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BS: Catholic Abuse of Children

Rapparee 27 Jul 17 - 09:25 PM
Rapparee 27 Jul 17 - 08:37 PM
Greg F. 27 Jul 17 - 08:10 PM
Jim Carroll 27 Jul 17 - 07:39 PM
Shakey 27 Jul 17 - 07:25 PM
Greg F. 27 Jul 17 - 06:41 PM
Shakey 27 Jul 17 - 05:25 PM
Greg F. 27 Jul 17 - 05:14 PM
Shakey 27 Jul 17 - 04:05 PM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 02:57 PM
Raggytash 27 Jul 17 - 02:53 PM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 02:46 PM
akenaton 27 Jul 17 - 02:40 PM
Raggytash 27 Jul 17 - 02:34 PM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 02:20 PM
Rapparee 27 Jul 17 - 10:12 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jul 17 - 06:33 AM
Steve Shaw 27 Jul 17 - 06:15 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 05:44 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 05:38 AM
Steve Shaw 27 Jul 17 - 05:09 AM
Big Al Whittle 27 Jul 17 - 05:01 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jul 17 - 04:43 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 04:28 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jul 17 - 04:19 AM
Iains 27 Jul 17 - 04:19 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 04:17 AM
Donuel 27 Jul 17 - 03:41 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 03:30 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jul 17 - 03:16 AM
Joe Offer 27 Jul 17 - 03:09 AM
Donuel 27 Jul 17 - 02:51 AM
Big Al Whittle 26 Jul 17 - 11:50 PM
Joe Offer 26 Jul 17 - 10:29 PM
Rapparee 26 Jul 17 - 09:52 PM
Joe Offer 26 Jul 17 - 08:09 PM
Jim Carroll 26 Jul 17 - 07:22 PM
Joe Offer 26 Jul 17 - 07:00 PM
Jim Carroll 26 Jul 17 - 03:11 PM
Jim Carroll 26 Jul 17 - 01:28 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Jul 17 - 07:23 PM
Raggytash 24 Jul 17 - 06:44 PM
Joe Offer 24 Jul 17 - 06:06 PM
akenaton 24 Jul 17 - 05:01 PM
akenaton 24 Jul 17 - 04:56 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Jul 17 - 04:45 PM
akenaton 24 Jul 17 - 04:40 PM
Iains 24 Jul 17 - 04:29 PM
Greg F. 24 Jul 17 - 01:36 PM
Shakey 24 Jul 17 - 01:10 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 09:25 PM

Here's another on Burchtaell.

Notre Dame didn't talk about such things when I lived a couple blocks away (1982-2000). Then the Burtchaell thing hit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 08:37 PM

http://www.nytimes.com/1991/12/03/us/priest-resigns-post-at-notre-dame-amid-accusations-of-sex-abuse.html

The students were seminarians. He died in 2015. The author of the antiabortion book "Rachel Weeping" among others. The original story was in the South Bend Tribune, confirming rumors that had circulated for years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Greg F.
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 08:10 PM

OK, thanks, got it now, Sharkey.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 07:39 PM

"You got a broken record on your machine there, Ake? "
Sounds like a dose of latent homosexuality to me Joe
Why else would anybody be so obsessed with other people's sexual inclinations?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Shakey
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 07:25 PM

'Cause its The truth. Not that it would matter to you, Sharkey.

Oh, so his head is broken is it, you know that and it's the truth?

And just to help

Shakey


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Greg F.
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 06:41 PM

Why Bother

'Cause its The truth. Not that it would matter to you, Sharkey.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Shakey
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:25 PM

Yup - as well as a broken head.

Insightful - No
Funny - Nope
Cutting - Not Even

Why bother


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Greg F.
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:14 PM

You got a broken record on your machine there, Ake?

