Neither did Isthmus publisher Vince O'Hern, but he decided to find out.
Reading Dinur's article and the contention between certain laity and the bishop reminded me of the old dictum "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."O'Hern was commenting on Esty Dinur's must read article in Isthmus about the arch-conservative Bishop of the Madison Diocese, Taking on Bishop Morlino: Robert Morlino claims to represent the true church of Jesus Christ. Some local Catholics aren't buying it.
Researching the origins of that quote led to the surprising discovery that it was penned by one Lord John Emerich Acton, a Catholic English nobleman writing to Bishop Mandell Creighton. The occasion was the proclamation of papal infallibility by Pope Pius IX in 1870. A prominent philosopher and religious publisher of the time, Lord Acton had something else significant to say that could be applicable to the present situation. "There is no worse heresy than the fact that the office sanctifies the holder of it."
Bishop Morlino's appointment was part of the current Vatican's ongoing rollback of Vatican II and seems especially incongruous in a liberal city like Madison.
Within months of his arrival, Morlino wrote a column in the Catholic Herald ripping Madison as a community that has "a high comfort level with virtually no public morality."It just goes to show what that absolute power thing can lead to.
Meanwhile, Morlino has raised questions about the soundness of his own moral compass by serving on and chairing the Board of Visitors of the Georgia-based Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation, formerly known as the School of the Americas. The school, run by the U.S. Army, trains military officers from Latin America, many of whom have been implicated in human rights abuses, including the murder of nuns and priests.