The Catholic Church Must Be DefendedFebruary 2nd, 2013
The recent release of 30,000 or so pages of documents detailing the cover-up of sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests in Los Angeles has brought the usual torrent of criticism of the church (Cardinal Roger Mahony, who the documents show working hard to shield rapist-priests, has been relieved of public duties). And with it comes the continued defense of the church. After helpfully noting that “It is well-understood that sexual abuse is a crime against children,” “Catholic Online” makes a remarkable charge:
While it appears based on the documents that Mahony may have participated in covering up crimes against children, he has actually gone one step further. He has actively participated in a crime against the entire Church.
An emerging trend among Catholic publications is to separate the offenders from the church. That has to be continually and dispassionately refuted. Every such utterance should be countered by, for example, the conclusion of the committee that documented decades of abuse of children in Catholic institutions in Ireland:
Physical and emotional abuse and neglect were features of the institutions.
Repeat: physical and emotional abuse and neglect were features of the institutions. Mahony is not separate from the church. He is of the church.