Sunday, July 1, 2018

A Few More Thoughts On The Reese Case

Mrs Fisher has posted on Reese's conviction on her blog here. I posted a comment that's subject to moderation, and given how squirrely some bloggers are about letting me comment, I'm going to post what I said here in case it never reaches the light of day there:
I’ve followed this case since you first made it public on your blog, with a particular interest in the Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter. You’ve asked in prior posts if there were warning signs before all heck broke loose, but another question would be why the OCSP has, since its start in 2012, routinely violated its own policies in ordaining men who don’t meet its published criteria. In Reese’s case, althogh the OCSP normally requires an MDiv of any candidate prior to applying, Reese had only a bachelor’s in music and never attended seminary. But he was accepted as a candidate in 2012, and although he was required to take remedial courses as a day student at St Meinrad’s seminary, he apparently never got an MDiv. As a result, he never met this minimal requirement for ordination as a Catholic priest. Another question that should be pursued is whether he ever had much exposure to a Catholic vocations director. While the OCSP has had a succession of men who have that title, they are all ex-Anglicans, and they never seem to last long in that job.

Just this past May 31, Bp Lopes received a man into the Catholic Church, ordained him a deacon, and ordained him a priest on the same day, in violation of normal practice in the Church and the OCSP. His MDiv was from an evangelical seminary, and apparently he was never required to take any remedial courses.

The problem is serious, and it continues. Of the small number of men ordained in the OCSP, Reese is the second instance of clear misconduct. Some observers think others aren’t far away.

The comments on her blog, apparently often from OCSP members, are normally anodyne.

Regarding the video of Reese coming out of the courtroom that I linked yesterday, a visitor who knows Reese comments,

Luke has for a very long time labored under the assumption that he was above people, rules and I suspect most recently now above the law. I think the video expresses it most interestingly. Offender Reese's actions show no shred of remorse for what he's done. When asked how he feels, he shrugs it off with an almost "oh well" response. The body language at the beginning of the video says to me that he feels he's the victim and he's still surrounded by his supporters, until one of them notices the camera and than leaves.

All of a sudden he transitions from victim to being exposed for what he is now publicly shown to be (a convicted felon). He makes a few nervous actions and then begins toward the elevator, wherein he gets close to the woman with the camera and his old self emerges (I'm Luke Reese and I am better than you, a pithy woman with a camera). When told not to touch her and that she is doing her job, he asks, "who even is she?" (well obviously a reporter doing her job, reporting on a now convicted felon).

Luke's old behavior emerges and it's rather chilling. Instead of slinking to the elevator and just ignoring her, he has to posture himself as, (I'm better than you and more powerful than you exchange).

Another question that's popped up for me is whether the sort of sustained criminality we saw in Reese's September 24-25 outburst could be related to drug use, for instance cocaine or meth. Eighteen hours of out-of-control criminal conduct, driving all around the state! Normal people would get tired!

Candidates for jobs involving high levels of public trust now must routinely submit to drug tests prior to employment. I worked for banks, transportation, defense contractors, and other industries, and drug tests were a normal part of life. Just sayin'.