Thank you, Jon, for your prompt reply! Perhaps I should clarify.
I went to oncecatholic.com a few months ago. They were supportive, but they said there isn’t much to be done about my situation but to pray for the priest.
I live in a VERY conservative Archdiocese. When I called the Monsignor in charge of priests here, I never got past his secretary, who wanted details, names, etc. I have no interest in being a whistleblower…I just want to know how I’m supposed to feel comfortable in a Church that keeps abusing me. The diocesan priests I’ve spoken with say, “Well, whatever he did to you is fine, because he’s a priest, and you’re not.” Oh, and let’s not forget, “Never attack a priest, even if they treat you like dirt.” Gotta love the good ol’ boy system…or, not.
The first priest I dealt with as an adult made my husband (who is not Catholic) and I jump through all kinds of hoops (baptism classes, private meetings, etc.), would not marry us (because my husband wouldn’t convert, even though he agreed to do EVERYTHING “Father” said), and baptized our oldest son under duress.
I caught him at a Dunkin’ Donuts the following year with his gay lover, and confronted him. He said nothing, but shortly thereafter, his Bishop “disciplined” him by giving him a 3,000 member-strong parish in another part of the state. Hypocrite. ” title=”Confused” />
One of the priests inbetween was so burnt out on his vocation that he didn’t regularly show up at the hospital to give Last Rites. (I’m a nurse.) You can imagine how the families of the very ill feel!
The last priest I dealt with was a fellow I thought I knew well enough to trust. We had worked together casually on volunteer projects for a couple of years when he started pestering me about my faith, and offered to give me spiritual direction. He told me to come back to Holy Mother Church…things had changed, and I could trust him…after all, we had actually gotten to be pretty good friends…or so I thought. It took me 8 months to decide to study with him. I told him I had to be able to trust him.
One day, he just up and decided he didn’t want me around anymore. He literally started talking to me through gritted teeth, when he had to talk to me at all. He wouldn’t return phone calls, wouldn’t talk about his issues. I was devastated. I found out a few months later that he confessed to a friend that he had fallen in love with me, and he considered it MY fault, because I was too “sexual” in my approach to him. One of the things he considered sexual was sitting next to him in a pew, praying…if we said the Liturgy of the Hours together, he shared his prayer book, and our legs touched occasionally. I also gave him the occasional hug and kiss on the cheek, as I do ALL my friends and family , male AND female. Ooh! I’m SUCH a temptress! :rolleyes:
Jon, I am built like a water buffalo. I’m about 75 lbs overweight. I don’t wear flowered shirts because they make me look like a [i:10k68gwm]sofa[/i:10k68gwm]! I gained a lot of weight during my pregnancies. I’ve been married almost 21 years. When he learned about the priest’s feelings for me, one of my teenaged sons said, “Mom, celibacy must have struck him blind!”
Yet, unbelievably, I still feel drawn towards the Church. But now I can’t even bring myself to pray on a regular basis, and the thought of going to Mass terrifies me. ” title=”Sad” /> And my husband doesn’t want me hurt anymore.