Over time, there is one thing that is consistent about perjuring priest Bob Malm: He is never a leader when it comes to moral and ethical issues. Whether it’s turning a blind eye to bullying by church staff who report to him, or misconduct by parish “leaders” that he has appointed, or his own lies, misuse of funds, and other misconduct, Bob is at best amoral.
And so it is with his new gig at St. Gabriel’s, Marion. While the government is urging people to avoid unnecessary interaction, and self-quarantine for those age 65 and over, Bob Malm until now has simply ignored these suggestions. Yes, last Sunday he avoided physical contact with parishioners, but the few attendees at services were overwhelmingly high risk.
To make matters worse, many were in close proximity to each other, thus putting themselves one cough or sneeze away from exposure and possible death. Moreover, viral exposure is an exponential thing, with one infected person potentially exposing dozens if not hundreds of others. Thus, even if you don’t care what happens to your parishioners, you risk causing harm to the larger community. This in turn deprives the church of any claim to moral legitimacy.
Fortunately, it appears that the bishop offered some adult supervision and asked the parish to stop in-person services. This is the only ethically appropriate outcome, and needs to continue for at least another month.
All I can say is it is about damned time.