Updated 6 February 2017 – Today, every Catholic archbishop from around Australia (apart from Tasmania) will be giving evidence at the Royal Commission Into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Former Australian archbishop George Pell who is alleged to have covered up multiple cases of child sexual abuse by his priests, now resides at the Vatican.
DYSFUNCTIONAL. Disconnected. Elitist. Narcissistic. The leadership of the Roman Catholic Church downplayed the torture and rape of children or ”managed” it to uphold the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and reputation.
The above damning indictment of the culture at the heart of the Vatican came not from a communist demagogue or a firebrand ayatollah but from Enda Kenny, the Prime Minister of Ireland, one of the most Catholic countries in the world. This Irish PM is a true hero. As the saying goes, it only takes one good man…
The Irish government has also warned the Church it can no longer even consider the seal of the confessional to be sacrosanct, promising to impose a five-year jail sentence for anyone found guilty of not passing information on child sexual abuse to state authorities.
Source-Douglas Dalby, a Dublin based journalist.
Pacific Daily News reporting on Guam clergy abuse trials: Noted canon lawyer Patrick J. Wall said, “Compiling and keeping records of various crimes by clerics, including childhood sexual abuse, is required by the Church’s own rules.” Wall is a former Catholic priest and Benedictine monk who left the ministry in 1998 after it became apparent he was being used to cover up the sexual abuses of other priests.
Wall is helping dissect defenses that dioceses mount during trial. He co-authored “Sex, Priests, and Secret Codes,” a leading book on the 2,000-year history of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.
See previous posts:
Australian Royal Commission into Sexual Abuse of Children
& Irish Prime Minister Blasts The Vatican
People world-wide must be growing weary by now of the endless cases of child sex abuse which is endemic within the Catholic Church. No other organisation has been so infiltrated by the sheer numbers of clerical paedophiles. It’s no wonder that the Vatican has been labelled ‘the gay men’s club’ and the largest paedophile ring in the world’. The abuse has been going on for hundreds of years because the great power and wealth of this establishment has been able to cover it up. It has blatantly ignored the damage done to children to protect its image of Godliness and purity. I would love to know what numbers of the congregation have left the church because of the ongoing revelations. I believe that it is not merely a case of an organisation of celibates attracting paedophiles, as some would have us believe. There appears to be a deep psychological flaw in the Church’s teachings and if you read enough about convicted priests, there is this view that it is ‘ok’ to rape little boys, girls, and ‘fallen’ women, as long as you leave the ‘sacred image of Mary’ alone ie in the form of ‘saintly’ mothers here on earth. These paedophiles show little remorse and their colleagues pity them their “sins of affliction” as though they are the sole victims. Canon Law allows Catholic clergy a loophole in the truth; it’s called ‘Mental Reservation’ which has allowed them to rape children with impunity for centuries!
How corrupt is the Vatican?
><>< >< Two other major reports published since 2005 also breached the iron walls of Vatican silence, but the Cloyne Report is different because it found systematic sexual abuse of children was still a reality as recently as 2008 and the church had been paying lip service to its own 1996 guidelines on child protection, which include the mandatory reporting of suspected abuse to state authorities. However, it was implicit that the ‘mandatory reporting’ was at the discretion of local Bishops. In fact. Bishops reported abuse cases to the Vatican heirarchy which enabled it to cover up the abuse and to move the paedophile elsewhere. The Vatican effectively encouraged bishops to ignore its own guidelines by dismissing them as “merely a discussion document”. PM Kenny’s confrontational address to the Irish parliament last month reflected the collective mood and tapped the raw pain and sense of betrayal felt by people across Ireland after the recent publication of the Cloyne Report. The state-funded independent report detailed numerous allegations of abuse by priests and a failure to report them in the rural diocese of Cloyne from 1996 to 2009. Pointedly, the local Catholic bishops didn’t rate a mention in PM Kenny’s speech; he saved his ire for their bosses in Rome. PM Kenny’s speech revealed that the Cloyne Report brought the government, Irish Catholics and the Vatican to an “unprecedented juncture”. The Cloyne Report exposed a more serious issue than previous reports. Because for the first time in Ireland, a report into child sexual abuse proved an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago. ><>< ><
Formerly Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger-Currently Pope Benedict XVl
See post ‘The Case of the Pope’ by Geoffrey Robertson, in which he examines, from a legal perspective, the Vatican as a sovereign state and its handling of paedophile priests and their victims
