Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Thursday, December 05, 2013

Francis' commission on sex abuse

Coming right after the Vatican rebuffed UN inquiries about clergy sex abuse, the Pope [is] Setting Up Commission on Clerical Child Abuse.

There's a lot about this in the Catholic press ... at Catholic Culture, Will new Vatican commission on abuse answer the one crucial question? ... at NCR, Vatican announces new papal advisory commission on sex abuse ... at US Catholic, Pope Francis launches commission to tackle sex abuse ... at dotCommonweal, Pope Francis to create commission on protection of minors. From David Gibson's post at US Catholic ...

[...] O’Malley acknowledged that Catholics were most keen to hear how and whether the pope and the new commission would tackle the question of disciplining bishops who have shielded abusive priests .... Several current cases in the U.S. have rekindled anger over the abuse crisis: last year in Missouri, Bishop Robert Finn was convicted in court of failing to report an abusive priest to authorities, and in Minnesota it was recently revealed that Archbishop John Nienstedt did not report priests suspected of abuse to authorities. Archbishop John Myers of Newark, N.J., has faced similar criticism for his handling of abusers. All three men are outspoken conservatives, and all three remain in office [not to mention Mahony] ....

Victims advocates in the U.S. said Thursday that this latest action was not nearly enough to address their concerns.

“Another commission surveying bishops and recommending policies is meaningless. It’s like offering a band aid to an advanced cancer patient,” said David Clohessy, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. “Only decisive action helps, not more studies and committees and promises.” ...

I think Francis has good intentions but I don't hope for much from this new commission ... it won't address the accountability of church leaders for covering up abuse, and also it doesn't appear that the actual causes of clergy sex abuse will even be addressed.


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