Just saw the provocative and extraordinary documentary, Deliver Us From Evil.
It documents the pathological institutionalization and cover-up of sexual abuse and rape of children by priests in the California Diocese of the Catholic Church.
What is most infuriating is the well-documented cover up of these crimes, motivated by the desire of higher-ups to safeguard their careers, and resulting in an exponentially greater number of victims.
It is shocking that Cardinal Roger Mahoney may still be serving as a high level official of the Church when it is so clear he is directly responsible for covering up abuses he knew about. And “Father” Oliver O’Grady, alone responsible for destroying scores of lives and families, is roaming free in Ireland because of machinations by the Church in spite of overwhelming proof that he raped vicitims as young as 9 months old and continued this pattern unobstructed for three decades with the knowledge of his superiors, who would just transfer him from parish to parish – to hide the problem.
Clergy abuse is so rampant that over 100,000 victims have risen up in the US alone in recent years. The numbers are staggering when bearing in mind that statistics indicate 80% of children who are raped and abused never report the crimes to the authorities.
The documentary also persuasively explains how this problem is institutionalized into the structure of the Catholic Church since celibacy was imposed on the priesthood for financial reasons (to prevent children from inheriting their priest parents’ possessions, and instead ensure that this property remained in the hands of the Catholic Church).
Of course not all Priests are pedophiles, and the vast majority of figures connected to the Church are remarkable spiritual leaders. Pope John Paul II was such a holy and deeply benevolent soul and example to our world and to ALL religions, as well as to the secular.
It is all-the-more tragic that one of the world’s great religions has not come to terms with this.
It is ironic that the Catholic Church will condemn so many victimless actions as abominable and unnatural sins, but doesn’t address the abominations within, and the unnatural structures that lead to them.
The assumption that one person or group is above the law (of earth and of heaven) can only lead to bad results.