Catholic Church's Abuse Report Not Enough
By David M. Drew
York Daily Record [United States]
March 14, 2004
I was quoted in an article by Karen Muller on Feb. 28 entitled, "Reports Detail Clergy Sex Abuse," as saying: "I think there is something a little disingenuous about this whole thing. They covered this up as long as they possibly could, and when they were forced to bring it out into the open, I think they painted it a different color." I would like to specify exactly why this report is "disingenuous."
The report is a collection of data provided by the individual dioceses to a panel of expert psychologists overseen by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. These psychologists function as pure statisticians because they offer no opinion as psychologists as to the cause of the problem or provide any recommendations as to its correction. A physician first performs a through history and physical examination to collect data. The purpose of the data is to arrive at a diagnosis of the problem. Without the diagnosis, the collection of the data is useless because there cannot be any effective action to effect a cure. Their role as psychologists on this panel is therefore pure window dressing. Catholics are now supposed to be complacently satisfied that expert psychologists have the problem in hand.
This is the most important deficiency, their failure to identify the nature and the cause of the problem. Even using their own data it is clear that the problem is primarily one of homosexuals who entered the Catholic priesthood since the 1960s using the clerical collar as a cover for the predatory behavior against young Catholic boys. This problem was directly caused in the 1960s by American Catholic bishops doing away with the established criteria and practical methods for screening active or latent homosexuals from being accepted as candidates for admission to Catholic seminaries to prepare for the priesthood.
The recently published book, "Goodbye, Good Men" by Michael S. Rose, provides a look at how degraded some Catholic religious orders and seminaries have become. However, Mr. Rose is not the first to bring this problem to the attention of the American bishops. One of the priests who assist us at Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Mission, Fr. Enrique T. Rueda, wrote the book, "The Homosexual Network," a 700-page work published in 1981 that details with extensive documentation some of the inroads made by homosexuals into the Catholic clergy 25 years ago.
I know personally of other priests who have meticulously documented the extent of this problem to Catholic bishops throughout the 1980s and were either ignored, or in some cases were punished by their bishops for reporting this information while the perpetrators of these crimes were protected.
What these bishops have done amounts to the willful participation and cover up of felonious crimes. They belong in jail and not on some podium presenting the findings of their self-serving investigations. If a physician or public school official had done what these bishops have done, confined to prison is exactly where they would justly be.
Forgive me if I sound a little jaded, but I think the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, who threw together this panel of investigators and established the limitations of their investigative mandate, is probably heavily influenced by personal injury attorneys who have lined their pockets with hundreds of millions of dollars of other people's money to which they have no right. That money, spent by the bishops to pay for their crimes, is taken from individual Catholics who generously sacrificed themselves for the propagation of the Catholic faith and support Catholic charitable institutions. That money is not the personal property of American bishops to buy themselves off from criminal prosecution.
I guarantee that if the judicial authorities had done their duty and thrown into prison the first bishop responsible for covering up these crimes of unnatural sexual molestation of minors, the rest of the American bishops would have cleaned house overnight. They may have little interest in promoting the doctrinal and moral teaching of the Catholic Church, but they have demonstrated a real avidity for personal preservation, no matter what the cost is to someone else.
David M. Drew is chairman of Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Mission. Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Chapel is at 129 S. Beaver Street in York.
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.