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Diocese of Dallas training video: “Two greatest Commandments love of self and love of neighbor” November 13, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, disaster, Domestic Church, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, Society.

Somehow, God got left out of the picture.  If I could reduce the past 50 years of the Church’s history into one brief sentence, that would be it.

I put up a post yesterday asking locals for their appraisal of religious formation in the Diocese of Dallas.  There have been some good responses, you should go read them if you have not, but I received another one, offline.  It had to do with Safe Environment training.

Now, I will state straight up, I have enormous problems with Catholic Safe Environment training in both concept and execution.  The Dallas Policy and the training it mandates basically takes a disaster caused by men manifestly unfit for the priesthood (and in most cases, this was obvious from their earliest seminary days) and makes complete innocents victims of their crimes.  This victimhood applies to both the adults and children who are forced into these programs.  Adults are victims because they are incurring the penalty, if you will, for crimes committed by others, and children because they are exposed to materials what are often not just inappropriate but potentially very damaging.  But Safe Environment is just one aspect of the collective bishops’ response to the boy-rape scandal that seeks at all turns to minimize the culpability of the episcopate for their own actions.  It is a training program forced on all that assumes all are potential abusers in order to meet a certain legal strategy and reduce their potential future liability.

There has been much ink spilled already about the problems with the Safe Environment training directed at children, which many feel introduces topics and ideas inappropriate for many age groups.  The adult training generally gets less visibility and fewer complaints.  But I happened to be informed of an egregious faux pas – at least I sure hope it was – in a Safe Environment video for adults produced by the Diocese of Dallas that is so severe it could cause one to question the reliability of the entire content of the video.

I cannot link the video, it is embedded without link and is not public on Youtube (or, at least, I couldn’t find it), so you’ll have to go here to see it. The offending comment starts at 3:59 and goes to about 4:03.  Again I will try to be charitable and assume the person who makes the statement didn’t mean what they said, and I quote “The two greatest commandments, love and self and love of neighbor……..” but how could this statement make it through editing and be used as a form of training – it could even be viewed as catechesis – in this Catholic Diocese of Dallas? My correspondent asks how a successor of the Apostles could appear and, one would think, approve of a video where this statement is made?  This isn’t just slightly wrong, it’s directly contrary to the entire ethos Christ gave us and is emblematic of the error at the heart of the crisis in the Church and culture: men have replaced love of self for love of God.

I must also say that this is why I am so leery of having half-trained lay people serve as heads of ministries and perform so many roles once assigned to priests and religious in our churches today, and which the comments from yesterday’s post indicate is evidence of a systemic problem in religious education.  But I want to stress I am certain the comment is not intentional, the greater problem is how this was vetted and a reviewed and still allowed to go public, as it were.  It’s just so revealing of the kind of shoddy product that bureaucracies tend to produce.  And the Church has been bureaucratized as never before in the past several decades.

Lest you think there is just this one comment I have a problem with, I assure you, that is not the case.  Another person in the video says child abusers go where the children are, so I must ask why those men who displayed such perverse tendencies in seminary and in service, like Rudy Kos (where there will literally dozens of warnings sounded) were allowed contact with children for  years?

Anyway, I’m not sure how long the video will stay up, so you may want to jet on over and see it while you can.  And another thing, I am reliably informed that at least two complaints about this video (and the offending comment) have already been made, privately, so I consider the lack of response makes this fair game for public airing.


1. J Rebecca - November 13, 2014

Oh my gosh. It is like you have heard the conversations my husband and I have had about Safe Environment Training. I came away from the class feeling like all the responsibility had been pushed off on the laity. Those scandals just never would have happened, if we had been doing background checks and fingerprinting all you parents that get guilted into teaching CCD programs that are a miserable failure. But, thankfully, you can go online once a year, watch a video to update your status, and that will solve everything.
I’m not surprised the error made it into the video, since the new teaching of the self-ordained laity likes to incorporate pop psychology. We have friends who attend NO parishes that get their feathers ruffled when we say that a big problem with the suburban Dallas parishes is that the laity seem to be running everything (can’t have enough ministries or complain enough about people not signing up for their personal project) with very little oversight from the priests. Does no one actually see the problem with laity leading Bible studies, marriage preparation classes (that never mention sin), or centering prayer groups?

Tantumblogo - November 13, 2014

Or directors of family and adult ministries openly promoting contraception use and counselling divorce for the most trivial problems?

We’ve tried nothing and we’re all out of ideas!”

2. c matt - November 13, 2014

Forgot about the VIRTUS thing (the safe training they call in Galvez-Houston). Kind of snoozed through most of it, but I did find it hilarious how it went out of its way to NOT pin the crisis on homosexual priests, despite the overwhelming stats. If I took a shot of vodka for every time they said “correlation does not equal causation” I would have died of alcohol poisoning.

Baseballmom - November 13, 2014

I had to take that same training in my Diocese. The thing that was most upsetting was the facilitator who went out of her way to INSIST this was not a homosexual issue. Ummmm – according to their own stats the USCCB stated that 81% of the victims were male…. Well, 100% of the priest abusers were male… So there’s that….

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