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Irish cardinal apologizes for hiding abuse

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by PELE, Mar 18, 2010.

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    PELE JF-Expert Member

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    Irish cardinal apologizes for hiding abuse

    Last Updated: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 | 12:49 PM ET Comments288Recommend63

    Ireland's senior Catholic Church cardinal on Wednesday offered an apology for his handling of a case involving an abusive priest decades ago, and said he doesn't know what his future holds.

    Cardinal Sean Brady was a priest in 1975 when abuse allegations were raised against another priest, Brendan Smyth. At a meeting at that time, Brady asked two victims — boys aged 10 and 14 — to sign letters agreeing they would remain silent. The church did not share the information with police.


    It was about two decades before Smyth was eventually convicted of abusing children.

    "This week a painful episode from my own past has come before me," Brady said in Armagh, Northern Ireland, during his St. Patrick's Day mass. "I have listened to reaction from people to my role in events 35 years ago.

    "I want to say to anyone who has been hurt by any failure on my part that I apologize to you with all my heart," Brady said during his mass. "I also apologize to all those who feel I have let them down."

    The revelations have led to pressure on Brady to consider resigning. He has said he would only step down if asked by the Pope.
    An investigation revealed in 2009 that church leaders had protected Irish priests suspected of sexually abusing children.

    The report on the scandal accused church leaders of "obsessively" hiding child abuse in the Dublin archdiocese for decades.
    A separate report in Ireland had been released months earlier documenting sexual, physical and psychological abuse in Catholic-run schools, workhouses and orphanage.

    The abuse — and its subsequent coverup — is estimated to have run from the 1930s to the 1990s and involved more than 15,000 children.
    In other developments Wednesday related to the sex scandal, the Pope is hoping his pending letter to Irish Catholics about abuse in the church will help with "repentance, healing and renewal."

    The Irish church has been "severely shaken" by the crisis, the pontiff said in English, adding that he was "deeply concerned."

    Pope Benedict XVI made the comments during his weekly general audience.
    "I ask all of you to read it [the letter] for yourselves, with an open heart and in a spirit of faith," Benedict said. "My hope is that it will help in the process of repentance, healing and renewal."
    The Pope is expected to sign the letter on Friday before it is sent to Irish Catholics.
    Merkel speaks out

    Benedict did not address abuse allegations in Germany and elsewhere.
    In her first public comments on the abuse scandal, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the damage suffered by abuse victims cannot be fully repaired.

    "I think that we all agree that sexual abuse of minors is a despicable crime and the only way for our society to come to terms with it is to look for the truth and find out everything that has happened," Merkel told the German parliament.

    People alleging abuse by church officials have been surfacing across Germany, and the allegations have included the Regensburger Domspatzen boys choir, which was led for three decades by Rev. Georg Ratzinger, the Pope's brother.
    On Monday, the old diocese of the Pope suspended a priest who was convicted in 1986 of sexually abusing minors. The church also accepted the resignation of the priest's superior.

    The archdiocese of Munich and Freising suspended the priest, who has been identified only as Rev. H., after he violated the condition that he not work with youth. The Pope served as archbishop of Munich and Freising from 1977 to 1986 before he went to Rome. With files from The Associated Press



     
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    PELE JF-Expert Member

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    Story comments (83)

    Sort: Most recent | First to last | Agreed
    placebosavior wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 9:16 PM ETApologies be damned because they are not even close to being good enough!.

    What the he*l is it going to take for world government to move against this? Obviously the church hasn't turned over the perpetrators or opened their records to scrutiny and you can bet they have no intention to, so when will we see police at the doors of the Vatican on behalf of the thousands of victims they are supposed to be protecting from criminals like this?

    Any company, organization, or even government would have been systematically dismantled already if faced with the same situation. We also spend billions globally tracking down child abusers and perhaps of all crimes, this one garners the least sympathy from basically anyone. Yet, this church is left untouched, criminals not prosecuted and victims ignored.

    I can't believe I even live in a world that is so afraid of facing reality it won't even go after an organized pedophile ring
    3Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    KRAKATOWA wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 8:50 PM ETnumberfour wrote:
    "There is essentially no difference between rates of pedophilia among priests as compared to the general population. But yes, I agree with all these Christian sentiments that priests should still be held to a higher standard."



    I'm sorry, but I find this statement absolutely STUPTIFYING.

