I have come to the fundamental conclusion, (and I took this to prayer), that so many of the faithful, priest included, still do not understand the magnitude of the personal destruction of clergy sexual abuse. The incredibly loud and ignorant minority have tried and are trying to silence this issue. Many others just want it to go away. In 2005 when this exploded in Philadelphia I was one of those people. The bell of sexual abuse, (any abuse suffered), cannot be unrung. That is most tragic.
One thing that I find especially irritating is the blame game; first the press, then victims, then the press and victims. And so many people, mostly the incredibly loud and ignorant minority, really need to realize that they too are victims of the same bishops and priests. If this aberration had been handled from the beginning there would not have been lawsuits, there would not have been large cash settlements. So once again it goes back to the leaderships lack of right and just leadership. I am sure no one imagined this issue becoming what it has become.
Then it seems that when a perfect pastoral moment presents itself to promote healing among the faithful the Church authorities say bonehead things that do nothing to build up the Body of Christ. And yes as a victim and also a priest I become hurt. What is it like for victims who hate the Church? My biggest fear is that some people will never “get” it, will never understand. Pray, pray, pray that never truly comes-to-pass.
I am an Inquirer columnist writing about this issue. Fascinated by these posts. Any chance you’d contact me? 215-313-3065 mobile, firstname.lastname@example.org. Please give it some thought.