Imagine for one moment that the Cover-Up scandal involving Catholic bishops was about superintendents of schools instead of bishops. What if it were grammar school teachers who were pedophiles? Imagine the offending teachers being transferred from one school to another and parents/guardians being given financial settlements with provisions that effectively prevented the victims from making public statements regarding the abuse. Can you imagine what would happen to the Superintendent of a school district who obstructed justice? How long would it take before the local District Attorney pressed criminal charges?
Here is where the analogy fails. Unlike the Public School System, Roman Catholic Diocese are corporations. Corporations enjoy all the legal rights of individuals without the legal responsibilities of individuals. Add to that the social/political clout of the bishops and their extensive financial power and you begin to understand why not one bishop has been prosecuted for obstruction of justice in criminal cases. These are not “white collar” (no pun intended) financial crimes, but crimes in which minors have been sexually abused.
This is why the Cover-Up is actually as bad as the pedophilia itself. The Cover-Up not only is an obstruction of justice in which victims and their families are marginalized and left to fend for themselves. The Cover-Up actually facilitates new case of abuse because bishops/superiors who knew of the abuse transferred the pedophile to new parishes. In several cases, the pedophile was moved across international boarders, thereby undermining any judicial action. All of this has been done to protect not the pedophile priest, but the institution and its reputation and wealth.
In a truly disgusting display during Holy Week, the Vatican has attempted to cast itself as the “victim” in all of this comparing itself with those who suffered the Holocaust. Cardinal Angelo Sodano then dismissed countless legal cases as “rumor.” As if the testimony of thousands of victims and the judicial proceedings of many countries are comparable to coffeehouse and locker room gossip.
The latest insult is an attempt by Cardinal Bertone of the Vatican to scapegoat gays for the pedophilia scandal. This despite psychological evidence to the contrary. However, the Vatican is not primarily interested in Science, or in the pursuit of the truth. They are; however, very desperately interested in pinning responsibility for their horrific crimes on anyone else. Hmmm, perhaps this last Holy Week was in fact the most honest commemoration of the original Holy Week in that sense.
- Boycott the Knights of Columbus
- A wedding sermon.
- An open letter to my parish community.
- Why was a college student in the car of drunken Archbishop-elect Cordileone at 12:26 AM, when Cordileone was arrested for a DUI?
- When the Church married Same-Sex couples.
- How It All began
- The Supreme Court’s Decisions and the New Mason-Dixon Line
- What the Vatican & American bishops DO NOT want you (and Politicians) to know.
- The Morality of Sex, gay & straight.
- San Francisco in archbishop Cordileone’s sight