebuke your atheist friends? That's what you should do if you are an honest person.

      April 17, 2011 at 4:53 am |
    • HotAirAce

      @Adelina and HeavenScent

      Magic figured it out apparently without much difficulty. Given that you two claim to know the absolute truth, it shouldn't have been too hard for you to do the same.


      What's the point of your reference to Vietnamese? Are you suggesting that all Vietnamese are liars?


      Thanks for helping educate. Re: HeavenScent and me calling her a liar, it's because she repeatedly whines that her posts are being blocked, has repeatedly been given advice on how to get around the moderation and denies that she has been given same. She is either thick or a liar – I think both.

      April 17, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • helloeyes

      I'm with Magic – who has a good command of the English language, grammar, English comprehension, and critical thinking skills; all of which are sorely lacking here.

      April 17, 2011 at 9:29 pm |
    • Adelina

      @HotAirAce, we didn't claim we have absolute truth. The Bible is proven to be inerrant and has absolute truth. You don't like the truth the Bible presents and that's why you attack it without knowing what you are even attacking. Some people insisted I'm Vietnamese and think I lied about it. I thought you were one of them. I'd never call any nationals more liers than others. I complained about the system itself(how they do it) of censorship; read other people's writings correctly.
      @Helloeyes, English language is not all there is. Foreign languages have different dimentions that English doesn't have. ESL people have rights to speak up. Get out of your own cage by mastering some other languages.

      April 17, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
    • helloeyes

      What makes you think that I do not speak any other language? In fact, I do speak 3 other languages besides English. Nice knee-jerk reactions you have going there. Try not to froth at the mouth.

      April 17, 2011 at 11:48 pm |
    • Adelina

      Helloeyes, you sounded too simple not to be a monolingual. That's why.

      April 17, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
  14. John Richardson

    The catholic church has been so thoroughly discredited as a moral force that I can barely believe it continues to exist anymore. Surely if the soviet bloc could go poof over the period of a few months, this decrepit old power center should be able to go poof as well. One can only hope.

    April 15, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      John, God is in control.

      Revelation 16:1-11

      16 And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.
      2 And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.
      3 And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.
      4 And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood.
      5 And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.
      6 For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy.
      7 And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.
      8 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
      9 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.
      10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
      11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  15. Artist

    Do you thinkt he pope owns some KY?

    April 15, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  16. Artist

    HeavenSent you clearly arent right with jesus or your posts would show. You need to look deep into yourself and see what you are doing wrong. All things are possible through jesus. Get right with him and you will be able to post whatever you want.

    April 15, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
    • Adelina

      Artist, stop mocking Christians. Do you do art? Catholics developed it all. You owe Catholics regarding any excellent art.

      April 16, 2011 at 5:37 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Artist, if you weren't such a fool, you'd realize this subject is a hot topic and certain scriptures can't be posted. Not my problem. I know said scriptures. And you? You'll stay in the dark because your refuse to read the Bible. Also, not my problem.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • helloeyes

      hahahahah classic.

      April 17, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
  17. Dave

    Until the church decides to stop conducting their so-called internal investigations and turn all matters of alleged criminal activity conducted by priests over to the secular authorities, i.e. the police and state and federal law enforcement, it continues to be looked upon as suspect.
    I have zero problem with the church providing legal council for accused priests, but the actual investigation needs to put in others' hands.

    April 15, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  18. Ralph

    So priests lie in court too, just like common criminals. What a shock. Of course, the Bible never says "Thou shalt be honest."

    April 15, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • Adelina

      Ralph, the Bible says not to lie and it says also to speak truth in love.

      April 16, 2011 at 5:34 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Revelation 21:22-27 speaks of Heaven after judgment day ...

      22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.
      23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.
      24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.
      25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.
      26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.
      27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  19. HeavenSent

    Oh, too bad for you Artist. The mod squadders won't let me post truth.


    April 15, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • Artist

      The truth about the corruption and leadership of the catholic church? If so, we are quite aware...even the followers of the catholic church. The followers continue to enable the church in its corruption.

      April 15, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • HotAirAce


      You have told many times how to get around the automated, non-human moderator. You must be too stupid to learn. Your christian persecution paranoia is kicking in too – nobody is interested enough in what you might say to personally be on the lookout for your posts. Nobody buy you is preventing you from posting your believer trash.

      April 15, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • Mr. Sniffles

      @ HotAirAce – BINGO!

      April 15, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • Smite Me


      You are obviously not saying the right prayers to overcome the "mod squad".

      April 15, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Of course non of you are right. Only obnoxious. Carry on as you suck up oxygen.


      April 15, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
    • HotAirAce


      Are you actually denying that various posters including myself have tried to help you get your posts through? If yes, you are not only stupid, you are a liar. If no, then you are ignoring the assistance provided, and are too stupid to learn.

      April 16, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Hot Air, there is no reason for me to lie on this post. You folks do plenty of that on your own. If I say my posts aren't going through. That's exactly what I meant. There are many scriptures that have been ignored in society. This topic being one of them.


      April 16, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      One more time for HeavenScent and other slow learners...

      Just as there are no gods, there are no human moderators actively reviewing submissions. It's just a poor bit of soft-ware looking for word fragments that might be part of a set of naughty words. The complete set of words or word fragments is not known, but folks such as Reality occasionally post a list of what is known. You should be able to find such a post, or you cab be lazy and wait for Reality to re-post. That being said, some of the common word fragments that could prevent a post from being accepted are s-ex, c-um, t-it and soft-.

      Now you have no reason to continue to believe you are being censored – one less item to trigger your christian prosecution complex.

      If you can't grasp the above, you truly are very, very stupid.

      April 16, 2011 at 9:26 pm |
  20. Artist

    I guess the catholic church can only cover up so much. Shame they couldnt protect these priests any further. I wonder, does the pope prefer blonde, brunette or red for his boys?

    April 15, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.