I will not be silent on this matter. Though men may be forgiven their sins, the latest move by Pope Francis to absolve 2,000 pedophile priests is nothing shy of whitewashing their crimes and failing to bring justice to these men on behalf of their victims.
The pope addressed journalists on Sunday on a flight back to Rome after visiting Fatima, Portugal on Saturday. He acknowledged that there was a backlog of 2,000 clerical sex abuse cases, but claims that the delay is dealing with those are justified and that the Vatican is “on the right path.”
Consider that being “on the right path” means that the Vatican is either running the clock out in hopes people forget, looking to pay off people to be quiet or simply move priests from one parish to another, just like they have done all through their sordid history.
The issue was thrust into the national spotlight in 2002 when the Boston Globe revealed the extent to which the local archdiocese shielded abusive priests from being exposed to the public even though it knew they posed a danger to young parishioners. The Globe exposé, which detailed abuse cases that numbered in the thousands over a span of several decades, inspired other victims to come forward, leading to an avalanche of lawsuits and criminal prosecutions.
Not only did the floodgates open in the US, but the Catholic Church was also forced to confront cases in other countries, including Mexico.In 2004, the Vatican re-opened a prior investigation against Marcial Maciel, who was accused of sexually abusing minors as well as fathering six children by three different women.
Though the allegations spanned decades and the extent of his crimes was known to church officials, it was only in 2006 that the Vatican forced Maciel, one of its most powerful clergymen, to retire from active ministry.
Fox News reports:
Francis was making his first comments about the criticism leveled at the Vatican’s handling of sex abuse cases by Marie Collins, an Irish abuse survivor who resigned from Francis’ sex abuse advisory commission in March. Collins quit because of what she said was the “unacceptable” level of resistance within the Vatican to implementing the group’s proposals to better care for victims and protect children from priests who rape and molest them.
Speaking to reporters while flying home Saturday from a trip to Portugal, Francis called Collins “a great woman” and said she was “a bit right” to complain about the slow pace in processing cases.
“Marie Collins was right on that point. But we are on the right path, as there were 2,000 cases backlogged,” he said.
Francis didn’t respond to the other issues raised by Collins, including the refusal of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith — which handles abuse cases — to create a tribunal to judge bishops who covered up for pedophile priests. Instead, he focused on explaining why cases can take so long to process.
To improve efficiency, he said he had added more staff to the congregation and that talks were underway about providing more regional help to bishops to ensure their cases are properly documented before they arrive at the Vatican for review.
Francis claims that he has never agreed to a request for clemency from a pedophile priest.
Yet, we know he is soft on homosexuality and pedophilia by his actions.
On Friday, I reported on a priest in the Vatican Communications Office who claimed that homosexuals will be in heaven, despite clear warnings in the New Testament against such statements.
“The priest Jose Ataulfo Garcia was acquitted of any crime by the Archdiocese Primada de México after confessing to have sexually abused dozens of girls in the indigenous community of Oaxaca, reports the platform ‘Anonymous’ of Mexico,” Urgente 24 reported. “The crime of abuse and rape of 30 girls between the ages of 5 and 10, admitted by the cleric himself, adds to the fact that Garcia is a carrier of HIV.”
“Neither the State of Mexico nor any organization defending the rights of children has spoken about this acquittal, probably due to the respect that the Catholic Church inspires in indigenous areas,” the report continued. “In addition, this religious institution has a great influence in Mexican institutions: of the large number of victims, only 2 dared to officially denounce.”
Protestants have their sex scandals, as well. However, when it comes to little children, Jesus was very clear.
But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. -Matthew 18:6
Additionally, Christians are commanded to not even have a hint of sexual immorality.
But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; – Ephesians 5:3
In fact, in the very next verse, Christians are commanded to even guard their speech when it comes to sexual immorality.
Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk, or crude joking, which are out of character, but rather thanksgiving. -Ephesians 5:4
And then the apostle Paul warns:
For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure, or greedy person (that is, an idolater), has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them. -Ephesians 5:5-7
The Roman Church needs serious reformation in not only its doctrine, but also its practice. Somehow, I believe if Jesus was to walk into the Vatican (and many Protestant Churches), He would utter similar words which He uttered to the Pharisees in Matthew 23.
But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. -Matthew 23:14-31