><>< The tide appears to be changing in Ireland. Most people still profess faith in God but church doctrine no longer governs personal spirituality. Indeed, there are now calls to remove Catholicism from every aspect of public life. Some Catholic parents are even doing the unthinkable and choosing not to baptise their children. While they may still regard themselves as Catholic, albeit with a small ”c”, contrary to stereotypes, this is no priest-ridden, theocratic backwater. The Catholic Church may continue to supervise the education system and control many hospitals, but for the most part, this is a cosmopolitan, urbanised, and secular, society. Increasingly, people in Ireland confine their church attendance to life changing events – christenings, weddings and funerals. Indeed, churches are more like mausoleums to past glories, with pews mostly empty or dotted with a few pensioners. The drift away from Catholicism has been gathering pace for some time, but revelations of the devious deceit and persistent cover-up of child abuse detailed since 2005 in the Ryan, Murphy and Cloyne Reports have transformed passive indifference into white-hot rage. ><>< In many ways the Catholic Church in Ireland is being devastated by a catastrophe of its own making. Its abuse of power also extends back to its role in the so-called industrial schools and Magdalene laundries, places of institutionalised slavery where children and young women were routinely, physically, sexually, and emotionally assaulted. The Magdalene laundries, which operated before the formation of the state in 1922 until 1996, were effectively church businesses where women and girls were imprisoned and forced to work in appalling conditions for little or no pay. Many of them suffered a lifetime of physical and psychological abuse at the hands of the nuns in charge. In many cases their ”crime” was to be a single mother. Only now are their stories being widely circulated and their campaign for redress gathering pace. ><
So far, 18 religious orders have agreed to pay €600 million ($A783 million) in compensation to industrial school victims. The state has agreed to pay €1.3 billion for effectively allowing the church to run riot with its most vulnerable citizens. American Catholic Churches have already paid compensation in the millions of dollars and incidents of the cover-up of sexual abuse by priests are still being currently exposed.
Source: Douglas Dalby, Dublin Journalist. _______________________________________________
Riccardo Seppia on the left
Christopher Jarvis: Child Protection Chief for the Catholic Church
One wonders if the Catholic Church can sink any lower.
Christopher Jarvis is headed to jail for a long stint, following his conviction for making, possessing, and distributing, child pornography, of which images were found on his home computer and work laptop. The laptop in question was provided to him to aid in his duties as a Catholic Church Child Protection Chief. The Catholic Church is the largest employer of sex offenders and pedophiles on the planet.
The Child Protection Chief’s job was to monitor church groups to ensure paedophiles did not gain access to children in the Church’s congregations. But Jarvis was caught by police in March with more than 4,000 child porn images on both his personal and work computers. He admitted 12 counts of making, possessing and distributing indecent images when he appeared before magistrates in Plymouth and is likely to face jail when he returns to court for sentencing next month. Jarvis worked the Diocese of Plymouth for nine years.
A Vatican spokesperson claims that the church removed him from his position as soon as his sex predator status was discerned. Who can possibly believe any statements issued by the Vatican in light of its record to date.
In yet another shocking case: Father Riccardo Seppia, a 51-year-old parish priest in the village of Sastri Ponente, near Genoa, was arrested on pedophilia and drug charges. Investigators say that in tapped mobile-phone conversations, Seppia asked a Moroccan drug dealer to arrange sexual encounters with young and vulnerable boys. Seppia makes his request to the drug dealer clear: “I do not want 16-year-old boys but younger. Fourteen-year-olds are O.K. Look for needy boys who have family issues”. Now, priests would know all about families with problem children, wouldn’t they?
According to investigators, Seppia told his friend, a former seminarian and barman who is currently under investigation himself, that the town’s malls were the best places to entice minors. In tapped phone conversations the two cursed and swore against God. The priest is charged with having attempted to kiss and touch an underage altar boy and of having exchanged cocaine for sexual intercourse with boys over 18. Seppia’s defense lawyers are expected to argue that the monitored conversations, “were just words, sex games that were played by adults”. It was just a game even when he claimed to have “kissed on the mouth” a 15-year-old altar boy, according to the defense. The altar boy in question confirmed that the kisses did in fact happen. These are games played by supposedly celibate priests? It beggars belief! Seppia also served as Pope Benedict’s official advisor on pedophilia; a child-raping pedophile himself?