Yup - as well as a broken head.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Shakey
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:05 PM

Should bishops be expected to be all-wise in such matters

The church generally doesn't hold back it's opinions on the big questions of how we should all live our lives.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:57 PM

You got a broken record on your machine there, Ake?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Raggytash
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:53 PM

Should bishops be expected to be all wise . . Frankly yes Joe they should. They are promoted to a position of being responsible for all that happens in their diocese.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:46 PM

But the bishops tried, Raggytash. They gave us seminarians rigorous psychological testing in the 1960s, and they believed that would solve the problem. They spent millions on state-of-the-art treatment centers in the 1970s and 1980s, and were proud that these centers could do such wonderful things to turn around the lives of wayward priests.
And when the bishops lost faith in the treatment centers in the late 1980s, they began referring criminal priests to criminal prosecution. The number of offenses dropped dramatically in the 1990s, but that was too late.
Most people really don't know how to deal with crime. Should bishops be expected to be all-wise in such matters? Hindsight is easy, but what was in the minds of these people when all this was happening? I have worked with children all my life, and I have been in situations where I found out later that people were committing sex offenses with children - and I had no idea at all what was happening, until the criminal was arrested. Child molestation is the quietest of crimes.
There was a guy who lived across the street from me who was physically and verbally abusive to his children and to his wife. I'd say things to him about it on occasion when I felt he was getting out of hand, and he'd stop. I never thought about calling the police. Maybe I should have, but would that have solved the problem or made it worse? How have you responded to similar situations?

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:40 PM

One question Joe why are there so many homosexuals in the priesthood and why is abuse of minors in the general population overwhelmingly against females, while in the Catholic church 4 out of 5 victims are youths between 14 and eighteen (post pubescent)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Raggytash
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:34 PM

Given that this abuse is not a new phenomena I find your suggestion difficult to believe Joe. This abuse has been widely known in the Catholic church (for example) for decades. I should expect, as a minimum, that a responsible leader, eg a bishop, should be constantly vigilant for such abuse.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:20 PM

I would say that there have been between five and ten percent of priests doing the sexual assaults.
And another five to ten percent covering up. These are mostly motivated by cowardice, I believe.
The percentage of offenders is small, but a few wrongdoers can have a vast effect. Brendan Smyth had 143 victims, spread over a number of parishes. His criminal conduct poisoned every one of those parish communities. I don't know how a congregation can survive such a betrayal - even though it was just one man who did the crime.
Smyth was first suspected of sexual misconduct in the 1970s, but he was not arrested until 1991. I can't figure out the dynamics of what went on during that period. Did Smyth's superiors in the Norbertine order not believe the allegations, or were they trying to protect themselves from financial claims, or what?
This is what I cannot understand. With all of this going on, how could church authorities continue to allow it? To my knowledge, no church official has come forward to speak with total honesty about what happened.
I do have a theory. Almost every chancery office (administrative office) in almost every diocese, is staffed mostly by priests who are social misfits. They're the milquetoast types who cannot relate to people, so they cannot function for long as parish priests. I've met a lot of very creepy priests in chancery offices, and they quietly wield a lot of power. They serve to insulate bishops from honesty, and they deal with problems in cowardly, secretive ways under the bishop's authority - and without the bishop's knowledge. But in the end, the bishop is responsible for their actions. I can picture that - chancery people quietly moving offenders from one place to another while hushing everything up. Two or three quiet transfers a year can happen easily without anybody noticing - and can multiply the damage exponentially. And if a priest dares to speak up in complaint about a problem with another priest, he can easily be transferred to a remote, rural parish. The bishop is out making official visits all around the diocese, totally aware of what is going on in the chancery office. And bishops are usually transferred in from other locations, so they don't really know the priests they supervise.
And regular parish priests are isolated, rarely aware of what goes on oiutside their own parish - managing a parish is all they can deal with. And to a great extent, sex offender priests are very charming and engaging on the surface - and they often do their jobs as priests very well. Who would ever expect that such a charming, gentle person would be a child molester?

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 10:12 AM

Mormons.

Jews.

Baptists.

Methodists.

Aetheists.

etc. etc. etc.

