The Letter

Friends,

I have been receiving many comments/messages/texts about the infamous letter. I am sure many of you are hearing about it as well. The following are my final comments on the matter.

The letter in question is only part of this story because a priest and confessor betrayed his parishioner and penitent by illicitly obtaining* the letter and sharing it. The letter is a personal correspondence and should have remained so.

I do not believe it is a love letter. I genuinely believe that it was a letter of friendship, which is a form of love and a very important one at that. Have we forgotten that love is a multi-faceted term? The Greeks distinguished four types of love:

Storge: affection – the love between family
Philia: friendship – the love between friends
Eros: passion – the love between lovers
Agape: unconditional love – the love of God

People are spreading this letter around our diocese (and beyond) along with their erotic interpretation of it. Salacious rumors are running rampant and people are using their erotic interpretation as “proof” of their claims. It disgusts and disappoints me in equal measure. These are good, faithful people I have respected in the past and want to still respect now and in the future. We are being divided – at a time when we most need unity!! – over personal interpretations of a letter none of us should ever have seen in the first place. Talk about compounding a tragedy!

Bishop Malone wants us to focus on this letter – that’s why he referenced it so much during this press conference on Wednesday! He wants this letter (and its author, recipient and thief) to deflect attention away from himself. We know how horribly he has treated Father Ryszard in the past – as this story makes heartrendingly clear – so it should not surprise us to realize that he is doing it again. Don’t let Bishop Malone get away with this pathetic diversionary tactic!

One of the most beautiful lines from The Little Prince is this one:

“One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eyes.”

Eros is so very visible in our society. We are surrounded by it in many forms.

Let us not allow our eyes and hearts to be blinded to the essential reality of philia.

And for the love of God – agape – stop spreading slander!

I will entertain no further comments or questions on this matter. Please join me in prayer for all involved. Thank you!

*Yes, I am fully aware that I “illicitly obtained” documents from Bishop Malone. They were of an obviously different nature and import.

7 thoughts on “The Letter

  • Siobhan of Buffalo, take courage!
    I know there was another young lady somewhere in France that was derided, calumniated, and falsely accused, but she heroically resisted all the accusations, the dirty innuendos, refused to answer when necessary, and never deviated from her mission. She led the charge for the whole Church, and at the end she did get the crown and the palm of victory. You truly remind me of her, and I feel blessed to stand with you. Don’t explain any more regarding this letter, its truly nobody’s business. Because I trust who you are, and what you stand for, I have no need to question your judgment about this letter, and wish everybody else would too, PERIOD!

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  • Siobhan, the steamy love letter not only exposed Fr. Biernat for who is truly is, but it also exposed *you* as well.
    You are clearly not the “faithful Catholic” that you, with the help of Charlie Specht and the media, have made yourself out to be. You not only *knew* about this gay love affair – the two of them also bought a house together last year – but you have defended these priests who have openly flouted their obedience to their vows.
    Your calls for unity ring quite hollow when you yourself have caused division and turmoil in the diocese in a corrupt and deceiptful manner. You have stood by the side of priests who have brazenly put their own pride ahead of the teachings of the Church.
    It may take a while, but the truth of this whole episode will eventually emerge.

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  • Considering that a religious sister, probably a few priests or Bishops, and at least one lawyer was involved in giving Bishop Malone advice on abusive priests and how to handle it, and that more than 90 percent of abuse happened prior to his time here…why did you feel you were the one to give private/ confidential info to the Press? They are like vultures. No organization wants to deliver it’s dirty laundry to the press. Who trusts them?! Furthermore, what happened to the Bishops who were here when most of the abuse took place-Mansell, Head, and Kimeck and their role in this? They get off scott free? Malone inherited almost all of it. I glad to see you found $ support through the media, having left your job. In the meantime, by the way, you know how common abuse is in all organizations, in families, everywhere? I was abused over a period of time by a relative, and yes, it was horrifying but, let’s just say I got over it through much counseling and God’s grace. I am certainly not ever going to seek revenge now and ruin other lives because of the injustice done to me then. It was a mistake of the Diocese of offer $ other than for counseling. I think you personally have helped to bring down the Church in this area, thinking you knew more and could” right the situation” better than anyone else. Pride.

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    • The current Bishop innocent because he wasn’t here?
      Are you saying he had no idea of what was transpiring in this diocese.
      Had it not been for the hard evidence found nothing would have changed!
      Your attitude is what has perpetuated this circus!
      The abuse scandal is worldwide. Every cardinal and bishop has been aware and done nothing!
      The blame goes to the church!
      Accept it!

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  • Let’s never forget, as we coddiwomple through this affair, that we are disciples of the same Christ who gave us the hard but crucial command to “Love your enemies”–within and without! If we can manage to set our hurt and anger aside a moment, we will see clearly that nobody here among us truly knows Siobhan’s heart well enough to judge her … or Bishop Malone, or Fr. Biernat, or Michael Bojanowski, or Fr. Nowak, or anyone else (even Brian Higgins) either. As we judge one another’s actions, we ought to remain mindful that God alone knows the depths of our individual woundedness, our terrible, lonely struggles, and the truest, deepest desires of our hearts. And if this God who knows hearts judges us with mercy, then who are we to do otherwise? We must ever remain vigilant to the fact that our one true enemy is not flesh and blood, it the Principality that cons and tricks us into betraying one another and the God who loves us, and we are ALL vulnerable to it! But Jesus has shown us the way to overcome sin: rather than tear each other apart we are to forgive and bind each other up, then encourage each other to “Go, and sin no more.” THIS is the supreme will of God that trumps even justice so as to triumph over the bondage of sin and establish the kingdom of God here in this world within us.

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  • To err is human, to forgive is divine, and to seek proper justice is praiseworthy in the eyes of God and society.
    Forgiveness granted by the wronged party does not preclude seeking justice, and seeking justice does not automatically indicate malicious intentions or rank revenge. The victims of priestly sex abuse, those that I have met, ALWAYS expressed their forgiveness, however, without the means of justice available to them, it only means that the perpetrators “GET AWAY” with their horrible crimes, frustrating the justice due to the victims, and thus resulting in more CURRUPTION from the Bishop down to his priests with resentments from the faithful, greatly effecting the mission of the Church. Bishop Malone has demonstrated himself UTTERLY UNWORTHY as a successor to the Holy Apostles, and has shown cowardice rather than courage, and must resign “IMMEDIATELY” as his own MRT has demanded. One is inclined to think that Bishop Malone is a spiritual midget with a gigantic Napoleonic complex.
    Siobhan of Buffalo, don’t let negative opinions detract from your mission, do not fear if the tide of human respect turns against you, rather fear what God thinks of you.
    Sometime good people confuse forgiveness with inaction, or justice with revenge.
    Frankly, most people who express these negative opinions, don’t do it out of malice, but simply because they “KNOW NOT WHAT THEY ARE DOING”.
    Do not deviate from the mission that God gave you, or be influenced by human respect even when things “MAY APPEAR” to contradict your words or actions, you are strongest when you are weak.
    Sincerely with Philia (or perhaps Agape?)
    Your friend
    Tony Parisi

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