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Will the Catholic Church deal justice to child-molesting clergy?

Added: Thursday, May 16th 2019 at 12:03pm by tjdonegan

Hi, Writer!

I'm not sure if I understand your question? But - thinking that you are asking: "What will/should happen to clergy caught abusing children?" our answer follows (forgive the pretention; ultimately God will render them their just-deserts, but we have a moral obligation to protect the vulnerable)...

If you mean will the clergy that have molested children be held accountable buy the Church (I think the secular law-enforcement is beginning to get the bastards, but they cannot undo the damage done to the innocents; no amount of money can return to a child abused what has been taken), but the Church - even now is dragging its heals to making right what they allowed to go wrong; Pope Francis - it seems - would like to change the subject (If nuns have been abused, that should be addressed separately, and not be used to attempt to take focus off child-molestation...), and - in my experience with fellow Catholics - there is still too much trust placed in clergy; lay-people should be running diocesan panels looking into these abuses, and what hearings and meetings should be open to the public whereby answers to questions may not be feel-goodplatitudes.

Now it seems - to me (Note: I could/can be wrong) that the good and faithful Catholic Clergy generally have been at the mercy of wicked, and/or weak Bishops... Thus far one may blame Pope's John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI for the sexual abuse of children, but they may not have known all of the particulars, and they may have relied upon unreliable sources to find answers to questions which - at the time - were not so ubiquitous... So until we know all the facts   - (and an investigation of what Church leaders knew and when they knew it should be going on by law-enforcement, and the secular-Press right now!) - regarding whom was guilty of negligence, ignorance, insouciance, complicity and/or actual abuse we should withhold judgment, but those facts and etiology needs to be fleshed-out.

Pope Francis - is being forced (by public opinion, and a number of loud unremitting Catholic intellectuals) - to provide a more sober response than it appears that he desires to give,; let us hope that the pressure intensifies rather than abates! As it is, and as William Donohue (Catholic writer, apologist, sociologist and scholar) has repetitively pointed out, the abuse was overwhelmingly homosexual abuse of young males (roughly 88% of the cases); Pope Benedict XVI - in a recent letter - addressed the high number of homosexuals among the clergy, and how they entered the Church - particularly - following the 2nd Vatican Council (1962-1965) wherein traditional morality (i.e., natural Law) was de-emphasized, along with relaxing the rigor of Clergy education (An emphasis - prior to Vatican II - had been placed upon undergraduate's study of philosophyparticularly the Perennial philosophy exemplified by Saint Thomas Aquinas); Benedict - in addressing the problem going forward - indicated 1.) Homosexuals - explicitly - should not be accepted as members of the clergy 2.) The rigor - associated with preparation for the priesthood - should return to that of the pre-2nd Vatican Council Church; Pope Saint John Paul II called for such a return in his encyclicals Fides ET Ratio and VERITAS Splendor . But we are off topic...

In dealing with child-molesters besides their prosecution and Court remedies (How severe is too severe? I'm all for severity - as a father of twin-boys - if anyone had touched my sons, I wouldn't have left much of the molester to prosecute...) it may be a good thing to sterilize/vasectomize - and, if need by lobotomize - the convicted perpetrator...

Now, there may be many things which should be addressed which were not, but if a related matter comes up, we'll attempt a response...

Cordially, tjd

User Comments

Thanks tjd for taking the time to address the issue personally. Didn't mean to take over Imperalix blog. I find you to be very well informed that's why i engaged you in conversation. You addressed an issue I wasn't think about, but I agree with your take on it. I have a relative who is a Catholic priest and in our conversations he lamented the fact that they were not allowed to marry and have children. 

I see the abortion issue as one hijacked by those who wants to make a profit out of terminating pregancies and one where the government wants to safe guard a potential decline in population growth which can be a burden on the labor force. I see women as stuck in the middle some afraid to give birth because of strenous econmic reasons.

I wonder though if that is the issue then should we allow women to tie their tubes? Should we allow men to have a vasectomy? Should we also turn our focus on Catholic priests who are not contributing to our populatiuon growth? There are so many factors that can result in a critical decline in population. That was my line of thinking. Thanks.

If I may inject a thought here, all of what is going on in America today is force and political pressure. To allow, pressure, forbid, etc. is reminiscent of Russia or China, not the American republic.  There are too many laws today that remove or reduce our freedoms, and should be replaced/ repealed. Besides abortion, all sexual questions should  only concern, and be answered by, the parties concerned.

I'm with you there. We are being pushed into a freedom of speech crisis.


Hi, Writer!


