Tag Archives: pedophile priests

Cover Up

New Bill Goes After Institutions That Cover Up Child Sexual Abuse, Giving Survivors Chance For Justice - Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault

Image courtesy of CBS News.

The following is excerpted from a post by Gabrielle Guthrie.  Gabrielle discusses the cover up of child sexual abuse by religious and other institutions, most particularly the Church of England [1].

The full post can be found at her blog See, there’s this thing called biologyhttps://insanitybytes2.wordpress.com/2022/11/06/he-fell-where/.

Colorado is among the states that have passed legislation extending the Statute of Limitations on sexual abuse, while targeting those individuals and institutions who knew (or should have known) about the abuse but did not stop it [2][3].

“…it’s the cover up that is so evil, it’s circling the wagons and protecting the power structure, that really rankles.  That’s what lurks behind those deep rooted feelings of powerlessness and injustice.  Sometimes that is even more emotionally painful then the initial assault.

Sexual abuse is evidence that you have no human value, no worth in someone’s eyes.  Those who look at the crime with apathy or complacency, and ignore it, validate that lie and amplify it.  It’s still a lie, but lies are a lot harder to dig out when they are deeply rooted due to other people’s complicity.” Continue reading

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Evil Never Rests

Evil eyes Royalty Free Vector Image - VectorStock

The past two years have been eventful for the world.  First, Covid dominated the news. Now, the tragic war in Ukraine (with 115 children killed, 140 injured, an untold number orphaned, and 1.5 million made refugees) is a major focus [1][2].

The following events have, also, taken place. They demonstrate that evil never rests:

  • Incest — Gucci heiress, Alexandra Zarini, has alleged that her stepfather, Joseph Ruffalo, sexually abused her between the ages of six and twenty-two. Her lawsuit has fractured the family, and confirmed that wealth is no safeguard against child abuse [3].
  • Catholic Church Sex Scandal — Retired Pope Benedict XVI (former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger) has asked forgiveness from victims for his mishandling of four Catholic Church sex abuse cases [4]. Ratzinger did not in so many words apologize or accept blame. He continues to deny personal responsibility for the rapes and sodomy perpetuated by his failure to curtail the ministries of pedophile priests when complaints first surfaced [5].

Continue reading

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Predator Priests, Part 1

Facade of St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome, Author Alessio Nastro Siniscalchi (CC BY-SA 2.5 Italy)

WARNING:  Graphic Images

Pennsylvania Attorney General, Josh Shapiro, this week released the results of what may be the most comprehensive state investigation into child sexual abuse and cover-up by the Roman Catholic Church in the nation’s history [1A].

Examining over 70 years of church records, the grand jury investigation identified 301 predator priests, and more than 1000 child victims, across six dioceses (Allentown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Scranton).  Sexual abuse by priests was earlier uncovered in two other Pennsylvania dioceses (Philadelphia and Altoona).

Background

The Catholic Church sex scandal first began to surface in the 1980s [2].  A seminal investigation by the Boston Globe in 2002 led to the criminal prosecution of five predator priests [3].

Subsequent investigations revealed a widespread pattern of abuse across the United States and the globe, with an institutional cover-up extending to the Vatican.  Despite complaints, predator priests were moved seamlessly from parish to parish, and allowed to continue in ministry, sometimes for decades.

As Shapiro expressed it:

“Church officials routinely and purposefully described the abuse as horseplay and wrestling and inappropriate conduct.  It was none of those things.  It was child sexual abuse, including rape [1B].”

Some 17,000 victims have come forward in the US.  Papal apologies and new protocols have done little to correct the situation.

Victimized

Victims were primarily boys.  However, girls were victimized, as well.  One 9 y.o. had his mouth washed out with holy water after oral sex [6].  Another victim was 18 months of age, and still in diapers.

Along with oral sex, abuse included groping, forced masturbation, vaginal and anal penetration.

When complaints were made to church hierarchy, victims were accused of fabricating lies (or seduction, if pregnancy resulted).

