I’ve been reading a lot lately, and there’s a good book that sums up perfectly my experiences with perjuring priest Bob Malm and Grace Episcopal church. Titled, When Narcissism Comes to Church the book is written by David Orrison.
Following is an excerpt from his blog that well describes the organizational narcissism at Grace
Too many people have found the church, the institutional local church, to be uncaring and so wrapped up in preserving its image that it will support the abuser in hopes that the victim will just go away and be quiet. We saw another example of this in the news this past week. Another church worker abused a young girl, and the church leaders just moved him to another place. Why does this happen? How can this happen in the church?
The answer is this overwhelming concern for image. In their drive to be seen as superior, some churches would rather ignore the victims than deal with the scandal. When hurting people can be ignored for the sake of the superior image, that’s narcissism.
Christians expect to be able to go to church leadership when they are hurting. When they are pushed away, or sin is covered up, something is very wrong. Narcissism creeps in to depersonalize and victimize.
Of course, this paradigm is problematic in the near-term for multiple reasons, including:
- The fact that Bob Malm, who seems to me to have been the narcissist-in-chief for the past 30 years, is now gone.
- No healthy priest with a good handle on organizational dynamics is likely to want to serve as rector; only another narcissist could or would fit the bill.
- Like any narcissist, the organizational narcissist that is Grace Church sees nothing wrong with its current conduct or attitudes, in which people are drawn to Bob Malm, versus God, and any behavior is justified as long as it meets Bob Malm’s perceived needs, and by extension those of the organization.
- The diocese is every bit as clueless and organizationally narcissistic as are Bob Malm and Grace Church. Thus, with the diocese fully supporting the current situation at Grace Church, there is zero chance of meaningful change.