I refer to your editorial comment relating to child sexual abuse and the pieces by John Cooney, Bruce Arnold and Matthew Day on the same subject (December 21).
Pope Benedict's remarks were scandalous and reflect the mindset of many senior churchmen and theologians who are cocooned from real life.
However, the Pope was speaking in a personal capacity as a theologian, and we know that a great deal of Roman Catholic theology is unconnected to the immutable doctrine; for example Limbo and clerical celibacy, which are positions adopted by the church and which can be overturned.
This does not excuse him. All normal people are horrified by the ongoing revelations about the defilement of the innocent by priests and brothers and the collusion of bishops.
The above, in my opinion, establishes that the church as an institution, as it stands at present, is a failed entity, which must be rebuilt more in accordance with the original vision.
This leads me to my main point. The church is primarily the mystical body of Christ with the faithful as members. This explains why, despite the horrors, I have never questioned my faith.
Carrickaboy, Co Cavan