Diocesan News

Diocese of Brooklyn Responds to Saturday Night Live Skit Attacking Catholic Church

The Diocese of Brooklyn is demanding an immediate public apology from “Saturday Night Live” and NBC after Saturday night’s disgraceful and offensive skit in which cast member Pete Davidson, during the Weekend Update segment, said: “If you support the Catholic Church, isn’t that the same thing as being an R. Kelly fan?” The statement clearly shocked the studio audience as gasps could be heard off camera.

Apparently, the only acceptable bias these days is against the Catholic Church. The faithful of our Church are disgusted by the harassment by those in news and entertainment, and this sketch offends millions. The mockery of this difficult time in the Church’s history serves no purpose.

The clergy sex abuse crisis is shameful, and no one should ever get a laugh at the expense of the victims who have suffered irreparably. The Diocese of Brooklyn strives every day to ensure that sexual abuse by clergy never happens again.

For nearly two decades, the Diocese of Brooklyn has taken this crisis seriously and instituted widespread changes mandated by the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.

Those changes include a zero-tolerance policy in which any clergy member credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor is permanently removed from ministry. Since 2002, the Diocese of Brooklyn has shared all of its files and allegations against clergy with the District Attorneys of Brooklyn and Queens. In 2004, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio instituted a reporting line that sends reports directly to law enforcement authorities.

The charter also mandates sexual abuse awareness training for all clergy members, teachers, parish/academy/school employees, catechists and volunteers who work directly with children. Employees and volunteers also must agree to initial and ongoing criminal background checks and must sign a code of conduct.

To help victims, the Office of Victim Assistance provides referrals for therapy, support groups for survivors and an annual Healing Mass to pray for all who have been impacted by sexual abuse.  The diocese also started the Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program as another possible mechanism for healing that may help bring closure to victim-survivors of clergy sexual abuse.

It is likely that no other institution has done more than the Catholic Church to combat and prevent sexual abuse. The insensitivity of the writers, producers, and the cast of SNL around this painful subject is alarming.

Share this article with a friend.

14 thoughts on “Diocese of Brooklyn Responds to Saturday Night Live Skit Attacking Catholic Church

  1. As hard as it is to hear and watch the media’s responses, the fact is, the Church has earned this response. The Catholic Church has been the powerful entity in the world for centuries, THE word on moral behavior, more than any other religious, political or educational group, so to be exposed for the evil and harm it caused, while painful, cannot be avoided. Its going to sting for a while, and many followers will respond, and many will leave. The best you can do to the media’s response (not harassment), is to Turn The Other Cheek. Show your followers what you are. Do not tell us. Keep making amends. Keep moving forward. To defend, to complain, to say you are harassed doesn’t work. Just keep doing What Jesus Would Do. Be humble. Stay humble, Not arrogant or defensive. Its not the current people in service who are being attacked but those in power in the past, even though it may feel like its you who are being criticized. Again, show us who and what the Church is and don’t waste your time defending or whining about criticisms. Be a transparent power of example for us. That is what we need.

  2. The truth is something the Catholic church should embrace and be ever humbled by it. The proper response to this skit is to apologize again. The Catholic church can’t get bent out of shape for 5 minutes of comedy after centuries of abuses. The child abuse problem is just the latest or a long string: the spanish inquisition, the crusades, support of Hitler in WWiI, etc.

  3. Well, I don’t know Petey – how many times did R. Kelly host Saturday Night Live, anyway? Sooo sorry to have to bring that up.

  4. Are they kidding with this? No. The Catholic Church continues to struggle with the issue of abuse and does not get to claim any moral high ground on the issue. They do not deserve an apology for being called out for what they’ve done. Victims of molestation suffer consequences for life, often including addiction, depression, poor grades, more job turnover, working lower wage jobs that peers, and more. For life.

    The Brooklyn Diocese needs to stand down on this and stop throwing stones from their shattered glass house.


  6. The oldest comment on record may be from Saint John Chrysostom who wrote that molestation of children by clerics has become so commonplace that people just accept it. I guess the Catholic Church is now saying that interfering with priests, bishops etc. molesting children is interfering with their right to practice their religion.

  7. NO, it is NOT the same! BLAME THE LEADERS, NOT THE CHURCH! His comment is as ridiculous as leaving this country if you don’t like the leaders!

  8. Dear Brooklyn Diocese, SNL is sorry your church believes protecting pedophiles is a core tenet of your religious organization. Happy now?

    Please don’t dare to ever try to take the high ground on this issue ever again. You have no right to do so.

  9. The fact of the matter is the Diocese is right in stating the only place you can attack today with impunity is the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church is not the only institution to have higher members accused of molesting youth. And I guarantee SNL would never slur Islam even though its treatment of young women is despicable. Yet NO SKIT HAS APPEARED ABOUT MUSLIM FATHERS KILLING THEIR DAUGHTERS WHO HAVE BEEN RAPED OR THE PRACTICE OF MUTILATING LITTLE GIRLS REPRODUCTIVE PARTS. Also, the Church did not take the side of the Nazis and the Inquisition had more to do with politics than Faith. You have watched too many Mel Brooks Movies