Spoils of the Kingdom
Clergy Misconduct and Religious Community
Publication Year: 2007
Published by: University of Illinois Press
Table of Contents
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The reader should note the use of the phrase “modern times” in the title of chapter 1. This time frame is an imposed restriction since the suspicion or occurrence of clergy malfeasance is no new note in the history of deviance and criminality...
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The following people assisted me in some direct way in the collection of data and analysis for this volume. They all shaped my thinking over the past decade. In no culpable order they are Thomas M. Doyle, A. W. Richard Sipe, Susan E...
Introduction by A. W. Richard Sipe
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Rightly it can be taken for granted that communities of faith seek integrity. At the same time we have to admit that the history of religions is peppered with misconduct, malfeasance, crime, and corruption of its elite—its clergy and leaders. The beginning of the...
1. Communities of Faith and Clergy Malfeasance in Modern Times
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In the year 2000, Cardinal Bernard Law controlled the Archdiocese of Boston, at the time the fourth largest archdiocese in North America, with unquestioned authority. By spring 2002, however, the prelate was immersed in a nationally publicized scandal and voices were heard calling for his resignation...
2. The Logic of Social Exchange Theory and Clergy Malfeasance
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The notion of applying a social exchange cost/benefit model to help illuminate heinous aspects of clergy malfeasance might initially seem incongruous. After all, social exchanges are conventionally thought of as concerning gift giving/sharing, equity, reciprocity, and distributive justice. Real examples of...
3. The Iron Law of Clergy Elitism
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In his book Papal Sin, contemporary Catholic historian Garry Wills (2000, 2) cites nineteenth-century British Catholic historian Lord Acton’s famous dictum, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” What most people...
4. Authenticity Lost: Faith and Victimization
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Authenticity of a religion is not an objective matter to be measured; it is a perception of legitimacy by a critical mass of believers in a faith community’s traditions and leadership authority. Whether the community is hierarchically...
5. Reactance, Crime, and Sin
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In early 2004 a play was produced by a small Chicago theater company. Written by an experienced off-Broadway playwright named Michael Murphy (not a Catholic) and titled Sin: A Cardinal Deposed, it was based entirely on the...
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Page Count: 184
Publication Year: 2007