True to form, Los Angeles Bishop Jon Bruno is not going down without a fight. But at this point, +Bruno is simply making a bad situation worse.
Yesterday, the disciplinary board denied and dismissed +Bruno’s appeal of the sanctions imposed on him, which prevented his sale of the vacant St. James the Great property in Newport. No surprise there, as being told you can’t sell the property while the related disciplinary matter is under way is hardly a shocking proposition.
What concerns me is that +Bruno does not appear to understand that his scorched earth policy apropos disciplinary proceedings is doing him more harm than good.
As I have said elsewhere on this blog, how clergy respond to accusations of wrongdoing is telling. If indeed they are trying to do the right thing, clergy in this situation will themselves seek mediation, conciliation, and help in resolving the conflict. When, as here, they trot out the whole, “Didn’t, wouldn’t, couldn’t, shouldn’t,” routine, they merely confirm that they are, in fact, acting badly. In short, when God takes a back seat to power, control, and ego, there is indeed a problem.
Had +Bruno early on, said, “I am so very sorry. Let’s see what we can do to work together towards a solution that is good for everyone,” this would have been a very short-lived proceeding. But as it is, +Bruno seems determined to prevent anything but the most draconian of outcomes from the hearing panel, underscoring the fact that this increasingly appears to be a disciplinary proceeding that should have happened long ago.
See the text of the Disciplinary Board’s decision in PDF here.