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Pope Lands in US, Vows to Fight Clergy Sex Abuse

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posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:07 PM

Pope Lands in US, Vows to Fight Clergy Sex Abuse

breakingnews.nypost.c om

Pope Benedict XVI stepped onto U.S. soil for the time as pontiff Tuesday, arriving to a presidential handshake and wild cheering only hours after he admitted that he is "deeply ashamed" of the clergy sex abuse scandal that has devastated the American church...

...Benedict pledged that pedophiles would not be priests in the Catholic Church.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:07 PM
Ok, this is fantastic news that they are taking actions against sex abuse but 'the pope pledges?'

The pope's promise failed to mollify other advocates for abuse victims, however. They said the problem is not just molester priests, but bishops and other church authorities who have let errant clergymen continue to serve even after repeated allegations.

Do you think they are really going to clean up their act or is it a case of things occurring in dark corners staying in dark corners? I don't want to say they aren't going to 'try' to stop this but can they 'really' stop this. Is this giving people a feeling of false security? It seems to remind me of politicians claiming to clean up the system but really doing very little efficiently.

breakingnews.nypost.c om
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:20 PM
Here's an interesting document.:
Catholic Report on the Crisis

I will list the highlights:

* US clerics accused of abuse from 1950-2002: 4,392.
About 4% of the 109,694 serving during those 52 years.

* Individuals making accusations: 10,667.

* Victims' ages: 5.8% under 7; 16% ages 8-10; 50.9% ages 11-14; 27.3% ages 15-17.

* Victims' gender: 81% male, 19% female

* Duration of abuse: Among victims, 38.4% said all incidents occurred within one year; 21.8% said one to two years; 28%, two to four years; 11.8% longer.

* Victims per priest: 55.7% with one victim; 26.9% with two or three; 13.9% with four to nine; 3.5% with 10 or more (these 149 priests caused 27% of allegations).

* Abuse locations: 40.9% at priest's residence; 16.3% in church; 42.8% elsewhere.

* Known cost to dioceses and religious orders: $572,507,094 (does not include the $85 million Boston settlement and other expenses after resear

[edit on 4/15/2008 by Bigwhammy]

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:35 PM
I saw the news about this topic and I have been waiting to see in the boards, Thanks AshleyD for posting.

I grew up in a strict dominated Catholic enviroment from school to everything you can imagine, I don't remember ever seen, heard of hint about any of the issues plaguing the Church as today, perhaps because it was unthinkable.

I really believe that the Catholic Church has been destroyed here in the US due to the scandals when it comes to credibility.

The pope is the figure head of the Catholic Church in Rome, I imagine that all he can do is to offer is promises, what else he can do.

Still when it comes to Rome the Church still rules.

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:43 PM
reply to post by Bigwhammy

Thanks for posting those statistics, Whammy. I can't open PDF files on this computer (never figured out how to get Acrobat to download correctly) but I am happy to see that it looks like it came from a Catholic source. It shows that at least they are working to expose this scandal. I must admit, those statistics are greater than I ever knew.

reply to post by marg6043

Thanks, Marg. I'm always hesitant to post something concerning another religion, denomination, or belief system for fear of being labeled a bigot. lol However, nothing breaks my heart more then children being harmed. I do hope they can control this and it is nice that they are cooperating with the press and coming forward with the scandal. Not sure how much choice they had but it is an interesting topic to discuss.

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 09:53 PM
It is a very good topic as we know that is been now years that old scandals are surfacing and new ones keep showing up still.

I think they had plenty of time in the Vatican to do something about it, in countries like Latin America where the Catholic Church have more control the scandals are more easily taken care off.

But here in the US thanks to freedom of speech all the dirty secrets are coming out of the closet.

I really don't think that the pope have any control at all.

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 10:02 PM
The pope had to come to the US to say/do anything about it???

Sounds like he's campaigning

posted on Apr, 15 2008 @ 11:42 PM

What is the status on the Catholic church's view of allowing their clergy to marry?? Doesn't the Bible allow church leaders to marry?? Does anyone know why Catholicism mandates celibacy of their clergy when it is mentioned in the Bible as acceptable while Protestant denominates allow marriage?? What is the scriptural-dogmatic inspiration of their stance I wonder.


It would seem allowing their clergy to marry would alleviate these problems. Until then they are at the mercy of catching the guilty parties after the fact --- if the victim comes ever forward.

It also begs the question how will they take preventive measures or if the church is being forthcoming in their investigation. Let us hope this is a serious effort and not a human relations campaign.

[edit on 4/16/08 by Snoopy64]

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 02:32 AM
Does anyone have the numbers for high school teachers? What about for Protestants? How much of the abuse comes from pedophiles? How much from homosexuals?