Like rape, this seems to be a crime based upon control. Not sexual, just one person wanting, needing, to enslave another to (usually) his desires.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 06:33 AM

None of that explains the animosity being expressed against the church particularly in represent to the abuses, the Laundries and the violence of the industrial schools - it's fairly specific.
If what you say happened in your parish happened everywhere, there wouldn't be a problem
It didn't and there is
Simple as that
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 06:15 AM

Which is the problem. I don't doubt that the vast majority of Catholics are good people. As you'd expect, I still know lots myself. But a large part of this issue is about perception. Once you've made that rod for your back it's damned hard to put things right in the public eye. Bad reputations are easy to collect but hard to shed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:44 AM

And Steve, you say the Christian thing to do would have been to immediately put the victims first.

That's what happened in my diocese. We had a bishop who was a good guy. And that's what happened in a lot of dioceses.

But not all, regrettably.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:38 AM

Jim asks: Can you7 explain why your church has taken the nosedive it has

Well, yes, Jim.
  • 40 percent left because the Catholic Church went liberal. They became fundamentalist Christians.
  • 40 percent left because it didn't go liberal enough. They became atheist and "spiritual but not religious." Or Unitarian.
  • And we who remain think it's our responsibility to make the Catholic Church into what it ought to be.

It never should have been a "state religion." Putting Church into bed with State, was a huge misdeed. Constantine didn't do religion any favors.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:09 AM

The Church has got itself into a mess by appearing to be institutionally complicit in cover-ups, Joe. This is slightly redolent of the ugly Labour Party thread (don't go there...) in which the party has been accused of harbouring antisemitism. There has been a lot of hand-wringing and self-examination inside the party, of which I'm a member, over that issue (never enough to satisfy some outsiders, naturally) and it's been played out in full public gaze. I will not be a member of a party that is institutionally antisemitic but I'm happy that the party is not such, despite the rotten apples. This doesn't appear to have happened in the Church. I say "appear." Sexual abuse is a criminal offence and we need to see the thing fully and frankly out in the open, not priests quietly moved from their parishes or the Church taking decades to reluctantly admit that widespread abuse has gone on. That's called making a rod for one's own back, ironically in an attempt to save one's own arse, when the Christian thing to do would have been to immediately put the victims first. If you're happy (not you personally) to be in an organisation that appears institutionally corrupt, fine. If you're not happy to be a member of an organisation that's perceived that way, you have to organise and fight like mad from within and you have to be seen doing it. As a now-outsider seeing a fight that looks from the outside to be reluctant, patchy and drawn-out I'd say it isn't anywhere near enough.

And this post is not an invitation for the usual opportunists to start rattling on about antisemitism. I hope you'll delete any posts of that nature that appear. I could be wrong but I thought the comparison was apt in some regards.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 05:01 AM

what i meant was -i'm not being racist -not in this case at least!
it really seemed to me that Irish Catholicism seemed to have this mad intense thing that's not there in the mediterranean or the northern european church. The Spanish Inquisition aside!

Theres this wonderful scene in a Ken Russel film - the one about Delius, where his young scribe Eric Fenby arrives at church in northern europe somewhere one afternoon where he finds the local priest having sex in the pews with an eager parishoner.

THe priest looks up, and Fenby says ,will you take my confession?

Without saying a word they both just walk towards the confessional.

So relaxed - you can't imagine that story amongst the Catholics I know.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:43 AM

Sorry Joe
You are taking the same line as your church
Can you7 explain why your church has taken the nosedive it has


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:28 AM

Ah, you're a stubborn man, Jim Carroll.

You're wrong, but you're a stubborn man....

I don't deny the offenses that happened - and there were indeed many. But there were many more who did not offend, and who did not participate in coverups. They don't deserve your blanket accusal.

Broad brush, Jim, broad brush.

