I mentioned in this blog a few times how I just gave up on religion. Today I read Newsday while having lunch. Local Newsday columnist Ed Lowe got a letter from the Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center Board of Trustees explaining that Ed would not be the key note speaker this year because of:
"...tenor and tone of your recent Newsday columns involving the Church."
I thought, Did I write about the church?
I thought harder. "I did write about men in Boston and on Long Island who paraded as holy shepherds of a flock but for decades permitted hundreds of lambs to be led to their rapists. I said those men should do prison time for their conspiratorial failure as citizens to share with police information they possessed about felony crimes committed by their colleagues against children.
I'd write it again, too.
The letter goes on:
"We are, first and foremost, a Catholic Institution, with deeply held beliefs about our role and mission within the community. Certainly, there are serious problems within our Church today that must be confronted with honesty and openness if they are to be resolved. We believe that many parties with a sincere interest in the outcome need to approach the issues in a spirit that seeks understanding and reconciliation, if there is to be any hope of success. Unfortunately, however, the tone of your recent columns is inconsistent with that objective. To the contrary, The Board is of the opinion that your musings have served only to polarize vital interests who ultimately must come together with the Good Lord's assistance to solve these problems and accord justice to all involved ..."
It goes on for another paragraph, about purpose, tone, mission, goodwill and support. After I read it, I found myself staring out, watching the wet snow accumulate on the branches of a tree near my window, thinking about how on a Saturday evening in May I would not have to dress up in a tuxedo, not have to gather with 300 similarly dressed men and not have to try to entertain them for an hour, for free.
Outside looked like Wonderland.
Originally posted March 17, 2004