Pope Francis On Clergy Sex Abuse: 'We Showed No Care For The Little Ones'

C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,004
edited August 2018 in News & Current Events

For those in CD thought I was being extreme about this matter, please read for yourself. In his own words:

Pope Francis On Clergy Sex Abuse: 'We Showed No Care For The Little Ones'

-- August 20, 20188:41 AM ET

Pope Francis addresses the International Pilgrimage of the Ministrants last month in St. Peter's Square in the Vatican.
Andreas Solaro -- Editor's Note: This story contains graphic descriptions that some readers may find disturbing.

Nearly a week after a Pennsylvania grand jury released its roughly 900-page report on sexual abuse by clergy, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church has penned a letter condemning the alleged misconduct and pledging repentance.

"The heart-wrenching pain of these victims, which cries out to heaven, was long ignored, kept quiet or silenced. But their outcry was more powerful than all the measures meant to silence it, or sought even to resolve it by decisions that increased its gravity by falling into complicity," Pope Francis wrote in the letter Monday, which is addressed to "the People of God." "The Lord heard that cry and once again showed us on which side he stands."

The "atrocities" Francis refers to were laid out in harrowing detail by the grand jury report, which used the church's own records to conclude that more than 1,000 credible victims had been abused by some 300 "predator priests" across eight decades in Pennsylvania. What's more, the report explained how the church apparatus enabled and covered up the abuse, often responding to complaints with cursory investigations and leniency toward the alleged abusers.

"Most of the victims were boys; but there were girls too. Some were teens; many were prepubescent. Some were manipulated with alcohol or pornography. Some were made to masturbate their assailants or were groped by them. Some were raped orally, some vaginally, some anally," the report asserted in no uncertain terms.

"But," it added, "all of them were brushed aside, in every part of the state, by church leaders who preferred to protect the abusers and their institution above all."

Report Reveals Widespread Sexual Abuse By Over 300 Priests In Pennsylvania
Report Reveals Widespread Sexual Abuse By Over 300 Priests In Pennsylvania
A Pennsylvania Priest Responds To Sex Abuse Report
A Pennsylvania Priest Responds To Sex Abuse Report
Former Catholic Priest Says Pennsylvania Bishop Ignored His Reports Of Abuse
Former Catholic Priest Says Pennsylvania Bishop Ignored His Reports Of Abuse
Until the church ceases to protect — and even in some cases promote — accused priests, "we think it is too early to close the book on the Catholic Church sex scandal," the report's authors concluded.

Francis' personal response initially was silence, instead allowing a Vatican spokesperson to offer the church's public response in the days that followed. And it was a particularly blunt one, noting that church officials feel "shame and sorrow" over the "criminal and morally reprehensible" abuses it revealed.

The spokesperson, Greg Burke, noted that the grand jury had found "almost no cases after 2002," when the Boston Globe's Spotlight investigations team famously uncovered a widespread cover-up of sexual abuse allegations. But "the Church must learn hard lessons from its past," Burke added in his statement Thursday, "and there should be accountability for both abusers and those who permitted abuse to occur."

In his letter Monday, Francis spoke in similarly stark terms.

"With shame and repentance, we acknowledge as an ecclesial community that we were not where we should have been, that we did not act in a timely manner, realizing the magnitude and the gravity of the damage done to so many lives," the pope wrote. "We showed no care for the little ones; we abandoned them."

The Catholic church has felt the lingering repercussions of its decades of alleged wrongdoing in court and in its wallet lately. As NPR's Tom Gjelten points out, dioceses and religious order in the U.S. have had to pay more than $3 billion in lawsuit settlements with abuse victims since the allegations came to light.

The Clergy Abuse Crisis Has Cost The Catholic Church $3 Billion
The Clergy Abuse Crisis Has Cost The Catholic Church $3 Billion
And though Francis did not detail concrete steps for how he expects the church to change its conduct going forward, he echoed Burke's statement that such change is needed.

"While it is important and necessary on every journey of conversion to acknowledge the truth of what has happened, in itself this is not enough. Today we are challenged as the People of God to take on the pain of our brothers and sisters wounded in their flesh and in their spirit," the pope said.

"If, in the past, the response was one of omission, today we want solidarity, in the deepest and most challenging sense, to become our way of forging present and future history."

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Anything I have said about the sexual abuse by clergy of the Roman Catholic Church was meek and mild compared to the Pennsylvania grand jury's roughly 900-page report. The Sexual abuse by clergy and the leaders of the Roman Catholic Church is beyond bad, shameful, and sickening. The Half, Haven't BEEN TOLD! The deeds by priests would make you cry, angry and pity the many victims and families. It makes you ask, where were God? Why did He allow so much, too go on for so long, and too so many people?

The report of actual deeds of priests to women, boys, and girls will make any TV or movie shame. This report alone can be a Tv or movie series. The report can be an x-rated movie script. As bad as it is, there are redactions. To add insult to injury, some victims will NOT get justice (stature of limitation). Mr. Cosby and the Catholic church in the state of Pennsylvania are blithe to the state. How can the state convict Mr. Cosby and the RCC goes free? What do you think? Should the RCC shut down operations, immediately, in that state and around the USA until crime-committing priests are identified and prosecuted, to the full extent of the law? What about the many lives that have been destroyed? No more time. Protecting the children and families should be foremost than trying to save the institution (RCC). Until sexual deviants are identified a big warning sign should be placed on all of its buildings: Enter at your own risk, sexual predators presence. What do you think?

This whole situation is lower than a snake's belly and more is yet to be told. How could a society allow a people and an institution of trust to get away this another day? This crime is too deep and wide for the church to handle it any longer.

A special prosecutor needs to be assigned. Lives remain in danger as we read. God, Help the many victims! And, Lord, prepare a place and perpetrators to endure the consequences of their crimes and sins. Amen! CM

PS. Your thoughts...


  • JanJan Posts: 248

    I've been wondering, where are the voices in Islam condemning sexual abuse of children?

    Every single case destroys a life, no matter whether the abuser is a Catholic priest, or follows Muhammad marrying a child bride of 6 years.

    However, in terms of numbers, the cases of clergy abuse are miniscule compared to abuse by Muslim child marriage (which are at least in the tens of thousands).

    Where is the media outcry??

  • GaoLuGaoLu Posts: 1,367

    Also, what about sexual abuse among Buddhists and Hindus? Anyone familiar with SE Asia knows exactly what I mean regarding temple children, child marriages, street kids/garbage kids and trafficking. Probably no one really knows the numbers, but it certainly eclipses anything that actually makes the media.

  • JanJan Posts: 248

    So true. A friend of mine has produced a movie about the issue. It had been banned in Cambodia for many years because it speaks out the truth. The governments in SE Asia try to deny the true extent.

    If you ever have the chance to watch this, go for it. As far as I know it's not possible to get hold of this movie in the West and close to impossible to do so in Asia.

    Western governments and media also don't want these issue to go public.

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,004

    Comparison of cases, other religious bodies, and nonchristian institution can't and wouldn't lessen the sin, shame and criminal activities of the Pennsylvania grand jury's 900-page report. Priests raping little boys and girls, the institution paying out billions of dollars in hush monies, and reassigning priests are not a part of the American culture. At least it shouldn't be.

    The RCC in allowing sex-crime, prayer, absolution in the shadow of confessionals seem to be America's Supersized Cult. Members and parents are brainwashed and children are not believed, even when molestations are reported. Immediate actions must be implemented to correct the damage. CM


    A sad reality for a grown man, messed up at the hands of a priest. God help! CM

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