Continue reading

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Scandal…Yet Again

Scales of Justice with emblem of Holy See, Author Ktr101 (CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported)

Just when the dust appeared to have settled, the Catholic Church sex scandal has expanded to a new venue.  This time the setting is Australia.  The proportions are massive.

A Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has uncovered the widespread abuse of children by religious schools and other institutions [1].  Most of those suspected are Catholic priests and religious brothers.

Tens of thousands of children were impacted.  While the exact number of victims cannot be known, the abuse extended across generations.

The Commission’s official report reads, in part:

“It is not a case of a few rotten apples.  Society’s major institutions have seriously failed.  In many cases those failings have been exacerbated by a manifestly inadequate response to the abused person.  The problems have been so widespread, and the nature of the abuse so heinous, that it is difficult to comprehend.”

More than 4400 victims have come forward and more than 4000 institutions been implicated.  In numerous cases, the commission found those in leadership were aware of the abuse, but failed to take effective action. Continue reading

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A New Pope

Hopes are high for Pope Francis and his impact on the Catholic Church.

While the new pope’s agenda should include additional measures to root out, redress, and report sexual misconduct by priests, that agenda should focus, also, on the poor.  The gap between rich and poor grows ever wider.

We may mistakenly measure the value of life by wealth, power or fame.  We may be impressed by zip code or square footage.  But to God all life is priceless.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT:  http://www.alawyersprayers.com

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Public Awareness

Recent Pennsylvania verdicts re: the cover-up by Catholic Church officials of pedophile priests, and repeated betrayals of trust by a former Penn State assistant coach have put abuse in the headlines.

Raising public awareness is vital to the prevention of child abuse.  So is public involvement.

Even as I write this, abuse continues.  Locally, news reports indicate a 6 year old boy in the advanced stages of starvation when first hospitalized, was twice returned to the custody of the very parents who had neglected him.

As a community, we are responsible for the welfare of our children.  However welcome guilty verdicts against predators may be, the criminal justice system can only seek to remedy past injury. Prevention is the ideal.  No child should bear these scars.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT:  http://www.alawyersprayers.com

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Held Accountable

Msgr. William Lynn has been found guilty in Philadelphia of a single count of endangerment for the systematic cover-up by Catholic Church officials of pedophile priests.

Offending priests were deliberately transferred from one unknowing parish to another at the direction of now deceased Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua.

The testimony by adult abuse survivors was wrenching. The verdict does not begin to offset their suffering, which continues to this day.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT:  http://www.alawyersprayers.com

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Nuremberg…Again

Philadelphia’s trial of Msgr. William Lynn for the systematic cover up by Catholic Church officials of pedophilia by priests continues.

The defense rests on two grounds: the advice of legal counsel that reporting to law enforcement was unnecessary, since the statute of limitations had run; and the orders of now deceased Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua.

Of course, the Statute of Limitations had not yet run when many claims were initially made. Often, it was the delayed handling by church officials which caused the statute to run. Nor was there a re-examination of the issue, when the Statute of Limitations was extended by the legislature.

In fact, had the Catholic Church acted in the best interests of the victims, it could easily have waived the Statute of Limitations at any time.

As to the second ground, it was previously raised by Adolf Eichmann at the Nuremberg war crimes trials.  He was “only following orders,” too.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT:  http://www.alawyersprayers.com

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Landmark

A landmark case is being tried in Philadelphia with the purpose of holding accountable in the US for the first time a Roman Catholic Church official for his handling of the sex abuse complaints made against more than 60 priests.

The testimony being elicited after 8 years of investigation and 2 grand juries is as appalling as expected. Grammar school children raped, reports of abuse ignored for decades, the transfer of known offenders from one parish to the next.

Child molesters returned to work with children, monsters provided fresh hunting grounds.

The church abandoned the most vulnerable of its charges. What justice may come out of this is long, long overdue.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT:  http://www.alawyersprayers.com

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