A new grand jury report says that internal documents from six Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania show that more than 300 "predator priests" have been credibly accused of sexually abusing more than 1,000 child victims.
"We believe that the real number of children whose records were lost or who were afraid ever to come forward is in the thousands," the grand jury report says.
"Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God who were responsible for them not only did nothing; they hid it all. For decades. Monsignors, auxiliary bishops, bishops, archbishops, cardinals have mostly been protected; many, including some named in this report, have been promoted. Until that changes, we think it is too early to close the book on the Catholic Church sex scandal."
The lengthy report, released Tuesday afternoon, investigates clergy sexual abuse in six dioceses dating back to 1947. Pennsylvania's two other dioceses, Philadelphia and Altoona-Johnstown, were the subjects of earlier grand jury reports, which found similarly damaging information about clergy and bishops in those dioceses.
"There have been other reports about child sex abuse within the Catholic Church. But never on this scale," the grand jurors wrote in Tuesday's report.
Read the rest here.
First Boston, now the state of Pennsylvania. A report I heard on CBS News had the number of accused priests in the Pittsburgh diocese alone at ONE HUNDRED, even more than the 87 accused in Boston, as reported by the Boston Globe in 2002.
I have to ask: if this is STILL happening in these two major American cities, why should we assume that it isn't happening anywhere else? Indeed, at the end of the movie, Spotlight, there was a list of cities in the US and worldwide where allegations of priest child sexual abuse have been made. A further question must be asked: Why Are We Tolerating This Behavior?!? Why isn't the Catholic Church itself under increased and intense scrutiny in the wake of the multiple reports from the Boston Globe and now regarding the Keystone State? As with many other such incidences, most of the offenses are past the statute of limitations, though Pennsylvania is considering a one-year suspension of that statute to empower further investigation and prosecution. In addition there are two priests who are under indictment and who will hopefully experience the full force of the state judicial system.
I still want to know: when will enough be enough? When will people see through the hallucination of holiness and the pretense of piety and shed the foolishness of belief without substance? Or, put more bluntly, How Many More Kids Have To Be RAPED???
Bertold, I just can't laugh at this ... I can't. What I am is pissed off ... to the point where I am giving serious thought to releasing that letter to the editor that you gave me a hand with some two years ago, though with a bit of a twist, which I may expound on later.
I look at the hurt that has happened and the phenomenal stupidity that accompanies it, and I am not certain I can stay silent.
Do NOT stay silent! Silence helps no one, not the child, the families affected, society, and certainly, silence does not help the religious who commit the assaults and the church.
These assaults will not stop until religion gets batted down. Religion is the parent of people believing they are entitled to do whatever suits them and some feel guilty. For these, prayer and forgiveness from the church authorities and the congregation make the abuser whole again.
Anger, caused by abuses of any kind, is of no use if there is no action with a cause! If someone stole your car, you would not stay silent;
if someone raped your mother, you would not remain speechless;
if someone murdered your wife, you would not be lost for words.
if someone touched your child in a way that is not appropriate or decent, you would not have surges of speechless passion.
Why is the rape of children by priests and other religious any different than your car, mother, wife, and child?
Loren said it well over in Quotations: "because faith and its promoters are supposedly respectable". "[I]f that had been ANY OTHER ORGANIZATION, law enforcement across the world would have been all over them ... their properties would have been seized and used to compensate victims and the church itself would be rendered utterly and irretrievably bankrupt."
Also, because there are still people who hope for heaven and fear hell.
Because belief in belief -- the idea that faith and religion are good -- is still powerful in society.
Perhaps also because many people in power don't want to endanger their positions in their own social-clubs-carrying-the-banner-of-godly-righteousness?
A truly respectable and moral society would not stand for any of those excuses!
I can't find anything to laugh at here either. Its just so bloody sick, & sickening, & I wouldn't even try to find humour in any of it.
As a molested kid myself, I find nothing about this that is even remotely easy to get around, & mine was minor compared to this.
Patricia, I had no idea. I'm just so glad you found your way out and to us.
Mine was not by any clergy, it was a family member, but it doesn't make it any different. I happened to be a blabbermouth & would tell anyone who would listen. But even 60 years later, its always there.
Well, for good or ill, I just sent off a note to my gang at the Northern Ohio Freethought Society. What I want to do is publish the aforementioned letter with ALL OUR NAMES on it ... and maybe a few more besides.
As I state in the note, I have no skin in this game. Never Catholic and never abused, yet this issue so pisses me off that I am moved to at least try to do SOMETHING. Damn it, those kids deserve better.
The world deserves better.
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