Sexual abuse drives Catholics out of church, pope says

This video from Germany says about itself:

Catholic Church in Germany releases sex abuse report

24 September 2018

It’s believed to cover a 70 year period and follows various reports of sexual abuse in Germany.

A four-year investigation into the sexual abuse of children in the German Catholic Church is to publish its findings. Our Berlin Correspondent Jessica Saltz gives us more details about this scandal.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

Pope: abuse scandals drive people out of the church

The abuse scandals in the Catholic Church shock believers and drive them out of the church. That is what the Pope said today on the last day of his visit to the Baltic states. The church must change if it wants to keep future generations, he said.

The Pope’s statements coincide with a new report on decades of sexual abuse and its cover-up in Germany.

To a large group of young people in Estonia, the Pope said that he knows that many young people feel that the church has nothing to offer them and does not understand their problems. “They are furious about the sexual and economic scandals without clear condemnation, and about the fact that we are not willing to really understand the lives and sensitivities of young people.”

“We ourselves must be converted”, said the Pope. “In order to be able to stand next to you, we have to realize that we have to change a lot.”


With these pronouncements, the Pope recognizes for the first time publicly the failure of the approach to sexual abuse.

Today, a report was published at the German bishops’ conference showing that almost 3700 people in Germany were abused by clergy between 1946 and 2014. More than half were 13 or younger at the time, and nearly a third of them were altar boys.

According to the report, evidence in these cases has been destroyed or manipulated. Many cases have never been brought to justice and abusers have been transferred, without their past having been made known.

Cardinal Marx, as the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Germany, said at the presentation of the report that things are not finished right now, but are just beginning.

“For far too long there have been lies about abuse in the church, looking away and cover-ups, and for all these failures and pain I apologize”, said Marx. “I am ashamed of destroying trust and of the crimes that people have been subjected to by church officials.”


Most Dutch bishops knew about clerical sexual abuse

This December 2011 AFP video says about itself:

Dutch Catholic Church abused ‘tens of thousands’

An independent Dutch inquiry into child sexual abuse committed by Catholic priests said Friday it found “tens of thousands” of victims since 1945, identifying 800 alleged perpetrators.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

More than half of the 39 Dutch bishops and cardinals between 1945 and 2010 knew of sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Church. NRC daily reports this on the basis of its own research. According to the newspaper, the clergy covered up the abuse, allowing the perpetrators to make even more victims.

NRC has made an inventory of known and less well-known abuse cases within the church that have come to light since 2010. The newspaper has linked a list of names of senior church administrators to these cases, based on information from the church’s child abuse committee, reports by the Deetman Commission and its own research.

Of the twenty cardinals, bishops and auxiliary bishops named by NRC, four are said to have abused children themselves. Sixteen others are said to have transferred pedophile priests to other parishes, where they then often continued abusing, writes the newspaper. None of the bishops is still active and all cases are barred according to NRC.

In a reaction, a spokesperson for the Roman Catholic Church in the Netherlands says that the NRC story is broadly correct. “The newspaper has put the reports the Deetman research, of the Complaints Committee and its own research together well”, she says.

Representatives of abuse survivors point out that this situation is distressing for victims who in recent years complained to the church about abuse, and who were told that the church authority was not aware of that abuse. “They have been abused again”, says a spokesman.

The Women’s Platform on Child Abuse (VPKK) says that victims think that the cardinals and bishops are complicit and that their policies have made more victims.

Moreover, says the VPKK, there are still places within the Catholic Church in the Netherlands where abuse is not mentionable. Victims who want to tell their stories feel pressured to remain silent.


The Dutch bishops’ conference says it is regrettable that bishops in the past have not taken their responsibility or even have committed abuse themselves.

The still living clergy mentioned in the inventory are aware of the list, but have not yet responded, writes the newspaper.

