all have sinned

Calvinist Protestants, including yours truly, believe that mankind is a fallen species. Genesis 3 tells us how quickly we descended from paradise to hell on earth. Now I don’t believe this as a literal rendering, in the same way I know that I live in Virginia and that today is Saturday, April 3. But the truth is there, and is confirmed all the time by the actions of men and women.

Is no one good? Or do good things? Sort of, and, yes, of course. But know this: even the best of us, with the best of intentions, fail. Because we are all sinners, no matter how much we strive to not fall into sin. If any believe that there exists humans without sin (as opposed to Jesus Christ, who was the only one such), then they’ve committed the sin of pride.

Thus, the Catholic Church, of which more might be expected, is not exempt from doing evil. Or being comprised of fallen members of our species. The current scandals enveloping the church (here’s a tasty array of stories, at the Daily Beast) may come as a shock to Catholics, but it’s no surprise at all to me.

No, not because I hate the Catholic Church. Just the opposite, in fact. I grieve for the Church; they are my brothers in Christ, even though I believe their theology and practices are wrong. But when you get a collection of men, create a top-down hierarchy with huge privileges, you get a recipe for failure.

And, make no mistake: the Church has failed, now, and through the ages. Some of the excuses made, e.g. this wretched claim that the Church, author of so much anti-Semitism in its history, is suffering from a version of anti-Semitism, are nauseating.

The Church will have to clean itself up. It won’t happen because some U.N. worthy wants to put the Pope on trial. I don’t hold out much hope; the Church is doomed because of its unwieldy, top-heavy structure. And, mostly, because it is comprised of mere men. Saint Paul’s letter to the church at Rome, the predecessor the the Catholic Church, sums it up in Romans 3:10 and 3:23: None is righteous, no, not one…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

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