-Joe Offer-

And Donuel, the width of the brush does indeed matter. It's an injustice to accuse those who have done nothing wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:19 AM

"But he was one man."
He was one of many Joe
You continue to avoid the point
This happened because (at best) the church ignored it
It spread because they allowed the passing on of perpetrators to other parishes
It continues to be a problem because of the refusal of the church to acknowledge the damage that was done and continues to be done - that reaches the very top of the organisation
Things cannot and will not be allowed to happen again and the only way to make the best of that is for the many good people in the church to face it head on
The longer it is not resolved the more damage that will be done to the thinks I believe you hold to be important
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Iains
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:19 AM

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/andrewbrown/2010/mar/11/catholic-abuse-priests

https://theukdatabase.com/uk-child-abusers-named-and-shamed/facts-and-stats-on-child-abuse/

All child abuse needs to be uncovered and punished. Concentrating on a small minority of Catholic priests as the sole perpetrators is taking the spotlight away from far more people that are guilty of the crime.
The above 2 links shed a little more light on the scale of the problem.
This quote from the second link illustrates my point;
"Very few children (less than 1%) experienced abuse by professionals in a position of trust, for example a teacher, religious leader or care/social worker."

For absolute clarity the statistics apply only to the UK and Ireland.
However I would be surprised if the breakdown of the statistics would show much variation worldwide.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 04:17 AM

Jim sez: I would have thought that handling this in a correct and open manner is a matter of self-interest for the church

I think so, too, Jim. But I think that since about 2002, the Catholic Church has fairly quickly turned itself around on this matter. Yes, there are still some offenses and some coverups - but I think that the tide has turned and that Catholics are insisting on full disclosure about everything that has happened.

I said that the offense named in the original post - the Regensburger Domspatzen offenses - was first reported in 2010, and then re-reported in 2016 and again in 2017. In earlier posts in this thread, I said that my diocese was aware of a problem in the late 1960s and responded to it then by giving us seminarians rigorous psychological testing, and that other U.S. dioceses responded by building treatment centers in the 1970s, and that the National Catholic Reporter began reporting church sex offenses in 1983 and has published hundreds of critical articles since then. How is that misleading?

I think we need to examine the hundreds of individual offenses one by one, in detail, and determine exactly what happened and why. What's happening is that people are getting the distorted impression that sexual abuse happens all the time, everywhere there is a Catholic church. Catholic priests are incredibly disheartened because they're all suspects of crime now, and yet only 5 percent of them have actually committed the crimes - maybe up to 10 percent in some places, but the most credible percentage I've seen is 5 percent.

In the U.S., http://bishop-accountability.org/ has a database that reports on every diocese and every priest. It's not a pretty picture, but it reports the truth. And part of the truth is that at least 90 percent of priests are not guilty of sex offenses.

Presenting a distorted view of crime, whether it's shoplifting or child abuse, doesn't help anyone.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Donuel
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 03:41 AM

Brush sizes are irrelevant.
That which is irreconcilable only leaves criminals and victims in need of repair. For the criminals, justice. For the victims, healing.
Hence, reparations are in order.

As long as Priest's crimes are put in a separate category outside the code of criminal justice those who enable sick Priests are an accomplice to the crimes.

One can pile excuses high or bury evidence deep but that only aids and abets the criminals. It appears Pope Francis agrees with me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 03:30 AM

Jim, Brendan Smyth was an incredibly evil man.

But he was one man.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 03:16 AM

