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Friday, July 6, 2012

Catholic Church Sexual Abuse 4 Corners Program

Even though the Catholic church acknowledges that paedophile priests have ruined the lives of innocent children, Cardinal Pell still refuses to entertain any talk of an independent inquiry.   And we know why - it's because the church has been doing a very unsatisfactory job of investigating themselves.

The 4 Corners report on Monday night was a shocking account of how Catholic priests have been raping children for years, secure in the knowledge that their church will protect them.  The worst that could happen was a wrap over the knuckles and a transfer to another school where they would continue molesting innocents.  Innocents who were so badly damaged by these followers of Jesus Christ, they grew up to be drug addicts and victims of suicide.  In just one state alone, Victoria, confidential police reports have detailed suicides of at least 40 people sexually abused by Catholic priests.

And it wasn't only the child that suffered, to see the pain in the faces of their parents and their siblings - good people who believed that the Catholic church was an honourable institution and couldn't understand why their child suddenly didn't want to go to Mass anymore.

Cardinal Pell told 4 Corners "What ever the facts are, we have to face up to them."  But he insists that the church is in the best position to deal with the victims.  Not true, there has not been one single case where the church has referred a paedophile priest to police for prosecution.

Since 2007, the Catholic church is not legally responsible for the actions of its priests, so you can't sue the church, just the priest, but what's the point of suing a man who has no assets?

There are many good Catholics in the Australian Labor Party and they, among others, are now calling for a national inquiry or a Royal Commission and the church will fight tooth and nail to stop it.  Surely they must see that the only way for the church to reclaim any credibility and move forward, is to allow the inquiry to go ahead and give it their full co-operation.

On 27 May 1993, we saw George Pell, then a Bishop, walking side by side with a priest who was headed to court to face charges of sexual abuse.  He wanted to show his support for one of Australia's worst sexual offenders, Father Gerald Francis Risdale.  There was no one from the church to show support for the victims.   Those old enough to remember, will never forget.