Saturday, November 10, 2012

Gay priest update: Wehmeyer in the news again.

Banned from ministry.
A Catholic priest who pleaded guilty Thursday to molesting two underage brothers is banned from "ever exercising priestly ministry," according to a statement from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.
The Rev. Curtis C. Wehmeyer will remain a priest, but cannot perform any duties of the church.
Wehmeyer, 48, pleaded guilty in Ramsey County District Court to 20 counts, including one count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, two counts of fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct and 17 counts of possessing child porn. He did not receive a plea bargain.
His sentencing is scheduled for February.
He admitted in court that two years ago he molested two brothers, then 12 and 14, in a camper parked at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in St. Paul. He was the parish pastor at the time and lived there.
Wehmeyer plied the boys with alcohol and marijuana and showed them pornography. He admitted to touching one boy's genitals more than once, exposing himself to the other and masturbating in front of them. -Strib
He did all that in his camper parked in the church parking lot.  What a disgusting memory for the kids.  What was a priest doing with marijuanna?  Why was he alone with the boys?  Why would you abuse yourself in front of boys?  What is missing in the man's character?  Why was he ordained?

Vocation and priesthood.

I know someone thought this guy shouldn't be ordained. Wehmeyer himself - if he was honest - should have known better than to seek ordination to the priesthood. I think he had to have lacked honesty.

In Hebrews St. Paul says of the priesthood, "No one takes this honor upon himself, but only when called by God." If there are impediments in the candidate, these need to be discerned 'honestly' and the candidate sent away, or more importantly - if the candidate is honest about any impediment, he withdraws from the pursuit. Paul acknowledges that men beset by weakness are appointed to be priests, yet the Church has provided canonical directives as to the most grave impediments to ordination. Some men believe they are above such regulations, thinking more highly of themselves than they ought, in short - they are dishonest and lack humility.

Some men enter religious life to be ordained and then leave for the freedom of secular priesthood, or to found their own community, which accords with their peculiar idiosyncrasies. Others denied entrance to seminary, or worse, those who have been asked to leave formation because of some impediment, travel the world seeking a seminary or congregation which will accept them and admit them to Holy Orders.

Is that really a vocation? Are they really responding to a call or an illusion?  Though a man may be ordained and receive a new character - the priesthood being forever - was he really called in the first place? Just because he was ordained, does that mean he had a vocation? I doubt anyone can answer that to my satisfaction, but I would rather see someone avoid ordination and or religious life than give scandal and risk damnation for themselves and others in the process.

It would be better if he had never been ordained...

The readings at Mass this past week came to mind while thinking about these things...

"Which of you wishing to construct a tower does not first sit down to calculate the cost to see if there is enough to complete the project?"

"Or what king marching into battle would not first sit down and decide if he can win the battle... but if not - wouldn't he then sue for peace?"

"The person who is trustworthy in small matters is also trustworthy in great ones. If you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth, who will trust you with true wealth?"

Perhaps this applies in Wehmeyer's case: If you can't be trusted to keep your hands off your own genitals - who can trust you to do so with others?

I don't know if it would have been "better that he had never been born" - as Christ said for those causing scandal to little ones - but I suspect it would have been better for him if he had never been ordained. 

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are."


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