    Spreading statistics among the general population in order to neutralise the impact of all this is cunningly misleading and bypasses the whole point.

    These Church-protected crimes against children were/are concentrated in one, single profession.

    So, 'numberfour', tell us what the rate of pedophilia is . . . .

    ~ among Dentists?
    ~ among Veterinarians?
    ~ among Accountants?
    ~ among Kindergarten Teachers?

    At best you could cough-up comparisions among other non-Roman Clergy, Rabbis, Mulahs. But to spread out the numbers in general terms is incidious.

    This is a Church which condemns homosexuality and won't (for example) let me and my married husband come up to receive the host. Yet, this is a Church wherein THE VERY PRIEST DISPENSING THE HOST may be a re-offending pedophile, whose sexual orientation is so buried as to be twisted and perverse.

    This is a Church calling the moral tune in countries where couples are afraid to use condoms, yet cannot manage the children they already have --- and MEANWHILE, back at Vatican City, the Lawyers are up all night devising ways to protect child-molesting Clergy and the Bishops and Cardinals hiding them.

    This is a Church where the very children abused were made to sign agreements of perpetual silence.

    And now, 'numberfour', you undercut this horror by saying,
    well, I guess "priests should still be held to a higher standard????"

    Protecting The Church from the truth is not loving The Church.
    3Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    JDSams wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 7:29 PM ETAnd the churches shall tumble.
    JJ
    1Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Vanpet wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 6:08 PM ETOH Holy Father, I forgive you.. I forgive all the sins of the holy fathers of the church and I am sure all of us do.

    You are our leaders and even if you do bad upon us some times, we still love you and admire you.

    Since I was a small boy I always obeyed you and always will..

    God bless.

    ===========================================

    If there is a Hell, I sure hope there is a place for the Pope there, right along side Jerry Falwell and Hitler.
    5Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    ForestDump wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 4:17 PM ETWhat kind of a fool would believe that writing a letter would make good on young boys being raped by his employees. The pope is so far out of touch with reality he should be put in a nut house.



    Women priests could bring some kinder spirits to the church and act as a deterrent to abuse.

    ************

    Anyone that thinks women are gentler and kinder than men needs to step out into the real world
    13Agree 8DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    KRAKATOWA wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 2:50 PM ETStay tuned wrote: "The Pope should set an example by naming and expelling from the church every perpetrator and reporting them to local police authorities. Jail terms don't seem to deter them, so I suggest, that all their property be seized, and held for the benefit of the innocent. "

    Well now, just who was Pope John Paul II's, theologically-rigid, doctrinally-obsessed, second-hand man, known widely in The Church as 'The Enforcer'?

    None other than Joseph Ratzinger, the present Pope Benedict XVI.

    John Paul II did next to nothing in acknowledging the henious nature of this crime against children. And his 'Enforcer' MUST HAVE PLAYED an integral part in directing the world's Bishops over how to deal with the criminal behaviour of Priests under their direction.

    This Pope must do much much MUCH more than 'naming and expelling' perpetrators. THIS POPE must first go on a personal Retreat and contemplate the word, 'mendacity'.

    He must then COME CLEAN BEFORE THE WORLD:

    ~ when did he know about these crimes against children?
    ~ what did he do when told about them?
    ~ what part did he play in directing Bishops to relocate criminal Priests?
    ~ what more has he been covering-up in order to preserve his Office?

    Expressing 'deep remorse' and writing Edicts and Letters and generally trying to stem the tide IS A SMOKE SCREEN.

    IT IS TIME FOR THE TRUTH.

    So, Papa? Does the Truth set YOU free?

    How about it?
    The world is watching.
    14Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Vanpet wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 2:46 PM ETWomen priests could bring some kinder spirits to the church and act as a deterrent to abuse.

    When an institution discriminates that blatantly it will always highten abuse in the ranks.

    ====================================

    I don't buy the fallacy that women are gentler and kinder. The nuns were just as hideous and horrid as any priest. When will people stop making excuses for these monsters?
    16Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    GazzBC wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 2:46 PM ETnumberfour wrote: "There is essentially no difference between rates of pedophilia among priests as compared to the general population."

    Do you - or anyone else - have a reliable source for this? I haven't been able to find any information stating what the rate of paedophelia is among the general population. The only information I've been able to find comparing rates comes from the Vatican.
    4Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Sentient Human wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 2:42 PM ETnumberfour,

    It is not the 'rate' that matters, but the ACT!