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 02:49 AM

Originally posted by AshleyD

Thanks, Marg. I'm always hesitant to post something concerning another religion, denomination, or belief system for fear of being labeled a bigot. lol However, nothing breaks my heart more then children being harmed. I do hope they can control this and it is nice that they are cooperating with the press and coming forward with the scandal. Not sure how much choice they had but it is an interesting topic to discuss.

Ashley, as a Catholic, I appreciate your concern for appearing bigoted towards the church. I certainly dont get that impression from your post.

As another poster pointed out, the scandal has exposed the hypocrisy of the church's hierarchy. The priests who molested children are sick. They are ultimately responsible for their actions and the effect they had in children's lives. The most egregious actions, in my opinion were those of the church heirarchy who not only took steps to end the abuse, they incredibly sent the offending priests to other parishes without ANY warning whatsoever to the people of the new parish that this priest was a child abuser.

In other words, they facilitated the abuse by providing access to a new group of potential victims.

And even when they were exposed, none of the Cardinals or Bishops were excommunicated...they were simply reassigned. Look up Cardinal Bernard Law if you wish to find a glaring example of this.

Now the Pope wants to speak on the subject? Did you know he was asked to come to Boston (where most of the reported abuse occured) and he refused. By the way, he has also refused to meet with any victims of the abuse while he is here.

The church has acted shamefully. Besides the children and families affected by the abuse, I feel most sorry for the thousands of priests who are good men and have honestly committed their lives to serving Jesus Christ and His people on Earth. They too have been victims in this since this has all caused them to be viewed suspiciously for the crimes of others.

Sorry for the rambling post...this subject is one about which I feel very strongly.

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 03:23 AM
The Pope either has no idea what's going on in the U.S. with his priests or doesn't care.

The Catholic church is business as usual, reinstating the molesters to active duty still to this day. That was a staggering figure you posted $572,507,094 If that isn't enough to stop them, nothing will. They obviously do not care about children, at all, not one single bit.

I googled this sentence "priest reinstated after convicted or accused of child abuse" and found : - March 15, 2008
October 27, 2007 December 30, 2006 (tried and convicted in the 1990's)

Archdiocese Reinstates Controversial Priest After Vatican Ruling: CINCINNATI -- A Roman Catholic priest who was fined for soliciting sex in a park and later acquitted of separate charges that he raped a boy has been reinstated, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati announced Thursday. - February 15, 2008

German bishop apologizes over pedophile priest reinstated
- Fri Sep 21, 2007

And that was just the first 6 listings on Google, you get the drift.

Where is the Catholic outrage? Where's the Papal outrage?

Looks to me as if nothing has changed at all, back to business as usual, pay out money to the newest victims...over ...and over...and over.

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 03:37 AM
Here's a study on generic "clergy" who molest:

The study focuses on criminal cases against 190 North American priests and preachers charged with sexual molestation of children during 1988 and 1989. Also studied were 60 child abuse cases involving nonclergy church staff, such as Sunday School teachers, counselors and parochial school teachers and principals.

Of the accused clergy, 75 were Catholic priests (39.5%) and 111 were Protestant ministers (58%). (Also charged were 1 Mormon clergyman, 1 occult minister and 2 cult ministers.) Protestant cases involved equal numbers of mainstream and fundamentalist/evangelical denominations. This study revealed no rabbis charged with child molestation.

"Although we find the numbers of molesting clergy staggering, our figures undoubtedly reflect only a fraction of these cases," notes Annie Laurie Gaylor, editor of Freethought Today

Source :

Sorry all I couldn't find any non-biased data concerning homosexual clergy that also molested children.

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 02:21 PM
reply to post by mdzialo

I don't have any but it would be nice to see the statistics if someone can provide them eventually and how the situation is being handled in other areas like education and other denominations.

reply to post by Night Watchman

Thank you for that contribution. I agree with you- it does give the good priests a bad name as well as Catholicism and Christianity in general. You would think they would want to 'expel' the offenders right away before they had a chance to do any more harm- not just reassign them like you mentioned. Since you are a Catholic, do you think the church's mission to clean up the problem is sincere?

reply to post by LateApexer313

Absolutely heartbreaking but thank you so much for sharing that. This especially shocked me from your second post:

While many see therapy as a panacea for this crime, only about a third of the convicted ministers and priests had had some kind of counseling or psychiatric evaluation, mandated or otherwise.

The problem on the Catholic side sounds easier to handle since it is a very organized structure but the Protestant side (me) sound like it will be a harder problem to tackle. One thing I do know is that this world is getting scarier.

posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 03:12 PM
The power of the Catholic Church is in their side, that is why you don't see or hear what exactly is done by the Clergy found guilty of crimes against children.

This only brings the issue that money is been use to keep the stories to a minimum of exposure and many families trying to avoid the circus parade of the press on their door step rater accept monetary compensation.

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