if i'm wrong in my observations Jim
Can't see why you have to apologise Al - that's exactly the way it seems to me
Joe
I really can't see why you feel this is "too broad a brush"
What is unique about these abuses is the power used to carry them out - I can't think of another group of people who could tell the children that what was happening to them was "God's will" as Brendan Smythe did to hes 100 or so victims, or the access to childrens' minds enjoyed by the clerics.
The arrogance of the church hierarchy and the continuing refusal to co-operate fully has done and will continue to do enormous damage
It is true that such abuses happen in all walks of life, but the obvious immunity felt by the church shown in the way they behaved and are still behaving separates it from all other forms
I didn't start this thread; had I done so I might have chosen a different title - 'The Religious Abuse of Children' maybe - that's what it is.
Other religious and non religious bodies are involved - the Church of Ireland still need to examine their own consciences as to what happened in the Six Counties - care and medical homes are now coming under scrutiny
This really is a multi-faceted affair
The victims need to be satisfied that their case has been heard fully - it still hasn't - blanket solutions and deals never do that
I've met a few who still won't speak up about what happened to them - the self-hatred, guilt and shame is palpable.
The revelations have called into question the position of the church in society - whether a group with such a powerful influence should ever be entrusted to care of the vulnerable again being the foremost
It is misleading to say that these reports first emerged in 2010 - similar reports in the form of innuendos and hints have been circulating throughout my life - dodgy priests, scoutmasters, teachers..... all grist to the child's oral culture
"Bad apples", "recent events" miss the point by miles
I would have thought that handling this in a correct and open manner is a matter of self-interest for the church
I am saddened to see the effect it has had on lifelong devotees who are still trying to cope with the damage it has done to their own faith.
Rap
This affair has opened up a massive can of worms which goes far beyond that actual abuses
I really do believe that 'you ain't seen nuffin' yet'
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 03:09 AM

No, Al, I don't think I misunderstand. I've studied the sociology of the Catholic Church with a very critical eye since my seminary days in the 1960s - and I've seen a lot of places where the Catholic Church is very, very sick. I have visited many churches and convents in Ireland, and I've seen both the good and the bad. I certainly acknowledge and deplore the bad, but I've also seen good in the Catholic Church in Ireland. But yes, there's an awful lot of bad, a repressive air that seems to pervade everything in some parishes.

In the Sacramento Diocese where I've lived for almost 40 years, there is an unusually large number of Irish-born priests and nuns - and I know dozens of priests and nuns here who were born in Ireland. I had a 30-year relationship with an Irish-born priest here who was a particular bastard who did his best to make Catholic life miserable for me - but lots of people loved the m----f----. But for the most part, the Irish-born priests and nuns I know are wonderful people. I've asked a number of them what it was like when they were growing up, and almost all of them had a very positive experience.

It's the same in the U.S. Many Catholics grew up in very severe surroundings, and their experience of the Catholic Church was severe. Most are no longer Catholics, but some grew up thinking that severity is an inevitable part of life. They do their best to make their parishes the unpleasant places they think churches should be. I met a sacristan in a church in County Clare who was like that - I'm sure she gave a sour attitude to the whole parish. And the Cathedral in Galway was like that. The two priests I met there were quite nice, but the entire congregation was somber and sour.

My sister was a very active and happy Catholic until she lived in Boston during the era of Cardinal Law. All of the Catholic Church in Massachusetts seemed to be set on denying the sexual abuse that had gone on in a number of parishes, and that air of denial caused a sickness in the entire archdiocese. That soured my sister on Catholicism, and rightly so. She left, and hasn't been back since.

My other sister lived in Connecticut, and her husband got sick and died when she was 40. A local priest made friends with my brother-in-law during that time, and visited him often. But there were times when the priest would be alone with my sister, and he made sexual advances toward her - while her husband was near death in the next room.

So, yeah, Al, I see the bad stuff - and I fight it wherever I find it.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Donuel
Date: 27 Jul 17 - 02:51 AM

Some things you can equivocate Joe but not this.
This is not an issue you can say "well but..." about.
You should not hedge yourself about this.
To give arguments like 'other people do the same crime elsewhere' - is an excuse that taints yourself.

No second hand defense whatsoever should be given.
Nor should you offer a Mea culpa unless you are guilty directly or by offering moral or physical support to the perpetrators in any way.

If they are guilty that is all you need to say.

Some things are cut and dried, set in stone or beyond absolution.
Or is this against your religion?

You will be better off NOT trying to reconcile the two.
I believe some things are irreconcilable. But that's just me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 11:50 PM

I think the thing is Joe - you misunderstand.

i've never been to America - but i get the impression from the Americans who come over here, that religion is something from the old country - you take it as seriously as you feel it warrants. People call themselves Jewish who've never been in a synagogue in their lives.

Ireland and the Catholic ghettos in English cities like Liverpool. It is the old country. In Ireland since Devalera's time - Catholicism is part of the constitution, and really there isn't personal space for an opt out.

I was from an orange and green background - my mother was the only one of four kids not brought up in the church. The totality with which my Catholic relatives submitted themselves to the rulings of the church was intense - mentally you took a step back. The brutality of the teaching brothers was something no one questioned, or queried their right to behave cruelly like that. Divorce, contraception were totally forbidden - and the rulings were adhered to absolutely. Little kids knew every word of the service and all the hymns - in Latin! Scariest was the way the kids talked to the priests. We were always respectful to our teachers - but the Catholic kids acted as though it was their duty to love the bastards who were for no real reason, beating them unmercifully.

They owned their souls, in a way which I think a non-Irish person would find hard to understand.

if i'm wrong in my observations Jim - I apologise. That's just the way it seemed to me. I worked in Germany for a while. Theres lots of Catholics there, and they seem more relaxed - but Irish Catholicism seems qualitatively different. something a bit mad about it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 10:29 PM

Well, Rap, BS threads get so nasty as time goes along. Maybe it's better to start out fresh every once in a while.

It's an issue I've been concerned about for forty years, and I've had to deal with it directly on occasion. It arouses a lot of concern, and rightly so. I think that it is vitally important that we as a society learn how to react to crime. Too often, the reaction is hysteria. Demagogues like to take advantage of the rightful anger and fear that people have about crime, and then stir it into a frenzy of prejudice.

How do we deal with crime in constructive ways? Too often, our responses to crime can be more damaging than the crime itself.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Rapparee
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 09:52 PM

I count at least two dozen other threads on this topic. Doesn't anyone search the Forum before creating a new thread?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 08:09 PM

Too broad a brush, Jim.

Take the offense named in the original post. It was first reported in 2010, hit the press again in 2016, and then again in 2017 - each time, people react as if this were a brand-new story. Most of the offenses happened before 1990. Of the 547 cases reported, 67 were instances of sexual abuse, and they took place over a period of 60 years. Two of the offenders were identified as priests who both died in 1986, the other 47 merely as "Catholics."

And yes, the offenses were commonplace, and they happened all over the world. I've seen no evidence that clergy committed sex offenses at a rate higher than other men, but still it's a terrible scandal that such things should be done by clergy. And there is no doubt in my mind that the sexual abuse of children is a serious crime that should be vigorously prosecuted.

But sex abuse of children is commonplace everywhere, wherever there are children. It happens in schools, sports teams, and youth organizations.

Jim sez, as he has often said before: all that needs to be decided now is whether the church should ever have access to people's minds and bodies ever again

I suppose the same should be said for schools, sports teams, youth organizations - and families.

Institutions are stuck between a rock and a hard place if they report crimes committed by their employees or volunteers. They face mass hysteria, and they also face financial claims likely to drive them to bankruptcy as punishment for offenses they did not commit. Seems to me there ought to be a better way to handle such things. My diocese ended up paying $1 million to each victim, decades after the offenses; even though the diocese had "done the right thing" in the first place and referred the offenders to prosecution and paid victims $40,000 or $25,000.

People are outraged by crime - and they should be. But it's also important to view things in proportion and remember that the vast majority of people (and priests) never, ever commit a crime. If we overreact to crime, we risk building a repressive society.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 07:22 PM