    Regardless of who commits such a crime they should be held accountable in OUR Courts, not some isolated self-proclaimed, undemocratic City State.



    I became Catholic as a young man and have never regretted my choice. I also am sorry for those that have been hurt.

    ====================================

    If I was a member of any organization with this kind of history and predisposition to hypocrisy, pedophilia, lies, etc etc etc. I would quit immediately and never turn back. In fact I have. The whole organization is despicable.
    9Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    numberfour wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:41 PM ETThere is essentially no difference between rates of pedophilia among priests as compared to the general population. But yes, I agree with all these Christian sentiments that priests should still be held to a higher standard.

    Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2010/03/18/catholic-abuse-popel-letter-ireland-austria-germany.html#socialcomments#ixzz0iYEWh2bm
    4Agree 3DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    WhiteLakeDan wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:40 PM ETAnd WHERE is the Pope's Boss in all this!
    10Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Sentient Human wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:35 PM ETLook for a sale, hopefully a 'Going Out of Business' sale, of Indulgences to grant special pardon by the authority of the Pope (just a man living in a delusion of Godliness).

    After all, that worked so nicely to fund the building of Europe's cathedrals.
    5Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    rhomac wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:26 PM ETYes...a letter...that should repair hundreds of years of abuse and I'm sure the hundreds of thousands of abuse victims will be happy now. "The priest said he believes Catholics will become disenchanted if the Pope does not offer a personal apology and bring in changes." Well - we can't have disenchanted Catholics, now, can we. I think disenchanted catholics are the least of their worries. These priests need to be treated like the criminals that they are. This is not a problem unique to the Catholic church. What is unique, however, is how these pedophiles were handled - within the organization. Call the police and get them to prison. Clean house - from the top down.


    Unless the Pope's letter is an edict that any priest caught molesting children will be defrocked, excommunicated and turned over to the authorities he is complicit in their crimes.
    24Agree 3DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    ranger246 wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:08 PM ETThis crime has been going on for generations, and around the world governments have been and still are only paying lip service to a form of genocide that continues to ruin the lives of thousands. I'm sorry, but offering their prayers just don't cut it. What is emanating from the Vatican is a vile crime and must be dealt with by governments in a manner equal to any crimes against humanity.
    13Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    maggie2009 wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:05 PM ETFool.
    9Agree 3DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    numberfour wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:04 PM ETThere is essentially no difference between rates of pedophilia among priests as compared to the general population. But yes, I agree with all these Christian sentiments that priests should still be held to a higher standard.
    9Agree 0DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    numberfour wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 1:02 PM ETI became Catholic as a young man and have never regretted my choice. I also am sorry for those that have been hurt.


    Joshua261 wrote:
    The Church is not immune to evil and has survived much worse in its 2,000 years.
    _______________

    In the hope of all that is good and decent, let's pray it doesn't take another 2000 to shut it down.
    7Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    rensecom wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:55 PM ETRemember when Sinead O'connor ripped up the picture of the Pope on late night.
    She was abused by nuns during her child hood
    This crime imo has been going on for 2000 yrs now the RC way is corrupt and not needed to worship God.
    30Agree 7DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Dr. Wayne wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:54 PM ETEVIL ... EVIL ... EVIL ... nuff said.
    17Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    red_fox wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:49 PM ETA letter isn't going to fix it.
    10Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    bigrroy wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:48 PM ETWell, if a letter would have "help repair some of the damage caused by the scandal" there wouldn't have been any damage to repair in any of the rest of the world.

    Would it.

    Not crying bankruptcy and poverty would also have helped ...

    ... letters don't help. Counselling helps. And the Pope obviously isn't a big fan of counselling or they'd have been all hands-on-the-pump long before this.


    It is still going on! Just recently a top priest got caught with a computer loaded with kiddie porn crossing the border into Canada from the US.
    How are these bastards any different than your regular child molester?
    I'll tell you how, each week you take your children to see them. The children trust the people their parents trust.
    there is adifferent law for the Catholic church. It is the devils playground.
    37Agree 7DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    ForestDump wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:44 PM ETOrganized cellibacy is a crime. Humans are sexual animals and to deprive individuals of this normal act is what causes most of this problem. This whole idea of devoting your life to some entity that lives up in the sky is ridiculous. Isn't it time humanity moved on, at least for the sake of our children?

