Talking on the phone with a friend of mine about priest sexual abuse and going to priests when one suffers any type of abuse, (as she has), I found something poignant, revelatory and really practical in something she said.
People who have suffered any type of abuse have come face to face with evil. Those who survived ongoing and constant abuse face evil over and over again. Unless you have faced evil and done combat with it and the results of evil entering your life you cannot relate to all of the ways that it negatively impacts you.
For those rare few who have made it through life with great parents, great friends, great teachers, great priests and great people in general would not have any reference point to deal with those who have suffered abuse, who faced evil, sometimes on a daily basis. That is probably why incredibly stupid things emanate from their mouths, like; “Get over it!”. (That phrase makes me want to punch the utterer.)
Because of my back-story and the fact that I am going toward my 10th year as a priest I know enough to know when I need to tell someone that they really need to seek professional help. Sadly, help is not cheap. But priests who pretend they know how to fix everything suffer from delusions of grandeur and incredible arrogance and pride. Saying, “Get over it.” only hurts the person coming for help. Abuse destroys trust and reaps anger and then to have someone say, “Get over it.”, exacerbates everything already suffered as an abuse survivor.
Other than their love of money and fear of scandal the hierarchy may be guilty of being grossly inadequit in dealing with congregants who have been sexually abused. Because of that they are guilty of inflicting further evil on victims.