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Priests and church leaders sexually abused hundreds of Pennsylvania children

Discussion in 'In The News... Funny or Serious...' started by kelli, Mar 2, 2016.

  1. kelli

    kelli The original blip

    how does this kind of thing continue to go on while the vatican turns the other way????

    Priests and church leaders sexually abused hundreds of children in Altoona Diocese

    Hundreds of children were sexually abused over a period of at least four decades by priests or religious leaders in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, a statewide investigating grand jury has concluded.

    The findings by the grand jury, released Tuesday by the office of state Attorney General Kathleen Kane, detail widespread abuse involving at least 50 priests or religious leaders. The findings reveal a troubling history of diocesan superiors concealing the child abuse as part of an effort to protect the church's image.

    The 147-page report details — at times graphically — accounts of sexual abuse of children at the hands of priests and church leaders. The late Monsignor Francis B. McCaa, the report notes, was "a monster" who groped and fondled the genitals of at least 15 boys, many of them altar boys. McCaa was assigned to Holy Name Church in Ebensburg for more than 20 years.

    At least one of his victims committed suicide, the investigation found.

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  2. ghost62

    ghost62 Goes Blip In The Night Staff Member Moderator Vendor Safe Zone Moderator

    I'm not Catholic but things like this trouble me greatly and I've had in-depth discussions with friends that are of that faith.
    It was explained to me that church doctrine, combined with falling attendance (= less money) caused many leaders to turn a blind eye toward what was happening in order to save face.
    One friend pointed out that, while not condoning the actions of some priests, he could understand how it could happen. They're in the business of forgiveness so they let it slide once because the priests begs for mercy and promises not to do it again. Then it happens again and their hands are tied because if it gets out that they knew, they'd be crucified. It's deplorable that they would put the reputation of the church ahead of the safety and well-being of children. "For the greater good", huh?
    In defense of the Church in general, a vast majority of dioceses, on their own, rooted out pedophiles and handled it quietly and effectively when a situation would arise. When ANY group, church or otherwise, does the right thing, it rarely makes the news so all we hear about is the negative.
    Priests need to be held to a higher standard of conduct for the choices they've made in serving God, but they're still human and need to be treated accordingly. If a man of the cloth is a criminal, treat him as such. In my opinion, a true man of God would not behave like that so therefore, they are fakes, charlatans and pretenders hiding behind the auspices of faith.
    But don't condemn the whole church for the actions of a small percentage. I have a great deal of respect and admiration for those that have chosen to devote their lives to serving a Higher Calling.
    It's the bad apples that we hear about though. Bad news makes for good circulation. We never hear about the parish priest that toils day in and day out to enrich the lives of those in his flock. We never hear about the pastor that goes hungry himself that he can feed those in need. It doesn't make the news when a preacher cries himself to sleep wondering what more he could have done when he loses an unsaved soul. Nuns that willingly subject themselves to the greatest horrors mankind is capable of in the treatment of wounded and sick in war zones simply aren't newsworthy.
    Any church, any group, every organization is comprised of people- humans with flaws, agendas, greed, lust for power AND good, honest, genuine individuals.
    As I stated at the beginning of my rant, this troubles me- not just because it happens, but because society is willing to condemn the whole for the actions of a few. It trivializes and minimizes the lives of some truly wonderful people.
  3. kelli

    kelli The original blip

    while i agree with most of what you said, i have to take issue a bit. i too, hate that entire groups of people are condemned for the actions of a few. just look at muslims as a good example.

    but....(you knew there was a but, right?)....while the number of pedophile priests may be low in comparison to the whole, each one molests 150 to 300 children on average. that is a lot of lives affected. i am also convinced that many men enter the priesthood just to have access to children, much as other professions attract pedophiles.

    if the church would allow priests to marry, it might cut down on the molestation some.
  4. kelli

    kelli The original blip

    and let me just add that some sins are more forgivable than others. this one to me is really difficult to forgive.
  5. ghost62

    ghost62 Goes Blip In The Night Staff Member Moderator Vendor Safe Zone Moderator

    Church doctrine is changing (slowly) to allow priests to marry and have families but a lot of damage has been done.
    I agree that their policies, combined with certain leaders' actions, made the Catholic church in some areas a haven for pedophiles for decades. That it happened to one child is terrible- to hundreds, inexcusable.
    Thankfully, they are taking a much harder line now
  6. dr3d

    dr3d biker blip

    Hate to reference film, but I will. "Spotlight" does a, IMO, fair and decent job tackling the telling of a very similar story from the perspective of the Boston Globe. Definitely not a Date movie, but worth a serious watch if you are willing and prepared to accept the cold hard realities of the past.
  7. kelli

    kelli The original blip

    thanks for that.....i have heard that film is very well done and very disturbing. it's extremely difficult for me to watch anything that deals with graphic sexual abuse so i will ask you....is it mostly implied/off screen?
  8. dr3d

    dr3d biker blip

    It is discussed but not delivered visually. The plot deals with the victims and perpetrators years after the crimes. The residual damage is apparent but the film's perspective - the difficulties the Boston Globe tackled to report the cover ups - was well managed. It should allow you to view the film. The assault on your senses is strictly of the deduced/implied variety.