A Lesson Learned From the Sex Abuse Scandal in the Church

  • The best of these spiritual teachers show their students the way to find God without their help, to have a private relationship with God not only through scripture or prayer books, attendance at the church or synagogue, or through following religious rituals.
  • People should not let the sex scandals in the church interfere with their faith in God.
  • When they desecrate the name of God by these type of actions including sexual abuse, bribery, money laundering, using funds from charity for their own personal benefits, it affects people and weakens their faith in God and their religion.

People should not let the sex scandals in the church interfere with their faith in God. It has already been said in Psalms 146:3, Don’t put your confidence in people, they have for you no salvation. Psalms 84:13, Lord of hosts, happy is the man that trusts in you. Jerimiah 17:7, Blessed is the man that trusts in God, for only in God is his trust.”

Religion is only the beginning of faith. The priest, pastor or Rabbi is only to help people to begin the journey of the soul. In the beginning of the search for God is needed a mentor and a religion to give a way of life through which a person can later be connected to God directly like a father to a son. It takes time to find the direct connection to God. During this time is needed a mentor and a congregation with holy books for study and prayer. The books for study and prayer are of great importance. It is also important to give honor to your teacher and your religious leader. If your leader has betrayed your trust; the sages teach that it is no longer necessary to give him the same honor like before. Again is learnt the truth of the passage above Psalms,146:3 “Don’t put your confidence in people, they have no salvation.” Religion and religious leaders are important. The best of these spiritual teachers show their students the way to find God without their help, to have a private relationship with God not only through scripture or prayer books, attendance at the church or synagogue, or through following religious rituals.

Rabbi Nachman of Breslov a Chassidic master encouraged his students to go out alone in the fields or the forest and to pray to God privately in their own words from their own hearts. He said this type of prayer is the greatest prayer. From this type of prayer grows a private relationship with God like a father to a son. All the time that a person has not acquired this private relationship with God which is called “knowledge” he is in danger of losing his faith. Every day there is more bad news of Sexual abuse in the church. ISIS is killing more people in the name of God. Sunni Muslims are at war with Shiite Muslims. India and Pakistan representing two faiths are fighting over Kashmir. The Orthodox and secular are at war in Israel over drafting their children. The more these atrocities are revealed the more difficult it is for people to believe in God. People depend on their religion and their religious leaders and look at them as an example of righteousness. When they desecrate the name of God by these type of actions including sexual abuse, bribery, money laundering, using funds from charity for their own personal benefits, it affects people and weakens their faith in God and their religion. Pope Francis calls These conflicts the work of the Satan.

Religion is necessary to reinforce faith in the home and for promotion of peace between man and his wife, man and man. People who marry should have similar beliefs. Jews should marry Jews. Christians should marry Christians. Muslims should marry Muslims. The father and mother need a third person who is their religious leader for counseling in matters of faith and child rearing. The couple should choose a special religious leader or spiritual mentor. If they have a conflict in the home regarding religion, livelihood, child education, almost everything; they can go to their religious mentor for advice. In Judaism families are members of a synagogue with a Rabbi as their religious mentor. Chassidic Religious almost completely depend on their Grand Rabbi for advice in every matter. The Chassidic Rebbe is revered like a Catholic priest to his constituents. The Grand rabbi who is respected by all religious groups Chassidic and Orthodox is revered like the Pope to all Catholics. In Judaism is stressed strict observance of the Torah law in all congregations. In Chassidic Congregations the Rebbe or religious leader is revered almost like the Torah or even more than the Torah. This great Rabbi is the example of righteousness to all the Jewish people in his generation.

The Jewish people are waiting anxiously for the Messiah. Choosing a Chassidic Grand Rabbi for a congregation of thousands of Chassidim can sometimes become controversial. When the previous Rabbi passes away usually is chosen his oldest son. If his oldest son is less learned than one of his other children; the Chassidim can choose the younger son which may cause a conflict which results in two leaders and two congregations. There is sometimes politics involving dynasties with large wealth. The conflict and the battle between the two brothers can lead to desecration of the name of God. From these conflicts, weaker souls lose faith. In the past generations there were arguments between Chassidic and Orthodox groups over their approach toward Torah law which became very dirty even to the point of violence. All these parts of religion cause the weaker souls to lose faith.

