Sure he’s ‘not a nice guy’. But sometimes they are the ones bold enough to say tough words other people shy away from.
We’re talking about Philipino President Rodrigo Duterte.
He’s not the kind of person to mince words. He once called Obama something that roughly translates to ‘son of a bitch’.
His crackdowns on drugs and corruption have been absolutely ruthless, traditional rules be damned.
He’s on exactly nobody’s list of charming and decent people. But he what he said just made the news again. Something he said about the Catholic Church.
And with wave after wave of sex scandal crashing into the Vatican’s credibility recently, maybe the criticism, regardless of the source should come as a wake-up call.
For context, Duterte claims he was personally abused by a priest during childhood.
In a shocking speech given at a groundbreaking ceremony for a school near the capital Manila on Friday Duterte claimed ‘most priests are gay’ as he doubled down on a previous claim that ‘almost 90 per cent’ of the clergy are homosexuals.
‘Only I can say bishops are sons of b*****s, damn you. That is true. Most of them are gay,’ he said.
According to local reports, Duterte’s comments were made during a speech at the presidential palace on December 6.
‘These bishops that you guys have, kill them. They are useless fools. All they do is criticise,’ Duterte said.
He also called the church ‘the most hypocritical institution’ and said his God is different from the one Catholics worship.
The President calls the Church the country's most hypocritical institution. Duterte adds that majority of priests are gay.
— CNN Philippines (@cnnphilippines) December 5, 2018
Those are strong words, to be sure. But are they really stronger than suggesting they should have ‘a millstone thrown around their neck and be thrown into the sea’? *Somebody* once said that would be a ‘better’ fate than what awaited them about wicked people who hurt kids.
As for the ‘most of them are gay’ line? How would one disprove that claim?
Looking at the cascade of scandals and coverups popping up first on one continent and then another, what evidence to those of us in the cheap seats have that the Church has taken sexual misconduct — or even simple sexual sin among the clergy — with the seriousness Christ would have expected?
Obviously, there’s no reason to give a green-light to a policy embracing practicing gay priests.
But that does raise the question of how many people wearing the collar don’t live up to even the barest biblical expectations of leadership conduct that the Apostle Paul wrote about to Timothy and Titus, and what should be done about it.
Sometimes it takes an @$$hole to start a hard conversation.
Now that the conversation has been started, will Rome do some honest introspection?
You know, that thing that goes hand-in-hand with ‘repentance of sin’?
Apologies are all well and good. Actual change is better.
After all, Jesus befriended a lot of sinners but always told them to ‘sin no more’.
If it applies to the ordinary guy — how much more so the religious leaders who bear his name.
Get Doug Giles’ new book:
Rules For Radical Christians is not a survival devotional designed to help the young Christian adult limp through life. Rather, it is a road-tested, dominion blueprint that will equip the young adult with leadership skills and sufficient motivation to rise to a place of influence in an overtly non-Christian culture. Rules For Radical Christians gives the reader the keys to become strategically equipped to move into an anti-theistic environment and effectively influence it for the glory of God.
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