With the recent admission from Rev. Anthony Mercieca concerning his behavior with Mark Foley (R-Fla), I have to wonder where exactly does the Catholic Church stand on pedophilia? Granted, Mark Foley's behavior with young male Congressional pages is unacceptable and not excused by what may have happened to him when he was young. That is a separate matter and should be investigated and pursued. So, what is the position of the Church on the relationship of Church officials and their young parishioners? Rev. Mercieca has admitted to multiple acts with the young Foley that should be considered inappropriate for a priest to have with a 13 year old parishioner.
Mercieca tells CBS news, "Let's say it was 40 years ago, almost 40 years ago, so why bring this up at this late stage?" Mercieca asked during the WPTV interview. "Anyway, he will overcome it, with a psychiatrist you know. Mark is a very intelligent man." Mercieca also submits, "I wish him well. Let bygones be bygones."
I believe that if Mercieca can be this up front and casual with his recounting of interactions with Foley, then he must have had more than one parishioner that he loved like a "brother". Does the Church not see anything wrong with this type of behavior? If the Catholic Church can not take a strong stand to protect children from its own priests, then any good work that the Church can do will be reduced in its ability to help anyone.
##That's my opinion##