    It is a sad irony that those that profess superior ethics are in fact some of our worst criminals and are the greatest of threats to those least able to protect themselves, our children. The clergy's theft of assets from the elderly is another crime of these vipers that is very well hidden. Give me that insurance policy and I'll be sure you have a special place in heaven is nothing less than a grand con.
    6Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    robert bythelake wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:42 PM ETWomen priests could bring some kinder spirits to the church and act as a deterrent to abuse.

    When an institution discriminates that blatantly it will always highten abuse in the ranks.
    3Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Oreodont wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:41 PM ETpetalworker: "
    Homosexuality has nothing to do with these crimes. This is pedophilia. The terms 'homosexual' and 'pediphile' are not interchangeable."

    100% aqgeed. And it has nothing to do with celibacy, etc. It is about pedophilia at the core of the RC Church.

    It's a bitt disconcerting that some posters still look for 'excuses' for these heinious acts against children. The Church is rife with predators abusing children.
    7Agree 2DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    informedconsent wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:39 PM ETForgive yourself, Father for you have sinnned and you've never wholly admitted it in a confession to the authorities. You are accused of the following sins, defiling the innocent, hiding your sins and blaming the innocent,demanding their silence under threat of excommunication, covering up for your brethren, and extreme hubris believing you are only answerable to canonical law and not the laws of society.You have lost our confidence and cast aspersions among your brethren as no one knows who among you is innocent. You will be answerable to the Lord, may he be merciful with your eternal soul. In the meantime, you are answerable to the common folk.


    Want to see the near future??? Within a few hours posters to this site will attribute all this sexual abuse to gay clergymen.

    Now I have no doubt that there are gay clerics...they are everywhere else so why not in organized religion but, and this is my point, I have NEVER heard (in all the hundreds places such abuse has been documented) any evidence that the abuse was carried out entirely, predominantly or even significantly by gay clerics.

    Yet in EVERY instance of abuse that I have followed, such linkages are rampantly spouted. And, once the problem is attached to "gay clerics" the rest of the Catholic Church is free to wear it's all-white vestments and offer "moral guidance" to the rest of us.

    Does it make YOU wonder who is behind the abuser=gay cleric linkages??

    Anyways, watch for it to happen here soon.

    The Bird
    3Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    Stay tuned wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:39 PM ETAlthough the Catholic church seems to attract more sexual predators than we hear of in other organizations, it is the largest Christian body in the world, so that may explain, in part, what appears to be a higher incidence of such abuse within its ranks.

    Child abuse of all knds has been documented by historians as having been ubiquitous throughout recorded human history. Some authors claim that it originated with paternalistic organized religion.

    The previous Pope, highly regarded by many, responded inadequately to the complaints about sexual abuse in the Church. In defending his position, he remarked that the incidence was no worse than what was happening elsewhere - which the public generally only hears about when there is court action involved.

    Health Canada posts a page on child abuse. I suggest readers check out that web site, where one is informed that families represent the most common source of child sexual abuse. It becomes handed on from generation to generation - Gerry Adams, the admirable Irish leader identified this horrific plague in his own family a few months ago. His statement is online.

    The Pope should set an example by naming and expelling from the church every perpetrator and reporting them to local police authorities. Jail terms don't seem to deter them, so I suggest, that all their property be seized, and held for the benefit of the innocent.

    By doing so, many victims who have remained silent for decades, may feel safe enough from feared family scorn to speak out safely and name their abuser, too.

    Health Canada
    5Agree 1DisagreePolicy Report abuse

    LovesFishsticks wrote:Posted 2010/03/18
    at 12:37 PM ETThe Church has literally been wrong about any stance it has taken.

    Witch burning, throwing Galilaeo in jail, supporting slavery, homophobia, anti womens rights, creationism, Noahs ark, gay marriage, anything that has to do with science, the crusades...............

    And dont tell me the church has supported many charities and good causes........You can be a good person and not be religious.

    Any charitable donations or good causes that the church has been a part of simply makes up for the trillions of lost tax revenue that could have been used to help the poor and better society.

    Stick a fork in it, religion is done.


    Writing a letter huh, the man should resign and turn himself into the Hague for aiding and abetting criminals.

    At least in today's Guardian, Cif, Andrew Brown has shown a bit of courage and said that the pope must send Cardinal Law back to the USA where he will be indicted. Will it happen, n-ah:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/mar/17/pope-benedict-cardinal-bernard-law

     
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