"Yes, what you say is true for some locations."
It happened in enough locations to be described as commonplace Joe
In Ireland is has been accepted as having happened without dispute - you may find pockets where that was not the case, but what I described was commonplace - there are no reports of whistle-blowers siding with the victims and supporting their complaints
The churches have been found out and have pleaded gui;ty - the government had ordered to pay some reparation and has agreed to foot a large proportion of the bill (which is being paid for by the taxpayer)
Some of the church groups have refused to pay
There is no dispute that the Church as a body acted to cover it up these crimes and continue to do so by refusing to pass on vital documented information.
The major documentary on the scandal, Mea Maxima Culpa, was based on events in the U.S.
All this is a done deal - all that needs to be decided now is whether the church should ever have access to people's minds and bodies ever again - the faithful are boting with their feet on that one, hence the empty churches and shortages of priests.
It's more than a scandal - it's a crucial question on the trustworthiness of the church as an organisation and it's spread into education and to health care
Had the referendum on same sex marriage taken place before the clerical abuse revelations, Ireland would still be living in the dark ages
As it is, the threats of excommunication fell on deaf ears - hopefully any forthcoming votes on women's rights to choose will meet the same fate
One religion schools and demands for baptismal certificates in order to be educated is the next in line
The grip is well and truly broken
This is an ecclesiastic earthquake - not before time
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 07:00 PM

You speak too broadly, Jim. Yes, what you say is true for some locations. That didn't happen in my diocese of Sacramento, California. Priests who offended were removed from ministry, and victims were offered counseling and compensation. Offenses were reported to law enforcement authorities, and some of the offenders went to prison.
In one neighboring diocese, Santa Rosa, the exact opposite happened.

In the much-larger diocese where I grew up, Milwaukee, results were mixed - but most cases were handled reasonably well. That's about how the crime of sex abuse is handled the world over - sometimes it's handled well, sometimes not-so-well, and sometimes it's covered up.

One would think that such a thing should never happen in a church. But it does happen - and when it does, it's a scandal.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 03:11 PM

"over 80% of sexual abuse of young people in the Catholic Church is perpetrated against boys."
The church is actually guilty of not removing the perpetrators out of being in the position where they were able to rape children
They ignored the rapes until they became so obvious they could no longer do so,
They then passed the perpetrators on to parishes where they were not known and could continue their little hobby
When this became too obvious, they were shipped abroad where they could rape African children
This was deliberate collusion, not just cover-up.   
The Senior Clergy kept this behaviour secret and threatened the parents who dared complain
To this day, the Vatican has refused access to many of the documents that might bring closure to the victims and their families - a form of ongoing abuse.
A number of rapists still occupy high office in the dying church
It matters little that people like you continue to defend this behaviour - the church will never return to the position it once held - it is losing its influence in schools, congregations are declining and churches are undermanned by clergy - rightly so.
As an atheist, I bear no ill will to believers and their belief - they are quite at liberty to do so without the malignant influence of the church
Believers do not need the church, but it will be interesting to see how politicians in a declining system manage manage without divine support

In a few years time the catholic Church as a body will be as dead as The Church of England
That is to be welcomed
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jul 17 - 01:28 PM

".and you just hate the Church"
Who wouldn't hate an organistion that has covered up and facilitated the persistent rape of children for decades
YOuu defend these crimes by refusing to discuss them
Instead you use the thread as a soapbox to trumpet your hatred of homosexuals
If are the best Church can offer in its defence it deserves to be brought into line and controlled
These rapes have nothing to do with homosexuality - gays are no more prone to paedophilia's than any other section of society
In fact most cases of paedophelia come from withing the family or from family friends - I believe you have something to say about "family values".
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 07:23 PM

What a stupid post, akenaton.

The Catholic Church has been a big part of my life and it still is for many members of my close and extended family, including my parents, who are still battling on. I can write articulately and grammatically and I have priests and brothers to thank for that. I'm a scientist and I received a pretty good grounding in the basics of science at my secondary school. Whatever moral standpoints I now adhere to must have had their germ in my Catholic upbringing. It's the only one I had, after all.

Looking back, I also see that I was exposed to the kinds of absurdities that I occasionally like to make fun of here. We Catholics were the only people who could get to heaven and masturbation meant hellfire. Stuff like that. No-one's ever managed to tell me what happened to all those poor buggers who ate meat on Fridays before the rule was relaxed. And no one-legged man has ever come home from Lourdes with two legs.

But I found it easy enough to escape. I'm an atheist of the Dawkins persuasion, but I must confess that leaving Catholicism behind isn't going to get you beheaded even if your granny might go ballistic. I think that adherence to a religion and a belief in an impossible deity is infantile in the extreme. But anyone who wants to believe it is fully entitled to do so, no ifs, no buts.

Catholicism is like all other religions in that it can only survive by catching people before they are sentient beings. I don't like that dishonesty one little bit and I think it damages people. But the current problem for the Church is that it is failing to demonstrate that it holds the moral high ground. Simply moving errant priests to remote parishes won't do. You'll be found out. Denying the dreadful abuses of the past by trying to rationalise them is disreputable. Wrongdoing is wrongdoing. Either you confront that in a straightforward, open and honest way or you risk being branded institutionally hypocritical.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Raggytash
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 06:44 PM

Having been educated in catholic schools I am aware of numerous individuals who did not conform to an accepted norm for teachers.

From the Nun at infant school who liked to put small boys over her knee to spank them to some very dodgy christian brothers at my grammer school.

I avoided the brothers like the plague and I would suggest they never tried it on with me as a punch in the nuts often offends.

How many of my fellow scholars succumbed I do not know, but I suspect more than a handfull did.

Personally I would have castrated anyone found to be guilty of such crimes ...... and I know that's not very christian of me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 06:06 PM

Ake, Catholic priests are normally 24 to 26 years old when they're ordained. If the victim is a 16 or even 15 years old male or female, I might concede that a priest's attraction to that victim could be considered "normal," if inappropriate and most likely illegal.

But if the victim is 14 years or younger, that's perversion. And there have been plenty of victims 14 years old and younger.

Wikipedia has a good summary of the John Jay report on priest sex abuse in the U.S. The complete document is here:
http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/child-and-youth-protection/upload/The-Nature-and-Scope-of-Sexual-Abuse-of-Minors-by-Catholic-Priests-and-Deacons-in-the-United-States-1950-2002.pdf

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: akenaton
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 05:01 PM

"It would be really good to see an assertive, open, zero-tolerance approach to abuse from the Church. That is what we haven't seen and that's the problem"

But you can't stand the truth Steve, that has become obvious on many threads.......and you just hate the Church

Do you expect us to take you seriously?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: akenaton
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 04:56 PM

Thanks for that very interesting link Shakey, I have taken the liberty of doing a "Blue Clicky"
Number 0f Homosexual priest estimates


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 04:45 PM

Well bugger me sideways with a bent banana but I agree with that, Iains. The only thing I'd add is that priests may attract particular reverence from their flocks which may help them to better hide their activities. There's nothing special about priests in that regard. There are lots of people in well-respected positions who have similar opportunities. What is disturbing about the Church is the apparent predilection for covering it up once it's been discovered. The Church opens itself up to accusations of institutionalising the cover-ups, therefore the abuse itself. That's the issue. It would be really good to see an assertive, open, zero-tolerance approach to abuse from the Church. That is what we haven't seen and that's the problem.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: akenaton
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 04:40 PM

Iains, we are discussing a specific crime here "Catholic abuse of children".....Nobody is trying to insinuate that all male homosexuals are predators.

No one has yet come up with an alternative cause of Catholic child abuse, the evidence regarding the sexual orientation of most of the predators is pretty convincing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Iains
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 04:29 PM

By the fixation on the percentage of homosexual priests one would be led to assume they are automatically sexual predators. Sexual predators exist in all walks of life, the only significant factor is that as priests they have a greater opportunity to be predators by virtue of more exposure to potential victims.

How many priests are homosexuals is a total irrelevance. The question to be asked is how many are predators. The answer is nobody knows.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Greg F.
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 01:36 PM

It is unknown how many Catholic priests are gay.

Yep, that's the word, all right. Unknown.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catholic Abuse of Children
From: Shakey
Date: 24 Jul 17 - 01:10 PM

http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_rcc.htm

Meta analysis points to 1 in 3

These figures are really quite easy to come by


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