The marriage of priests is a Church discipline, not a Church doctrine; your uncle has likely mentioned such? If the Pope should allow priests to be married (as they have accepted married clergy from other faiths into the Catholic clergy; particularly the Greek Orthodox), he’d likely get an influx of vocations; it is said/feared that the Church is worried that the priest would have a double-loyalty…? One of the things which I forgot to mention – regarding the development of the clergy crisis and pedophiles – is that a number of Bishops (e.g., Bishop/Cardinal Wuerl whom I have had a number of tête-à-têtes with when he was Pittsburgh’s Bishop) – place a number of impediments to would-be-priests if they detect in them a dominance of reason; it seems that the preferable model of a Vatican II priest is heavy on sentiment, and light on philosophical grounding… I personally knew 2 seminarians in the 1980’s that Wuerl wanted them to drop out; to this day I do not know if they ever became priests; additionally, the Church – in Pittsburgh currently – priests which emphasize the Church’s moral doctrines are given warning, and if they persist in intoning moral doctrines they are sent to minister to dementia patients in Nursing homes as punishment (can’t say that this is Bishop Zubic’s doing or one of his subordinates, but know that it is, and has been, happening…)… And in some regards this touches upon your discussing abortion, vasectomies, tying tubes, et al, - if the Catholic Church and the denominational Christian Church’s were what they should be, and teaching what they should be teaching, and should have been teaching, the last 50-60 years, this society would likely be considerably different; as it is the Church (the Church did not act alone, it had plenty of help from the educational system) has been a tacit vanguard/concomitant of social/moral decay; this neglect has manifested in the decay of family, and greater prevalence of most forms of sociopathic behavior…


Take care, writer!


Cordially, tjd


Hi, us2!


Abortion is - objectively - murder, but it is presently the law-of-the-land; once upon a time smoking cigarettes was 'cool' and then the Federal Government - under Clinton convinced most Americans that second-hand smoke will lead to the death of most of us... Today one may smoke, but it is no longer cool, and it is a restricted activity; imagine if we - as a society - were to ubiquitously proclaim both abortion is murder and legal... It strikes me that abortion would almost cease to exist, if we told the truth everywhere... Our culture/society if abortion was truthfully described as the taking of an innocent human life, would almost completely eliminate abortion, and of course the laws would reflect the 90+ percent public opinion, which would be altered in accordance with acknowledging the truth!


Sexual questions - regarding sexual activity - should be private matters among adults, unfortunately the Courts and the social-behavioral disciplines have worked to allow children become pawns in the advance of normalizing sexual-perversity; this culture is moving in the direction of normalizing pedophilia (the social-behavioral disciplines are one of the strongest advocates; albeit their work - in these area's is subtle, but persistent...); consequentially, although I think libertarianism - vis-à-vis sexuality (even sexual perversity; the State should not attempt to punish sin i.e., violations of God’s law, if innocent life is not harmed...) - is fine among adults, but children should not be made the playthings of social-experiments, as they have been for over a generation… The behavioral sciences (irrespective of whether there may be many fine, morally upstanding behavioral scientists…) are implicitly satanic, and are principally amoral! So a libertarian approach to sexuality may place youth’s in jeopardy, and the Church can longer be trusted, this places a moral onus on the responsible citizenry among us…


Cordially, tjd

Thnks for your response. I think also that the internet and access to information has hastened the demise of society and the influence of religion in the process. From my personal experience I was always hesistant and resistant in my belief, but I did embrace it for most of my life and tried to understand its purpose in my life. Even wrote my personal devotion book. There is a saying that curiosity kills the cat and I was curious to know the history of my belief and it changed my whole belief system. 

the catholic church spent a long time trying to hide their boys desires to molest ... not to mention the use of nuns to fill their sexual needs, and the killing of babies fathered by their clergy... the penalities shoiuldn't be up to the church itself, it should be left up to the law... or, maybe neutering, then a firing squad. 

Or may they need to change their policy and let these priests get married?

That wouldn't hurt a thing!


Hi, JJ!


The Church - like all institutions administered by humans - is filled with a mix of good and evil people (none of us is completely wicked, and none completely good); the Catholic Church hierarchy (we do not know what responsibility the sundry Popes bore…) has - over the last several generations - been inundated with wicked individuals, but we lay people (I’m Catholic, am not a saint, but have been very unhappy with the Church – to include my fellow lay persons – over the last 40 years…) in our sloth - have often allowed the wickedness to metastasize by formerly flattering some of the same clergy which today have been revealed as enablers and/or molesters, and for desiring more a Church which flatters - rather than one which indicts - the flock… And JJ we certainly agree with you, what penalties molesters and enablers should pay – minimally – should be imposed by the criminal Justice system; if the Church has additional penalties, fine…


Cordially, tjd  

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