The Dean of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Portland, Nathan LeRud, in the Sunday Oregonian.
The Episcopal Church’s record in regard to sex abuse is far from spotless. Our priests and lay leaders have been guilty of horrible crimes, and our institution has tended to protect the powerful at the expense of their victims. Although my denomination has different structures of authority in place that have helped to mitigate against the scale of abuse other denominations have seen, this is not a moment for any faith community to claim moral high ground. When one part of the body suffers, all suffer. Many faithful people, and not just Roman Catholics, will have to answer for the sins committed by some clergy. I feel this in a visceral way when I walk down the street wearing a white clergy collar. In that moment, it doesn’t matter how my denomination’s practices and policies may differ from another’s: I represent a faith tradition that has damaged thousands of lives. The pain and trauma experienced by some in our midst is the responsibility of us all.
Therefore, all faith communities – not just Roman Catholic communities – must work for change. Becoming communities of radical hospitality requires that we become communities of trust, where the integrity of pastoral relationships is preserved and protected. At Trinity, we are looking closely at our screening and monitoring policies around sex abuse. We have been scrupulous over the past decades in screening and monitoring those who work with children, and now we are expanding our policies to all volunteers who represent the Cathedral, whether they’re teaching church school, singing in the choir or serving the homeless. Abuse doesn’t just happen to children. Congregations must learn how to look out for each other and treat one another with respect and dignity, regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, ability or creed. Not because our liability insurance requires us to, but because this is the kind of people Jesus calls us to be.
Read it all.
I was on NYC subway and an elderly woman came up and said "I'm just so disappointed and angry with you all." Was about to say something but instead realized the courage she showed and just stayed silent. https://t.co/YXHILHhKwE
— Crusty Old Dean (@crustyoldean) August 17, 2018