BBC: Pope Ratzinger ‘covered up paedophile priests scandals’, like US Republicans

Bush's party on paedophilia, cartoon

From the British Broadcasting Corporation:

Sex crimes and the Vatican

A secret document which sets out a procedure for dealing with child sex abuse scandals within the Catholic Church is examined by Panorama.

Crimen Sollicitationis was enforced for 20 years by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger before he became the Pope.

It instructs bishops on how to deal with allegations of child abuse against priests and has been seen by few outsiders.

Critics say the document has been used to evade prosecution for sex crimes.

Update May 2007: here.

Paedophile priest scandal in Florence: here.

So, apparently, not just in stirring up ill will between Muslims and Christians is there a parallel between the new pope and the Republican party in the USA.

Like with George W Bush’s Republicans in their Congressman Mark Foley scandal, there is also a parallel in covering up sexual predation on children (as during Foley’s own childhood?).

By the way, the picture of Mark Foley is still on the website of a Republican US Congressional colleague.

I wonder how soon they will take it away.

UPDATE: it was gone on 5 October.

Mark Foley’s own website is already gone.

Will Foley‘s boss, Hastert, resign now?

36 thoughts on “BBC: Pope Ratzinger ‘covered up paedophile priests scandals’, like US Republicans

  1. Hello Kitty, Thought that you would like to know that the Canadian blog, ”
    La Revue Gauche has listed you as a great feminist blogger. Unfortunately, he links to your old modblog site. I tried to add a comment giving your new address, but the site only accepts comments from blogspot members. I posted a link to you a while ago at left i on the news. He sometimes like to post his birdwatching photos in with his news analysis. I reccomended you as a left wing naturalist blogger. Good to see you getting positive attention.


  2. Instead of the “triumphal” week they had hoped for, the national GOP is now deeply embroiled in a tawdry sex scandal on the eve of the midterm elections. Revelations that Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) sent inappropriate emails and text messages to teenage boys who worked in the House as pages, alongside allegations that top House leaders covered up the scandal or at least failed to address the congressman’s behavior, have left many wondering who the next casualty of the controversy will be.

    “I don’t think this is so much about Foley as it is about the handling of this,” said Republican strategist Rick Davis. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has come under fire after reports that he knew Foley was writing personal emails to pages and did little about it. Rep. Tom Reynolds (R-NY) heard about the emails first, and originally informed Hastert almost 11 months ago. Majority Leader John Boehner has known about Foley’s contact with the pages since the spring. Other Republicans are struggling to distance themselves from the scandal. Rep. Christopher Shays (R-CT) said about his colleagues when the news first broke, “If they knew or should have known the extent of this problem, they should not serve in leadership.” Even Tony Snow today kicked the problem out of the White House: “The House has to clean up the mess.” Rick Davis summed up the current situation when he said, “The question becomes who’s getting thrown overboard besides Foley to get this to go away.”
    Click here to read the whole story:


  3. As the lurid scandal surrounding former Congressman Mark Foley (R-FL) enters its sixth day, political support for Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (R-IL) is cracking. Kirk Fordham, a former aide to Foley, resigned yesterday from Rep. Tom Reynolds (R-NY) staff and then told the media that he had warned Hastert’s office of Foley’s inappropriate behavior toward pages as early as 2003. He said he had “more than one conversation with senior staff at the highest level of the House of Representatives asking them to intervene.”

    House Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO) also weighed in yesterday, placing blame on Hastert, while Rep. Ron Lewis (R-KY) canceled a campaign appearance with Hastert because of the scandal. Hastert rebuffed the possibility of a resignation.


  4. Cardinal Law’s Role in Rome Sparks Outrage in U.S.

    Fri Apr 8 [1905], 2:41 PM ET U.S. National – Reuters

    By Greg Frost

    BOSTON (Reuters) – The Vatican’s decision to let Cardinal Bernard Law lead a funeral Mass for Pope John Paul in Rome has prompted outrage back home, where the ousted Boston archbishop is seen as a symbol of a pedophile priest scandal.

