I’m watching as they threaten to arrest a Priest for not breaking the Seal of Confession. Uh, no, WRONG. Priests are NOT obligated to break the Seal in the New York Court and Priests can NOT be prosecuted for keeping the Seal; this was established in the People v. Phillips case of 1813. Any police officers who try to shame a Priest (or even lie, as was arguably the case in this episode of Law and Order: SVU) into breaking the Seal of Confession should be ashamed of themselves. Child abuse or no child abuse, murder or no murder, this is going beyond protecting children; this is about souls.
“Protecting the Church” is often talked about like it’s a bad thing, but it’s helpful to remember every now and then how tremendously important the Church really is. Saying that the Seal of Confession is “sacred” is saying something incredibly serious. We’re dealing with the eternal soul here. Guilting Priests into breaking the seal is, and this sounds dramatic because it IS dramatic, messing with sources far more powerful and far more dangerous than any pedophile on Earth, however evil.