Religion writers will be familiar with the Catholic Church’s more nuanced attempts to spin the news of its American Troubles, but the rest of us may be surprised at the depth of its cynicism, as revealed here by Debra Mason of the Religion Newswriters Association. Debra nominates the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops for the RNA’s “Into the Darkness Award” for their attempt to limit the latest news to a handpicked cadre of elite (read: reasonable) reporters.

And as we write, the official report commissioned by the bishops “The Nature and Scope of the Problem of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Catholic Priests and Deacons in the United States,” has just been released. How bad is it? This bad…