Cardinal blames LGBTQ people for clerical child abuse

This video from the USA says about itself:

1000+ Reports Of Sexual Abuse By Catholic Priests In PA | Velshi & Ruhle | MSNBC

15 August 2018

A bombshell Grand Jury report in Pennsylvania reveals a shocking level of abuse and cover-up by Catholic priests. Stephanie Ruhle and Ali Velshi are joined by Shaun Dougherty, a Catholic sexual abuse survivor, and Mitchell Garabedian, who is representing six victims from this Pennsylvania case to discuss this two-year long investigation and the church’s efforts to cover up the crimes.

Translated from (right-wing) Dutch daily De Telegraaf today:

Abuse in Roman Catholic Church: ‘gays are guilty

Boston – American cardinal Raymond Burke believes that the homosexuals are mainly tp blame for abuse by clergy.

The cardinal said this in an interview with the president of the Christian organization Catholic Action for Faith and Family. The conversation took place after it became known that thousands of children in the USA had been abused for years by some three hundred priests in the state of Pennsylvania.

According to him, the church is not to blame for the abuse, but it is “acts that are caused by homosexual culture. That has influenced the church and must be exterminated.”

“Sexuality is only between the man and the woman.” Burke also advises parents to keep children away from homosexuals and homosexual family members.

The cardinal does not think that the church should undergo a drastic reform or that stricter controls are needed.

Child abuse, ‘Roman Catholic ecclesiastical law not working’

Pope Francis I and child abuse survivor Peter Saunders when he joined papal commission in 2014

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

Although the Roman Catholic Church has its own legal system, it is “unsuitable to prosecute suspects of sexual violence“, says Peter Saunders. He was one of the two victims of abuse who took part in the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, set up by Pope Francis.

Last year he and the other victim resigned, partly because they got obstruction from the Vatican. “Ecclesiastical courts do not take the victims into account, and if they come to a conviction, then they impose far too light penalties, eg, a life of repentance“, says Saunders. A prison term is not an option. …

In Pennsylvania, for the first time in history, from outside the church the seriousness and extent of ecclesiastical abuse has been established in a United States American state. It is only one of the fifty states, but it is a beginning. …

Soon, the powerful cardinal George Pell will also have to stand trial in Melbourne. Recently, the Australian was the number three man in the Vatican, and he seemed untouchable. …

Many Chilean clergy are accused of absuse and the covering up of it. Recently, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of five Chilean bishops for an abuse scandal. But one of the protagonists in the cover-up, Cardinal Ezzati, is still at his post as Archbishop of Santiago. He will soon have to testify before a judge about the long-term cover-up of abuse. The parliament is considering annulling his Chilean citizenship, which the Italian born in 2006 received because of his “good works for the country”.

Clerical child abuse survivor speaks

This 14 August 2018 United States TV video says about itself:

‘Secret archives’ detailed priests’ child sex abuse and cover-ups, Pa. attorney general says

A scathing new grand jury report in Pennsylvania describes decades of sexual abuse by Catholic priests. At least 1,000 children were molested by more than 300 clergy, the panel found, which also claims a conspiracy of silence extended all the way to the Vatican. Judy Woodruff sits down with Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro and Fr. Thomas Reese of Religion News Service.

THESE ARE THE VICTIMS OF THE ‘PREDATOR PRIESTS’ A Pennsylvania grand jury has identified more than 300 alleged “predator priests” in six dioceses whose crimes for decades were locked away in secret church archives. Here are just some of the stories. [HuffPost]

Grand jury alleges: Hundreds of Catholic priests abused thousands of children in Pennsylvania: here.

Translated from Marlou van den Broek in the Netherlands today:

‘They abuse children, they abuse their power’

Thousands of United States American children in Pennsylvania abused by 300 priests. All Chilean bishops offering their resignations because of abuse scandals. And the archbishop of Adelaide in Australia who did not report that a priest had committed abuse.

This year alone, various abuse scandals within the Catholic Church have come out. But similar revelations have actually come to light for years. How is it that within the church abuse takes place so often?

The abuse is often committed against minors. Ton Leerschool was 13 years old when a monk asked him to sit on his lap. “You feel that something is not right”, says Leerschool. Shortly afterwards he was abused.

