Friday, February 17, 2023


Tyranny and Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church: A Jesuit Tragedy

Dr. John R. T. Lamont

In the light of new revelations about sexual abuse in the Church, many Catholics are asking how the situation that these revelations have disclosed can possibly have come about. The first question that occurs, a question of long standing, is; why did bishops deal with sexual abusers by concealing their offenses and moving them to new assignments, rather than by removing them from ministry? No sufficient answer has yet been given to this question. FULL ARTICLE

An excerpt from the article describing a situation that sounds familiar to us in Guam:

James said he had tried to tell his father that he was being abused when he was 15 or 16. But Father McCarrick was so beloved by his family, he said, and considered so holy, that the idea was unfathomable. … James says that as a boy, he had no safe place to discuss what was happening to him. “No place. No place. My father was just not going to hear it.” … “I tried a couple of times with my mother, but she would say ‘I think you’re mistaken.’ My father was born in 1918, my mother was born in 1920. They were raised in a way that the Catholic Church was everything. My father was a holy guy. He’d walk around with a rosary in his hand all day. My parents were very holy, and their parents were very holy. Their whole idea about life was that way.”[1]


While there is much to agree with in this article, there is, in my opinion, a much simpler answer to the "first question," as set out above. The real answer as to why and how all this horror could happen is not due to a warped development of the concept of authority as the author theorizes, but because of the warped development of those in authority, i.e. the bishops

As the McCarrick debacle exemplifies (and closer to home, the Apuron scandal), the bishops were the actual bad actors. The infamous 2002 "Dallas Charter" is a prime example. The Charter was drafted by bishops to discipline wayward priests but not themselves. More thoughts on this another time. 

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