Shameful Religious Persecution

While CRUX, the new Catholic journal on the block, complained of Chinese persecution of Christians, the National Catholic Reporter (NCR) had a more significant story of religious persecution. CRUX overlooked the story, but the Irish Times carried it (here).

Father Sean Fagan was an Irish theologian, and an unusually popular one. NCR explains his sins: “Fagan was critical in his writings of the church's position on mandatory celibacy, women's ordination and homosexuality.” Not only was he silenced, but he was threatened with laicization if he so much as mentioned this punishment. This was much harsher treatment than serial child abusers received. At the outbreak of the Great Recession, job prospects for an aging, laicized Catholic theologian were quite bleak. Note that most Catholics agreed with Fagan’s positions. According to Vatican II, that should have carried considerable weight.

NCR repeatedly notes the absence of any Vatican response to his death, though the Pope and his minions knew of it. Their silence speaks volumes.