BY PAUL J. HANLY JR. ON 12/30/15
As we head into 2016 and the official start of the awards season, “Spotlight,” which tells the true tale of a Pulitzer Prize–winning team of Boston Globe reporters that unravels the Catholic Church’s decades-long attempt to cover up the sexual misdeeds of its clergy, emerges as a clear favorite.
The film reveals the shame, embarrassment and fear of sex abuse victims as they weigh whether to risk it all by outing one of the world’s most powerful institutions.
Frustratingly, few moviegoers will realize that the story is actually much bigger than what the film depicts in two key ways. The most mind-blowing revelations, in fact, may still be enshrouded in darkness.
Sexual abuse of children by those associated with the Church is by no means confined to the abbeys of Boston. In 2014, the Vatican released a report revealing that 848 priests, globally, had been defrocked for raping or molesting children over the past decade, and 2,572 other offending priests had been given lesser sanctions.
According to news reports, between 2004 and 2013, the U.S. Catholic Church has spent almost $3 billion in costs related to widespread abuse allegations, including settlements and attorneys’ fees, therapy for victims and support for offenders.
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