In Jewish history when times were very difficult for Jews living in the diaspora the anxiousness for the coming of the Messiah made the greatest desecration of the name of God. In the 1600s there was a Sephardic ordained Rabbi and mystic Sabbatai Tzvi who claimed to be the Messiah. Almost all the Jewish people were fooled by him. In the end, he was confronted by the leaders of the Ottoman Empire to convert or die. He desecrated the name of God and Moses and converted to Islam. The faith in the coming of the Messiah and in the Torah was severely weakened. Judaism has had its hard knocks in its history. The Catholic Church is being attacked today.

There is no time to waste. Depending on religion for your faith is not enough. Religion is important. The priest or Rabbi in your community is important for the strength of your family and congregation. Everyone needs a congregation, and a family. Today is the time to transcend religion and reach perfect faith which will not be damaged by hearing stories of sex abuse in the church or rabbinical leaders doing things against God and the Torah. The answer is to believe in the resurrection of the three great prophets of all ages Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed and connect to God through resurrection not only through scripture. There is no greater spiritual energy then in spiritual unity.

In the last generation in Judaism, the two greatest leaders of the generation took steps to bring the Jewish people and the world to perfect faith. Rebbe Nachman the grandson of the Baal Shem Tov the founder of Chassidism brought into Judaism non-conventional prayer each person from his heart in his own language. He emphasized happiness and unity of God before religion. The Chabad Lubavitch Chassidic movement encouraged the study of esoteric topics in Judaism and even encouraged Jews to learn with their gentile neighbors Torah law. The Rebbe built an enormous Candelabra Menorah in public places on the holiday of Chanukah to spread the faith in God and the Law of Moses to all the world. Many Chabad Chassidism consider the Rebbe to be the Messiah of the Jewish people even after his death. Also Rabbi Yisrael Odessa the leader of the Breslov movement claimed to be the receiver of a letter written by Rabbi Nachman 200 years after his death. The letter is displayed on the internet. Rabbi Nachman signs his name Na,Nach,Nachma, Nachman which has secret meaning in the esoteric Judaism sort of the way a mantra is used in Hinduism. There is no more time to wait. Everyone has to find God and know God to the point that he won’t be dependent even on the Pope or his Grand Rabbi. About this wrote Jerimiah in chapter 29, everyone will know God from child to adult and it won’t be necessary for one person to depend on his mentor to teach him. Jesus rebuked the Jewish religious clergy by saying, that they worry about eating a bug (it is forbidden to eat a bug and Jews inspect closely their vegetables before eating them), but they eat a camel. Catholic priests preach righteousness observing all the laws of the New Testament and eat the camel of Sex Abuse. The whole world is guilty of sex abuse but the media picks more on the religious because they are supposed to know better.

In one way the stories of sex abuse in the church aggravate and weaken the faith of weaker souls. In the other way they are an incentive for all people to know God and no longer to depend on religion for answers. For sure there is less sex abuse in religious circles than in secular circles. In the Jewish world the Satan has done his damage when religious leaders and religious woman have been convicted for sex abuse. In the secular world Bill Cosby and Michael Jackson have been accused of sex abuse along with many others. President Clinton was impeached for sex abuse. Gays are always looking to find new companions legally and illegally. In Israel the former President of Israel was convicted of sex abuse and imprisoned. Human beings are not perfect; only God is perfect. However the greatest perfection of a human being is after resurrection almost like God but still only the Son of God and not the father. We will only reach this perfection after death. The sages teach, greater is the work of good deeds in this world than all of the world to come. Trust in God but believe in the Messiah. Sometimes even the Messiah cannot be trusted. Maybe he is a false messiah. The Messiah was revealed after his death through resurrection. The greatest of saints became known after their death. Also the greatest of artists, and poets.

(The picture above is of the letter written by the hand of Rabbi Nachman to his student Yisrael Ber Odessa two hundred years after his death. Believing in the resurrection is the gateway to faith.)

David Wexelman

Rabbi David Wexelman is the  author of five books on the topics of World Unity and Peace, and Progressive Jewish Spirituality.  He has two sites at:  www.progressivejewishspirituality.net and www.worldunitypeace.org
http://www.worldunitypeace.org

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