The nun who alleged that she was raped many times by a bishop is facing a major situation. She has to get her charges against the bishop proved. Ignoramus that I am, I think it is very difficult.
The arrested bishop, Franco Mulakkal will have to prove that he is innocent. That will be a herculean task for him.
The Catholic church of Kerala, the richest church with the biggest number of believers will have to prove, not in the court of law or media, but to the believer and the public that they do not protect any hanky-panky in anything. Quite a tall order that, given the fact that the Cardinal, the highest ranking officer after the Pope cares two hoots for the biblical saying Pay unto Caesar what is Caesar's. Truth to tell we Christians 95 % of us including me, do not pay to Caesar what is Caesar's, we forget the saying but go to the church every week to meet our ends, to meet the opposite sex, to appease our conscience after having due liquor, to get the latest rumour and to earn the goodwill of the priest.
But the nun can prove that she is a true Christian, better than many priests and nuns and bishops by making a clean breast of everything and forgive the bishop. The bishop should also cooperate; then it will have a beneficial effect. The whole chapter will be closed. In this respect the church’s authorities will have nothing to boast about. She will be remembered as the nun who showed true Christian principles of forgiveness. Forgiveness is all, after all.
It's worth noting what the Pope said while addressing a meeting in Estonia attended mostly by the youth he called for changes in the Catholic church’s attitude towards financial and sex related issues. If it is not done by the church, it will not attract youth, they might go elsewhere, he said. Important call that was. It wasn't reported in most Malayalam papers. Was it a miss or a decision? No telling that.
According to what appears in the media, the nun had reported all the horrible things she was subjected to by the bishop, to certain supreme nuns, some priests, bishops and the Cardinal. But no action was taken. Frustrated, she thought long and hard about it, while the bishop went on doing his holy job. Finally she had to give a complaint to the police and in less than three months the police arrested the bishop. It's hard to believe. Let that pass. Some politicians argue that the police was not investigating the matter and the masses believed it.
The mini leaders of the Congress continue the argument that the arrest was delayed because the CPM suggested it with an intention of saving the bishop. It was aimed at not saving the nun but giving a bad name to the CPM. The CPM apparatchik Kodiyeri Balakrishnan exposed them. Meanwhile five nuns organised a mass movement in support of the nun and it got the support of the media. It spread like wildfire. The Congress' small leaders too joined the stir. The Catholic church took action against one nun who had joined the agitation. The nun's supporters turned against the church. The church withdrew the action. The almighty church has suffered a heavy blow, delivered by its own nuns agitating for justice. The masses supported it and political parties watched the goings on.
The Christian community has given the nation persons like Saint Teresa we should remember. We have also contributed persons like the present leaders.
( The ideas expressed in the article are of the author. )