In Australia it seems, the Catholic Church hierarchy is no more keen on investigating sex abuse by priests, than anywhere else:
AN inquiry into suicides among victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and brothers in Victoria would achieve little, a Catholic bishop says.
Australian police investigating the case of convicted pedophile Christian Brother Robert Best, believe at least 26 victims of sexual abuse at schools in which he taught have committed suicide. One of the investigating officers wants a parliamentary inquiry to investigate the deaths.
Christian Brother Robert Best
><>< “If it helps the victims I’d be more than happy for it to go ahead,” Bishop of Ballarat Peter Connors told AAP. “I don’t think they’ll learn very much more … I’m convinced we’ve done the best we can in more recent years.” Best, who taught at schools throughout Victoria, including Ballarat, will be sentenced on Monday after pleading guilty to 27 charges of abusing 11 boys between 1969 and 1988. Best was principal at St Alipius primary school in Ballarat at the same time convicted serial paedophile and priest Gerald Ridsdale was the school chaplain. But Bishop Connors said not even revelations from Detective Sergeant Kevin Carson that 26 young men had killed themselves after being abused by priests and brothers in Ballarat convinced him that more would be learnt from an inquiry. “I think we’ve learnt a lot of things about what is appropriate behaviour and what’s not appropriate behaviour,” Bishop Connors said. “I think people are very well informed nowadays as to what’s inappropriate approaches from a male”, the Bishop contnued. But I would ask, what have these lame statements got to do with opening an inquiry in to the abuse? While conceding the abuse of children was wrong, he said that in the past it had not always been clear to everyone what was appropriate and inappropriate behaviour. I don’t believe he could make such a claim. Surely grown men in the priesthood, one would assume, should have known what was appropriate behaviour? Bishop Connor’s ramblings don’t make sense. “In the past a lot of ignorance was there on the part of lots of people. Parents didn’t understand, sometimes bishops didn’t understand. We have no excuse now.” As to whether there was an excuse when Ridsdale and Best were abusing boys, Bishop Connors said he did not know. Among the charges laid against Best in Victoria’s County Court last month were details of him raping a nine-year-old boy in his office. The court heard that after Best raped him, the boy thought he was going to die and blacked out. Bishop Connors said in the past 14 years he had spoken to more than 30 victims of Ridsdale and other priests in the Ballarat diocese. But he said none had told him they were also abused by Best. “I can’t remember them saying they were victims of Brother Best as well,” he said. The bishop said he had no reason to meet Best’s victims “because he being a Christian Brother, I’m not responsible for him.” Another stupid answer. Yet he conceded that some of Ridsdale’s victims he had met could also have been abused by Best, because both men were there at the same time. Bishop Connors says the church has paid some victims far more than the $70,000 the Archdiocese of Melbourne says should be paid for the worst cases of child assault. Others have been paid less but overall victims had received “a considerable amount”. He is now waiting to see if any of those victims will come forward in two civil compensation cases set to be mounted against Best and whether the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat will be named in the actions. The statements made by Bishop Connors tells me that the Vatican does not employ the right sort of specialists to deal with sexual abuse cases. This is part of the problem. Bishop Connors, like other priest and Bishops, is trained to minister to the spritual needs of their congregations, not to deal with thousands of sexual abuse victims. ><><
ABC News Update on Brother Best 8/08/2011:
Christian Brother Robert Best jailed for sex abuse of Victorian school boys.
Robert Best has been sentenced by the Court to 14 years imprisonment for abusing 11 boys, mainly aged between eight and 11, but will probably serve a minimum term of 11 years. Seventy-year-old Robert Best taught at schools in Ballarat, Box Hill and Geelong between the 1960s and the 1980s. During the sentencing, Best stood in the dock without emotion. His many victims were in court and shouted at Best as he was led away.
Civil claims lawyer Dr Vivian Waller: The Catholic Church, and particularly Christian Brothers, who supported Brother Best throughout, now need to take the next step on the road to recovery for these victims and assist them with their treatment and education. We’ll be claiming damages for pain and suffering and for the cost of medical treatment, and other special damages that will assist these victims to recover from what they’ve been through.
Victims believe Best is unrepentant. “He doesn’t show any remorse.”
See relevant posts: