“Only four US bishops (out of hundreds) have resigned because they hid and enabled horrific crimes, but only after … massive public, police, prosecutor and parishioner outrage. … And no one in the entire US Catholic hierarchy, despite 30 years of horrific scandal and at least 100,000 US victims, has been defrocked, demoted, disciplined or even publicly denounced by a Church colleague or supervisor, for covering up child sex crimes, no matter how clearly or often or egregiously he did so.” – Barbara Blaine
In a speech today to U.S. bishops, according to ABC News, Francis “does not specifically reference the paedophilia that has rocked the Roman Catholic Church.”
He does, however, speak of some alleged “great sacrifice” made by bishops because of the abuse and cover up crisis.
What sacrifice? What bishops takes fewer vacations, drives a smaller car, does his own laundry or has been passed over for promotion because he’s shielding predators and endangering kids? None.
Only four US bishops (out of hundreds) have resigned because they hid and enabled horrific crimes, but only after staying in power for years and only after massive public, police, prosecutor and parishioner outrage. (Law, Finn, Piche and Neinstedt)
Virtually none of the other US clerics, (out of thousands) have ever been punished in the slightest for protecting predators, destroying evidence, stonewalling police, deceiving prosecutors, shunning victims or helping child molesting clerics get new jobs or flee overseas.
And no one in the entire US Catholic hierarchy, despite 30 years of horrific scandal and at least 100,000 US victims, has been defrocked, demoted, disciplined or even publicly denounced by a Church colleague or supervisor, for covering up child sex crimes, no matter how clearly or often or egregiously he did so.
In carefully-crafted remarks, Francis claims Church officials are working “to ensure that such crimes will never be repeated.” He knows, however, this is disingenuous. Such crimes are happening right now, all across the world. He refuses to admit this, however, preferring to conveniently imply that somehow, because of tiny, belated and grudging steps forced on bishops in a few Western nations,
Finally, Francis says he has “no wish” to tell US bishops “what to do, because we all know what it is that the Lord asks of us.” He’s half right—bishops do indeed know precisely how to protect kids. But they refuse, like Francis himself does, to take the simple, proven steps to do this.
Still, we’re deeply disappointed that Francis refuses to tell bishops to do a single thing more than they’ve been forced to do by courageous victims, angry Catholics, determined law enforcement, and the Church’s own insurers, defense lawyers and public relations experts.
Here are just some of the tangible steps Francis could have told US bishops to take to protect the vulnerable, heal the wounded, expose the truth and end the cover ups:
His remarks today confirm what we’ve long said and suspected: this pope, like his predecessors, is doing and will do little if anything to bring real reform to this continuing crisis. Those who care about kids must focus on secular authorities, not Church figures (however popular they may be). – SNAP, 23 September 2015
» Barbara Blaine is the founder and president of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), a national advocacy group for survivors of clerical sexual abuse.
- Benedict XVI on Child Abuse: It’s normal for men and children! – Sign of the Times
- Benedict’s Legacy: Sex, lies, and the sordid history of the Catholic Church (with videos) – Michael Moynihan