And now, on top of these many crises comes a scandal crying out to heaven – the revelation of the clerical abuse of thousands of children and adolescents, first in the United States, then in Ireland and now in Germany and other countries … There is no denying the fact that the worldwide system of covering up cases of sexual crimes committed by clerics was engineered by the Roman Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under Cardinal Ratzinger (1981-2005). During the reign of Pope John Paul II, that congregation had already taken charge of all such cases under oath of strictest silence. Ratzinger himself, on May 18th, 2001, sent a solemn document to all the bishops dealing with severe crimes ( “epistula de delictis gravioribus” ), in which cases of abuse were sealed under the “secretum pontificium”, the violation of which could entail grave ecclesiastical penalties - Hans Kung
It might be difficult to believe but there have to be some good apples in the barrel that has Catholic Church stencilled on its side. Not everyone affiliated to this International Centre for Child Rape is an abuser or an accomplice before or after the fact in terms of cover up. It might well take Indiana Jones to find them but they are there. Why is another matter. Maybe they believe that such is their penance; born into original sin they must walk the earth scorned as the associates of paedophiles because as tiny children they were not worthy in the eyes of the god they proclaim to love so much. Worth it in the end because silent deference to an obedience-demanding god shall see them rewarded with eternal salvation.
It never seems to occur to them that a god who hates children so much that he has them branded as sinners the moment they emerge from the womb, is unlikely to reward them with anything but more of the same. The writer Martin Amis thought that paedophilia was anything but a love for children. He saw it as a hatred of children. So maybe the rapist priests are at one with their god after all. For what is original sin but a hatred of children?
The whole sordid business goes right to the very top. In Ireland, for example, Cardinal Brady has been found to have a history of cover up. In 1975 he participated in imposing a vow of silence on abused children. That he seems an alright sort of guy today is beside the point. Sometimes cultural embedment when it is reinforced by cultic ritual distorts the thinking processes. Brady most likely bitterly regrets his involvement in silencing the abused now that there has been a substantial descaling of his eyes. But if he couldn’t see to begin with what authority can he preach to the rest of us about a god who failed miserably to guide him or equip him with a moral conscience?
Internationally the head of the Catholic cartel, Joe Ratzinger, aka Pope Benedict, or to cynics like me simply the priestfuehrer, too has hands which are by no means clean. Yes, the man with the hotline to Heaven has been up to his neck in a little bit of covering the tracks and distorting he facts. His latest rubbish beggars belief. Rather than place culpability firmly where it belongs, in the hands of the clerical rapists and the institution that covered up the crime, society is offered this: the root cause can be traced to the 1970s when ‘paedophilia was theorised as something that was in keeping with man and even the child … The effects of such theories are evident today.’
Not surprisingly this provoked howls of anguished outrage from survivors groups that spanned the Atlantic. Margaret Kennedy, from the British Minister and Clergy Sexual Abuse Survivors group, complained:
He is trying to say that the modern world is corrupt and sexually rampant. It is blaming society for what is actually their responsibility. No one in any age has ever thought that adults having sex with children is right.
Even more scathing was Barbara Blaine, head of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests which is based in the US:
It is fundamentally disturbing to watch a brilliant man so conveniently misdiagnose a horrific scandal … Catholics should be embarrassed to hear their Pope talk again and again about abuse while doing little or nothing to stop it and to mischaracterise this heinous crisis … The Pope insists on talking about a vague ‘broader context’ he can’t control, while ignoring the clear ‘broader context’ he can influence - the long-standing and unhealthy culture of a rigid, secretive, all-male Church hierarchy fixated on self-preservation at all costs. This is the ‘context’ that matters.
Next he will be blaming the altar boys. They made the priests rigid.