Gabriele Kuby’s new book, Abuse of Sexuality in the Catholic Church (Divine Providence Press) includes an anecdote which shows up in pitiable relief the glory of the Catholic priesthood and its degradation in in some highly publicised instances today. Recalling a film made about Pope John XXIII in 1965 by Harry Salzmann she writes that the then Patriarch of Venice was walking along the Venetian canal paths wearing a raincoat on top of a black suit: “He sees a derelict priest in a dirty soutane, unshaved and obviously drunk, standing at the edge of a canal. The Cardinal walks up to him, puts his arm around his shoulder and takes him to the chapel of his palace. There he puts the violet stole around his neck, kneels down before him in order to confess. “You see” says the Cardinal to the priest, “to which sublime service we are called.” It is good to bear this in mind in reading the author’s charges concerning scandals in the Catholic priesthood in our times. Relating that she is a convert in later life, Kuby’s book has the convert’s zeal and enthusiasm as she remembers “the mysterious power of the exposed Blessed Sacrament”, the “life-changing grace” of her first confession, her d...