    Slideshow: Cardinal Bernard Law

    Victims of sexual abuse by Roman Catholic clergymen were particularly harsh in their reaction, saying the decision to give Law a prominent role in the pomp and circumstance surrounding the pope’s death came as a slap in the face.

    “I find it personally very insulting and one more instance of how the Roman Catholic hierarchy protects and promotes even the most egregious among them,” said Ann Hagan Webb, a regional coordinator of the group Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests.

    “He (Law) protected priests at the expense of children over and over and over again, and this symbolically says: ‘We don’t care about these children; we’d rather honor him,”‘ Hagan Webb, a clergy abuse victim herself, told Reuters.

    Law resigned as archbishop of Boston in 2002 after court documents showed that he and other leaders of the Boston church shuttled known pedophiles from parish to parish without informing worshipers.

    The scandal spread to other dioceses across the United States, prompting a drop in donations as attendance fell off at weekly Mass.

    The Archdiocese of Boston has since agreed to pay more than $86 million to settle legal claims filed by hundreds of people who said they were abused by priests.


    For a time after he left Boston, Law took up residence near Washington, D.C., and dropped out of the public eye. He later moved to Rome, where he was named archpriest of the Basilica of St. Mary Major, a role that allows him to lead the funeral mass. He is also eligible to help choose a new pope.

    Law resurfaced in American media this week following the pope’s death, granting a lengthy interview to ABC News and being photographed at numerous public events.

    “From the moment Law appeared on ABC, we have received an overwhelming number of e-mails and phone calls, for the most part from people very much upset by Law’s visibility,” said Suzanne Morse of the Catholic laity group Voice of the Faithful, which grew out of the scandal.

    The Rev. Walter Cuenin, a Newton, Massachusetts, priest who was a critic of Law before the prelate resigned in 2002, said that for many Boston-area Catholics seeing Law play a public role in Rome has reopened old wounds.

    “All the priests (who were accused of abuse) are off the job, so some Catholics feel that Law should be retired and not serving on active duty in Rome,” Cuenin told Reuters. “And this week seeing him has brought it all back.”

    However, Cuenin also said given Law’s position at the basilica in Rome, it made sense that the Vatican would choose him to lead one of the nine funereal masses for the pope.

    “On that particular decision I don’t think it’s intended to make a statement but it’s more that it would be logical to have one of those Masses there.

    The Vatican announced Thursday that Law would preside over one of the nine funeral Masses for the pope.

    Law was chosen because his church is one of the four major basilicas in Rome. The archpriest is the senior figure in a cathedral or basilica and is responsible for how it is run, so his appointment to this task follows protocol.

    The nine-day cycle began with the Pope’s funeral in St. Peter’s Basilica.

    As a cardinal under 80, the former Boston archbishop will also enter the conclave to elect a new pope that begins on April 18.


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  9. Hi Kitty, Indeed the hierarchy in the catholic church has known about this for a long time. Years ago I spoke of my concerns to a priest who visited my sister, he too had almost become part of her family. He would not say anything directly but said and I quote “I will say only this, there is no smoke without fire”. The hypocrisy and ‘under the covers’ role the catholic church has played disgusts me, these are supposed to be men of God and as such have great influence and power over their ‘flock’. Whether one believes in God or not, people will generally regard priests with respect and assume they have the welfare of people uppermost in their minds, this is given automatically. In the “Deliver us from Evil” article by the WSWS (World Socialist Web Site) Bob Jyono, the father of a victim whose family were destroyed by the revelation of their daughters years of abuse said, “There is no God. All these rules are made up by man”. The scriptures have been tailored throughout the years by all of religions representatives, religious politics and interpretation formed to control the people. I think Bob Jyono is right in saying the rules are made up by man, this has been my opinion for some time. What a mess we (mankind) are in! Regards Supernova.


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