Leerschool now helps people with abuse experiences as a trauma therapist and has been doing voluntary research on the subject for fifteen years. “It is really a power situation: if you are in a youth center, a boarding school, a care institution or even a youth organization, then you are dependent on the cleric”, explains Leerschool. “In that way, the indoctrination of the belief that you think the clergyman stands above all else makes you do everything he asks of you.”

Sex is a difficult subject within the church, says Leerschool. “Clergy are not allowed to have sex and homosexuality is not allowed at all, yet … there are cases of child abuse, so there is a double standard in the church and the outside world.”

“This double morality also exists among those children. For example, according to children, a priest is really a holy man, so they do not oppose it, even though they feel that what happens to them is not good”, says Leerschool. “I too thought that the father who abused me was a man who was above all else.”

In addition, Leerschool thinks that many of the perpetrators themselves have been victims at some time. “By abusing other children, they go back to the moment things went wrong, to put it right again.”

Within the Catholic Church there are regulations, the so-called ‘crimen sollicitationis‘, which say that a clergyman is not allowed to report a colleague to the police if he is guilty of sexual abuse. If a clergyman does so nevertheless, then he is expelled from the church.

“If you know that your colleagues will not report you anyway, you can easily go ahead. In some cases it is reported internally, but the punishments within the church are never in proportion to what a child has suffered”, says Leerschool. “The reputation of the church prevails over the well-being of human beings.”

It is also concealed within families, according to Leerschool. When families know about the scandals, they dare not say anything. “The moment they would do that, the village would turn against the family, and not against the clergyman.”

Here again, the priest abuses his power, says Leerschool. “I know cases where a girl is being abused by the priest while the mother is waiting downstairs with a cup of coffee.”

‘No pedophilia’

Leerschool does not think that the abuse of children by clergy is a form of pedophilia, but that it is always a question of abuse of power. According to Leerschool, these clergymen are not about love for children, but about indulging in their own sexual frustration. “They have the opportunity and they want to use that opportunity.”

They have much less chance with adults. “The child really thinks that the man is a saint, and that child can be overwhelmed much more easily than a parent who is more aware”, says Leerschool.

There are more cases known where abuse has been committed on boys than on girls. This is because clergymen often work in the boys’ environments, such as at boys’ boarding schools.

In the Netherlands, interest in Catholicism is declining. There are almost no Catholic institutions such as boarding schools left anymore. In countries like Belgium, Italy and France, they still exist, but across the board the power and influence of the Catholic Church in Europe is waning.

Leerschool: “Because the power is reduced, it is noticeable that the priests’ prestige is also reduced, making it more difficult to abuse children.” In countries in Southeast Asia, Africa and South America, the Roman Catholic Church still has absolute power, where clergymen can do what they want.”

“The fact that there are not so many boarding schools in the Netherlands any more does not mean that children are no longer being abused.” Some clergy still believe that they are a kind of superman. All abuses must come to light. “In America there is now a second big wave, with abuse cases being revealed after a wave of abuse had come out in the early nineties, so we are on the right track.”

All Chilean bishops resign in child abuse scandal

This video says about itself:

Vatican Defends Appointing Chilean Bishop Accused of Hiding Abuse

31 March 2015

The Vatican on Tuesday strongly defended its appointment of a bishop in Chile despite protests by critics who have accused him of covering up sexual abuse. Juan Barros was installed on March 21 as new bishop of Osorno as supporters holding white balloons and opponents carrying black ones shouted at each other during the ceremony in the city’s cathedral. The appointment outraged some parishioners, national legislators and abuse victims who said Barros had protected one of the nation’s most notorious pedophiles and asked Pope Francis to rescind it. Critics in Chile say Barros was aware of and helped cover up abuse by Father Fernando Karadima, 84, who was a mentor to a number of younger priests, including Barros.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

All Chilean bishops offer resignation due to abuse scandal

All 34 Chilean bishops have submitted their resignation to Pope Francis. They resign because of the abuse scandal within the Catholic Church in Chile. Francis still has to accept the resignation of the bishops.

One of the bishops [Monsignor Juan Barros] is accused of covering up child abuse by a pedophile priest. Francis dismissed these accusations as slander, but after a storm of criticism, he changed that and talked to victims of sexual abuse.