The Continuing Scandal–Lifestyles of the Rich and Pious

“Foxes have their lairs, birds have their nests, but the Son of Man doesn’t have a place he can call his home.” Jesus Christ…

His represenatives today…fromORANGE COUNTY WEEKLY OC Weekly: Cover: Lifestyles of the Rich and Pious:

“Would you like to work for a company that, when facing millions of dollars in lawsuits, buys you a multimillion-dollar house? How about an employer who adds a second story to your already-massive abode even while the government forces it to pay $5.2 million to settle a lawsuit?

Think it can only happen at Halliburton? Well, think again: you can enjoy all of this if you’re a priest for the Catholic Diocese of Orange!

Yes, when Bishop Tod D. Brown became the spiritual head of Orange County’s 1.2 million Catholics in 1998, he abandoned the Church’s millennia-old practice of housing priests in humble rectories on parish grounds and began shacking up clergy in fancy digs few of the faithful could afford: quaint Balboa Island bungalows, beachside manses and other high-class abodes featuring three-car garages, walk-in closets and in-ground spas. In a confidential Sept. 3 memo written by Father Michael Heher to diocesan priests, Heher defended this practice by citing Brown’s policy of allowing priests ‘to live off-site, affording them more privacy and a place away from their work environment.’ And just last month, Brown admitted to purchasing a gated-community lot on which he plans to have built a multimillion-dollar mansion for himself near the proposed site of the $100 million Christ Our Savior Cathedral in Santa Ana (see accompanying story ‘Rooms at the Inn’).”

Check out the story for pictures of some of the “rectories” in the diocese.

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3 Responses

  1. Let us leave aside the Gospel for the moment, since it obviously isn’t the guiding principle in this diocese. But what about public relations? When you know that the media is out gunning for you, is spending money like this really a smart idea? Well, that doesn’t even cross your mind if you’re arrogant. And my years in the religious not-for-profit sector taught me enough about CEOs (and what else is a bishop in his diocese?) who talked about “servant leadership” while funding mortgages for themselves and their cronies. They are able to entertain a level of cognitive dissonance that is breathtaking.

  2. They seem to have little/no contact with reality. Isn’t that one of the measures of mental illness?

  3. I’m the anonymous above. Keep having
    problems signing on….
    Lynn
    Computer Klutz

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