On Thursday, October 19, CBS aired an episode of the drama CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, titled “Double-Cross.” The episode revolves around a woman found strangled by rosary beads and crucified in a church, and the priest suspected of her murder.
Commenting on the show is Catholic League president Bill Donohue:
“CSI has offered viewers a big helping of messed-up Catholics in ‘Double-Cross.’ Suspected priest, Fr. Frank, may not have murdered the dead woman, but he did have sex with her. In addition, he was transferred from another church after the suicide of a female parishioner. He also resists helping the police with their investigation. A spacey-looking nun named Sr. Bridget is so intensely protective of Father Frank that, fearing he did commit the murder, she lies and accuses herself. When confronted with the fact that she lacks the physical strength to carry out the grisly killing, she claims ‘it was a miracle.’ Another nun, bitter and old, gripes about Fr. Frank helping the homeless. She even mocks the prayers of the less fortunate, muttering, ‘Dear Jesus, please keep me from blowing the laundry money on the nickel slots at the gas and go.’ Not only is she nasty, she’s overzealous in declaring divine intervention: seeing blood on the hand of a statue of Jesus, she proclaims, ‘right here on the eve of the apocalypse, a miracle.’
“Viewers are presented with only one seemingly-normal Catholic. The lead investigator, Gil Grissom, is a level-headed man. However, as he explains, he doesn’t take his faith very seriously: ‘I suppose I practice a kind of secular Catholicism that involves ritualizing certain aspects of everyday life and imbuing them with a spiritual intensity they might not otherwise possess, but I don’t want to put too fine a point on it.’ He is able, however, to put a fine point on the emotions of practicing Catholics. According to Grissom, ‘they’re full of guilt.’
“So here we have it: As portrayed by CSI, those who have devoted their lives to the Church are a sorry lot. It’s nice to know what they think of faithful Catholic servants.”
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(This update courtesy of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.)